Dehumidifiers work by regulating the humidity in a room and removing any excess moisture lingering in the air. As a result, it creates a living condition that is inhospitable to any hazardous toxins in the air. These airborne nasties can include dust mites, mould, and other allergenic organisms.
But how much water should a dehumidifier be collecting in a day? Will it remove enough moisture from the air? The good news is that your dehumidifier will likely solve any humidity issues you have, but the amount of water collected depends on the model you choose. Let’s take a deeper look so that you can make an informed decision
- How Quickly Should a Dehumidifier Fill Up?
- Determining the Relative Humidity of your Space.
- Is it Safe to Run a Dehumidifier Constantly all the Time?
- How To Reduce Dehumidifier Runtime
- Why is my Dehumidifier Not Collecting Water?
- Final Thoughts
How Quickly Should a Dehumidifier Fill Up?
The amount of water your dehumidifier should collect in a day depends on a few things, one of them having to be the amount of moisture inside the home. High humidity levels can make the dehumidifier collect more throughout the day, leading to you having to dump the water container more often.
Most manufacturers claim a dehumidifier should collect between 10 and 20 litres of water per day. On larger units, it can collect up to 50 litres. A 10-litre dehumidifier will remove 3 to 4 litres per day and a 20-litre dehumidifier will remove 6 to 8 litres per day.
Dehumidifiers come in different capacities, that means the amount of water the collection area can collect, not how big the unit is. The most commonly used capacities are 15L, 30L and 40L. The higher the capacity, the more water that the unit can extract in a quicker amount of time.
Here is a chart that averages the amount of time different dehumidifiers with different capacities took to dehumidify the air in a 50 square foot space.
|Capacity||90% - 40%||80% - 50%|
The heading “90-40%” refers to the time taken (in the number of seconds) for the dehumidifier to dehumidify a 50 sq ft room from 90% relative humidity down to 40% relative humidity. The heading “80-50%” refers to the time taken for the dehumidifier to dehumidify our 50 sq ft test space from 80% relative humidity down to 50% relative humidity.
Determining the Relative Humidity of your Space.
One of the easiest ways you can determine how much humidity is in your home is by figuring out the relative humidity levels. For this, you will need to purchase a hygrometer. These are reasonably inexpensive tools.
Place the small device in the room you want to test and follow the instructions. The hygrometer will show your home’s humidity level in a percentage. For most homes, the ideal humidity level is between 45 to 60% during the summer, and 25-40% during the winter. Although, during the winter, you might want to use a humidifier instead to replace any moisture that is lost.
Is it Safe to Run a Dehumidifier Constantly all the Time?
It is recommended that your dehumidifier runs for at least twelve hours a day. Running your dehumidifier longer than that can cause wear and tear on the unit, shortening its lifespan. While it is running, you may need to dump the collected water from the tank multiple times.
Luckily; most dehumidifiers come with a built-in shut-off feature, so when the tank becomes full, it will shut off automatically so there’s no need to worry about the water collected overflowing onto your floor.
If dumping the reservoir is too much work, most units come with a spot on the back where you can attach a drainage pipe. You can either stick the drainage pipe outside of a window, or connect it to a floor drain – whatever works best to get rid of the collected water.
How To Reduce Dehumidifier Runtime
If you’re worried about having to run your dehumidifier all the time, there are several steps you can take in your home to help reduce the amount of humidity. Like all appliances, dehumidifiers have a lifespan and will usually last a couple of years.
Running the dehumidifier 24 hours a day will put an extra burden on the compressor, which is why it is not recommended. Here are some great preventative measures you can take to ensure your unit lives it’s life to its fullest.
Ventilation – A lack of ventilation can cause humidity to accumulate and not leave the room. You can improve your ventilation by covering, or filling, cracks in windows and doors. These cracks will bring in unwanted moisture from outside.
Leaky Pipes and Roofs – Fixing any leaks in your home will help reduce excess moisture from entering the environment. Leaky pipes can also cause mould to grow, which can lead to respiratory issues.
Avoid using heating appliances – Unvented natural gas, kerosene, heaters will contribute to moisture in a room. Avoid using it or replace it with alternate electrical appliances.
Install Exhaust Fans – Places like the bathroom and kitchen acquire a lot of humidity due to the amount of steam created. Cleaning yourself and cooking meals will add humidity and moisture to the area. Installing an exhaust fan in these spaces can help suck out the damp in the air.
Regularly Emptying Water Tank – If the water tank is full, the dehumidifier will not function properly and it could even damage the circuit board. Make sure you empty the water collected by the dehumidifier regularly and check it several times per day.
Regularly Dusting – Cleaning the coils and air vents free from dust will make the unit more efficient while operating. Dust can cause clogs in the mechanisms and reduce its capabilities while operating.
Read here : Best dehumidifier for a garage & basement
Why is my Dehumidifier Not Collecting Water?
First, you need to determine if the room temperature is above 18C, this is because it may not have any further humidity to collect from the air. If it is above this temperature, the problem likely rests with the compressor – a key component in how dehumidifiers work as it circulates the refrigerant that ensures moisture is extracted from the air.
If not running above 18C, it could also be the fault of the capacitor. This is also part of the refrigerant pumping process and works hand in hand with the compressor. Usually, if one of these components is broken the other will cease to work until it is repaired.
It could also be that your fan motor is faulty, and this is responsible for preventing frost and ice from building up on the coils. Sometimes, it is caused by lint and dust collecting over time and restricting the capabilities of the fan function. Fixing the fan yourself can be quite delicate work and sometimes professional assistance is best in this situation.
Where is the best place to put a dehumidifier?
The best area to place your dehumidifier is in an area that has a lot of excess moisture in the air. Dehumidifiers are commonly placed in bedrooms, basements, laundry rooms, crawl spaces, and indoor pool areas since these areas often have moisture problems.
What does a dehumidifier do for your health?
A dehumidifier removes excess moisture from the air, preventing the growth of mould and removing common toxins. There are many negative effects on the body that comes with having too much humidity in your living space.
Asthma can worsen, viruses are more prone to travel within the home, and there is an increase risk of bacterial growth. A home with too much humidity combined with high temperatures can lead to heatstroke, especially for those with heart problems.
Will a dehumidifier help with any smells lingering in the air?
Yes, Dehumidifiers help reduce odours that can accompany mould and mildew in your home – getting rid of that “musty” or “rotting” smell.
Can one dehumidifier do a whole house?
Yes, one dehumidifier cannot do a whole house but only if it is an installed system. Portable dehumidifiers are not meant to control the relative humidity of an entire house, especially if your home is big.
They are typically meant for smaller areas, one way to avoid having to purchase multiple units for your home is to get a whole-house dehumidifier installed into your heating and cooling system if you have one. The benefits a whole-house model offers concern capacity, airflow and operation.
Is it safe to drink the water from a dehumidifier?
No, it is not safe to drink the water from a dehumidifier. Your dehumidifier is pulling mould, mildew, and dust mites from the air and these are things you wouldn’t want to put into your body. Empty the water safely, and then put the tank back ready for more collected water.
The amount of water a dehumidifier collects in a day has to do with the amount of moisture in the air and the capacity of the unit. These two things will determine the time frame you should leave your unit running during the day and even overnight.
Humidity won’t go away immediately, but you’ll notice the air is less damp and the humidity levels lower as time passes.
Are you ready to buy your new dehumidifier? Why not check out our guide to the best dehumidifier models on the market, all of which are available at fantastically competitive prices to help you get a good deal that benefits the whole family.
Gemma Tyler is a freelance journalist with 15 years of experience writing for consumer publications. She has tested and reviewed a wide range of household items from vacuum cleaners to washing machines and dehumidifiers to steam irons. Her attention to detail and exhaustive testing certainly makes her an expert in her field.