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Old 14-08-2012, 10:55   #1
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Dehumidifier Instead of Air Conditioner

I was down in Cabo last November on a Catalina 42 that had an air coditioner that pumped out cold air, but was entirely inadequate to cool the boat. I did notice that while over a couple of hours the temperature only dropped a degree or so, it did seem more comfortable below deck. I thought that maybe that was because the humidity went down. If so, then would a dehumidifer be a good choice for making below deck more comfortable in the tropics while docked with shore power available?

Marcus
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:01   #2
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

All dehumidifiers I have had produce heat. We have a large dehumidifier for late fall/winter/early spring, and we know it is time to stow it away for summer when it starts making the cabin air stuffy.

Frank
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:12   #3
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

Frank,

Could the unit be above deck with a duct to the cabin? I know that they build SS units that might survive outside.

Marcus

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All dehumidifiers I have had produce heat. We have a large dehumidifier for late fall/winter/early spring, and we know it is time to stow it away for summer when it starts making the cabin air stuffy.

Frank
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:13   #4
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

Dehumidifiers work like a/c....chill the air to condense out the water. But then they reheat the air, because they're only meant to dehumidify. Not sure what would happen if the reheat portion suffered a regrettable accident....
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:22   #5
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

Dropping the humidity may make is seem cooler, but not much real effect unless the air is also cooled. As pointed out, AC units in effect dehumidify the air they process. My AC unit has a dehumidify mode where it just runs enough to drop the humidity. Boat must be closed up for this to work because you can't dehumidify the great outdoors.
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:34   #6
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

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Boat must be closed up for this to work because you can't dehumidify the great outdoors.
Blast, you mean I left my fridge open all summer for nothing?

The benefit of the dehumidifying is to make sweatcooling viable again....was only looking into this yesterday, over on the SSSSM v2.0 thread. If it's hot and not 100% humidity, it makes more sense to drink a hot cup of tea than a cold drink. Core temp sensor...

I wonder if marine a/c would be more effective with an airlock effect on eternal hatches, mainly the companionway hatches? Was considering a strikedown canvas screen for the companions anyway, for when going below soaked.
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Old 14-08-2012, 11:52   #7
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

A dehumidifier is simply an air conditioner where the hot exhaust is not vented outside. All the power supplied to the dehumidifier ends up inside as heat while cold water drains outside.

Better to run an air conditioner and vent the hot air outside along with the condensate.
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Old 14-08-2012, 12:10   #8
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Re: dehumidifier instead of air conditioner

Just imagine how hot the inside of the boat would be without the AC running!! There is absolutely no difference between a dehumidifier and an air conditioner. Don't believe me? Try this. Put a small window unit inside of a room and close the door. The room will be hot and dry, the condensate will have collected in the pan at the bottom of the AC unit. The dehumidifier is exactly the same thing but with a better system of removing the water.
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