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Every Thursday, Zengage brings you a classic correspondence from the Write The Company archives. (For more, see our interview with Write The Company.)
Humidifier vs. Dehumidifier
There are humidifiers. There are dehumidifiers. How do you know which way to idify on any given day? I wasn’t sure, so I asked Jarden Consumer Solutions for assistance…
Dear Dehumidifier and Humidifier Honchos:
I see that Sunbeam manufactures a variety of Humidifier and Dehumidifier models. Can you explain how to decide which one to choose? Sometimes my rooms feel humid and sometimes they don’t feel humid enough. Then what? Do you need to buy both?
If you do recommend owning both, Steven Wright once asked: “If you put a humidifier and a dehumidifier in the same room and let them fight it out, which would win?” What’s your take on this? The answer may be the deciding factor for which idifier to go with.
Furthermore, are most rooms on average generally more humid or dehumid? Can you please explain the term room temperature? According to Steven Wright, “It doesn’t make a difference what temperature a room is, it’s always room temperature.” What do your climate control experts say to either support or desupport this theory?
Can you recommend a good barometer for determining which Humidifier or Dehumidifier is best for home use? I only ask because I don’t have a very good sense of humid, but it appears that you do.
A Jarden Consumer Solutions Representative responded with
We thank you for contacting Holmes, a division of Jarden Consumer Solutions. We have received and read your letter requesting information on dehumidifiers and humidifiers. Unfortunately, we don’t have any research material that we can include with this but I have a bit of expertise regarding your questions and I will be more than happy to assist you.
As you presently live in a naturally humid climate, I would recommend a dehumidifier. Your area has the benefits of the ocean and other natural humidity. Due to this natural humidity, it can cause a lot of problems with mold and mildew. Mold and mildew spores inhabit areas of natural humidity looking for a warm spot to latch onto and then multiply. By sapping that humidity out of the air, you can limit or inhibit this growth. Humidifiers, typically, will only add fuel to the fire, so to speak.
As far as room temperature, it’s a relative concept. Room temperature is the degree of warmth, or cold, in a given living space (ie. bedroom, kitchen, etc.). This temperature is dependent on a lot of variables, like internal and external climate. Most thermostats are set temperatures in the 70s for their households. There are some people that like it cooler, or hotter, but it depends on temperature thresholds that one can normally tolerate comfortably (ie since you’re in a tropic area, your threshold will be higher than people in Illinois).
Unfortunately, barometers would not be what is needed to check internal humidity. Barometers check the atmospheric pressure. They are closely attributed to weather on the outside. Hygrometers are devices created to monitor the relative humidity in your household. Most guidelines suggest keeping humidity levels at around 40-50%. Living in high levels of humidity, can cause some health ramifications. It can make you lethargic as well as can lead to becoming ill. You may find hygrometers at your local hardware store or you may find them at www.holmesproducts.com. Most hygrometers are basically designed similarly but I would suggest something that has percentages over anything with comfort levels. In my opinion, comfort level types of hygrometers don’t typically give you all the information needed for household use.
If you need any further information, please don’t hesitate to write us back. We are also available from (hours of operation) on our customer service line, (phone number). We look forward to assisting you further in the future.
As a consumer, it is incredibly satisfying to air out your concerns and get a comprehensive reply back that blows you away. Jarden Consumer Solutions delivered so much more than a response. They practically provided a treatment that could be used to pitch a documentary to The Weather Channel.
The Consumer Solutions Representative also lived up to their title by actually analyzing my climate and providing solutions. Humidity isn’t an easy topic to tackle because it is relative. That’s why they call it relative humidity. This also brings up another factor to consider. How are humidity levels inside a home affected when relatives stay over? It certainly increases the amount of hot air being expelled. This hot air may or may not combine with humidity and throw the entire interior atmosphere of a home into disarray, or at the very least increase condensation on windows. If you’d like to verify this theory, please check with a Meteorologist, preferably with a PhD in Family Counseling.
Based on this response, I’ll definitely be looking out more for brands like Sunbeam and Holmes from Jarden Consumer Solutions. However, when you’re confused about what kind of product is most suitable for your needs, sometimes it is best to clear the air first and Write The Company.
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Today’s letter is republished with permission from Write The Company. All rights reserved. © Write The Company