View Full Version : Humidity solutions for the south...

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:03 PM
I have finally moved south. And from the north, this is a change in MANY ways for the horses, and it appears, my tack.

So, I have a great tack room. But it's so darn humid that I can't store tack in it. We have gone thru 2 dehumidifiers, and killed a wall unit (It was old...no great loss) but clearly I need SOMETHING.

Any ideas? This was an apt at one point in time, and has an attached bathroom. It's a nice area, and I was kind of thinking I might not keep it as a tack room, but my options are quite limited for tack storage. So any ideas would be appreciated.

As for the horses....we have fans in the run in, but they are really not that effective. Any ideas for exhaust fans? Does anyone use them? My OTTB is miserable- but keeping him in during the day just does not seem like a great idea. I am gone for a lot of the day, the barn is not that well ventilated so he would be very warm I think. I am thinking that using a wall exhaust fan might be in order for the barn, too.

So any CoTH ideas would be appreciated!

Frank B
Jun. 25, 2012, 10:11 PM
Which part of NC? The climate ranges widely from one end of the state to the other. We were in Robeson county, down in the Southeast corner. Hot, humid, and 'skeeters the size of B-17s.

I kept my tack in the house under AC. The barn and stalls were well ventilated and each stall had a fan. Stable-boarded horses were kept in during the heat of the day and turned out at night. Field-boarded horses had stands of Pine trees to escape into.

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:21 PM
We're on Long Island. It's not the South, but we still have our moments of nasty humidity. I got a few large sized Damp Rid things and hung them in the tack room.

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:25 PM
Gets pretty hot and humid here in Aiken, SC. We put a small AC window unit in our tack room. Has worked great thus far.

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:40 PM
I am on the Coast of North Eastern NC. I keep my tackroom screened in and have great ventilation so my tack makes out okay. If there is something I am really worried about I keep it inside the hose. A pain but much better than constantly cleaning tack .

A window A/C should do the trick to take the humidity out in conjunction with some damp rid.

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:45 PM
I'm down in AL and the mildew factor varies from saddle to saddle LOL. Some are well oiled and don't get funky, some just can't wait to turn green.

I have a rough cut sort of barn, so I just have a fan in the window and lots of inherent ventilation (board and batten home built barn by a non carpenter-savvy DH ;) )....

The horses? Well, if you have the time and can support it, leave the horse under a fan all day - check out Big Ass Fans if you can $$$ it...and turn him out at night.

And start riding again in ...September ;)

Jun. 25, 2012, 10:55 PM
Thanks everyone! I'm in Tryon, at River road, so low...and damp! Great area, however, so it's all good! I've got my 3 boys, and I work full time in Asheville to support them. I am in the ED so my hours are not steady. But we will make it work!!

I'm checking into the Big Ass Fans! Tahoe will appreciate them!

Jun. 26, 2012, 09:17 AM
it's very humid where I am too, but honestly I don't have an issue. My "solution" might be that the ceiling in the tack room isn't enclosed. It's got insulation on top of dropped ceiling tiles, but it's all just laid on top of the roof truss so there's nothing solid at all about it.

Sometimes it's not about reducing humidity, but increasing air flow, so I'd look into a good fan.

Jun. 27, 2012, 10:04 AM
I'm in Florida. Our tack room isn't climate controlled but stays pretty cool and we don't have much problem with the humidity and the tack, but I know of another barn that has a climate controlled tack room that cannot keep mildew off its tack, even cleaning every week. I think a big difference might be the cleaning products used. You may need to adjust to using one that has less conditioner in it. For instance, I have found that Horseman's One Step (which is what that other barn uses) gets really greasy and leaves a film on tack here, but I've heard people in other, less humid places say it is awesome. I personally use glycerin soap and condition with mink oil, which helps give a waterproofing layer to the leather. If you aren't comfortable with the mink oil (it can darken light colored leather), Stubben's conditioner also works very well. :)

Frank B
Jun. 27, 2012, 11:14 AM
You should enjoy the area. Lots of horsey stuff over at FENCE.

Loves to ride
Jun. 27, 2012, 01:33 PM
Not to hijack but I have a related question.

Can a de-humidifier be used in a tack/grain room to reduce humidity?

Is there any reason not to use one?


Jun. 27, 2012, 02:18 PM
I'm in the same area (in fact, was at a show this past weekend at FENCE and nearly melted).

I second (third? fourth?) the small a/c unit if at all possible. It doesn't even need to really make the room feel all cool and comfy...it simply cuts down on the dampness of it all. If you don't have a window, maybe where the wall unit was that you killed off?

And welcome to the area! I promise it isn't always as hot as this coming weekend promises to be!!

Jun. 27, 2012, 10:16 PM
Thanks for the warm welcome! I love it here- went to a show at FENCE and came back a few months later and got a home. Its taken seven years and a whole 'lotta life happening to get back here, but here I am. I am right on the FETA trails (Dark Horse Lane), so it's pretty nice. Pollards lived here before the former owners that we got the farm from, so it's pretty horse friendly overall.

I think the last owners put a ceiling in the barn, which cuts down on the air flow, and there is a lot of shrubbery around the barn, which also makes it damper than it might be. I am in no position at this point to make major barn changes (especially since have to address fencing SOON), so I have to make do.

Thanks for all the suggestions!

I think I may end up replacing the wall unit eventually. Maybe get a dehumidifier to tide me over. As for the person that asked about something in the feed room, I have those dry rid packets. The feed room is 6X10, and if I keep the door closed, it seems to work pretty well.

Jun. 28, 2012, 08:40 AM
*I* would get the shrubs off the barn unless you just really really love how it looks. It invites all sorts of creatures to hang out - some you want (ie black snakes) but many you don't.

You can get large buckets of Dry-Rid-like stuff that may help as well.

Jun. 28, 2012, 02:18 PM
Good luck...and I'm jealous that you're right on the FETA trail system. Such a fun place to ride!

Jun. 28, 2012, 02:30 PM
Not to hijack but I have a related question.

Can a de-humidifier be used in a tack/grain room to reduce humidity?

Is there any reason not to use one?


Yes, you can use a de-humidifier in a tack/grain room.
Watch your settings. I've been told that you should maintain relative humidity between 30% - 50%. Any lower and you are drying out your leather.

Jun. 28, 2012, 09:27 PM
A small window unit turned on a few times a week will do the trick.

Jun. 28, 2012, 09:54 PM
Hm, I have lived here for seven years and not had a problem and it gets plenty humid. However, most things get used almost daily and what doesn't gets stored in the trailer, where it sits happily till I need it next. I leave wet things to dry in the sun before I put them away. I keep saddles covered and always leave pads dirty side up. Do you have problems with everything or just things that sit?

Jun. 28, 2012, 11:01 PM
I think it's things that sit...DD lived here for awhile and her tack has not been used but now resembles something ...green and fuzzy:) not her saddles, but her bridles. So, I'd hazard to guess that is the main issue.

I also think that the carpet in the tack room needs to go. Again, moisture holder=mold creator.

I also agree and think the bushes need to get cleared away. Well...most of them. The amazing blueberries can stay! The others are just sorta decoration. They are definite moisture attractors. Sad, but clearly any thing grows here.(..ESP poison ivy! Lol!) so I can plant something more of a ground plant rather than something that stops airflow 4' up.

Yup...feta trails are the best!! It's what I keep thinking about. Just mowed our section tonight. Maybe one day I'll get to ride them again!

Again, thanks for all the great input!

Jun. 29, 2012, 11:14 AM
Yes, I'd definitely pull the carpet, that won't help. The only bridle in our tack room that molded was one that sat without moving for two years, left behind by someone. I finally said, if I clean it, I keep it. Wiped the mold off with a damp towel, the cleaned and and oiled it up, set it outside for about 20-30 mins to warm the leather, suck up the oil and kill the mold with UV, and it's been fine ever since.

A cheap bridle bag or even a plastic bag contraption after the bridles are clean and dry should help keep the mold off bridle that don't get used often too.