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How Humidity Made the World a Cooler Place

by | Jun 21, 2017

Humidity made the world a cooler place
It was humidity more than high temperatures that led to the invention of air conditioning. In 1902, Willis Carrier was working in a printing company, and finding that paper would curl and ink would not set properly on humid days. Familiar with the concept of heating objects with steam, he reversed the process for cooling and created his now-famous and indispensable air conditioning system.

Your AC: One System, Three Ways to Stay Cool

Cool air is a necessity in summer, but if it’s humid, even that can feel muggy and downright stifling. Humidity—the amount of water vapor in the air—is a major factor in how our bodies cope with heat. When sweat evaporates, the process draws heat away from our skin so we feel cooler. However, high humidity slows this process way down, leaving us feeling warm and sticky. This is why we love Mr. Carrier’s air conditioning—AC makes your home less humid and more comfortable in three ways:

  1. Cool It Down—Your AC’s job—first and foremost—is to bring down the air temperature in your home or business. It does this by cycling a refrigerant through the coil system, where this liquid is continually condensed and evaporated. The energy transfer in this process is what allows it to absorb and cast out heat.
  2. Dry It Out—Because cool air can’t carry as much moisture as warm air, the air conditioning process reduces humidity. As air moves across the evaporator coil, the coil absorbs heat and also “wrings out” moisture. This is often enough to bring humidity down to a comfortable level in your home. There will be times when the outside air is so humid that your system can’t keep up, or there may be places in your home—like a bathroom or basement—that are not well-serviced by the AC. In these situations, experts like those at Gross Heating have both whole-home and stand-alone dehumidifiers to help you get and stay in a comfortable range.
  3. Move It Around—Even when you don’t need serious cooling, the auto fan option on your air conditioning system can make you more comfortable. Simply keeping the air moving brings humidity down a notch, and circulating it reduces stuffiness. This is another area where an HVAC professional can help you—ask about air to air heat exchangers that bring in fresh, clean air from the outdoors, while controlling humidity and minimizing heat loss or gain.

Carrier’s invention controls not only temperature but also humidity, and almost 90 percent of all homes now benefit from his ingenuity. At Gross Heating, Carrier® products are still our first choice. If you want to learn more about your choices when it comes to comfort, contact us for an in-home consultation.

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Gross Heating & Air Conditioning
3260 N. 126th Street
Brookfield, WI 53005
Phone: 262-783-6000
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