James White on September 16, 2015 7 Comments Quick Overview on Dehumidifiers You’ve made the first step to living in a healthier home—recognizing that your living space is having humidity issues. Household dehumidifiers are useful appliances that help maintain preferred, and healthy, humidity levels within your space. They do so by working to cleanse the air of excess moisture and prevent mold, bacteria and other particulates from growing, all of which could lead to a variety of health issues in the long-run. Click Here to View All Home Dehumidifiers But where does one even begin to search for a home dehumidifier that fits their needs? Worry no more, our buying guide will provide you with adequate information and essential tips to help figure which kind of dehumidifier best suits your needs. To help you accomplish this, let’s take a look at what you should consider when buying a dehumidifier, and whether or not you even need one. You know you need a dehumidifier if: Moist or wet stains are present on walls or ceiling. Room feels unpleasantly stuffy. Windows are covered with condensation. Musty odors exist. Mold is visible. Excess moisture. Things to Consider While Shopping for a Dehumidifier Dehumidifiers are effective units that come with many benefits for your space, and most importantly, yourself. They eliminate potentially dangerous variables that can affect your home, family and even your beloved pets. Before making any kind of purchase, research should be done to find a dehumidifier that works best for you. Here are several things that you should keep in mind when you are shopping around for a new dehumidifier for your home. 1. Mold Prevention Every homeowner’s worst nightmare, mold. Mold is a fungal species that causes natural materials to breakdown through a process known as biodegradation. Mold can become dangerous in large quantities, putting household residents’ health at risk. Symptoms of mold allergies can include: eye and throat irritation, skin rashes, sneezing, itchy throat and/or coughing, not to mention help contribute to asthma attacks. Moist, damp air is the ideal environment for mold to flourish (50-65% humidity), and a dehumidifier can remove the surplus moisture while preventing new mold from growing. If you or anybody in your home suffers from frequent asthma attacks or if you see mold growing in various places, then you should strongly consider getting a dehumidifier for your home. 2. Improve Air Quality The quality of air in your home is not only measured in the amount of toxins that you may or may not be breathing in, but also by the humidity levels of the air itself. While there’s no denying that an air purifier is the most effective way to cleanse the air of potentially harmful substances, a dehumidifier does indeed play an important role in improving your indoor air quality. In fact, no matter how many houseplants you have in your home or air purifiers running, it is impossible to keep your quality of air in your home at a healthy level if there is too much humidity. 3. Helps Eliminate Dust Mites As we discussed above, dehumidifiers play an intricate role in improving the overall indoor air quality within your home. Not only by removing excessive levels of humidity, but also by eliminating dust mites — who may be the culprits for why you’ve been wheezing so much recently. Photo Credit: Wikimedia Household dust mites are a common cause for many allergy-related symptoms and asthma, and they thrive in humid, warm climates. Dehumidifiers help keep the overall humidity in your house at an optimal level, therefore helping eliminate the environment in which dust mites survive in. While you’ll likely never completely rid your home of these tiny mites, there are plenty of things you can do to keep them at bay. By creating an unfavorable environment for them to live in will go a long way in preventing the possible health-related ailments that they may cause. 4. Protects Your Home High humidity levels can destroy your home’s structural integrity. Over time, moisture can affect the wood in your home, including the support beams, causing them to warp, crack or even split. Mold can start to grow in the wall. Metal fittings may start to rust. All because there is too much humidity in your home. A dehumidifier is an easy way to prevent your home from slowly deteriorating, while simultaneously creating a healthier living environment for your family. 5. Helps You Feel Comfortable When moisture is present in your space, temperatures may feel warmer than they actually are. By removing moisture from the air, you will feel more comfortable without having to crank up your air conditioner. In fact, you could probably raise the temperature on your thermostat and make your home more energy-efficient, as a result. This is especially true throughout the warmest times of the year. 6. Can Be Used In Any Room Whether you have an extremely moist basement or a humid living room, there is a dehumidifier designed specifically for that space. In fact, many popular home dehumidifiers can be used within all of these spaces in your home, to help ensure a dry environment. Some dehumidifiers offer a feature called “low temperature operation” that allows it to be used in climates as cool as -4°F, making these appliances perfect for year-round use. Many home dehumidifiers come equipped with casters for convenient mobility, enabling the unit to be easily transported from room to room, providing treatment whenever and wherever it’s needed. 7. Different Sizes Available Before making any kind of purchase, it’s important to figure out which size dehumidifier is properly suited for your home. Dehumidifiers remove moisture in terms of pint capacity, emphasizing each unit’s reservoir size. Small Rooms: For lightly damp or small rooms, such as bathrooms or laundry rooms, a dehumidifier with a capacity of 25-40 pints is recommended for that size space. Mid-Sized Rooms: For mid-sized rooms, such as bedrooms, or rooms with excessive levels of moisture, a dehumidifier with a 40-59 pint capacity is recommended. Large Rooms: For larger rooms, including living rooms or other open living-spaces, a dehumidifier with a 60+ pint-capacity is recommended. Basements, Garages & Crawlspaces: If your garage, basement or crawlspace needs to be treated as well, a 60+ pint sized unit is generally recommended. However, there are specially-designed units designated for these areas. We would recommend using one of those, if possible, especially if the device will be used in that area for prolonged use. The above room sizes typically cover the standard home, however, if you require an even larger unit, then you may want to look into getting a commercial and industrial-grade dehumidifiers. Units rated with a capacity of 70 pints or less are ideal for residential use, while larger-sized dehumidifiers are perfect for commercial and industrial settings, such as warehouses, factories and server rooms. However, keep in mind that a larger size dehumidifier isn’t necessarily better; the performance of a dehumidifier is affected by the size and humidity levels in the space being treated. 8. Many Budget-Friendly Options Before you rush out and spend a lot of money on a dehumidifier, it’s important to research the different types and brands available to you, as well as what your intentions are once you buy the appliance. Once you know this, it will be significantly easier to find the right dehumidifier for your home or situation. Larger capacity units are generally more expensive, because of their ability to treat vast spaces. Additionally, the same can be said about the brand you are buying. EdgeStar and Danby have a well-known and deeply-rooted reputation for creating quality products that last for many years. You may pay a little more upfront, but you’ll get more from the unit over time. Depending on your intent with the appliance, the price can vary widely. If you have a specific budget in mind, narrowing down your choices based on a dehumidifier’s features will not only help find an appliance in your price range, but also to find a unit designed for your objective. This is why it’s important to know what and where you plan on using the device. 9. Portable & Convenient Having a dehumidifier with mobile capabilities can be convenient, especially for long-term use. Nowadays, it’s pretty much standard that a dehumidifier will come with casters and carrying handles, but if not, this is a must-have feature we would recommend. Not only will it make it easier to use on a daily basis, but it will make it easier for you to move from one area of your home to another. This will allow you to buy one unit and use it strategically in your home, instead of buying multiple units designated for multiple areas in your home. 10. Energy Efficiency Helps You Save Money When a unit has an Energy Star rating it means the dehumidifier is able to operate in an energy-conscious manner to help you save energy, which means you are able to cut down on your utility costs. Not only will this help create a healthier environment for you and your family, but you can save money in the process. In order for a product to become Energy Star Rated, it must meet strict guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency. And this is no easy feat. 11. Maintenance is Easy & Quick Look for a dehumidifiers with a top-loading filter. This innovative feature allows for very simple and quick maintenance. While many dehumidifiers require the internal reservoir to be taken out in order to change or clean the filter, units with this feature have a convenient compartment on top which provides immediate access to the filter. This cuts down on time spent trying to open the device and prevents an unneeded mess from occurring. And trust me, removing and emptying an internal reservoir will lead to an unwanted mess at some point. 12. Automatic Shut-Off Saves You Time & Energy Designed to further cut down on energy costs, dehumidifiers with an automatic shut-off feature use intelligent software to actively monitor your space’s climate and will shut down once the desired humidity level has been reached. In addition, units with this feature will also shut down once the internal reservoir is full. Another must-have feature when it comes to buying a dehumidifier for your home, automatic shut-off will ensure that the device only operates at their best ability. 13. Auto Defrost Saves You Time Automatic defrosting dehumidifiers are convenient and save time when it comes to maintenance. The automatic defrost feature is a must-have feature for anybody that plans to use their device in colder climates. Autdo defrost allows you to operate your unit without the worry of frost damage. While most dehumidifiers can function in low temperature spaces, appliances designed for the cold can operate without the danger of the units’ coils icing over. 14. Restarts Automatically In times of power outages—or any time your electricity suddenly shuts off—the automatic restart feature is a godsend. This feature ensures that your dehumidifier will continue to operate at its previously configured settings as soon as the power has been restored, making sure your space continues to receive the dehumidifying treatment it needs. This feature is a must-have for people who travel/work a lot and are home less frequently. 15. Drains Continuously Although some dehumidifiers may have a large reservoir capacity, allowing for continuous drainage can reduce user maintenance, as well as provide continual dehumidification for your space. Some units come equipped with drainage hoses that connect to the internal reservoir and utilize gravity to feed built-up moisture to the nearest drain. Gravity drains have the ability to only drain liquid vertically, so if you’re in need of a more powerful option then looking into a condensate pump may be beneficial. Condensate pumps are great for locations with diverse elevation and work to pump the liquid vertically and horizontally to the nearest drain. Takeaways Now that you’ve gathered sufficient information and have a better understanding on home dehumidifiers, deciding on a unit that will work best for you should be much easier. While many home dehumidifiers exist and claim to treat your space as effectively as the next, our top four home dehumidifying brands—EdgeStar, Danby, Frigidaire and Friedrich—have been commendably reviewed to treat spaces for excess moisture, making homes a happier and healthier place to be. Don’t let yourself suffer anymore, shop our home dehumidifiers and find a solution that keeps your house dry and comfortable, for many years to come.