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Dry Out Techniques - part 1
By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff
Air drying is the oldest and most common technique for dry out processes. It is based on the principal of airflow circulation. Airflow will speed up evaporation by moving moisture-saturated air, allowing dry air to absorb moisture.
Air drying is considered an inexpensive drying method since no special equipment is required. However, it is relatively slow and will occupy space to efficiently dry out personal belonging such as fabrics and paper.
The simplest way to air dry a room would be to keep doors and windows open, allowing fresh air circulation. However, a faster result can be achieved using floor fans, exhaust fans, or industrial fans that will circulate larger volumes of air.
A dehumidifier is a device that removes moisture from the air to reduce humidity. Reducing humidity promotes a faster dry out. Building materials such as drywall, flooring, carpets and furniture will dry faster.
Dehumidifiers are important to stabilize the environment after a water damage event. They are important tools especially in high humidity areas where the air usually carries a lot of moisture.
A refrigerant dehumidifier circulates moist air through cold coils that reduce the temperature to the saturation point where moisture condenses and then collected into a bucket. A high capacity refrigerant dehumidifier can remove about 5 gallons in 24 hours. The main disadvantage is that performance deteriorates as the air becomes cooler.
This dehumidifier uses a desiccant to remove water from the air and reduce humidity. The desiccant is a material with high affinity to water vapor.
- Absorbent desiccants absorb water as they go through chemical or physical changes.
- Adsorbent desiccants do not change when absorbing water. These desiccants hold moisture on their surfaces.