Have you heard the phrase, it’s not so much the heat but the humidity that makes you uncomfortable? This phrase describes the hot, muggy environment that results when there is excess humidity in your space. Although most window air conditioners, portable air conditioners and central air conditioning systems remove some excess moisture from your indoor environment, sometimes it isn’t enough. If you notice condensation on windows, wet stains on walls and ceilings, mold, or musty scents, you probably have a humidity problem. If these problems are ignored, structural damage to your home and its contents, allergic reactions, respiratory problems, and other health issues may arise.
A dehumidifier can help you remedy the moisture problem in your home. These appliances are designed to pull damp, sticky air into the unit, rapidly cool it and condense the moisture, and redistribute the drier, dehumidified air back into your environment using a fan. Depending on your needs and the dehumidifier model you are using, the collected water either drains into a water collection receptacle contained in the dehumidifier or it drains through a hose and into an exterior receptacle (i.e., a floor drain) using simple gravity.
For jobs that require water to be pumped further distances or upward, some dehumidifiers are equipped with internal condensate pumps. Many models are also designed to support external condensate pumps. Condensate pumps are useful when dehumidifying remote spaces because they automate the water removal process to a degree. In addition, pumps and condensate tubing lengthen the reach of drain hoses, allowing users to remove excess water and drain it across further distances—for example, when there isn’t a floor drain nearby. They can also be useful when you need to remove a large amount of moisture from a space and won’t be available to empty the drainage tank regularly.
Dehumidifiers are often placed in the following areas where excess moisture is most prevalent:
- Crawl Spaces
- Spas or Indoor Pool Areas
Additionally, when you supplement your air conditioner with a dehumidifier, you will achieve the best balance of cool and dry air, which will help your indoors remain healthy and cool.
Choosing the Right Dehumidifier
There are a wide range of dehumidifiers available, with models that vary according to capacity, consumer need, dehumidifier placement, cost, and more. Thus, choosing a dehumidifier can be a tricky process. One way to start is by figuring out how much moisture you need to remove and within how much space. A leading consumer reporting agency divides dehumidifiers into the following four categories based on capacity:
Small Capacity: These dehumidifiers remove about 25 pints of excess moisture from your environment each day. They are best suited to treat small, damp spaces.
Medium Capacity: Removing 45 to 50 pints of moisture per day, these dehumidifiers are great for dehumidifying damp medium- to large-sized spaces.
Large Capacity: These models are capable of removing up to 75 pints of moisture per day and can treat a wider range of humidity problems—from excessively wet to damp conditions.
Whole-House Capacity: A whole house dehumidifier can be integrated with a home’ existing HVAC system. Many of these dehumidifiers can remove excess moisture in spaces up to 3,000 square feet.
While small, medium, and large are accurate descriptions of dehumidifier capacities, oftentimes these same dehumidifiers—regardless of capacity—will be grouped together as single room dehumidifiers. For small room and offices, dehumidifiers like the Sunpentown SD-30E are great for removing up to 30 pints of moisture each day. Medium-sized rooms, such as large bedrooms and kitchens can benefit from models like the PrimeAire PA5010E 50-Pint Dehumidifier, which removes up to 50 pints of moisture daily from your environment. For large spaces like dens, garages, or lofts, higher-capacity models like the Comfort-Aire BHD-651, which can remove up to 65 pints of moisture from your environment each day, are a great solution.
Capacity isn’t the only variable to take into consideration when choosing a dehumidifier. Depending on the type of space you want to dehumidify, there are more specific models such as crawl space dehumidifiers that are designed to tackle moisture problems in tight crawl spaces and indoor pool dehumidifiers that help keep indoor swimming areas comfortable and reduce moisture-related structural damage. There are also dehumidifiers that address particular types of moisture removal, such as water damage restoration dehumidifiers, that are useful during flood cleanup and recovery. More rugged than household dehumidifiers, industrial dehumidifiers are useful in manufacturing settings and warehouses. These commercial dehumidifiers can help keep your facilities comfortable for employees and protect your merchandise from moisture damage.
Check the manufacturer specifications thoroughly to ensure that you are getting a dehumidifier that will adequately address your moisture problems. Visit our website at https://www.wearemsi.com