If you live in a humid region like described you will sooner or later look for a dehumidifier. My list of the Top 4 Portable Dehumidifier under $200 is limited to low-pint models such as 30-Pint or even less. Another aspect I put attention on was the portability, meaning lightweight and size of the dehumidifier in order to use it in tiny living spaces. Actually reading the customer reviews about small dehumidifier I realized that people living in RVs, Campers or Boats are most likely the ones to be interested in getting a good dehumidifier.
Updated 2017: new products added!
This is how a dehumidifier works. It takes moisture out of the air by sucking in moist air and moving it over some ice cold tubes. The moisture collects on those tubes and drips into a tube or bucket. Dry air is then pushed out into the room where it mixes with the remaining moist air and is pulled back into the dehumidifier. Eventually the air in the room becomes dry, but not as dry that you would need to use then a humidifier.
One of the most reliable models is EcoSeb’s 15-pint Desiccant Dehumidifier. It is called Desiccant Dehumidifier because it is efficient at super low temperature (as low as 34°F) where a compressor type can’t be.
There are rules of thumb about the pint size of the dehumidifier depending on the room size:
- 25-30 pint for up to 400 square feet
- 40 pint for up to 800 square feet
- 50 pint for up to 1000 square feet
- 65 pint for up to 1300 square feet
These are the exceptions to this rule: In coastal areas the square foot coverage will be reduced by 50%. And this rule is based on an average ceiling height of 8’. If the ceiling is 10’ high, you have to add 25% more to the square foot coverage.
Pint tells how many pints of water the dehumidifier generally can remove in 24 hours. The buckets coming with the dehumidifier generally aren’t larger than 15-20 pints regardless of the size of the model. If you don’t want to empty the bucket regularly you can connect a hose (it can be simple garden hose) to an opening in order to drain the water into a tube or floor drain. Most models have this feature, some even provide a hose.
One important factor for dehumidifying is the temperature in the room. At or above 70 degrees F the humidity can be reduced to 35-40%. Below 70 degrees F the humidity will stay around 60%. This means you can use the temperature in your room for modifying the humidity such as placing the dehumidifier high off the floor being always the coldest. Most of the dehumidifiers are warming the air anyway, this helps in turn to reduce the humidity even more. In a small room a dehumidifier is able to raise the temperature by 3-8 degrees.
It is plenty enough to keep a humidity level at 50% or just below because mold won’t grow below 50% humidity. To try drying the air to even below 40% is considered to be a waste of energy. To find out the humidity level in a room you can use a hygrometer or some models include a humidistat.
Another advice I found was to keep the windows closed while the dehumidifier is working, otherwise you would try to dry the outdoor air. And – the filter coming with the dehumidifier should be cleaned every month, depending on how often you use it, of course.
Take a careful look at the size of the model in order to be sure that it fits the place you want to put it.
Frigidaire 30-Pint Dehumidifier with Humidity Control
- 30 pints per day dehumidifier
- Low temperature operation saves energy and money
- Ready-Select electronic controls with digital humidity readout
- 24-hour on/off timer and control lock
- Uses standard 115V electrical outlet
This dehumidifier works great. Much quieter then the one I had to replace that quit working. Really easy to remove the full bucket and carry to the sink to dump.
I am incredibly impressed by the amount of water this dehumidifier takes out of the air, and the speed at which it works. And easy to set up, easy to use.
Works great in our room. We have it on 24/7, set it in low fan didn’t bother our sleep at all.
Arctic Aire 30 Pint Dehumidifier
- 30 pint capacity dehumidifier per 24 hours
- For areas up to 1500 sq. ft.
- Environmentally friendly R410a refrigerant
- Electronic controls with LED display
- Auto de-icer prevents ice build-up on coils
- Removable air filter is easy to clean
- 2 fan speeds
This product is very quiet and is a “work horse”! My husband and I can hardly believe the amount of water it takes out of the air! We live in humid Florida and it has increased our comfort level tremendously!
This machine does exactly what it says it is going to do! Just set it and go. It does a great job of keeping the humidity down – we monitor the humidity from upstairs and it does a great job! Would highly recommend!!
Works like a champ, good controls, easy to use, best of all, good price.
EcoSeb 15-Pint Desiccant Dehumidifier
- Tilt protection
- Automatic water full shut down
- Heat temperature detection and shuf-off
- 15 Pint
- Quiet, smaller and lightweigh
- Easy to use rotary humidistat
I needed a dehumidifier that I could run 24/7 that wouldn’t drive me crazy with noise. I am totally happy with this guy. It’s really compact and unobtrusive in the space.
We use the EcoSeb in a 30′ RV. This unit is very quiet in low speed mode during the day. We switch it to high speed during the night if it is damp and or cold. Keeps our place very dry.
It is amazing quiet when operating in the economy mode, which is all I need for my 700 sq-ft apartment.
Whynter Energy Star Portable Dehumidifier 30-Pint
- 30 pint capacity dehumidifier
- 12 pint removable water bucket
- Auto-restart and auto-shutoff options
- Adjustable humidity range of 30 – 90% relative humidity
- Auto-defrosting capability to prevent frost build-up inside unit
Does the job well even in a big space for such a small unit.
No more humidity related problems. Have run it continuously for about 6 months now without issue. Runs smooth and quite and appears quite energy efficient. I haven’t been able to see any real difference in my power bill. No negatives for me. Would recommend.
Quiet machine that removes all the moisture from my basement efficiently! Very easy to set up and operate. easy to move(it comes with wheels).
* Prices are good at the time the article was written, but subject to change without notice.