Frequently Asked Questions

 Below is a list of the most asked questions regarding humidity control, psychrometrics, and desiccant dehumidifiers.  Please check back for constant updates  to our list or call us if you don't see a question you need answered.

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Frequently asked questions

General

What separates IAT from other manufacturers?


Innovative Air Technologies exists because of its customers. It's our mission to serve them. We try hard to do well what our competition does poor, and that seems to be great quality, unbelievable customer service, and low prices.




What is a desiccant dehumidifier?


A desiccant dehumidifier is a device in which air is passed over a desiccant. The desiccant adsorbs moisture from the airstream leaving the air dry. The simplest form of a desiccant dehumidifier is the silica gel packets you see in shoes, purses, electronic equipment, etc. However, these little silica gel packets only adsorb one time and then they are discarded. An industrial dehumidifier such as the ones we produce, are continuous operating dehumidifiers. Meaning they will continue to dry out the air as moisture passes through them. They require more energy to operate but many industries need this type of equipment.




What is the difference between a desiccant dehumidifier and refrigeration dehumidifier I might see at one of the big box stores?


Great Question. The main difference is how moisture is being removed from the air. A refrigeration based dehumidifier essentially removes moisture from the air by cooling a surface (evaporator coil) to the point of condensation. At that point, liquid water condenses on the cold surface and drains off into a collection tank. It is done in a liquid state. A desiccant Dehumidifier uses silica gel normally to adsorb moisture direct from the air in a vapor state. No liquid water is collected and drained. For more on this, click here.




What is desiccant?


In its simplest form, a desiccant is any material that has a high affinity for water. It can be as simple as your t-shirt or as complex and common as silica gel. There are many forms of desiccant but the most common is silica gel.




Can you explain air filter efficiency ratings?


MERV stands for the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value of a filter. It is a method of stating the efficiency of a filter based on particle size and is determined by testing the performance of the filter when exposed to particles of a known size in the air stream. MERV can be used as a guide to selecting filters for specific contaminants within a range of particle sizes.​ A higher efficiency filter, while sometimes more expensive, can help cut down on energy use and may also require less maintenance. ​

MERV 1-4
Control These Contaminants: >10.0 Micron Particle Size Pollen, Dust Mites, sanding dust, textile/carpet fibers
Applications: Minimum Filtration, Residential furnaces, window air conditioners

MERV 5-8
Control These Contaminants: 3.0-10.0 Micron Particle Size Mold, Spores, Dusting Aids, Cement Dust
Applications: Commercial Building, High End Residential, Industrial Work Spaces, Paint Booth Inlet Air

MERV 9-12
Control These Contaminants: 1.0-3.0 Micron Particle Size Legionella, Lead Dust, Humidifier Dust, Coal Dust, Nebulizer Dust
Applications: High-End Residential, Commercial Buildings, Hospital Laboratories

MERV 13-16
Control These Contaminants: 0.30-1.0 Micron Particle Size All Bacteria, Tobacco Smoke, Sneeze Nuclei, Most Smoke, Insecticide Dust, Copier Toner, Face Powder Applications: Hospital Patient Care, General Surgery, Smoking Lounges, Superior Commercial Buildings

MERV 17-20
Control These Contaminants: <_0.30 Micron Particle Size Virus (Unattached), Carbon Dust, Sea Salt, All Combustion Smoke, Radon Progeny
Applications: Cleanrooms, Radioactive Materials, Carcinogenic Materials, Pharmaceutical Manufacturing, Orthopedic Surgery

HIGH-EFFICIENCY PLEATED FILTERS​
MERV ratings from 11-14
These are the standard when it comes to most HVAC systems, because they are easy to install, come in standard sizes and have a low initial cost.
ADVANTAGE: Energy Efficient and Environmentally Friendly
WHERE THEY ARE USED: Commercial, healthcare, municipal, government, hospitality and residential

RIGID CELL FILTERS
MERV ratings from 11-14
These filters come in a box-style format and contain either synthetic media or fiberglass. Rigid cell filters look similar to pleated filters but have a depth of 6-12 inches and are surrounded by a galvanized metal or plastic frame.
ADVANTAGE: Durability
​WHERE THEY ARE USED: Commercial and industrial HVAC systems, VAV systems, high-humidity applications, clean rooms, healthcare, food service and manufacturing

POCKET FILTERS
MERV ratings up to 14
Also referred to as bag filters, pocket filters are constructed of a plastic or galvanized steel frame and contain fiberglass or synthetic media. They are called pocket filters because the media is stitched or sonically welded to form pockets ranging from 10 to 36 inches deep.
ADVANTAGE: Long Service Life
WHERE THEY ARE USED: Commercial, educational, healthcare, government and manufacturing

HEPA FILTERS
Not MERV rated because they must offer efficiency of at least 99.97% and up to 99.99% of airborne particles 0.3 microns in size to qualify as HEPA.
ADVANTAGE: Highest Efficiency
WHERE THEY ARE USED: Clean rooms, medical facilities, laboratories, airplanes, commercial, industrial, residential




How long has IAT been in business?


IAT has been in business since 2001. However, many of us have been in the desiccant dehumidification industry for longer. We have over 46 years of experience in this industry. So you could say we've been around the block. We are not afraid to admit that. :)




What are your current Leadtimes?


Compact leadtimes are 1-2 weeks typically while the Rotor Series and IDP Series Dehumidifiers are round 10-12 weeks after submittal approval.




What is a PID loop?


A PID (Proportional-Integral-Derivative) loop is a control loop mechanism for a variety of applications requiring continuously modulated control. In practical terms it automatically applies an accurate and responsive correction to a control function. Imagine cruise control on your car as a PID loop control. In our dehumidifiers, we use PID loop control for cooling and heating valves, fan speed/damper position for airflow or even desiccant wheel speed for humidity control.




Why is Pre Cooling used on a desiccant dehumidifier?


Pre Cooling is used primarily for two reasons:

  1. Most common use is to remove moisture from the airstream prior to entering the desiccant wheel. This is done when fresh air is the primary air source for the dehumidifier. Desiccant wheels are very efficient on the lower end of the humidity scale but are less efficient on the higher humidity side. Pre cooling however is very efficient on the higher end and conversely, less efficient on the lower end.
  2. The second and less common use for pre cooling is to treat mixed air conditions that comprise of return air and fresh air.




What are some tips for troubleshooting a desiccant dehumidifier?


Most desiccant dehumidifiers need 4 things to produce dry air. Each of these are critical to performance of the equipment and must be in working order for proper performance to be achieved:

  1. Desiccant wheel must be in good order and rotating
  2. Desiccant wheel must have proper seals in place preventing cross contamination from the react air process airstreams
  3. You must have 2 airstreams, process and react, that are providing the proper airflows
  4. You must have a react heat source. Typical heat is electric, gas, steam, hot water and achieve react inlet temps of 160F-285F depending on the heat source.




Why does IAT use chain drive vs belt drive on desiccant wheels?


Simple, belts stretch, break, slip and are a pain to replace. Chain drives do not stretch, break, or slip and in the unlikely event of failure, very easy to replace.




What is a PLC and what are the advantages over standard controls?


PLC’s or Programmable Logic Controller, is an industrial computer that has been design for the riggers of harsh environments where our equipment is often installed. The benefits of the PLC over standard controls is flexibility and ease of use when properly designed. Many products we sell, typically IDP Series dehumidifiers, contain dozens of input and outputs that would otherwise require dozens of relays and individual controllers. Each of these individual controllers would then need to be programmed to communicate and operate with one another. With a PLC, you can consolidate all of these controllers and relays and their functions into one single program and an HMI (Human Machine Interface) or touchscreen, allows you to control the system very easily from one place vs many different controllers.




What is a VFD and why are they used on your products?


VFD or Variable Frequency Drive is a type of motor drive to control AC motor speeds. In our case, we are controlling either the Process Fan speed, React Fan speed, or the desiccant wheel speed. We use VFD’s in many situations because it saves energy, quieter vs full speed fans, allows for tight control of each motor, and is much easier to use than manual dampers.




What are some ways to control a desiccant dehumidifier?


There are 5 standard ways to control a desiccant dehumidifier, each way has their pros and cons and each application should dictate which method of control is used.

  1. On/Off control of entire dehumidifier. This is best for small standard units like the Compact Series dehumidifier or in situations where the humidity control tolerance is not critical
  2. On/Off control reactivation heat method. This method is used primarily in Waste Water treatment plants or where humidity control tolerances are less stringent, approximately +/- 5%RH
  3. Modulation of the reactivation heat method. This method is the most used method by IAT. Modulating the reactivation heat saves energy and most applications that humidity control tolerances of +/- 2%RH, this is very effective.
  4. Face and Bypass control method. This method provides the tightest humidity control of all the options listed above. This can provide humidity control tolerance of +/- 0.5%RH. The downside is energy cost as you run the dehumidifier at maximum capacity continuously and introduce ambient (process inlet) air around the desiccant wheel to mix with the dry air that passed through the desiccant wheel. This mixture is then supplied to the conditioned space.




What is the lifespan of the desiccant wheel?


We get this question a lot! This is a tough question to answer definitively because there are so many variables that affect the life of the desiccant wheel. It’s like tires on your car, if cared for and driven in a reasonable manner, you can get longer life. Same with the desiccant wheel. Filter changes, quality of the airstream, usage and other external variables all affect the performance of the dehumidifier. Our wheel is designed to provided 90% of the original performance after 10 years of operation




What is your Warranty policy?


Every dehumidifier is built at our factory in Covington, GA and is thoroughly tested prior to shipping. We offer a 1 year parts warranty and a 5 year prorated warranty on our desiccant wheel rotors. If further info is required, please contact the factory at info@dehumidifiers.com or (770) 788-6744.




What is IAT's Vision?


Our vision is to enrich the lives of everyone that comes into contact with Innovative Air Technologies. From a customer’s perspective, if we’ve provided you with a quality product at a great price, delivered ontime, then we’ve made your life better. We want the same experience for everyone else who experiences us, from Reps, vendors, to truck drivers and especially staff teammembers.




What does Innovative Air Technologies stand for?


In addition to our Vision of “Enriching Lives”, we also believe in Core Values. We have 9 of them and they guide us everyday when we operate Innovative Air. Review them here.





Compacts

What is the difference between the new style (RE) and the older horizontal bed design that was so successful? Why change?


Main difference: performance, weight, construction. We went with better performance, lighter weight, stainless steel construction. Our new design was carefully thought out. For years we wanted to update our Compact units but we didn't want to make any changes that removed great features from our horizontal design that our customers loved so much.




What is the performance of the Compact Series?


That all depends on the inlet conditions to the dehumidifier. At higher humidity levels, the dehumidifier performs very well, at very low humidity levels where there is little moisture present to remove, performance declines. For more information on the specifications of the Compacts, click here.




What is the lead-time for the Compact Series dehumidifier?


More often than not, our lead-times are 1-2 weeks after receipt of an order. The only reason we don't have them prepackaged and ready for shipment is there are many voltage options we offer and that is the reason for the 1-2 week lead-time. However, we can get some Compacts out within 2 days in some cases.




How do I balance my dehumidifier?


Please refer to the manual for balancing procedures but for quick reference:

  • IAT-300RE, Adjust Process Damper to achieve 0.60” WC on the minihelic on the side of the unit. React damper to achieve 0.80” WC on the minihelic gauge.
  • IAT-150RE, Adjust Process Damper to achieve 0.18-20” WC on the minihelic on the side of the unit. React damper to achieve 0.28-30” WC on the minihelic gauge.
  • IAT-75RE, Adjust Process Damper to achieve 0.20” WC on the minihelic on the side of the unit. React damper to achieve 0.30” WC on the minihelic gauge.




What maintenance is required for my dehumidifier?


General maintenance is very simple, filter changes are the heart and soul of long lasting performance. The better the pre filters are, the longer the desiccant wheel will perform. The fan motors have sealed bearings so there isn’t any lubrication required and our desiccant wheel drive system is chain driven so there is no maintenance on that either.




What spare parts are available for my dehumidifier? Where do I get these?


See link to get a list or request a spare part for your dehumidifier.




Can I place a dehumidifier outside?


Yes, the Compact Series dehumidifiers are design to withstand the harsh outdoors. Our unit is made of stainless steel so no degradation or corrosion will occur. There is a weatherproof construction package that needs to be added prior to shipment or a field mounted kit can be installed on an existing unit.





Rotors

What sizes are available?


Nominal sizes are 600, 1000, 1500, 3000, 5000, 7500, 10,000, 15,000, 20,000, 30,000 CFM models. Although we can hit any specific volume and pressure needed for the application.





IDPs

What does IDP stand for?


IDP stands for Integrated Dehumidification Package. This allows us to incorporate any other HVAC component into our standard dehumidification package. This includes but not limited to: Cooling Coils, Heating Coils, Specialty Filtration, Dampers, Energy Recovery, and others. With the ability to integrate these components into our system, we can provide the customer with a turnkey package that handles both temperature and humidity control for their space. Versus installing multiple HVAC solutions that create higher installation costs, more complex control problems and other logistical issues. Our IDP system solves a multitude of problems, enriching the life of the end user.




What kinds of cooling and heating options are available for use in the IDP Series?


  • For Cooling, Chilled Water and DX are the most prevalent.
  • For Heating, Hot water, electric, natural gas or propane, and steam are the 4 most used energy sources. These can be used in both the react airstream for heat as well as process airstream for space temperature control.