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Dehumidifier Buying Guide

A comprehensive dehumidifier guide that will give you all the information you need to buy the best dehumidifier for your home.


Getting Started

Dehumidifiers pull excess moisture from the air inside your home. Some moisture is preferred in interior environments (which is why you might run a humidifier during the winter), but too much humidity can cause problems. High humidity makes a space feel muggy and contributes to the sticky, uncomfortable feeling when the temperature rises. It also aggravates health issues like allergies and asthma. Excessive levels of humidity can also lead to mold and mildew growth. A portable dehumidifier lets you maintain an ideal level of humidity in your home.

How do I know if I need a dehumidifier?
Whole-house and window air conditioning units remove some of the moisture from your home's air, but if you live in a particularly humid climate, you might need additional help. Major signs of excessive humidity in a home are: condensation on the inside of windows (especially double or triple-pane windows), dripping or "sweating" pipes, peeling wallpaper, warping wood floors, and difficulty opening wooden doors or windows in the summer. If condensation is present for prolonged periods, take steps to reduce the level of moisture or increase ventilation in your home.

Types

Small Capacity Dehumidifiers
Rated to remove 25-40 pints of moisture from the air per day. Best for small spaces that are damp, but not wet, and have a musty odor in humid weather.
Medium Capacity Dehumidifiers
Rated to remove 45-60 pints of moisture from the air per day. These are used for spaces that feel and smell wet, the walls and floors sweat, or seepage is present.
Large Capacity Dehumidifiers
Rated to remove up to 65-70 pints per day. These are used for large rooms or extremely wet spaces.

Features

Air filter
An air filter helps clean the air that is being drawn into the dehumidifier. This helps eliminate some allergens from the air, but more importantly it keeps dirt particles from entering the inner workings of the dehumidifier, helping prolong its useful life. Look for a dehumidifier with a washable air filter, and remember to clean it on a regular basis.
Auto-Restart
Auto-Restart is a helpful function that, in the event of a power outage, automatically turns the dehumidifier back on when the power returns. Great for basement dehumidifiers.
Caster wheels
Caster wheels are typical on most dehumidifiers, caster wheels allow for easy transportation and portability.
Collection Tank or Collection Bucket
Most home or residential dehumidifier models have an internal collection tank or bucket that can be removed when needed. Once a dehumidifier model extracts enough moisture to fill the collection tank, the tank most be emptied. Most models have an auto-shut off feature that turns the dehumidifier off once the tank is full.
Direct drain-off
A direct drain-off eliminates the hassle of emptying a bucket. An anti-frost sensor can be very important, as the unit will shut off as frost starts to build on the compressor.
Humidistat
Humidistat measures the humidity in the surrounding area; it will relay that information to the dehumidifier and adjust accordingly. Having a humidistat is always a great option, since it allows you to set the humidity level that you desire.

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