The human body can thrive in a variety of environments, but we tend to feel the most comfortable at certain temperatures and relative humidity levels. If the air we’re breathing is too dry, we start to tear up or cough. In pools and spas, we deal with breathing difficulties for the opposite reason—humidity in an indoor pool can get so dense that people have trouble breathing. However, normal HVAC systems just aren’t built to handle that much moisture. That’s where pool dehumidification units come in.
Two Reasons to Use a Pool Dehumidification Unit
You may not see the point behind adding yet another component to your HVAC system. After all, you could just use your air-conditioning system to deal with the humidity in your pool or spa. In that case, you wouldn’t be entirely wrong. This would eliminate some of the major problems with excessive moisture, including bacteria and mold growth and damage to wood and metal.
However, you’d also have to run your cooling system constantly to keep the humidity down. Although it’s possible, you’d be putting unnecessary strain on your system, which means more breakdowns down the road, leading to higher utility and repair bills.
Few environments put more stress on an HVAC system than an indoor pool or spa environment. It’s not just the moisture: water in pools and hot tubs has to be treated with harsh chemicals like chlorine which damage delicate AC components. Pool dehumidification units, on the other hand, are built to operate constantly in very warm, humid environments.
Types of Pool Dehumidification Units
There are two commonly used designs for pool dehumidification units: refrigerant dehumidifiers and ventilation dehumidifiers. Generally, the type you choose will depend on the area you’re trying to dehumidify and your budget.
Refrigerant dehumidifiers are fairly simple. Humid air enters the system and passes over a very cold coil. Water from the air condenses from vapor into liquid before finally draining from the system.
Although they’re effective, refrigerant dehumidifiers have their disadvantages. Because the system’s fan and cooling coil must operate constantly to keep humidity levels down, they require a lot of energy to function at full capacity.
As the name implies, ventilation dehumidifiers take advantage of outside air to help manage relative humidity levels around indoor pools. Up to 100% of the inside air can be replaced with outdoor air, providing exceptional levels of moisture removal.
Ventilation dehumidifiers are more efficient and can be more cost-effective over time for high-volume, high-traffic spaces. However, since the system can only directly transfer moisture to outside air, it can’t function well when the outside air is more humid than the air coming from indoors or the outdoor air is too cold and must be heated. Finally, because they require more equipment—and room—than refrigerant dehumidifiers, they’re not ideal for small spaces.
Ventilation of pool spaces is also critical as the indoor air quality of a pool is difficult to manage. According to Dectron, a leading pool dehumidification equipment manufacturer, “It is a common misconception that a strong chlorine odor is caused by too much chlorine in the water. The odor is actually caused by chloramines (combined chlorines) off-gassing from the pool water surface. Chloramines are formed in the pool water when there is insufficient free chlorine in the pool to address the nitrogen-containing compounds brought into the pool water by the swimmers.” Exhausting air containing these chloramines and introducing clean outdoor air is critical.
Selecting a Pool Dehumidification Unit
If you’re buying a unit for a small pool or hot tub, you’ll probably want to go with a refrigerant dehumidifier. This type of dehumidifier is the smallest, most budget-friendly option. However, if you’re shopping for a large indoor space, you should consult with a professional to determine which type of dehumidifier will work best for your facility. No two spaces are alike, after all.
Find Pool Dehumidification Units That Fit Your Needs
At Windy City Representatives, we work with custom equipment manufacturers to procure high-quality, affordable pool dehumidification units. These products are manufactured by Dectron and AAON. We’ll work with you to find the right fit for your needs and budget. Contact Windy City Representatives today