Most homeowners living in Alabama understand the value of their dehumidifier. Especially during long Alabama summers, there are few things we are more grateful to have than our AC and dehumidifier. Are you looking to maximize the comfort in your home? Well, the pros at OnTime Service are here to help you make your home air and humidity levels a priority with 8 maintenance tips for your dehumidifier.

1. Ensure Proper Placement

First of all, the continued efficiency and safety of your dehumidifier depends on where you place it. Make sure your unit is on a level surface, away from any obstructions that could block the intake of air. Not only can obstructions reduce the efficiency of your dehumidifier but can cause the system to overheat. Furthermore, your dehumidifier should be at least six inches from the wall, with surrounding windows and doors closed. By keeping windows and doors shut in the room that houses the unit, you can keep your dehumidifier from working overtime to extract excess moisture.

2. Adjust the Humidistat

Secondly, you should make sure your humidistat is set to maintain an ideal humidity level of 45% to 50%. Designed to control how much moisture your dehumidifier removes, the humidistat is a device included with most units. Make sure your humidistat settings are correct. Overworking your unit and removing too much moisture can lead to a dry, uncomfortable environment and high energy bills. Conversely, setting the humidity levels on your humidistat too high keeps the dehumidifier from doing its job and fixing the humidity problem.

3. Use a Hygrometer

Now that you know the ideal levels to aim for when you set your humidistat, you will need a way to measure current levels to make the right adjustments. Therefore, we are brought to our third maintenance tip on our list. Whether you choose to mount it to a wall or set it on a table, a battery-powered humidifier/thermometer is the best device to measure current humidity levels in your home so you can adjust your humidistat settings properly.

4. Keep It Clean

Once you have set up your dehumidifier properly and adjusted the hygrometer settings to the desired levels, you will need to keep up with routine cleaning of the unit. To prevent mold and mildew growth, we recommend cleaning the condensate bucket each month. This involves unplugging the unit, removing the container, and washing it with warm water and a small amount of dish detergent. Before returning the condensate bucket to the unit, you must make sure it is completely dry. Also, we recommend cleaning the air intake and exhaust grilles within your dehumidifier at the start of each season. This can be done with a vacuum brush attachment to clear dust and debris blockages that accrue over time.

5. Replace the Filter

Another important maintenance task for your dehumidifier is replacing the filter once each year. Although this should be done once a year, we recommend inspecting the filter twice a year for tears or damage. Furthermore, if you can, clean your filter between the two annual replacements to keep it working efficiently in the meantime. For specific filter care instructions, you should check your unit’s owner’s manual. This will also include the model number of your unit which will allow you to find out which type of replacement filter your unit needs when the time comes.

6. Inspect the Coils

Because your dehumidifier’s evaporator coils can develop a buildup of ice if the temperature falls below 60 degrees, it’s important to inspect the coils regularly. Furthermore, dehumidifiers should only be used in rooms that are kept at a temperature above 60 degrees. However, if you find that your dehumidifier is developing ice buildups, you could try raising it higher above the ground, since air tends to be cooler the closer it is to the floor.

7. Avoid Short-Cycling

To avoid short-cycling your dehumidifier, you should wait at least 10 minutes between turning it on and off. Because your system will need time to equalize the pressure to avoid a tripped circuit-breaker or overheating, this is an important habit to adopt. Furthermore, short-cycling your unit doesn’t give your dehumidifier enough time to evaporate excess moisture, leading to a decrease in its efficiency for removing moisture.

8. Check Water Levels

Last but not least, we recommend checking the water levels in the condensate bucket daily. Because dehumidifiers collect water in a reservoir, failing to empty a full container keeps the unit in shut-off mode. In this case, humidity levels will rise and the standing water in the reservoir will lead to mold growth. Even if your dehumidifier has a hose option for drainage, you should regularly check to make sure the water is properly draining.

Maintain Your Humidity with OnTime Service

Even with these maintenance tips for your humidifier, there are always more solutions to maximize the comfort in your home. With years of experience, the experts at OnTime Service are the best at helping homeowners like you find ideal solutions for any of your HVAC, Electrical, or plumbing needs. For reliable service from the best team, visit our website or call us at 251-272-3595 (Mobile Bay) or 205-942-1405 (Birmingham).