Modern air conditioning cools or heats the air in the room, you choose the operating mode and temperature. Also, some models of air conditioners are equipped with ionization and air purification modes. But among the budget devices, you are unlikely to find split systems with built-in humidification, although you have probably heard or read how the air conditioner is able to dry the air.
In this article, we will briefly explain whether air conditioners dry the air during standard operation and how to adjust the humidity in the room.
The optimal humidity in the living room is 50-70%. A standard air conditioner operating in cooling mode is able to reduce air humidity by up to 30% in a few hours of continuous operation.
To get a sense of how much humidity you will get as a result of the air conditioner, imagine that you are in a desert area with a scorching sun and no water. In such regions, the standard humidity is no more than 40-50%, and this is the lower threshold for residential premises. With this humidity, you will feel a lack of air and dry mouth.
And if such low humidity persists for a long time, the human body will turn on the mechanisms of self-defense. At best, your overall well — being, sleep and performance will deteriorate, and at worst, you will become allergic to wool, dust and other allergens, even if you have not suffered from this disease before.
But you must understand that no air conditioner is able to dehumidify the air so much as to cause serious harm to health. But it may well affect the overall well-being by increasing the amount of dry air in the room. A standard split system dries the air by about 20% for 3 hours of continuous operation.
Why do air conditioners dry the air? It’s all about the principle of its work. In the cooling mode, the device sucks warm air directly from the room, subsequently cooling it and directing it back to the room. So, condensate is formed, i.e. the air loses some of its natural moisture.
In what cases is low humidity useful?
Low humidity is not always synonymous with feeling unwell. If you live in the subtropics (for example, in Gelendzhik), then you will most likely need this property of the air conditioner. In such regions, the humidity is traditionally kept at around 70% or more.
In such a microclimate, dehumidifiers are often used, not humidifiers, so air conditioners are very popular. They not only cool, but at the same time reduce the humidity of the air. If you do not dry the air, a person can develop allergies, and mold will begin to multiply in their home or office.
How to increase the humidity in the room?
However, the probability that you live in the subtropics is extremely small. This means that your air conditioner is more likely to negatively affect the humidity in the room. By forcibly humidifying the air, you can ensure a comfortable microclimate in your room or office, where you can sleep and work comfortably.
A few recommendations on how to increase the humidity in the room:
Purchase several indoor plants. In combination with other measures, the plants will help regulate the humidity in the room. You can also pick up plants that produce oxygen to improve your sleep and overall well-being.;
Install a portable humidifier in the room. Yes, this advice is obvious, but few people use it. And in vain: with low humidity, humidifiers that work on water and do not require special care do an excellent job. Even a child can handle such a device;
Buy air conditioner with humidification function If you are just planning to buy a split system, think about an air conditioner with a built-in humidification function. Yes, such devices are more expensive, but they are easy to use and do not require the purchase of additional devices;
Regularly perform wet cleaning in the room. If you have the opportunity, dust and wash the floors at least once every 3-4 days. Do not forget to ventilate the room often.
Do air conditioners dry the air? Definitely, yes. But this happens only if you use the device for long hours without a break. In other cases, the humidity of the air decreases, but not so significantly.
You can use additional measures to humidify the air if you feel generally unwell. By the way, the inhabitants of the subtropics are happy to use the property of the air conditioner to dry the air, since in this region the humidity is always higher than normal.