Indoor Pools and Dehumidification - Problems and Solutions

by Pool Builders on 04-08-2010 in Articles

Indoor humidity can cause serious problems with mold, mildew, corrosion (including corrosion of structural supports), rust, water vapor in sensitive equipment causing expensive failures and breakdowns, paint blistering, wood rot. Not to mention swimmers' discomfort, and possible health hazards from overly humid air. Indoor swimming pools continuously produce large quantities of chlorine laden water vapor. Humid air more easily breeds bacteria and fungi, and the mold and mildew mentioned earlier.

Modern buildings are made more airtight these days, so air exchange is not a very efficient way of dealing with high humidity. (I HAVE seen indoor pools where they leave a window or door open year round, even if sever climates, just to combat humidity. There ARE much more effective- AND inexpensive- ways of dehumidifying.)

NOT dehumidifying WILL cost you time, money and headaches over the long run. Potentially LOTS of time, money and headaches. Over 35 years in the pool business means we have seen a great deal of anguish and frustration due to humidity problems. The best solution (and I do mean best) is a commercial grade dehumidifier. There are various kinds, some with complex options. Our experience has led to the idea that simpler usually is better, in all things.

There are three key things to look for when shopping for a commercial dehumidifier:

1) Low unit cost
2) Low installation cost
3) Low operating cost.

In regards to a low unit cost, some units utilize heat transfer innovations that dramatically improve performance. This enables manufacturers to build higher capacity dehumidifiers with smaller refrigeration systems. That results in lower equipment cost.

And, with installation and operating costs, a smaller refrigeration system requires a smaller electrical load. It is important to properly size the commercial dehuimidifer to your room size and volume, but smaller units are cheaper, so be careful not to buy bigger than necessary. Also, if it can use ordinary 115 volt grounded current that is less expensive than having to bring in a 200 volt line and electrically wire that.

Also look at effectiveness of various units. Some dehumidifiers remove two to three times more water per kilowatt hour of electricity than other dehumidifiers. If possible, compare capacity. Ask: how much water will this unit remove from this volume of space at 80 degree room temperature and 60 degree relative humidity?

Finally, be sure to buy from a reputable company. Look for one that has an established business, been around a long time, and will stand by and guarantee their products. The average life of a dehumidifier is about 15 years, you want trouble free operation during those years until it is time to replace.

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