I sleep in an air-conditioned room most nights and I do find that using the air-conditioner dries out the air a little. Not so much that it bugs me but its a fact that it does. In fact, what air-conditioners do besides cooling the air is reduce humidity in the air, which is why we feel that the air is drier. Since I live in a tropical climate where humidity in the open air is usually about 90-100% I do feel it when the air is drier.
I must say however that I am not overly bothered by the dry air from air-conditioners. It doesn’t cause any breathing problems for me nor does it do much detriment to me that I can see.
One tip I’ve heard often for counteracting the drier air in air-conditioned rooms is to place a glass of water by your bedside.
The science behind this is that the water will evaporate into the air and increase humidity. I decided to put this theory to the test.
A glass of water does not help increase humidity
I found that a glass of water by the bedside only served to be a nuisance. I was so concerned about knocking it over in the night and making a mess. I later moved the glass to my dresser but I found no increase in humidity nor comfort levels.
For control purposes (this is an experiment after all! 🙂 ) I placed a glass of water in my non air conditioned living room.
I found that the water in the glass in my room takes about a week to dry out from the glass which is about the same rate of evaporation as that of the water in my living room. This tells me that the rate of evaporation is not as great as I thought in an air-conditioned room.
My conclusion: A glass of water has too little water to have much impact on the humidity in an air-conditioned room.
A dipper or pail of water has better effect on humidity
Nonplussed by the failure of a glass of water to make an impact on humidity, I decided to go big. I put a pail of water in my room – yep! Anything for an experiment 🙂
With the pail of water, I found that I did feel greater comfort in an air-conditioned room. It did not feel as dry when I wake up as when I go to sleep. However, the practicalities of lugging a pailful of water into the bedroom and the fear of tripping over it caused me to stop this practice after a spell.
My conclusion: A pail of water, being a larger body of water can contribute better to the humidity in an air-conditioned room.
A Humidifier might be a better choice to increase humidity
As I don’t have breathing problems, I wasn’t too fussed by the dryish air in an air-conditioned room. However, for those who might be concerned, you might want to invest in an air humidifier. A humidifier will actively increase the humidity in the air because this is what it is created to do.
Do you sleep with a glass of water by the bed to counteract the dry air from air-conditioners? Does it help you?