September 30


What Is the Difference Between a Humidity Sensor and a Temperature Monitor?


By William Chutney

Published: September 30, 2021

Are you looking to install a new home monitor in your home that provides you with the specific details you need in order to make the house comfortable? Often people focus on the temperature inside the home as the comfort determination factor. While that certainly plays a huge role into how comfortable everyone is, there is another important consideration that you may also want to be aware of and that's the humidity level in your house.

The humidity level can make a house feel hotter, damper, and even cooler, which means simply adjusting the temperature won’t be enough. This brings us to the topic of a humidity sensor versus a temperature monitor. So, what exactly is the difference and why does it matter to you? Let’s take a closer look.

What is a Humidity Sensor?

Humidity sensors - sometimes referred to as dew sensors, are able to sense, measure, and then provide the details regarding the relative humidity that is in the air. It measures both the air temperature and the moisture since the relative humidity is determined by the ratio of moisture in the air against the highest amount of moisture that can be found in air temperature. The warmer your house is, the more moisture can be present.

The humidity level is reported as a percentage, with 100% being the highest level of humidity possible. Now, you want your home to have some humidity so that it's comfortable and not overly dry, which means anywhere between 40-50% humidity is usually preferred.

What’s the Harm in High Humidity Levels?

So why exactly should you be concerned about high humidity levels in the home? Well, obviously, the comfort factor is the first thing that comes to mind. Even if the house temperature is set to a comfortable reading, if there is high humidity present, it’s not going to feel comfortable. Then there is the fact that high humidity can bother people that suffer from things such as asthma and migraines and it can even act as a trigger.

Then we have a much more serious reason to keep the humidity levels in check, and that is the prevention of mold growth. If a home has high humidity, it means there is a lot of moisture present in the air. That moisture can lead to mold growth, which can cause all kinds of serious health issues. Basements can often be the source of high humidity levels, and it’s also common to then find mold growing in these spaces. The same can be said of bathrooms that lack proper ventilation.

What to Do When You Have High Humidity Levels?

So, what happens if you install a humidity sensor and your readings are far too high? Now what? Typically, the best step is to use a dehumidifier. Depending on the size of your home and the humidity level, you may even need to purchase a few of these units to place them around the home. There should be at least one unit on each level in order to do the best possible job.

The way a dehumidifier works is that it pulls the moisture from the air into an intake bucket. You will then need to empty that reservoir of water on a regular basis. Keep in mind it can fill up pretty fast if you have high levels of humidity.

It can also be helpful to ensure that your home is property ventilated allowing moisture to be released rather than trapped inside.

What is a Temperature Monitor?

A temperature monitor is what is found in your home's thermostat. This sensor is responsible for reading the average total temperature in your home. Depending on the thermostat unit that you choose, it may even have a remote sensor that can be transported around the house. This can help to give more accurate readings in the home.

For those who live in multi-story houses, you'll notice that the temperature may alter by a couple degrees on each floor. Because the thermostat is found on one floor, it can be difficult for it to monitor the entire home. This is where remote sensors can be extremely helpful since they can read the temperature in various areas of the home, not just one set location.

The temperature monitor inside your thermostat is what is responsible for activating your furnace for heat and your air conditioning unit for cool air. It does all the measuring and work for you, so that you can maintain a comfortable temperature in the home at all times.

What About a Combo Unit?

Now because the temperature and humidity levels are each important readings, and will allow you to adjust the furnace and air conditioning accordingly, it can be quite helpful to look for a combo unit that works hand-in-hand with one another.

Today, Smart thermostats have become quite the trend, as they are able to read all kinds of different levels and conditions in the home. Among those is often the room temperature as well as the humidity. It's taking a regular thermostat and bumping it up many levels providing homeowners with much more insight. Some of these even feature Wi-Fi so that you can look at the readings no matter whether you are at home or not.

Now keep in mind that in order for the readings to be accurate, you need to place the thermostat correctly. Experts recommend you pick a place where the unit isn't getting direct sunlight; it shouldn't be in the kitchen since it's usually the warmest room in the whole house, shouldn't be above an air vent, not near a window or door, and not in a hallway. Ideally you want your thermostat mounted on an interior wall in the middle of your home.

Each Plays an Important Role in the Comfort Level of Your Home

At the end of the day, a humidity sensor and temperature monitor are both important pieces of equipment that will help you to keep your home comfortable year-round.

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