Dehumidifiers can be a great starting point for any homeowner looking to improve the quality of their air. Depending on what part of Australia you live in, humidity can play a major role in aggravating allergies, causing noticeable condensation on windows and surfaces, accelerating the production of mould, and can even ruin paintwork.
Here’s what you need to know about purchasing a dehumidifier and how it can help tackle humidity and condensation, head-on.
A dehumidifier acts as a tool to remove moisture from the air, helping to prevent mould and reduce the risk of allergens being present. There are two main types of humidifiers used in Australia. For warmer climates, refrigerant (compressor) dehumidifiers are recommended, and in cooler climates, desiccant dehumidifiers are recommended.
These types of dehumidifiers operate best in hot humid conditions because they draw surrounding air in, filter it, and then cool it to condense the moisture. The moisture is then reheated where warmer dryer air is pushed back into the room.
These types of dehumidifiers work by passing the surrounding air through a rotating desiccant wheel to extract moisture. A second stream of air is heated and passes through the same wheel. Dry air is passed through to the surrounding room.
The water collected in your dehumidifier is generally considered as greywater. This means that while it isn’t suitable for drinking or watering vegetable gardens, it is completely fine to use for watering other plants.
How do I know if I need a dehumidifier?
There are a few tell-tale signs that indicate whether you have a humidity problem in your home. The main issues associated with humidity include:
- mould spots and mildew on clothes, walls, and floors
- increased allergy or asthma symptoms at home
- condensation on windows and walls
- water spots on paintwork
- damaged furniture or brickwork
- odours or smells coming from darker places in your home
What features should I look for in a dehumidifier?
When it comes to purchasing a dehumidifier, you should look for an appliance that suits the needs of your home. Here are some features to look for when buying a dehumidifier.
- Washable filters
- Moisture removal
- Operating setting (such as a quiet mode)
- Drainage features
- Accessible air filters
- UV light indicator that detects dust and bacteria
- Carry handles
- Water storage capacity (in litres)
- Multiple fan speeds
How much do dehumidifiers cost?
Pricing for a dehumidifier will vary by the size of the unit, the model you choose, and the type of dehumidifier you need. They can average between $200 and $1,000.
Do your own research and learn about the type of dehumidifier that is best suited to your needs and your home. Importantly, there is a range of energy-efficient dehumidifiers on the market, so when comparing, look at the manufacturer's claim of how many Watts of electricity per hour it uses.