Optimal Humidity Target for Dehumidifier?

  • Participant
    duckspeaks on #225926

    Finally bought the humidifier that I have been considering for a long time. Australia, being the driest continent still has a humid period. Winter is above freezing point but also the raining season.

    Is there a target relative humidity value I should aspire for?

    It is a Delonghi machine. I can either choose “smart mode” to let the machine make it “comfortable for humans” or set a target humidity percentage value.

    Without the machine, relative humidity has shot up to 79% so far with door and windows closed. As the weather cools down (from summer) I’ll need to open the windows more often, letting in more moisture from outside.

    Thanks in advance!

    Participant
    Biagio on #225930

    Depends somewhat on the harp model: those with aircraft grade laminate boards such as Dusty Ravennas and the Allegro/Crescendo are less prone to humidity “issues” than those with solid wood boards. Gut is more susceptible than nylon and fluorocarbon even less than nylon.

    As a general rule though if you are comfortable your harp should be too. If humidity and temperature fluctuate widely (usually overnight) you may have to tune more often but not a big deal. Here where I live (the US Puget Sound region) relative humidity may fluctuate between 60% and 75% (sometimes as high as 80% and as low as 50%) and in winter I have to live with imprecise forced air heaters. No problems there either (though I’d rather have radiant heaters!).

    Biagio

    Participant
    duckspeaks on #226051

    Dear Biagio,

    Thanks for your reply.

    I have different ones. If there is no one number to aspire for, I’ll let it run on smart mode when I feel the need to use it. Got 3 hygrometers around (and they all have their own opinions!!).

    Participant
    wil-weten on #226052

    I just found an elaborate and illuminating article on the question of humidy and dryness in relationship to harps at the website of Dusty Strings at:
    https://manufacturing.dustystrings.com/blog/how-keep-your-harp-or-hammered-dulcimer-safe-cracking-winter-months

    I myself keep my harps between 40% and 60% of relative humidity. Where I live, this means that, depending on the season, I sometimes need to moisturize the room and sometimes to demoisturize the room.

    Like Biago, I believe that as long as you yourself feel comfortable, your harp feels comfortable too. Also, I think that a stable environment in which you try to prevent fast occurring extremes in temperature and moist (like when one decides to go and play outsiede, is really important.

    Participant
    balfour-knight on #226074

    I agree, between 40 and 60 percent humidity is very good, and please get an accurate digital hygrometer, since the others vary widely, you know!
    Harp Hugs,
    Balfour

    Participant
    duckspeaks on #226209

    Thanks Wil-Weten and Balfour-Knight for article and calling out the range.

    My several hygrometers (all but one are digital) differs a lot but mostly within a 10% range. Most consumer grade ones are +/- quite a few percents and between any two they could differ by 2 X of that variance (when one over reports and the other under reports) plus significant mis-calibration margins.

    They also differ very significantly in the rate of change.

    The de-humidifier’s own measurement is again totally different.

    So I now see the desired range as a rough guide only. If no one sleeps in the room and doors+ windows are closed, it can’t wonder too far off. Without a snow season here, my main concern is the moist spells.

    It is seldom too dry but if it were, I would think twice before turning on the humidifier, which is possibly too fast acting.

    Thanks again!

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