Types of Dehumidifiers

Different Types of Dehumidifiers

In the pursuit of creating a comfortable and healthy living environment, managing humidity levels within the crawl spaces of our homes is a crucial consideration. Excessive moist air can lead to a variety of issues, from respiratory issues to the unsightly growth of mold to discomfort in our daily lives.

Dehumidifiers emerge as unsung heroes in addressing these concerns, but navigating through the array of options available can be a daunting task.

I embark on a comprehensive exploration of the various types of dehumidifiers, shedding light on their unique features, advantages, and possible costs.

Types of dehumidifierHow it worksSuitable For
Refrigerant dehumidifiersWork similarly to air conditioners: they draw in moist air, cool it, and then throw it back in the room as dried airPerfectly suitable for bedrooms, living rooms, and offices
Peltier (or Thermo-Electric) dehumidifiersPeltier dehumidifiers use a thermoelectric module to cool a surface and floor space, causing moisture in the air to condenseUsually used in small spaces, such as closets, bathrooms, or RVs, where a portable dehumidifier is needed
Desiccant dehumidifiersDesiccant dehumidifiers use a specific desiccant wheel and material (silica gel) to remove moisture from the airExcellent for lower temperatures, making them perfect for basements, garages, and other spaces where temperatures may be lower
Industrial dehumidifiersThe typical process involves air conditioning, cooling, and reheatingThis dehumidifier is suitable in a variety of settings where relative humidity control is paramount. Such as manufacturing facilities, storage warehouses, pharmaceutical industry.

Types of dehumidifiers

Here is some deep information about each of these dehumidifiers.

Refrigerant dehumidifiers

A refrigerant dehumidifier is a versatile device designed to alleviate excess heat, humidity, and moisture in indoor and tight spaces. Operating on a mechanism akin to air conditioners, they draw in humid air, cool it, condense water vapor, and then release dry, comfortable air.

Ideal for bedrooms, living rooms, and offices, these units efficiently move warm air and tackle a broad range of temperatures. While they are known for their effectiveness, it’s important to note that some models may produce noise during operation.

Refrigerant models provide an accessible and energy-efficient solution to combat mold, musty odors, and discomfort in various residential units and office settings.


  • Suitable for general use in homes and offices
  • Effective in a wide range of temperatures
  • Energy-efficient compared to other dehumidifiers


  • May be noisy during operation
  • Higher cost compared to other dehumidifiers

Thermo-Electric dehumidifiers

Thermo-electric dehumidifiers, also known as Peltier dehumidifiers, offer a compact and energy-efficient solution for relative humidity and moisture control. Operating quietly and without a compressor, these units use a thermoelectric module to cool a surface, causing moisture in the surrounding air to condense.

Ideal for small spaces like closets and bathrooms, they are appreciated for their portability, low temperatures, and minimal maintenance needs.

While they may have a slower dehumidification rate compared to some alternatives, their affordability, and environmentally friendly operation.


  • Pretty compact and portable
  • Quit during operation
  • Environmentally friendly


  • Slower dehumidification compared to other models
  • Less effectively control humidity in high humidity condensation and very low dew point

Desiccant dehumidifiers

Desiccant dehumidifiers excel in low-temperature environments, using desiccant materials such as silica gel to efficiently absorb and remove moisture even from the outdoor air itself.

Renowned for their quiet operation and portability, these units are compact powerhouses, making them ideal for basements, garages, and spaces in colder climates. Unlike refrigerative counterparts, they don’t rely on cooling cycles, ensuring effectiveness even in suboptimal conditions.

Desiccant dehumidifier offers an energy-efficient solution for specific needs, emphasizing durability and performance in areas where maintaining lower humidity levels in a room without an air conditioner is crucial for preventing mold, and musty odors, and preserving materials.


  • Light and portable
  • Quite a performance
  • Energy efficiency


  • Higher cost
  • Lower moisture removal capacity

Industrial dehumidifiers

Industrial dehumidifiers play a crucial role in maintaining optimal humidity levels within large-scale facilities, such as warehouses, manufacturing plants, and storage spaces.

These robot machines are designed to extract excess moisture from the air, preventing issues like corrosion, mold growth, and product deterioration. By controlling humidity, industrial dehumidifiers contribute to the preservation of equipment, raw materials, and finished goods.

They are essential in industries where precise environmental conditions are paramount for efficient processes and product quality. These devices often feature high-capacity moisture removal, durable construction, and advanced control systems, ensuring reliable performance in challenging industrial environments.

Overall, in industrial applications, dehumidifiers are indispensable tools for enhancing operational efficiency and safeguarding valuable assets in diverse industrial settings.


  • High moisture removal capacity
  • Lower cost
  • Suitable for large spaces


  • Heavier and bulkier
  • Noisy operation
  • Potential frost formation on the cold evaporator coils at low dew point


What is the best type of dehumidifier?

The answer to this depends on your own needs. Different dehumidifiers offer different HVAC systems, from giving the pool room (or any other space, where a dehumidifier is needed) lower temperature (by using a cold evaporator coil) to being an air conditioner for your space!

Which is better desiccant or compressor dehumidifier?

If you need a dehumidifier for colder temperatures, prioritize energy efficiency in those conditions, and prefer a quieter operation, a desiccant one might be a better choice.

On the other hand, if you’re dealing with warmer temperatures, want a more budget-friendly option, and room air, and noise are not a major concern, a refrigerant model could be suitable.

How do I choose a dehumidifier?

As I said earlier, you should choose the model based on your own needs.

What is the difference between cheap and expensive dehumidifiers?

The main difference is quality, capacity, noise level, and energy efficiency.

More expensive models often come with additional benefits, it’s essential to consider your budget and the requirements of the space you want to dehumidify when making a purchase decision.

Which type of dehumidifier has the highest operating efficiency?

Desiccant dehumidifiers have the highest efficiency at higher dew points and refrigerant dehumidifiers have the highest efficiency at warm dew points and temperatures.

What is the most common type of dehumidifier?

The most common ones are desiccant (that has desiccant material in it) and refrigerant.

What dehumidifier should I buy for my basement?

The desiccant one would be perfect!

How much does a good dehumidifier cost?

A good model can take $400 and above.

What is a cheaper alternative to a dehumidifier?

You can use alternatives such as baking soda, fans, ventilation, ion, and houseplants. But be aware that their effectiveness can be lower than dehumidifiers. Also, they may have some limitations.


In conclusion, the choice between all the dehumidifiers is contingent on specific environmental factors.

For example, some dehumidifiers, essentially functioning as heat pump prove essential for expansive spaces with formidable moisture removal capabilities in warmer conditions.

As technology evolves, consumers are presented with a diverse range of options, enabling tailor their choice based on individual preferences and the unique demands of their living environment, especially in considering the dual functionality akin to a heat pump.

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