As you may know, traditional dehumidifiers use calcium chloride to collect moisture from the air. This unique chemical compound is known to dry out high levels of humidity, which prevents mold growth. Here’s the problem: the dangers of calcium chloride desiccants to human health are extreme and can even lead to burns in the mouth and throat.
Obviously, calcium chloride is a dangerous substance to have within your home. In fact, it can cause damage to people, pets, and even property! So, how do can you avoid the dangers of calcium chloride?
In this article, we will discuss the ins and outs of calcium chloride desiccant in traditional dehumidifiers and how silica gel dehumidifiers are a better solution for all of your humidity home problems.
Keep reading to learn how to avoid the potential dangers of calcium chloride desiccant dehumidifiers.
What is Calcium Chloride?
Also known as calcium salt, calcium chloride is a type of salt that is edible in small amounts. Typically, the substance is used in canning and pickling since it has an extremely salty flavor and can help preserve food. Calcium chloride is also used in traditional home dehumidifier systems to trap water molecules and eliminate high levels of humidity.
However, the dangers of calcium chloride desiccants are classified as severe if one is exposed to above-average levels. In fact, the chemical is an extreme irritant for the eyes, skin, and respiratory system.
While some brands try to tout the effectiveness of calcium chloride and its level of absorbance, you have to ask yourself, “is it worth risking my family’s health?”
Health Hazards of Do-It-Yourself Dehumidifiers
Some “do-it-yourself” and other powered dehumidifiers rely on fans to circulate air over calcium chloride salts. This exposes the air to minimal amounts of this chemical. Not so bad, right?
Here’s the catch: over time, long-term exposure to calcium chloride and its dust can cause lung damage, as well as other respiratory issues in the nose and throat. It can also cause skin irritation and contaminate clothing.
The dangers of calcium chloride are so extreme that The US National Library of Medicine (NIH) even strongly warns against the use of calcium salt:
“Inhalation causes irritation of nose and throat. Ingestion causes irritation of the mouth and stomach. Contact with eyes (particularly by dust) causes irritation and possible transient corneal injury. Contact of solid with dry skin causes mild irritation; strong solutions can cause marked irritation, even a superficial burn.” (source)
As you can see, dehumidifiers that use calcium chloride should not be used in the house. But, we’re not stopping there! This hazardous chemical can also destroy your property.
Don’t Use Calcium Chloride Desiccant Dehumidifiers in Vehicles or Gun Safes
Listen up! This is important: calcium chloride is exceptionally corrosive to metal. Overall, the salt eats away at the metal and rusts any metal inside the safe. Therefore, you should never dehumidify your gun safe, car, or other places where metals are stored with calcium chloride dehumidifiers or crystals.
For the same reason, it’s a good idea to avoid calcium chloride for boats and RVs. While many marine surfaces are resistant to corrosion, extended exposure to this chemical can present a problem.
So while a calcium chloride desiccant might absorb damaging excess moisture faster than alternatives, you are just replacing one hazard with another.
So, what’s a simple solution? Silica gel dehumidifiers, of course!
A Safer Alternative: Silica Gel Dehumidifiers
In contrast to calcium chloride salts, silica gel is a safe dehumidifier and is an incredibly effective way to remove unwanted moisture from an environment. Here’s the best part: unlike Calcium chloride, which usually requires air to be circulated over the chemical, silica gel dehumidifiers do not need air circulation to work.
How Do Silica Gel Dehumidifiers Work?
Silica beads have multiple small holes that create a large surface area on a tiny object. The more surface area something has the greater the heat absorption rate. The silica dehumidifier creates an entrance for air to come in and then absorbs the humidity.
What makes it so special, is unlike alternative dehumidifiers, silica gel dehumidifiers are non-electric. Additionally, these beads are reusable making them a lot more eco-friendly than the traditional calcium chloride options.
Additional Benefits of Silica Gel
You may have seen silica gel after you bought new shoes, clothes, or even received a package at home. While silica gel is not safe to eat like calcium chloride, it is much safer to inhale. Furthermore, these dehumidifiers:
- Do not rust metal like calcium salt
- Wick moisture from the atmosphere more effectively
- Are reusable and therefore have an indefinite shelf-life
- Work with less material and fit in small spaces
And what’s more? Silica gel dehumidifiers are even reusable! Great for the environment and for your health. It’s a win-win!
Discover the Power of Mini Silica Gel Dehumidifiers with Eva-Dry
Want to suck up excess moisture without risking your health more? Turn to Eva-Dry, we create effective dehumidifiers without compromising your family’s health.
Mini dehumidifiers can be plugged into the wall and can be placed nearly anywhere without the health risks associated with calcium chloride. The added benefit is that the device removes the moisture stored in the gel so you can use it again and again.
Check out EVA-DRY Dehumidifiers and provide your home, boat, or RV with moisture control solutions that are safe and convenient. Safely fit an EVA-DRY mini dehumidifier anywhere in your home and breathe easy again.