Mailport: August 2013
I was interested in your article on dehumidifiers (PS, June 2013). Living in South Florida means that excess humidity is a problem nine or 10 months of the year.† My boat is in the water year-round. The water temperature varies from 70 to 82 degrees, and the air temperature from 50 to 95 degrees. In the summer, the cabin temperature can frequently top 105 degrees.
At one time, I used the standard household dehumidifier sitting on the sink of my boat, and plumbed it to allow the condensate to drip straight into the sink drain. (Without this precaution, the dehumidifierís reservoir would over flow in less than two days.) The biggest drawback to the dehumidifier was that it increased the temperature inside the boat even more. Trying to then cool down the boat before going for a sail was almost impossible and caused me to abandon this approach to the problem.
I am very interested to know whether the Peltier-type dehumidifier would do the same. Perhaps during the summer months of your test, you could take some readings to estimate the temperature rise.
Some of the other boats near me use a 5000- or 8000-BTU window air-conditioner as a way of dehumidifying their cabins. The A/C unit is simply set into the hatchway with a modified hatch board to form a good seal between boat and unit. This approach certainly keeps the boat interior cool and dry. The big drawback is removing the A/C and passing from the boat to someone on the dock. I am hoping the Peltier dehumidifier will be a reasonable alternative.
Clicquot, Pearson 38
Palm Beach, Fla.