Today, most people have at least one “smart” device in their home, like a smart thermostat or video doorbell.
The Ecobee Thermostat is a smart thermostat that includes a sensor for monitoring the humidity in your home.
Controlling humidity is essential for you and your family’s comfort.
The Ecobee humidity sensor is remarkably accurate. Like most similar devices, the Ecobee will monitor the temperature and humidity level in your home. If you notice that the humidity level is off, it can be manually adjusted to improve accuracy.
In this article, I’ll explain in detail how the Ecobee humidity sensor works, why humidity matters, and how you can correct humidity problems in your home.
Humidity and Humidity Sensors
Humidity is a measure of the amount of water vapor (moisture) in the air all around you.
There are 2 ways to measure humidity: absolute or relative humidity.
Absolute humidity (AH) is based only on the actual moisture levels in the air. It’s the ratio of water vapor to dry air mass.
Relative humidity (RH), on the other hand, takes into consideration the temperature. RH has much more to do with how humid it “feels.”
A humidity sensor is a small electronic device that measures the humidity in the surrounding air.
These sensors can be separate devices or part of your HVAC system, as in the Ecobee thermostat.
Smart thermostats typically adjust your AC settings according to the readings they get from the humidity sensor. This helps keep your home feeling comfortable.
Thermostats like Ecobee and Nest can send alerts when humidity levels get too low or too high.
Check out this support article from Ecobee about how to set up alerts on your device.
How Does the Ecobee Humidity Sensor Work?
Humidity sensors typically deal with relative humidity, or how the air “feels,” relative to the temperature.
The Ecobee’s sensors are located either in the base of the thermostat or in the individual sensor units, which are placed in different rooms.
The sensor moves the temperature up or down to ensure that your environment feels the way you expect.
The Ecobee also monitors occupancy, which means it can make adjustments based on whether you’re home or which room you’re in.
Testing the Accuracy of the Ecobee Humidity Sensor
According to Ecobee’s company website, the thermostat is highly accurate, with only a +/- 1° margin of error.
It takes an average over multiple reads to keep itself calibrated and continuously reads the temperature every 15 seconds.
With that level of accuracy on maintaining temperature reads, the same is likely true of the humidity sensor.
However, since moisture in the air can be more challenging to detect, you can compare readings to other humidity sensor devices to check the accuracy.
There are many versions of meters available on Amazon.com.
If you want to get a second opinion on your home’s humidity level, I recommend the ThermoPro Thermometer.
Calibrating and Adjusting the Ecobee Humidity Sensor
The Ecobee humidity sensor typically gives an accurate read of the current room conditions.
However, when you first install the unit, you should make sure you calibrate it properly.
If you feel like the humidity reading may be off, you can use the humidity correction feature.
How To Configure Your Ecobee
When you first get a smart thermostat like Ecobee, it’s important to read all the instructions and perform the initial setup correctly.
For help with setting your preferred thresholds and configuration, check out Ecobee’s support page.
The first time you use your Ecobee, it will provide you with prompts to guide you through the step-by-step setup process.
Next, it will perform a temperature calibration which can take up to 20 minutes.
During the setup process, you will be able to choose your desired HVAC settings and preferences.
How To Correct the Humidity Reading
If you notice the humidity sensor is not reading accurately, you can make an easy adjustment.
The humidity correction can be set at + / – up to 10% to ensure an accurate reading.
Similarly, the temperature sensor can be adjusted by + / – up to 10 degrees.
Making these adjustments will ensure your sensor readings match the environment more accurately.
Why Accurate Humidity Readings Matter
The Ecobee is a responsive and accurate thermostat and humidity sensor.
Knowing the humidity level in your home can help you to make the right adjustments to make the environment more comfortable.
And the most important reason to have accurate humidity readings is your HVAC system.
Your HVAC system won’t work as effectively as it could without accurate information about the conditions in your home.
The Ecobee will ensure that your AC is cooling your home based on more than just the temperature.
It will also save you money by making sure your AC works efficiently.
Why Controlling Humidity Matters
Your body is susceptible to humidity. The process of cooling our bodies by sweating depends on how much moisture is in the air.
For example, if the air is at 100% humidity, it cannot hold any more moisture.
In this environment, your sweat would not be able to evaporate from your skin, which would make you feel much hotter.
Humidity is important because it impacts how hot or cold you feel. It can make your skin feel dry.
Low humidity can make the air feel colder. In low humidity situations, the moisture evaporates from our skin more quickly.
High humidity can make hot temperatures feel even hotter and affect your clothing, activity level, and health.
Excessive moisture can also cause damage to your home or belongings.
It’s even more important to control humidity if you live in a hot and humid climate zone.
What’s a Good Humidity Level?
Most experts agree that humans are most comfortable when the humidity level is between 30% and 50%.
To reduce the chances of bacteria, dust mites, or other pests, it’s a good idea to keep the humidity between 45% and 55%.
When temperatures are cooler, it may be more difficult to tell if humidity levels are high.
A sensor is helpful to know what the actual conditions are inside your home.
Use Dehumidifiers To Improve Humidity Levels
A dehumidifier is a small appliance that removes moisture from the air in your home.
Adding a dehumidifier to your home not only improves air quality but also has several health benefits.
This may be a good option for you if your humidity is consistently high.
The size of the dehumidifier you need depends on the size of your space.
For a small space, I recommend this Pro Breeze Electric Dehumidifier, available on Amazon.com.
It’s suitable for rooms up to 1200 cubic feet (33.98 cubic meter), and it’s portable.
For a larger space in your home or basement, this Waykar Dehumidifier is a solid choice.
It will treat up to 2000 sq ft (185.81 sq m) and has a large water tank to collect the moisture removed from the air.
Both these machines do a great job of efficiently removing moisture from the air, which is collected in a tank so you can see how well it’s working.
To check the humidity levels in your home, a simple meter will do the trick.
However, if you want to use your HVAC system to control the moisture in your home, a smart thermostat is a good investment.
The Ecobee has a reliable and accurate humidity sensor to help keep you comfortable.
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