Why does your bathroom need to be dehumidified?
Bathrooms provide the perfect warm and moist environment for microbes, mold, and mildew to thrive: hot showers that generate a lot of steam, poor ventilation due to space limitations, and water everywhere – splashed, spilled or leaking. The presence of microbes in the atmosphere makes us vulnerable to allergies and other respiratory complications while mold and mildew ruin our clothes, valuables, and structures. There is also the embarrassing odor that is common in damp environments.
Your bathroom needs to be dehumidified to extract the prevalent excess moisture from the atmosphere for clean, breathable air. Dehumidifiers also come with filters that keep airborne allergens under control.
Features to consider while choosing a dehumidifier
The best dehumidifier for bathroom models should be evaluated based on the following features.
Knowing the different types of available dehumidifiers and the technology they use will help you choose the most suitable one for your needs. There are three main types of dehumidifiers:
These are also known as thermoelectric or peltier dehumidifiers because of the peltier module that they use to operate. Peltier is an electronic device which entirely depends on electricity to create a difference in temperature in the two heat sinks on each of its two sides. As the warm, humid air passes through the cold heat sink, moisture is extracted into a reservoir, and then the hot heat sink heats up the air before releasing it again into the atmosphere. Peltier models are smaller because they do not use a pump or compressor, only an electronic module, two heat sinks and a fan. They are also the quietest for the same reason. The downside is that this type of dehumidifier cannot operate without electricity. It also generally has a lower dehumidification rate than compressor and desiccant models.
Also known as refrigerant or compressor dehumidifiers, they work by drawing warm air over a refrigerated coil which causes condensation. The condensate is dripped or pumped into a reservoir, and then the cool air is heated and pumped back into the room. The pump speeds up dehumidification by drawing in and emitting large volume of air. Compressor models also feature large coils which extract more moisture because, unlike peltier or thermoelectric models, they use an integrated compressor to cool the coils instead of depending on electrical power only. The additional components, including a fan, a pump and compressor, make them heavier, larger and louder than other types. They usually have the best moisture removal rate provided the room is not so cold that it causes frosting on their refrigerated coils.
This type is also referred to as chemical absorbent dehumidifier. Unlike the other two types, this dehumidifier does not require electricity. A rotor draws air to the desiccant which removes moisture through adsorption. Once saturated with moisture, the desiccant is heated to recharge it and release the trapped moisture so it can continue to extract more moisture from the air. The best advantage of this technology is its effectiveness in extremely low temperature because the desiccant’s adsorption rate is unaffected by the room’s temperature. It also lasts weeks and months before it needs to be recharged.
Water tank capacity
Generally, the higher the rate of moisture extraction, the higher the maximum volume of water the tank can hold. A greater capacity eliminates the need for frequent emptying of the water tank. Frigidaire FAD301NWD has a water tank with a capacity of 192 ounces which can hold the large volume of moisture extracted from the air in big bathrooms.
Recent models include continuous drainage option which allows you to attach a hose to the water tank and drain the water directly into a sink or sewage through gravity, where the dehumidifier is positioned at a higher point than the drainage outlet.
This refers to moisture extraction capacity, and is measured by the amount of excess moisture the dehumidifier can remove from the air in 24 hours. This should guide you on getting the right dehumidifier for your humidity needs. Since humidity levels in bathrooms are typically high, choose a model with high dehumidification rate, such as Eurgeen Compact 20 Pint Portable Dehumidifier which extracts 320 ounces of moisture from the air in a day. If possible, always opt for higher moisture removal capacity than you need to accommodate fluctuating air conditions.
Calculate the size of your intended bathroom, including the height, and match it to a dehumidifier that can effectively process the volume of air in that space so you do not end up with a model that will underperform. Manufacturers indicate the size of space that their dehumidifiers can cover.
Almost all types of dehumidifiers feature a fan whose size and speed can affect the level of noise it produces. But fans are hardly the culprit because even at their loudest, they mostly produce white sound. On the other hand, compressor models additionally have pumps, compressors and other movable parts which can generate substantial buzzing and vibration noise.
The dehumidifiers featured in our review all run quietly. Despite being mechanical models, Eurgeen Compact 20 Pint Portable Dehumidifier and Frigidaire 30-Pint Dehumidifier have sound levels of 50 dB and 46.1 dB respectively. EcoSeb DD122EA-SIMPLE, a desiccant model, runs at 34 decibels. For perspective’s sake, a normal conversation has a sound level of 50 decibels.
Look for multiple speed settings in a unit so you can adjust speed to a lower setting for an even quieter operation.
Dimensions and weight
The size and weight of a dehumidifier should be determined by the space to be covered and the level of humidity. Portable models are light in weight and compact. This makes them convenient to move and install in bathrooms with space limitations.
The size and weight can also indicate the type of unit, area of coverage, and water tank capacity. Compressor models are larger and heavier than other types due to the additional mechanical components but handles and castor wheels improve maneuverability. They also have the best moisture extraction rate in room temperature or warmer conditions. Frigidaire FAD301NWD is 19.8 x 11.54 x 14.57 inches with 1400 square foot coverage while 1byone 400ml Electric Mini is only 6.65 x 4.92 x 8.46 inches with 161.5 square foot coverage.
Familiarize yourself with warranties of different brands and any added incentive like the 30-day money back guarantee for Hysure Electric Mini Dehumidifier. You can get that information online from verified buyers and authoritative reviews such as this one.
These are some of the features that will improve convenience, save time, energy and money, and add value to your overall moisture removal experience:
- LED/LCD indicator for full tank alert;
- multiple speed settings for energy efficiency and less noise;
- auto shut-off feature after full tank alert to avoid water spillage;
- timer for delayed start;
- on/off feature for automatic restart after power outage;
- programmable humidity controls;
- digital display for feedback;
- integrated humidistat;
- auto defrost for unit protection in low temperature;
- continuous drainage option;
- removable and washable filter to prevent clogging and to purify air;
- handles and castor wheels for maneuverability;
- Energy Star certification.