Shopping for Dehumidifiers? Here’s What to Look For

The increase in portable dehumidifier brands and models on the market demonstrates increased consciousness about the comfort and health of the indoor environment. Elevated indoor humidity is not only uncomfortable for residents, it makes air conditioners and furnaces run longer and makes it harder for them to effectively cool or heat the home. High levels of indoor moisture also spawn the growth of indoor mold, mildew, and bacteria. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends keeping indoor relative humidity between 30% and 50%.

Major portable dehumidifier brands rate their units according to these criteria:

Type

Home units typically utilize compressors to extract water vapor or, less commonly (and less effectively), a desiccant dehumidifying process.

Capacity

Dehumidifiers are rated according to total pints of water removed from the air over a typical 24-hour period.

Sizing

Typical residential requirements for portable units run from 30 pints daily suitable for a damp room of 500 square feet up to 50 pints for 1,000 square feet. In more-humid climates, 75-pint models may be utilized for larger rooms of 1,200 square feet or more.

Condensate Draining

Basic units from most dehumidifier brands require manual emptying of the removable reservoir. Larger units may drain by gravity flow into a floor drain. Full-feature dehumidifiers include pumps to automatically empty the reservoir.

Here are typical features offered by major dehumidifier brands, as well as specific models for different areas of the house.

Frigidaire Standard

  • 30-pint-per-day rating.
  • One-touch controls.
  • Washable filter.
  • Programmable humidity settings plus a digital display.
  • Energy Star certification for low energy consumption.

Vacplus Bedroom Dehumidifier

  • 50-pint-per-day rating.
  • Very low noise (36 decibels) for bedroom usage.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity plus smartphone app for remote control.
  • Four levels of dehumidifying power.
  • Drain hose for floor drain.

Homelabs Basement Model

  • 70-pint rating to handle elevated basement moisture.
  • Suitable for spaces up to 4,500 square feet.
  • 188 cubic feet of air circulation per minute.
  • Continuous run mode for wet basements.
  • Effective in low temperatures common in basements.

For more information about available models and options from major dehumidifier brands, contact the air-quality pros at CCAC.

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