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The importance of a dehumidifier in an RV!

Having shared with other camping folks this year the importance of s dehumidifier in an RV/fifth wheel/travel trailer etc., I figured it was time to put those words in writing. When we owned and lived in our travel trailer the condensation in the colder weather was AWFUL! Each morning we would have to wipe down every window and sometimes even the walls. Of course there were five of us and a dog living in a very small space! When we discovered mold growing in the cupboards our solution was to leave them open ajar to let the air flow and although it most definitely helped it was not the best way to solve the problem. Buying this new rig folks told us we wouldn’t have to worry about condensation as the windows are double paned plus the rig has WAY better insulation. That proved to be true for a short while…….

Last autumn, whilst in Northern Idaho, we began seeing some condensation on our bedroom windows. Northern Idaho, as you know at this time of year, tends to get a little on the cold side. We even saw some snow. Not only that we discovered we had a visitor (mouse)! Once caught we then figured we needed to clean out under our living room couches as we were sure that was where it had been residing. We have the theatre seating so quite an undertaking but clean it out we did and boy, was it damp under there. NOT moldy but definitely damp. Richard immediately ordered a dehumidifier (Frigidaire, 30 pt – see pic) and we ran it constantly for 3 -4 days. Hard to believe the amount of moisture that it pulled out! Caleb left his marbles on the floor for me to kick a few days later and yes, you can guess where they went SO out came all the seating again! GREAT though as it was completely dry under there.

Who likes a damp mattress? Right, no one! Once again, when we purchased this rig, we put Aire-Flow aka Hypervent under all the mattresses. This is designed for boats as well as RV’s. It is supposed to let the air flow under your mattress preventing the condensation building up and thus creating mold. When we discovered the damp, we checked under our mattress. Uh oh! It was wet and although not as bad as we had in the travel trailer we definitely did not want to leave it like that. It was over the slide where it is a little colder. For two days we had the mattress lifted and the dehumidifier close by and the mattress and wood base finally dried out. We are SO thankful we discovered all this else we could have had a ruined fifth wheel not to mention what our health would suffer!

We have heard the ‘answer’ that when your A/C is running it draws out the moisture. Whilst the A/C may well draw out some of it, it definitely does not draw out all of it! This summer, the heat and humidity here in Missouri has been pretty intense. (Of course the kids keep running in and out certainly doesn’t help.) We have learned that we need to run the dehumidifier for about 2 days, once a week. I can tell when it is getting humid in here by the feel of the floor. It just begins to feel sticky and not because of someone spilling something! The dehumidifier pulls out 60-90 pints of water over that couple of days. Yes, quite incredible! We let it run on constant until the humidity level is around 40%. The dehumidifier beeps and stops when it is full. (When Caleb accidentally flooded the bunkhouse this past winter, the dehumidifier was a lifesaver pulling out all the excess moisture.)

Obviously mold/damp is not good for anyone’s health so if you do not have a dehumidifier in your camper we recommend you spending the cash to get one. It will definitely save you money in the long run.

Hope this helps,

Liz

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