A dehumidifier is an electrical appliance which reduces and maintains the level of humidity in the air, usually for health or comfort reasons, or to eliminate musty odor and to prevent the growth of mildew by extracting water from the air. It can be used for household, commercial, or industrial applications.
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Room dehumidifiers, like air conditioners—warm, moist air is drawn into the dehumidifier by a fan. The moist air then crosses over the dehumidifier's refrigerant cooled coils, causing the moisture in the air to condense on the coils within the machine.
Dehumidifiers regulate the humidity in a room by removing excess moisture from the air, thereby creating a living condition that is inhospitable to dust mites, mold and other allergenic organisms. But, how does a dehumidifier work? What is the mechanism that allows the dehumidifier to take moisture in a gas form from the air and remove it as liquid water? While there are two primary methods that allow dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the air, for this article, we are going to focus on refrigerant-based dehumidifiers
Much like your glass of ice water, the coils are colder than the air that is immediately around them. As air cools, its ability to hold and retain moisture drops, and when the air has more moisture than it can hold, it forms that familiar condensate. Dehumidifiers typically have a drip pan or a removable bucket where the condensate collects for easy disposal—some dehumidifiers are also equipped with a built-in pump for worry-free, continuous drainage. Next, the cooled air passes back over the dehumidifier’s warm motor, which slightly reheats the air before it discharges back into the room. The dry and slightly warm air exits the dehumidifier and attracts moisture like a magnet, maximizing the dehumidifier’s efficiency.
Here is a breakdown of the steps that a dehumidifier takes during operation:
Air is drawn into the unit by a fan
Air passes over the cooled coils
As the air is cooled, its moisture condenses
Water falls into the drip pan or removable bucket
Air is then reheated by the heat recovery system
Air that is 2° Celsius warmer and considerably dryer disperses back into the room
The defrost system will automatically de-ice the unit as necessary
The dehumidifier will automatically shut off when the drainage bucket is full
When the dehumidifier achieves the selected level of dryness in the room, it will automatically turn off
Dehumidifiers are rated according to pint capacity, which refers to how many pints of water it can remove from the air in a 24-hour period (actual water removal per day will vary with the temperature and relative humidity level of the room).
Benefits of a Dehumidifier:
Dehumidifiers reduce humidity levels, making your home less hospitable to allergens such as dust mites, mold, and mildew.