A humidistat (also called a hygrostat) is a measurement device that helps to monitor and maintain the humidity level in the air. Humidistats are often found on portable humidifiers or combined air cleaner/humidifier units that can help manage the moisture level in your home. Maintaining a certain humidity level is often desirable for various health reasons.
How Does a Humidistat Work?
Humidistats contain a sensing element with two conductors. Variations in the relative moisture in the air cause electrical resistance. These two conductors measure the electrical resistance of the air and compare that measurement to known resistances that correspond to the humidity level in the air. The humidistat can then adjust the relative humidity of the air by turning the humidifier on or off depending on the humidity preferences.
Humidistats are often used in conjunction with hygrometers. A hygrometer gives humidity readings of a room like a humidistat but lacks the capability to maintain the desired humidity. Hygrometers are often used to check how a humidistat is functioning and if adjustments to the desired humidity level need to be made for certain spaces.
Where to Use a Humidistat?
Humidistats are generally used in humidity-related devices like stand alone humidifiers and dehumidifiers, though they can be used with HVAC systems to help regulate airflow and maintain desired humidity in certain rooms or spaces. Humidistats are often used in crawl spaces to control ventilation fans to keep humidity down.
Maintaining a proper moisture balance in your home is critical to prevent over-humidifying, which can result in mold spores. A home that is too dry can also be uncomfortable. Adding a humidistat to your current HVAC system can help make your home more livable.
Who can benefit from a Humidistat?
If you live in Florida seasonally, or are a “snowbird” a humidistat is ideal for your home. The humidistat will regulate your home based on humidity rather than temperature, thus resulting in your air conditioning turning on less, lowering your energy bills.
The recommended humidity level for a home is from 45 to 60 percent. Factors that can influence this level are climate, weather, outside temperature, and insulation. Adding a humidifier or dehumidifier along with a humidistat can help maintain a humidity level in the acceptable range if your home does not fall within it. Combining a humidistat with a hygrometer can help you achieve optimum results.