There’s always one. Always someone that says it as soon as you start talking about feeling hot (and you feel hot EVERY Georgia summer). You know what we’re talking about. There’s always someone that reminds you, “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity!”

Sadly, they’re right, sort of. How we feel heat – and cold for that matter – is all part of a scientific equation that features temperature, and, yes, humidity. But it also includes dew point and a whole range of other factors.

You want to know the crazy thing? That equation also effects your home’s HVAC system. Now, that doesn’t mean your air conditioner is outside right now complaining about the heat (or the humidity!), but what it does mean is that humidity influences how your HVAC systems run and what they produce inside your home. And in places like Buford, Lawrenceville, Flowery Branch, and Hoschton, where humidity and (more importantly) dew point are regularly high, these factors can reveal your system is either not up to the challenge. In fact, humidity can cause older systems to malfunction.

How? Let’s take a closer look and find out…

First, let’s look at how humidity effects how you feel. If the air in your home is humid – that is the air has more water particles in it – it will make you feel warmer. Why? Because the presence of those water particles keeps your sweat from evaporating, and the human body cools itself by sweating – and then that sweat evaporating.

Therefore, the more humid your home, the hotter you are going to feel – which leads us to how your HVAC responds in those situations.

Window with condensation because an HVAC unit is broken.

There are three ways that your HVAC may not be able to handle humidity in your home:

  • It is an older unit
  • It is a single sped unit
  • It is too big for the home

No matter how often you take part in preventative maintenance on your your unit, there will still be issue pop-up from time to time.

Why is older a problem?

If your HVAC installation took place some time ago, there’s a chance that it does not have a dehumidifier attachment – though the chances of that are slimmer for units here, as Buford HVAC contractors – and contractors throughout north Georgia and metro Atlanta – understand what occurs with the weather here in Georgia.

However, if your unit does not have a dehumidifier, it will make it harder for the HVAC to do its job. As your air conditioner runs, it’s coils effectively reduce humidity in your home by condensing water vapor into liquid that it then drains away. However, if it does not have a dehumidifier attachment that process will be more difficult and cause the unit to run longer and more continuously. If the unit is already older, this constant work could set it up for a breakdown.

Why is single speed a problem?

HVAC units that can only run at single speeds have a harder time dealing with humidity control. This is because the best way for an air conditioner to deal with high humidity is to run at much lower speeds on a consistent basis – in order to most effectively remove the excess water particles from the air. However, single speed units can only run at full bore. This means they will run at full power until the thermostat reaches a desired temperature and then switch off again.

This might get the temperature down effectively, but it does not remove humidity effectively.

Why is too big a problem?

A unit that is too big for the home it serves has a much harder time controlling optimum levels of temperature and humidity. This occurs because a unit that is too big is constantly turning on and off, as the compressor cannot find the right balance of consistent low speeds to remove humidity while also maintaining the desired temperature.

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How do I know if my home is experiencing too much humidity?
Do your windows consistently fog over? Do you notice a must odor in your home? Is your skin constantly clammy?

These are all telltale signs of a home with too much humidity in the air.

While it might not seem like a big deal – so long as you’re cool, right? Well, long-term homes that have too much moisture in the air can develop mold and mildew – even in places you cannot see, such as your HVAC ducts. If that happens, the mold and mildew will be transported all over the house. And if you have allergies, that could lead to real suffering.

What do I do if I have a humidity problem?

If you have – or suspect you have a humidity issue – in your home, the best thing to do is contact a professional HVAC contractor and have them look closely at your system. They will be able to tell whether you have a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

That said, you want to talk with an air conditioning company that you can trust. So, before you Google “heating and air companies near me” know that Zone is here and ready to help you with all your HVAC needs. We have decades helping residents of north Georgia and metro Atlanta to achieve the perfect levels of comfort in their homes. And we’ll be honest with you. Our NATE-certified technicians won’t try and sell you a new system just for the sake of it. We’ll give you a complete look at your options, including any air conditioning repair or simple fixes that you can make to increase your comfort.

We’re here for you at any time. Simply call us today at 770-904-5432.