28th September 2018
Whether you are investing in a large dehumidifier for the whole home, or a small and more portable dehumidifier, there are important factors to look out for to ensure a dehumidifier is energy efficient enough to save you time, money and electricity.
Before jumping straight in to finding the most energy efficient dehumidifier for you and your home, it is important to understand where humidity comes from and how the efficiency of a dehumidifier can prevent it.
The air that we breathe every day is made up of numerous gases, including water vapour. The term humidity refers to the amount of this water vapour in the air which greatly influences the comfort we experience in a home on a daily basis. But don’t panic, adding moisture to the air is as simple as breathing – yes, you heard us right. From showering, cooking and even breathing, normal household activities without proper ventilation cause humidity levels in a home to be surprisingly high.
Let’s take a look at some common telltale signs that could indicate you may have a humidity problem.
For those living in humid environments, high levels of moisture and humid air can spell trouble, too much or too little can be problematic to your health and your home. From condensation on windows, damp and mould to asthma, dehumidifiers solve the problem through removing moisture from the home so there are less signs of unhealthy air quality.
When investing in a dehumidifier, think about where you are going to put it and make sure it is the best one for the size, purpose and level of humidity in the home.
The two primary types of dehumidifiers on the market today are compressor dehumidifiers and desiccant dehumidifiers.
A compressor dehumidifier, sometime known as a refrigerant dehumidifier, uses condensation to remove water from the air - the dehumidifier has a cold surface, and when humid air from the home comes into contact with it, it condenses into water droplets and drips into the water container inside the machine.
Compressor dehumidifiers are a great dehumidifier for the UK climate because they are most effective at humidities and temperatures found every day in homes across the country. The primary benefit of compressor dehumidifiers is that they are considerably more economical than desiccant dehumidifiers and provide the optimum level of water extraction at the lowest cost
A desiccant dehumidifier uses the process of absorption to remove water from the air – the dehumidifier uses a desiccant wheel to pull water from the air before a heater regenerates the desiccant so that this process can be repeated.
The main benefit of a desiccant dehumidifier comes from it not requiring a compressor, which means a lot less weight and a lot less noise than a compressor dehumidifier. Desiccant dehumidifiers are more effective at lower humidities and temperatures which mean they’re more suitable for garages, sheds and other places that are typically below room temperature.
The initial cost of a dehumidifier is pretty clear, you can buy a domestic dehumidifier – compressor or desiccant – from anywhere between £100 – £300, but analysing running costs and the efficiency of a dehumidifier is something that is not so easy.
To help understand this better, we conducted a series of consumer tests to show the running costs of a compressor dehumidifier versus a desiccant dehumidifier.
The test set out to compare the performance of a compressor dehumidifier versus a desiccant dehumidifier and their abilities to solve condensation, damp and mould. Running the compressor dehumidifier and desiccant dehumidifier on separate occasions, we recorded the RH, power consumed, temperature and water extracted and from it came the following results:
For the purpose of the test the dehumidifier used was the Ebac 2250e compressor dehumidifier versus a competitor desiccant dehumidifier.
Like we can see, both dehumidifiers cured condensation, damp and mould but the desiccant dehumidifier - despite it extracted more water - cost significantly more than the compressor dehumidifier; partially because the cost per litre of water extracted was higher and partially because it ran more than was necessary.
The control system of a dehumidifier is key to solving the problem. Not getting the setting right either means that the problem is not solved or causes the unit to over run which can be a big problem with desiccant dehumidifiers because of their high extraction rate.
It is recommended by many dehumidifier manufacturers to buy a dehumidifier that is automatically controlled that can sense when there are high levels of moisture and humid air and automatically adjust its settings accordingly.
This means that the dehumidifier can be placed anywhere in the home and it will know when the humidity in a home has increased or decreased and switch itself on or off depending on what is needed.
With a Manual Dehumidifier, the clue is in the name, we are the ones who have to change the settings. This might not seem like something that would contribute to whether a dehumidifier is efficient enough or not but often the dehumidifier will operate when it shouldn't or at the wrong setting, wasting energy and money.
The best thing to do if you have your eyes set on a manually controlled dehumidifier is to buy a hygrometer; this will measure the amount of humidity in the home and guide you when to change the dehumidifiers setting.
Ebac’s Advanced Patented Smart Control Technology – available on most Ebac Dehumidifiers – is the first of its kind. There are no other dehumidifier manufacturers that offer the same technology – promise, we’re not lying. But what makes Ebac’s Smart Control different?
Similar to how automatic dehumidifier does, this technology continuously monitors and learns about environmental factors in and around the home so it knows when it needs to operate. But unlike automatic dehumidifiers, Smart Control takes readings of humidity every hour of the day and stores it in its memory. It uses these readings to understand a home and automatically adjusts to match extraction needs; minimising running costs and ensuring a fast and efficient resolution to the problem.
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