The best dehumidifiers in 2021
If you notice your home becoming humid, the best dehumidifiers will reduce any residual moisture effectively and quickly. The best dehumidifier will immediately deal with humidity to prevent mold, mildew and water stains building up over time. In addition, dehumidifiers will improve overall air quality, and are beneficial for allergy sufferers so they can breathe properly.
What’s more, they will rid your home of musty smells, and also handy appliances for drying freshly-washed laundry more quickly and reducing pests and termites. But with so many different types of dehumidifier available on the market, it can be tricky to know which one would suit your home.
We’ve rounded up a great selection of the best dehumidifiers from large capacity ones to those for compact spaces.
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What are the best dehumidifiers?
We’ve checked out more than 30 devices and read dozens of customer and expert reviews, and we’ve identified the best dehumidifiers for your home.
Our top pick is the Frigidaire FFAP5033W1, which replaces the older Frigidaire FFAP7033T1. The FFAP5033W1 has a convenient automatic pump to move water and a top-notch design. It will quickly suck water from the air and is easy to set up, clean and put away.
The GE APER50LZ is not far behind. It’s got a slightly smaller tank than the Frigidaire FFAP5033W1, but also has an active water pump. Its digital interface makes it easy to change settings. However, it’s not as ergonomically well designed and is more difficult to move around or stow away for the winter.
If you are on a budget (or have a smaller space), we recommend the Frigidaire FFAD2233W1. It’s a nice substitute for the older, no-frills Frigidaire FAD301NWD, which is no longer in production, and adds a digital display.
One note: New EPA classification standards went into effect in mid-2019, as detailed at the end of this page. We’ve indicated when a model is classified under the older set of standards.
The best dehumidifier you can buy today
The Frigidaire FFAP5033W1 is the best dehumidifier overall, based on reviews of its nearly identical predecessor, the Frigidaire FFAP7033T1.
It’s one of the few devices on our list with an active pump, meaning you can send water to an elevated sink or out a window if you don’t have a floor drain and don’t want to go through the hassle of removing and emptying the bucket.
What bumped the Frigidaire FFAP5033W1 above the other devices we considered is its design. It’s sleek and has an attractive digital display, making it easy to see indicator lights and settings.
There are hooks for wrapping up the power cord when the machine sits right next to an outlet or when you want to store it away, and the filter is easily accessible for removal and cleaning. While the device does come on casters for easy rolling, it also has a heavy-duty top handle for carrying down stairs.
One of the few areas in which the older model, the Frigidaire FFAP7033T1, fells short was in the initial pump setup. Testers and device owners reported that removing the plug from the pump socket was tricky, and that in some cases the plug simply broke off.
This flaw isn’t unique to Frigidaire, but it is something to prepare for if you’re purchasing this model for the convenience of having a pump. We’ll keep an eye out to see if the FFAP5033W1 suffers from the same problem.
While the pump option does come at a premium, it’s a nice feature to have. Of course, you can also default to continuous draining (if you have a floor drain) or to simply dumping out the bucket manually if you’d prefer.
In the switch from the FFAP7033T1 to the FFAP5033W1, Frigidaire increased the tank capacity from 13.1 pints to 16.9 pints. If you live in a really damp space and run the machine continuously, that’s a significant improvement, because water volume will fill up pretty fast, and the device will shut down until you empty the bucket. The GE APER50LZ, our runner-up, has a 15-pint capacity.
As with many of the older models that fell under the previous set of Department of Energy regulations (see below), the FFAP7033T1 is disappearing from store shelves, so you’ll have an easier time finding the Frigidiare FFAP5033W1 or its pump-less sibling, the FFAD5033W1.
The GE APER50LZ is a close second to the Frigidaire FFAP7033T1. It’s the only other dehumidifier on our list with an active water pump, although you also have the option to passively drain the tank using a hose or by carrying the bucket to a sink.
This device comes with all the features you’d expect in a top-ranked dehumidifier, including a digital display for indicator lights and changing timer, speed and humidity settings.
On performance and noise levels, the GE APER50LZ is right in line with the Frigidaire. The biggest difference is in design: There’s no option for wrapping or storing the power cord, and the handles may be difficult to grab. Setting up the passive drain is also not terribly convenient.
That said, the GE APER50LZ is an equal alternative to the Frigidaire FFAP7033T1 if you can find it at a better price.
(This review was originally for the identical GE APER70LW, which has been rebranded as the APER50LZ due to new EPA EnergyStar certifications.)
We loved testing the Midea 20 smart dehumidifier. Once connected to its app, you can monitor it from your phone, including viewing the humidity levels and receiving alerts when the bucket is full. You can change the settings remotely too, adjusting the speed of the fan with three levels to choose from. Voice control is available via Alexa or Google Assistant, although two-factor authentication is missing. It stands out for storage though, as this dehumidifier can be ‘nested’ into itself, taking up half of the space.
In terms of performance, it gets the job done and proved to be a useful asset for us when dealing with a flooded basement. It’s also incredibly easy to empty, thanks to the lower half turning into a bucket and handle. Despite the name, it can hold about 24 pints, although this is still relatively small compared to others on our list. Ultimately, this dehumidifier has a very user-friendly design which couldn’t be more compact to store.
Read our full Midea 20 pint cube dehumidifier review.
The LG PuriCare UD501KOG5 is a medium-capacity, 50-pint dehumidifier good at drying out midsized spaces. It has an attractive design, a large digital display and a clear water bucket with a large handle. That makes it easy to see when the tank needs to be emptied, and the handle makes it easy to carry the tank to a drain or sink.
The LG PuriCare UD501KOG5 has lots of positive user reviews on the Home Depot and Sam’s Club websites. We’ll keep an eye on real-world tests and update here accordingly.
The 22-pint Frigidaire FFAD2233W1, which replaces the 30-pint Frigidaire FFAD3033R1, is a great choice for laundry rooms, apartments and other small spaces. It’s portable and its four wheels make it easy to move from room to room if needed.
The older machine, the FFAD3033R1, did well in real-world tests for water removal, reaching humidity levels that were 28% below where the tests started). It also did well on humidistat accuracy and cool-room performance.
The Frigidaire FFAD2233W1 also has user-friendly design features similar to those of its larger cousin, the FFAP5033W1, including an easily accessible filter and cord-storage hooks.
The Frigidaire FFAD2233W1 is Energy Star-certified. User reviews posted on the Amazon, Home Depot and Walmart sites were overwhelmingly positive.
The Honeywell TP50AWKN, which replaces the virtually identical Honeywell TP50WK but adds Wi-Fi connectivity, is well regarded by professionals and customers alike.
If something does go wrong with the TP50AWKN, you’re covered under Honeywell’s five-year warranty. Most of the dehumidifiers we considered come with one-year or two-year warranties, so this extended policy ensures that your investment is protected.
One downside: The Honeywell TP50AWKN’s water bucket holds just 7 pints (three-quarters of a gallon), a small fraction of what the machine can condense in a day. If you don’t have the option to continuously drain, you’ll find yourself emptying the water bucket more frequently with the Honeywell TP50AWKN or going without dehumidification once the tank reaches capacity.
You probably don’t need a Wi-Fi-enabled dehumidifier, but if smart-home devices are your jam, then the 50-pint Frigidaire FGAC5044W1 may deliver on what you’re looking for.
You’ll receive push notifications when the water bucket is full, and you’ll be able to remotely control the fan speed, target humidity and power. You can also set up voice controls for the Frigidaire FGAC5044W1 with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
All these smart features can be especially handy if you’re out of town or you’re monitoring a dehumidifier in a rental property. However, many online purchasers of the unit reported trouble setting up the app, which gets mostly negative reviews on both Google Play and the App Store. Here’s hoping Frigidaire gets that sorted out.
This dehumidifier is fairly similar to our top pick, the Frigidaire FFAP5033W1, but swaps Wi-Fi for a powered water pump. A drain hose comes with the unit to let the tank drain passively, or you can dump out the 2-gallon bucket by hand.
There’s also a washable dust filter and an ionizer to eliminate airborne particles, much like one of the best air purifiers available. A light at the top of the front face changes color to let you know system status.
Hundreds of Amazon, Wayfair and Walmart customer reviewers liked the Frigidaire FGAC5044W1 a lot (even if many of them didn’t like its mobile app), rating the unit at 4.4 out of 5 stars on average.
(Note: This replaces an older model, the Frigidaire FGAC7044U1, which has been discontinued.)
Best dehumidifier comparison chart
|Best for||List price||Capacity (pints)||Drainage type||Digital controls|
|Frigidaire FFAP5033W1||Best overall||$369||50||Pump||Yes|
|Midea 20 pint cube dehumidifier||Best compact design||$178||20||Passive||Yes|
|LG PuriCare UD501KOG5||Best midsize option||$300||50 (30 under new standards)||Passive||Yes|
|Frigidaire FFAD2233W1||Best for small rooms||$219||22||Passive||Yes|
|Honeywell TP50AWKN||Best warranty||$419||30||Passive||Yes|
|Frigidaire FGAC5044W1||Best smart controls||$379||50||Passive||Yes|
How to choose the best dehumidifier for you
There are a huge range of dehumidifiers on the market. Before choosing your favorite, here are a few factors you should consider:
In 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy instituted new dehumidifier testing standards. Nowadays, dehumidifiers are assessed at lower temperatures to better simulate being placed in a real-life environment, such as the basement.
As a consequence, the biggest dehumidifiers, which originally offered 70-pint capacities, have now been reduced to capacities of 45-50 pints. This is because warm air can hold more water than cool air, so the dehumidifier will naturally absorb less in lower temperatures.
Medium-sized models, on the other hand, have been reduced from 50 pints to 30 pints capacities. Whereas small dehumidifiers have moved from 30 pints to roughly 20 pints.
Because of this recent change, many models are being discontinued and replaced with updated designs to suit the new procedure. For example, the GE APER70LW has been replaced by the nearly identical GE APER50LZ. We’ll update these rankings as we get more information.
There are different types of dehumidifiers on the market. The most common type is a condensing dehumidifier, which pulls the absorbed air over refrigerated coils, which cools it enough the condense and separate the moisture.
Other types include desiccant dehumidifiers, which will use a water-absorbing material, and thermoelectric dehumidifiers, which operate with charged plates. Generally speaking, neither of these latter two types are as effective as condenser models, which is why we only recommend this type in our list.
Dehumidifiers generally come in three sizes: large (45-50-pint capacity), medium (30-pint capacity) and small (20-22-pint capacity).
Under the old regulations, these sizes were 70, 50 and 30 pints, respectively, and you’ll see such numbers with three older models above.
Features to look out for
- Pint capacity
The capacity in pints relates to how much moisture the dehumidifier claims to absorb per day. The bigger the capacity, the larger and damper space it can handle.
- Bucket size
Pint capacity shouldn’t be confused with bucket size however. This specification indicates how much the internal bucket can actually hold before it will need to be emptied. The larger the bucket, the less often you will need to empty it.
- Drainage type
On this list you will find passive and pump drainage types. Passive types let you passively drain the water through a hose, or alternatively you can manually carry and empty the bucket yourself. Whereas pump drainage types will automatically pump the water out. Pumps are preferred as the water doesn’t need to rely on gravity alone to drain, so you can direct the hose into a sink or out of the window. However, these models do cost more than without.
- Energy Star Certification
It’s always useful to look out for Energy Star Certification as this guarantees savings in terms of energy and money.
- Humidity sensor
With a humidity sensor, your dehumidifier will detect relevant changes in the atmosphere and can automatically switch on and, in some cases, set its power accordingly. Those without a sensor will just be manually controlled.
- Frost sensor
A frost sensor will detect the formation of ice on the condenser coils. The dehumidifier will then shut off the compressor to give the ice a chance to melt. If it continues to run with frost on the coils, this can damage the parts and make the appliance work much harder to absorb any moisture.
- Auto restart
If the dehumidifier suddenly loses power, auto restart means it will automatically switch back on to its previous settings once power is restored.
- Number of speeds
This relates to how many speeds the fan has on the dehumidifier. The more speeds there are, the better as it gives you greater control and means excess energy isn’t wasted.
How we picked the best dehumidifiers
To determine the best dehumidifiers on the market, we looked at the top picks from Wirecutter, Consumer Reports, the Good Housekeeping Institute, Dehumidifier Buyers’ Guide and others, as well as top-selling and highly reviewed machines on Amazon, Best Buy and The Home Depot.
We narrowed the list down to several models based on features, price, efficiency and ease of use.
How to clean a dehumidifier
When you consider that bacteria and mold is being sucked into your humidifier, it’s no wonder that it needs an occasional clean. This isn’t as difficult as you might think, simply follow these steps if none are given in your manual:
1. Unplug the humidifier from the wall. You don’t want to risk an electric shock!
2. Remove the water reservoir bucket and tip out any residual water. Clean this with warm soapy water and a microfiber cloth.
3. While that’s drying, wash the filters. The filters collect any impurities so it’s essential that these get an occasional clean. You should have a main filter and potentially a much smaller bucket filter. If you’re not sure where to find these you can refer to your manual. Both need to be washed in warm soapy water, rinsed and then left to dry.
4. If you notice a lot of dust inside your machine, you can also use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to pick up any remaining fluff.
5. Lastly, give the outside a once over with a microfiber cloth for finishing touches.
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