Best dehumidifiers – the best models to do away with damp

Our dehumidifier reviews reveal the best buy extractors that will rid your bedroom, bathroom and other areas of your home of damp for good

Damp. Even the word makes you feel clammy, doesn’t it? When those black blotches, flaking paint and mould begin to appear, it’s time to take action. To be clear, a dehumidifier takes moisture out of the home. It’s not to be confused with a humidifier, which adds moisture into dry environments. Something to be clear on when making your purchase as that mix up could be a real clanger!

A dehumidifier is usually a stop-gap solution to the problem of damp. You may have a more serious problem that requires a builder’s expertise. However, a dehumidifier is a great way to keep damp at bay. So how much power to do you need to tackle the problem?

Some dehumidifiers are so powerful they can suck up a whopping 25 litres of moisture per day. This level of power means many are also useful for drying clothes, a bit like an airing cupboard might help you do. So if you’re in the market for a tumble dryer, too, this might help you make a saving as a two-in-one purchase. But which one is best? Read our dehumidifier reviews to find out.

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Best dehumidifiers

1. Meaco 25L Ultra Lower Energy Dehumidifier – best dehumidifier for big houses

best-dehumidifiers-MEACO 25L LOW ENERGY LAUNDRY ROOM-700x700

As one of the best known dehumidifier brands around, the Meaco 25L Ultra Low Energy Dehumidifier is one of the finest out there. Is it a dehumidifier? Is it a tumble dryer? It’s sort of both. This beast sucks so much moisture out of the air it will actually dry your wet clothes as they hang nearby.

It’s also one of the first UK dehumidifiers to feature a DC inverter, something usually found in high-end air conditioning units. That means it does all these jobs without using a lot of power at just 270 watts. Despite being relatively small this dehumidifier can suck up to 25 litres of water out of the air per day. It covers an area about the size of a five bedroom house.

The tank tops out at 5ltrs though so you may have to do a lot of emptying depending on the extent of your damp. Thanks to wheels you can roll this dehumidifier to the bathroom or back door easily enough. You can use the water tank handle to easily slide out and empty the water. There’s a continuous drainage mode and two metre hose, making it the ideal dehumidifier for drying out a shed or boat.

A digital display makes access to the timer, fan speed, louvre swing, ioniser, auto defrost, auto restart and child lock settings nice and intuitive. Modes can also be selected here including laundry mode and a useful night mode that runs super quietly. All this and at a competitive price – this really is one of the best dehumidifiers you can own right now.

Ideal Home’s rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Buy now: Meaco 25L Ultra Lower Energy Dehumidifier, £282, Amazon

2. Pro Breeze 500ml Compact Mini – best dehumidifier for small homes

best-dehumidifiers-Pro Breeze 500ml Compact Mini

If a small area needs dehumidifying then a more compact unit like this Pro Breeze 500 ml Compact Mini is ideal. This will work to cover an entire room but anything more and you’ll be struggling. It does offer a respectable 250 ml extraction rate and a 500 ml tank so emptying isn’t difficult or something you need to do regularly. But then this is so small and quiet you’ll barely notice it’s even there.

This dehumidifier isn’t for eliminating serious damp, but more for managing areas where mould builds up over a longer period of time. This offers an affordable way to manage damp that may otherwise cause issues with breathing and brickwork. The unit stops working when full and illuminates a light so you can easily empty, replace the tank and it’ll kick in working again.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Buy now: Pro Breeze 500ml Compact Mini, £37.99, Amazon

3. Electrolux Ambiflex EXD20DN3W – best dehumidifier to dry clothes

best-dehumidifiers-Electrolux Ambiflex EXD20DN3W

This is super effective dehumidifier that packs in a turbo function for when you really want moisture gone, fast. That means that this can actually dry laundry with more energy efficiency than a tumble dryer. It does this without taking up the room, too, since it’s only a little larger than a kitchen bin. Set this to CompactDry and it’ll do the work on maintaining a healthy 45-55% humidity, using its 20 litre extraction per day rate.

Then if you want to dry clothes, pop this into Turbo on Dry mode and it’ll get that humidity level set to 45% and suck any moisture out of your laundry. The tank tops out at five litres but there is also the option of adding a hose for constant drainage – although that’s not included. Digital controls, energy saver and sleep modes are all excellent additions. Together they make this a top-end dehumidifier that’ll handle entire houses with ease.

Ideal Home’s rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Buy now: Electrolux Ambiflex EXD20DN3W, £199, Amazon

4. DeLonghi Tasciugo Ariadry DX10 – best dehumidifier for style

best-dehumidifiers-DeLonghi Tasciugo Ariadry DX10

As dehumidifiers go, this has got to be one of the best-looking one out there. The DeLonghi is also light, meaning that carry handle can come in useful for moving and emptying the two litre tank. However you can’t adjust fan speed and you don’t get a humidistat. This does struggle in colder environments outside of the house.

All that said you do get a Dry Clothes mode, air filter, general low energy consumption and simple controls. In fact this whole unit is simple and that’s a big positive for the dehumidifier – it just works. It might not be the most powerful but as long as it’s in a warm environment it’ll do the job. It can suck 10 litres of water out of multiple rooms at once in a day.

Ideal Home’s rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Buy now: DeLonghi Tasciugo Ariadry DX10, £140, Amazon

5. EcoAir Arion 26L – best eco-friendly dehumidifier

best-dehumidifiers-EcoAir Arion 26L

This is a decent enough looking, big tank toting dehumidifier from a company that specialises in exactly that type of product. The result is a dehumidifier that’s the heavy duty monster of its class, meaning large jobs are done with ease. This is great for a larger home with a family where lots of moisture is created each day.

That 26 litres per day extraction rate will do well to the point that the 4.2 litre tank may seem a little small if you have a lot to empty – especially if you use Laundry Mode to dry clothing too. Other useful features include continuous drainage mode, a timer, auto restart and auto defrost. It also has a filter clean indicator and wheels to move the unit about easily. As the name suggests it does all this while keeping energy consumption relatively low too at 257 watts.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Buy now: EcoAir Arion 26L, £270, Amazon

6. Electriq CD12LE – best dehumidifier for saving energy

best-dehumidifiers-Electriq CD12LE

While its looks are basic, this model is not only affordable to buy but also to run and it’s very capable at the same time. That means a 12 litres per day extraction rate into a 4 litre tank. This is all run by a humidistat so you can sit back and let this do its thing as it covers an area of about three rooms. The company claims this saves you up to 40 percent on energy compared to competitors, at just 180 watts. This is further enhanced using the timer function.

Control over the humidity ranges from 35 to 85%. That allows you to hit the perfect level and, potentially, to dry clothes too. Plus, there is a continuous mode so you can drain off a wet area like a garage easily using a hose.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Buy now: Electriq CD12LE, £179, Amazon

7. Duronic DH05 Mini Compact – best dehumidifier

best-dehumidifiers-Duronic DH05 Mini Compact

If you want an affordable little dehumidifier to clear a room of moisture, you can’t go far wrong with this miniature machine. Costing you very little to buy, this saves in other areas with its meagre 2.5 watts power consumption. Of course, this is largely because of the size of the unit, which is made to handle a single room at most.

That means a 250 ml daily absorption rate and a tank that tops out at 500 ml before needing an empty. You are alerted to with a simple notification light. The size also means this dehumidifier is light enough to move about and is easy to empty.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Buy now: Duronic DH05 Mini Compact, £30, Amazon

Why do I need a dehumidifier?

best-dehumidifiers-Electrolux Ambiflex EXD20DN3W LIFE

Damp and mould is not only ugly but dangerous too, as it can eat away at your walls. Damp can not only ruin your home but it can cause and agitate respiratory issues too. Living in a house with damp has been associated with asthma, chest infections and allergies. Having a dehumidifier might help to prevent nasty spores from becoming airborne and being breathed into your lungs.

Read this! How to get rid of damp, condensation and mould

How much should I spend on a dehumidifier?

Prices for a dehumidifier generally range between just over £30 and up to £300. What you need will help clarify what you’ll need to spend. Generally speaking, the higher the price, the more water you’ll be able to absorb. As is often the case, spending more up front can often mean a saving in the long run as you will have a more efficient machine.

How to buy the best dehumidifier for you

Buying the correct dehumidifier can be a complicated task. It’s always best to speak with the company you’re buying from to clarify your needs and make sure you’re getting the right model for you. But to narrow it down a bit, here are some facts it helps to know.

What are the main types of dehumidifier?

1. Desiccant dehumidifiers

Desiccant models are made to deal with temperatures of one degree Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius. While this sounds impressive it uses more power than a compressor model and generally that range won’t be needed in the UK. These use a heated absorbent material to extract water from the air and drop it into a tank.

2. Refrigerant (or compressor) dehumidifiers

The compressor model is usually a better bet for the UK as it works best at around 20 degrees Celsius which is what the average UK home sits at. It also means far less energy usage so these compressor models are more affordable to run. These dehumidifiers draw in air using a filter over cold coils which condenses the air moisture that drips into the water tank.

What else should I consider before buying a dehumidifier?

best-dehumidifiers-Pro Breeze 500ml Compact Mini LIFE

Image credit: Pro Breeze

There are a few factors to consider when deciding which dehumidifier is right for you:

1. Multiple fan speeds

Consider if you’re planning on running the unit rarely or using it to dry clothes. A single speed is fine for slow and steady use where you leave it on running. But if you want to turn it off and on and gets bursts of dry, or dry clothes quickly, you may want to look out for more fan speed settings and a humidistat which keeps the humidity at a level you select.

2. Size

Size is important as you may need to dry a larger area than some dehumidifiers are able to handle. Generally anything under 500 ml is for confined areas like cupboards, wardrobes or a single room at most. Step up to 5-10 litre machines and you can clear a larger area of around 30 square metres, aka, a few rooms. If you want to take on the house you’ll need to opt for a 10-20 litre machine.

3. Digital

Digital or manual controls are another area where you may have a preference. Some dehumidifiers offer a fancy digital screen where you can access settings like power and timers. Others have more basic manual controls. This is really a matter of preference on how comfortable you are with using either menu to interact with your dehumidifier.

4. Humidity

Actually using your dehumidifier is another task. Be sure to aim for around 45 to 60% humidity – once set at this level the humidifier should automatically turn on and off as needed to maintain that. It will turn off when the water tank is full and needs to be emptied. Also make sure you vacuum first so that dust particles aren’t being sucked into the unit.

If your dehumidifier isn’t being moved then a drain hose can be useful as a way to empty the unit without lugging that full tank of water around the house.

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