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Physics of dry air

  1. Dec 11, 2007 #1
    I am using a space heater (fan plus heater type thing) to heat a room and was wondering if this drys the air, because it sure seems to. As I understand it, dehumidifiers use a cold element to condense water out of the air, which is obviously different from the fan and heating element that makes up my space heater. Does anyone know what happens to water molecules when they pass through a space heater? Am I drying the air by using it?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 12, 2007 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    In absolute terms, heating air does not dry it - it does not actually remove any water vapor from the air. But the relative humidity goes down as temperature goes up because air has a greater capacity to hold water the warmer it is. What really makes the air inside dry in the winter is that it is cold outside.
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