What Is the Dew Point, Anyway?

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Most homeowners already know that humidity, air quality, and mold are interconnected. Specifically, high humidity in your home promotes mold growth, which then lowers overall air quality. However, when analyzing mold development, experts also use a term called the dew point. But what is the dew point, and why is it so important?

What Does the Dew Point Mean?

Generally speaking, dew is the term for the water droplets that form on most surfaces in the evening and morning. Therefore, the dew point refers to the specific conditions that promote the formation of dew.

The Difference Between Relative Humidity and Dew Point

Both the relative humidity and dew point help measure the amount of water in the air. However, the former refers to the percentage of water in the air relative to how much water the air can hold at a specific temperature. It’s worth noting that relative humidity increases when the air becomes warmer, as it can hold more water than cooler air.

In contrast, the dew point is an absolute measure of water content and doesn’t depend on air temperature. As a matter of fact, the temperature at which water condenses on a surface is referred to as the dew point.

Calculating the Dew Point

You can figure out the dew point of a specific area of your home by using the air temperature and relative humidity. The generally accepted formula that provides accurate results for humidity values above 50% is Td = T – [(100 – Rh)/5].

Why Is the Dew Point Important?

Together with temperature and humidity, the dew point can help predict whether your home is prone to mold growth or not. Keep in mind that mold can start germination when room humidity is at 80% and has a dew point of 55 °F. At 85% relative humidity, you’ll notice visible and smelly mold around the area. As humidity rises, the dew point also increases, which will eventually cause a mold infestation in a month or even less.

Besides mold, the dew point has also proven to be an excellent measure for controlling different aspects of building operations. From cooling to dehumidification control, the dew point helps engineers figure out the ideal functioning conditions for buildings to maximize their energy efficiency.

How Can I Control the Dew Point?

In order to reduce the dew point of your home, you’ll first have to lower its relative humidity and temperature. You can do that by using dehumidifier devices, improving your home’s insulation, and turning on the air conditioning. That should reduce the risk of mold infestations and keep your home safe.

Key Takeaways

Understanding the dew point of your home is vital when it comes to preventing and dealing with mold. But sometimes, no matter how careful you are, you might still end up with an infestation. Fortunately, you can always request the help of a professional mold remediation company. They’ll be able to isolate, remove, and prevent mold from taking over your home in the future!

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