If you’re in the market for a new dehumidifier, knowing how much it will cost to run it on a daily, monthly, or yearly basis is essential.
We’re often asked about the costs associated with running a dehumidifier in the home, so in this article, we’re going to discuss the basic costs of operating one, as well as the factors that can influence them.
Table of Contents
- 1 Can a dehumidifier save you money?
- 2 So how much does a dehumidifier cost?
- 3 How much does a dehumidifier cost to run?
Can a dehumidifier save you money?
Saving through lowering the thermostat
One of the many benefits of running a dehumidifier in your home is that it will feel warmer.
This is because of the reduced humidity (moisture) in the air, as on a chilly day, condensation can take the heat energy away from our bodies through evaporative cooling.
What’s more, the insulating layers of air trapped between our skin and our clothes are more difficult to heat when more humidity is present.
Once that your home feels warmer due to the addition of a dehumidifier, it is possible to turn the thermostat down without feeling any heat loss.
In fact, by turning your temperature down just one degree, you could look to save between one and three percent of your annual heating bill.
Saving on the bills directly
There’s also a bit of science that is worth considering.
As the heat capacity of water is four times greater than air, it means that water takes over four times the energy to heat. So, at just 20˚C (68˚F) a 35 cubic foot of air can hold 0.63 ounces of water. In this instance, the relative humidity would be recorded at 100%.
At 45% humidity, therefore, which is considered ideal, 35 cubic foot of air would hold just 0.28 ounces of water, which means it would be much easier to heat.
So if a four bedroom house contained approximately 35,000 cubic metres of air at a humidity of 75%, the house would hold an extra 11.9lbs of water in the air. It would take around 0.0063kWh to heat this excess moisture by one degree.
If the heating came on twice per day and needed to heat the home by just two degrees, then this would equate to an extra usage of 9kWh per year, which depending on your electric company, could cost around £3-£5 pounds.
Save on drafts and mold damage
We all know that poor ventilation can cause a series of issues in your home, including mold, damp, and of course, condensation.
A dehumidifier combats all these issues and owning one, in the long run, means that you won’t have to worry about ventilation and all the tactics that you previously used to encourage it.
A downside of leaving windows and ventilation flaps open is that they can cause draft issues, which means that your home is less energy efficient and will in effect cause your bills to be more expensive.
In fact, by merely blocking drafts, you could look to save between 5% and 30% on your heating bills each year.
Due to the fact that the average heating bill in a home using gas is just under £600 per year, this means that if you save only 5% on your bills, you could look to save around £30.
What’s more, damage to walls, windows, and soft furnishings by mold and condensation could cost hundreds of pounds if left untreated.
So how much does a dehumidifier cost?
This, of course, depends on the size, make, and model of the dehumidifier in question.
A mini-dehumidifier, which can extract around 10 pints during a 24 hour period, could set you back approximately £30 to £60.
A slightly larger model, which can remove around 11-25 pints, which you would typically find in a living room, could cost between £80 and £200.
The price of a particular dehumidifier will also depend on the features that it will come with it, such as a humidistat, an auto shut-off feature, or if it has energy efficient or noise reduction.
A larger dehumidifier, which can extract up to 70 pints during a 24-hour period, which you would typically use in a basement, could cost as little as £120 and as much as £350, although the average generally falls around £200.
Higher prices in this capacity range tend to fall on features such as extra large tanks, hose attachments for continuous drainage, or frost control.
Large and industrial dehumidifiers
Large capacity, self-draining dehumidifiers, which can be used for extra large basements or crawl spaces, can be found online for around £600 and can cost as much as £1,000.
Whole house dehumidifiers, which can have a capacity of up to 260 pints, can cost as much as £2,000 and industrial models can be found for between £4,000 and £5,000.
Although dehumidifiers are relatively easy to install, hiring someone to do the job can cost around £80 to £350, depending on labor rates and ease of access to the home or site.
If the dehumidifier needs an electrical outlet to operate, this will also push up installation costs.
How much does a dehumidifier cost to run?
This can depend on a variety of conditions, as discussed, including the make and model of the dehumidifier that you have purchased.
The overall running cost of a dehumidifier tends to depend on two factors, however, which is the energy rating of the dehumidifier and the number of hours that it is running.
The second factor is essential, as many people believe that dehumidifiers should run for 24 hours a day, which as you can imagine, can be quite expensive.
Unless your home happens to have high levels of humidity or damp, then this is considered to be a waste of electricity.
Many good quality dehumidifiers can extract a fair amount of moisture in around a six-hour period.
If you’re worried about the running cost of a dehumidifier, you should look at purchasing an energy efficient dehumidifier, or a type that uses less power to run, which we will discuss next.
Compressor (refrigerator) Vs. desiccant humidifiers
The first thing that you should consider is whether the unit you’re purchasing is made with a compressor or desiccant system.
This is because compressor dehumidifiers are more cost effective to run, as desiccant systems use hot air to extract water from the desiccant material.
As a result, desiccant systems use much more energy to do the same job effectively. Depending on the quality, make, and model, a desiccant dehumidifier can use as much as 50% less power.
- Read: The Best Refrigerant (Compressor) Dehumidifiers for Your Home
- Read: The Best Desiccant Dehumidifiers for Your Home
Energy Star rating
If you’re in the US, look out for a dehumidifier that is Energy Star rated.
For those who don’t know, Energy Star is a government group that evaluates a vast range of electrical products to determine how energy efficient they are.
If a product receives an Energy Star rating, it means that the product in question is 15% more effective than a non-rated counterpart.
With this in mind, if you purchase a dehumidifier that comes with an Energy Star rating, you should look to save when it comes to running costs, even if the unit costs a little more to buy.
Once that you have found a unit you like, and you can see how much electricity it uses, you can calculate how much the unit will cost over a specified period.
To do this, you will first need to discover the wattage of the unit. Once you find out what it is, take the wattage and multiply it by the hours you intend to use it and divide by 1,000.
By doing this, you will have found the kWh measure.
(400 watts x 10(hours per day) x 365(days per year)) divided by 1,000 =1460kWh x 7 pence(kWh) =£102.2/per year
(400 watts x 10(hours per day) x 365(days per year)) divided by 1,000
=1460kWh x 7 pence(kWh)
Of course, this can only be a rough estimate of how much a dehumidifier will cost to run, as already explained, there is a range of reasons and factors that come into play.
For example, a very efficient unit that uses more power to remove humidity than a less efficient unit that runs on less power can still be more cost effective — even if it runs for a more extended amount of time.
Overall, it is thought that the running cost of a typical dehumidifier, depending on the humidity and the size of the area, would be around £10 to £20 per month.
That said, a recent study showed that the average home dehumidifier uses 4.2kWh per day, while direct drain units use 5.6kWh per day, and manually emptied dehumidifiers use 3.7kWh per day.
This calculates to an annual operating cost of around £80 or so per year, which is approximately 9% of the average electricity consumption in a typical home.
Other studies, however, have shown that dehumidifiers can cost up to £25 per month when they are used for extended periods of time.
It’s also worth noting that researchers tend to classify dehumidifiers as “energy-intensive appliances” in domestic settings.