Using a dehumidifier versus a fan for indoor humidity. Which one is better?
Excessive humidity inside of your home can happen for multitude of reasons including flooding, leaks, poor insulation especially in the basement and crawl spaces, or the rainy season has just descended on you.
Regardless, living with high humidity inside of the house not only effects your level of comfort and overall wellness, it also effects the structure of your home as well as your belongings.
Dehumidifier vs. fan
A fan can be useful to reduce indoor humidity as long as it is blowing dry outdoor air into the room, but it is not controlled or measured.
On the other hand, a dehumidifier will reduce a controllable , measured amount of humidity and does not depend on the outside air being dry.
If you have an issue with high humidity inside of your home, the humidity outside is more likely going to be very high than low.
In a circumstances where the humidity is not overbearing but not exactly helping you out either, placing fans around the room can have a drying effect on the air. If you were trying to paint or some other type of similar art project where you need a dry environment, having a couple of fans osculating and moving air around the room can probably give you the amount of dryness you need for your project.
But other indoor humidity issues, like a damp basement, you need a way to control the amount of humidity in the room because of the problems of mold and fungus it comes with it.
The only way you can get this type of control is by using a dehumidifier that will extract the humidity out of the air to the proper relative humidity is reached.
Dehumidifier vs exhaust fan
Most people have exhaust fans in their bathrooms so that the moisture left in the air by the shower and bath can be expelled out of the house so but it does not have a chance to promote mold in the drywall and window frames.
But though you typically do fine exhaust fans in the bathroom and the kitchen, they are really not found too much in other areas of the house.
Dehumidifiers and fans or exhaust fans are not enemies. Nor do they have to work exclusive of each other.
Using the exhaust fans in the bathroom in the kitchen or a great idea and do a great job. But they do not work for the whole house.
A Dehumidifier can only help an exhaust fan to reduce the humidity in the house. Likewise, exhaust fans can only help with the dehumidifier do its job.
“The main difference is that a dehumidifier can extract and remove the exact amount of humidity that you need it to whereas a fan doesn’t have the capacity to be measured.”
The second way a fan can help a dehumidifier is the use of a high-powered air mover fan. An air mover is a fan created especially for drying and is usually used on construction sites as a means of speeding up the time it takes for paint to dry and blowing away the fumes left behind by the paint.
An air mover is not generally a piece of machinery that you’ll want to use in your home unless you plan on removing everything from the walls and putting everything away that can be blown away.
A fan and a dehumidifier can both help reduce humidity in the air but the difference is, it is the job of a dehumidifier to remove humidity from the air and it does so according to how it is programmed.
A Fan on the other hand, even though it does have some drying capacity because oh the natural blowing on something to dry it aspect, does not extract humidity from the air and does not do nearly as good of a job as reducing humidity as a dehumidifier. Nor is it measurable or controllable like a dehumidifier.
One exception is an exhaust fan that is put inside of a bathroom or kitchen for the express purpose of removing moisture created by showering and cooking. Another exception is the use of a commercial air mover, which is a high velocity fan meant that is used to help dry out construction sites as well as remove fumes.
Yet even in these cases it’s not measurable or controllable.
But as a fan, a dehumidifier is only good for blowing hot air on you. Not usually the effect you want from a fan.
See Also: Humidifier vs. Vaporizer