Optimal Placement of Humidity and Temperature Monitors
Humidity and temperature monitors are, ideally, devices that could be placed in remote locations and that require minimal maintenance. Actual limitations center around mounting considerations with minimal influence for practical or esthetical reasons.
All sensors or base station unit, if part of an array, must be protected from shocks, spills, snow, intense sunlight, strong winds, insects and birds. This is particularly important for outdoor units as they have the highest environmental vulnerability. However, outdoor units are indispensable for on the spot data gathering that is much more relevant than weather forecasts and readings from public weather stations.
In general, both indoor and outdoor units should be placed in relatively easy to access areas. This is also for practical reasons as well as the utility of providing information from used areas. Radio waves propagation may require a remote sensor not to be placed at more than 5 meters, particularly when buildings have concrete walls and a complex layout.
Mounting heights should be at least a meter above soil, in relatively shaded areas for outdoor units, while indoor units should be at around 0.8-1 meter heights. This positioning considers that sitting humans at desks, tables are roughly at this height so air temperature comfort should be monitored here. In spaces inhabited by small children, the monitoring position height may be as low as 1 meter to determine values that are relevant to their comfort.
Good placement suggestions
Monitoring devices should be close to facade walls and windows. These areas typically experience the biggest temperature swings. Condensation may form on windows first, then walls, as the winter temperature gets very low, and these are good positions for early warning of such risks.
Indoor potted plants contribute to humidity and they require light so their positioning near windows brings challenges to indoor areas. Since they release water due to perspiration, the area around them is slightly more humid and, coupled with the tendency of windows to be cooler in winter, creates its own mold growth risk.
Wall positioning could be near a span or at corners, since both situations reveal plenty of information. Corners may have lower temperatures in certain situations, due to wall heat losses in discontinuous areas of the building frame.
Although door areas can show certain temperature swings, they are much more difficult to monitor properly, so the immediate area close to doors is much more appropriate.
Ideal places for monitoring temperature/humidity are on window sills, near fixed window frames or permanently affixed to nearby walls. This reduces the risk of accidental human or wind knocks. Areas that have poor circulation due to furniture or are directly above heat or humidity sources are not recommended since they can easily influence readings without offering a meaningful global perspective.
Every room has its own requirements that are determined or assumed to be within a range, as designed, and in the absence of current measurements. It is highly recommended that important areas are monitored first. While the below list offers only a guideline, the presented order reflects the impact of such environments on the whole building and its inhabitants' comfort.
Creativity can be put to good use to avoid damaging walls or tile: suction cup system can be adapted to wall mounting holes on base station.
One of the most important areas for humidity monitoring is the bathroom. Large relative humidity swings occur any single day due to showers and washing duties. Towels create many hours of lingering, high humidity, long after usage. The highest risk of mold growth and other issues is in such areas.
Ideal positioning considers risks of water splashes from the shower, but the area immediately near the shower or bathtub should be considered. Mounting heights of 2 meters may be considered.
The second most important area for humidity monitoring is the kitchen. Frequently overlooked particularly in homes, the kitchen contributes a lot to local humidity and temperature conditions. Cooking releases waste heat and water vapours.
Ideal positioning is on a wall directly adiacent to stoves, ovens, or other frequently used grilling, baking or boiling areas.
Humidity monitoring can be easily overlooked on bedrooms since most concerns center on an adequate temperature. However, bedrooms contribute a lot to healthy living conditions since we spend many hours sleeping every day. This is even more important for areas that are used as activity rooms during the day as well, in small households.
Ideal positioning is on windows sills near fixed windows or on wall mounts on the facade, close to windows. Furniture placed close to walls is not recommended as poor airflow delays proper temperature and humidity monitoring.
Office working areas are slightly more demanding than living rooms due to long ours spend in mostly the same place. Drafts and large temperature swings are particularly discomforting.
Ideal positioning is on a desk close to the building's facade. If partitions such as cubicles are present, monitoring positions should be above the cubicles, as airflow is easily considered there. If openable windows are present, positioning should aim at areas near windows.
Areas used for activities have slightly higher demands for comfort than the ones for siting. Due to less frequent movement temperature and humidity requirements are relatively stable but have an important bearing on comfort.
Ideal positioning is on facade walls, near windows a and open balcony doors, when available. Areas close to any major airflow and temperature disturbance such as radiators and indoor units of split air-conditioning systems should be avoided.
Places where food is served require moderate comfort. While not as strict as offices, it is important to monitor drafts and major temperature or humidity changes.
Ideal positioning is on facade walls, near windows.
Stairs, halls, foyers and other access areas
Sometimes neglected, these spaces have a very important contribution to the building's balance. These areas experience large drafts that can easily change conditions in other building areas and this impact is manifested permanently. Windows opened more than required when temperature is much higher or lower than in the rest of the building can significantly influence overall comfort.
Ideal positioning is near facade walls and windows. In taller buildings it may be helpful to separately monitor the lower and top floor since drafts and building energy losses are amplified by these conditions.
Storage rooms, pantries, small warehouses
The most important requirement for warehouses is controlling humidity as it can damage products stored and presumably protected in these areas.
Ideal positions are near exposed facade walls, doors, windows or other ventilation areas. Center floorplan positioning should be avoided as it offers no relevant information about humidity and temperature impact.