What is a dehumidifier? It is an electronic appliance that removes excess moisture from the air. Dehumidifiers work by sucking in moist humid air on one side, using a fan, and moving the air over ice-cold tubes that causes the moisture to condense on these tubes and drip into a bucket. The air is then warmed and pushed out on the other side of the unit.
Purchasing a basement dehumidifier is a simple forward process once, especially if you know exactly what to look for. The following are a few factors to consider:
What size of a dehumidifier do you need?
To determine the size of the dehumidifier you need you must get the exact size of your space and the level of humidity :
- Up to 800 square feet: 40 pint
- Up to 1300 square feet: 65 pint
- Up to 400 square feet: 25 or 30 pint
- Up to 1000 square feet: 50 pint
How much humidity will your humidifier be able to exact?
The amount of pint of water the dehumidifier can extract is determined by the following factors :
1. Room temperatures affect the minimum humidity level you will be able to achieve- Air that has been processed by most humidifiers is around 30% humidity. At 70% and above, it’s possible to reduce the humidity to 35% to 40% at room temperature.
2. If the Humidity reached is not as low as you want - you can heat the room or raise the humidifier off the floor where it is coldest. The higher you can raise the dehumidifier the warmer the air.
Other factors that affect how low you can bring the humidity level include:
- Size of the area you are dehumidifying.
- Construction of the room.
- Area of the country where you live – some places are more humid than others.
The following are a few tips to consider before buying a basement dehumidifier:
1. Permanent Drainage Facility- Many dehumidifiers in the market currently come with a permanent drain facility. This allows the dehumidifier to empty the gathered water itself.
The drainage facilities include:
- Gravity drainage facilities-for this unit you must have the drain lower than the dehumidifier. This facility concurs with wall-mounted dehumidifiers such as those found in commercial areas like swimming pools.
- Motorized drain facilities- Drains are actually higher than the dehumidifier as the motor pushes the water up to the drain.
- Permanent drain facility- Many dehumidifiers in the market come with a permanent drain facility which allows the dehumidifier to empty the gathered water itself. Access to the permanent drain is located at the bottom of the rear of the appliance.
3. Noise- A low setting on the dehumidifier is as loud as a person whispering or around 35dB. A medium setting is louder than that of a library under normal conditions. Higher settings produce a sound volume that is similar to a desktop fan operating at full speed. Note that dehumidifiers usually differ but usually operate on the medium setting through the low setting is often used at night.
4. Desiccant or mechanical- Always check whether the dehumidifier is a desiccant dehumidifier or a mechanical one. The mechanical dehumidifiers are often a little louder than their desiccant counter-parts. Desiccant dehumidifiers are very eco-friendly.
5. Energy-saving technology - Dehumidifiers running costs are lower than most people expect. Many dehumidifiers consume around 200watts at low fan settings.
6. Washable Filters- Some models in the market have filters that protect the coil from dirt and dust. Hence make sure you can easily remove the filters and wash them. There are different types of anti-bacterial filters. They include silver Nano filters or multi-filtration systems with pre-filters and charcoal filters which eliminate odor.
7. Desiccant Dehumidifiers or compressor- A compressor dehumidifier works better in warmer environments. Desiccant dehumidifiers are suitable for the low-temperature environment.
8. Actual Extraction rates versus stated- In all types of dehumidifiers, you will find the variance between the stated and actual extraction rates. These dehumidifiers are tested in temperatures of 30%-80% relative humidity.
9. Water Tank size- This is a section where water is collected and stored. This determines how quickly the dehumidifier fills up and how regularly you need to empty it. When you purchase the right size of dehumidifiers, you will not need to empty the tank very often. The larger the tank, the better especially if you are not always around to empty the tank. The following are water tank features you should consider:
- Water tank lid- The availability of a lid on the water tank is very important. This reduces the chances of spilling the water when carrying a water full tank to the sink for emptying.
- Anti-mold coating- You should ensure that the tank has an anti-mold coating inside the water tank. Most users put the dehumidifiers away for summer and do not dry the water tank properly resulting in mold growth.
- Pull-up Handle- Most dehumidifier water tanks are sold with a pull-up handle which is located at the center of the tank that the user can hold when bringing the fuel tank to the sink. However, most users prefer to hold the tank by its sides as we feel it’s faster.
Here is a list of key additional features to look out for in a good dehumidifier:
- Mobility/portability- if your house has several rooms, you will need a portable dehumidifier. You should make sure it has a handle and caster wheels if it’s a large unit of more than 8l.
- Adjustable humidistat- This feature allows the user to set ideal humidity levels that the user wants to attain in an environment.
- Automatic Shutoff- The automatic system in the dehumidifier helps in shutting down the unit when the ideal humidity is achieved.
- Defrost mode- This stops the dehumidifier from freezing up in low-temperature environments.
- Inbuilt hygrometer-This is an automatic system that detects the humidity of the air which can be used to determine switch itself on or off.
- Auto-reset- In case of a power outage or sudden unplug, the system remembers your settings for the time you used it.
Laundry mode- This mode places the system into its most powerful setting and can bring down humidity levels to 35% or more.
12. LED Display panel-The LED display makes reading the temperature and humidity levels very easy. The only assured way of knowing the exact humidity level of your room or house without the LED display is to purchase a damp meter, which means incur an extra cost.
13. the best way to use a basement dehumidifier- After you have selected the best basement dehumidifier that will help solve your humidity problem the next thing is to know how to best use it. For first time users, you will need to use your basement dehumidifier for longer hours depending on the humidity of the area and capacity of your basement dehumidifier.
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