Keeping everyone in the office comfortable on hot days sometimes requires a master class in negotiations. For every person who feels the thermostat is set too low, another complains about it still being too hot. However, when the majority of your employees agree that the air in the office is too dry, that may indicate you have a humidity problem in your building. Here are a couple of ways you can fix the issue:
Set the Air Conditioner Fan to On
Moist air holds heat better, which is why air conditioners are designed to remove water from the air to help cool down the building. This is done when the air conditioner pulls in warm air from the outside. It extracts the moisture and heat, sends the cool air into the building, and sets the extracted water aside to be drained outside.
The fan helps the air conditioner by pushing the cool air through the ducts. When the fan is set to auto, it automatically turns off when the air conditioner does and the water the machine collected disperses.
Unfortunately, sometimes the air conditioners can remove too much moisture, resulting in a low humidity environment that many people may find uncomfortable and even aggravating health-wise. While there is no way to adjust how much water the air conditioner extracts, you can send some of the moisture it did take from the air back into the building by leaving the fan setting in the "On" position. This causes the extracted water to remain on the coils, which is then returned to the building with the cold air.
Be aware that doing this may cause your energy bills to increase, since your air conditioner may get caught in an endless loop of removing moisture and sending it back. However, keeping humidity at a healthy level will result in fewer complaints and prevent damage to sensitive equipment and furnishings.
Add More Live Plants to the Area
Another option for increasing the moisture content in a dry environment is to add some live plants to the area. Plants naturally release water into the air by a process called transpiration. The exact amount of water a plant will transpire varies, but it's generally several times more than what it weighs.
Start by placing a few plants in the corners of the room, then gradually add more to the area until it seems like the humidity level has increased. You can also use a hygrometer to measure the amount of humidity in the air and make adjustments to the number of plants in the space until the desired humidity level has been attained.
To learn more about managing humidity in your building or to have important maintenance performed on your air conditioner, contact a local HVAC company like Associated Mechanical Contractors, Inc.