Do I Need a Humidifier or Dehumidifier? (Differences Explained)

Have you been asking yourself the question “Do I need a humidifier or dehumidifier for my home?”

Or are you wondering do you need a humidifier or dehumidifier in summer and winter?

If you’re having those types of questions then this post is for you.

As your trusty companion, I’ve put together everything you need to know about the differences between these devices. This way, you’ll be able to choose the correct one to suit your needs and stay comfortable indoors all year round.

Understanding the Difference Between a Humidifier and Dehumidifier

The first thing you want to understand is that both a humidifier and a dehumidifier help to improve your home’s indoor air quality.

The thing that makes these two machines different is how they function to enhance your home’s indoor air quality.

If your indoor air is too humid and uncomfortable, a dehumidifier will work to draw the excess moisture out of your home’s air. It’ll cycle the moist, warm air through a system and cool it inside the dehumidifier.

If your indoor air is too dry and it’s causing you to have dry cracked skin, nosebleeds or a sore throat, a humidifier will work to add moisture to your home’s indoor air. You fill a tank on the device with water and turn it on. The humidifier will then disperse moisture into the air to make it more comfortable.

Do I Need a Humidifier or a Dehumidifier?

Whether you need a humidifier or a dehumidifier depends largely on your indoor air.

Does the air feel like there’s too much moisture? Is the air heavy and generally uncomfortable?

If so, you need a dehumidifier because it’ll pull the moisture out of the air and remove it from your home. Along with making it more comfortable, it’ll also make it harder for allergens, fungi, and mold to survive because they thrive in high humidity levels.

You don’t need an expensive dehumidifier to get good results. Take a look at my review of the best mini and small dehumidifiers to see how you can get a cheap, yet powerful device for your home.

Does the air feel dry like there isn’t enough moisture in it? Are you uncomfortable because your skin feels dry and chapped?

If so, you most likely need a humidifier. It’s useful for households in arid climates because there isn’t a lot of surrounding moisture to pull into your home. A humidifier introduces moisture to the air and makes it comfortable.

Do You Need a Humidifier or Dehumidifier in Winter?

Technically, you may need both a humidifier and dehumidifier in winter depending on your location and the quality of the air on its own. You can check the average humidity by U.S. state., cities and towns across the UK, and Canada’s largest cities.

If you live in a climate that gets a lot of snow or moisture, this could cause your humidity levels in your home to rise. When your humidity levels hit a certain point, condensation will start to form.

Condensation forming means that there is most likely moisture forming in other places around your home, and you’ll need a dehumidifier to drop your home’s indoor humidity down to around 30 percent.

However, winter can also bring dry air with little to no moisture because cool air naturally holds less moisture. If this is the case, you’ll need a humidifier to introduce moisture back into your home’s air and make it comfortable for you to dwell.

Do You Need a Humidifier or Dehumidifier in Summer?

Again, you could technically need both a humidifier and dehumidifier for summer months.

However, most people find that they only need a dehumidifier during the summer because warm air holds more moisture than cool air. This can lead to heavy and wet air that is uncomfortably warm.

A dehumidifier will work to strip the excess moisture out of the air and make it feel cooler around your home. This is because you’ll be able to sweat without it constantly sitting on your skin and causing you to feel too warm.

For people in very dry and arid climates who find themselves waking up with irritation in their respiratory tract, sore throats, or nosebleeds, they may need a humidifier instead.

It may be worth it to purchase both a humidifier and dehumidifier because you’ll most likely need to use one or the other sooner or later. It all depends on your location, the weather, and how comfortable you feel.

Both devices help to keep your home’s humidity levels in the proper range which is between 30 and 50 percent. If you can maintain that level of humidity indoors all year round then you’ll feel the most comfortable.

Now you know the difference between a humidifier and dehumidifier, as well as which one you may need in summer and winter.

Your pal,
Trusty Joe