For YOUR Florida Home:
You live in a sub-tropical paradise, which means your home’s humidity level must be controlled for your personal comfort.
The first step is very critical. Your air conditioning system must be sized to a very close tolerance in order to control the homes humidity, keeping you personally comfortable, protecting your health and your furnishings, and lowering your power bills.
You probably have heard advertising or had companies promoting “whole home dehumidifiers”. These are needed usually because the air conditioning system was never sized properly for your home. An over-sized system has no ability to control your humidity personal comfort.
While away on Vacation:
The tried and true method to control your homes humidity while you are away for extended amount of time is by a programmable thermostat, programmed to run for only two hours per day. (Schedule to call daily for cooling at 70 degrees from 5AM to 7AM–all other schedules set to 90 degrees, 2 hours of run time is all you need.)
This schedule maintains good control of your relative humidity and is a recommendation from the local power companies.
Florida Power and Light recommends this humidity control method and schedule:
Cost to operate $:
Since you have set the air conditioning system to only operate for 2 hours per day your monthly energy cost can be calculated.
Example of cost: A base 13 seer 3 ton system requires approximately 3 KW of power at standard design conditions. Therefore, 3 KW times your power company’s cost per KW of 10 cents approximately equates to- (3KW x 10¢ x 2 hrs. per day = 60 cents per day). Therefore, your cost to control your homes humidity while you are away will be approximately $18.00 dollars per month.
HOW to SET:
Example: Program a call for cooling at 5 am daily with a temperature request of 75 degrees at 7 am set temperature back to 90 degrees. All other programmable settings to be set for 90 degrees. The home only needs two hours of run time per day.
Tested home at these settings- maintains a relative humidity between 45% to 55% and a temperature range between 75 degrees to 83 degrees.
Old technology (dehumidistat): The goal was to keep your relative humidity (RH) at approximately 65% RH.
New technology (programmable thermostat): Set at the above time frame, testing, proves better relative humidity (RH) control with an average of 52% RH and a monthly power bill that is constant. Come back to a fresher, drier home.
If this was MY home, I’d choose 50% RH.