Many construction contractors fail to account for the effect of ambient conditions on their project timelines and budgets. As an example, high relative humidity will cause finishes and materials like plaster or concrete to cure far more slowly than anticipated – if at all. This isn’t good news as overlooking project milestones, idle time and costly reworks can create substantial financial and operational issues for a project manager who already has enough on their plate. The good news is that these Problems can be prevented at a fraction of the possible consequential cost of enduring humidity associated delays. Using the right dehumidifiers in such scenarios can really make a difference to the advancement of any building project.
Indeed, I have helped many construction-related companies to comprehend the value of spending a little of the project budget to increase quality and efficiency by creating favourable conditions that may keep project timelines on monitor and minimise expensive reworking. Building and civil engineering companies, flooring contractors, plasterers, painters and shopfitters have benefited from this advice on many different jobs from house-building to important infrastructure jobs. Unfortunately, many people in the Construction and associated industries don’t completely understand the requirements and so waste money on ineffectual solutions. Equally unfortunate is the lack of understanding – and sometimes outright misdirection – widespread among many gear hire companies. Please let me explain. Dehumidifiers generally fall into one of two categories, i.e., refrigerant or desiccant units. Refrigerant dehumidifiers are the kind typically promoted in a hire brochure as a ‘builders dehumidifier’ or ‘building dryer’.
These little units work on exactly the exact same principle as the pipework located on the back of a home refrigerator. Warm humid air is drawn across a cold surface pulling moisture absorber from the atmosphere in the shape of condensation. This principle is reasonably effective provided that the atmosphere is warm. During winter months this practice is not as efficient because of the cooler temperatures encountered on a construction site. It is now that an inexperienced, or ethically challenged, hire supplier will suggest adding a heater to ‘help matters along’. Normally a direct-fired propane or Paraffin heater is added which actually introduces moisture to the region through the fumes in the burnt fuel. This extra moisture is then captured by the refrigerant dehumidifier and so gives the appearance of a much more efficient solution. A desiccant dehumidifier on the other hand extracts moisture from the atmosphere via desiccant substance and expels it from the area to be dried with ducting.