Does a Dehumidifier Work Better in a Warm Room

Have you been wondering whether the temperatures in your area or house can affect how your dehumidifier works? When it begins getting wetter inside the house, it is clear that you need a dehumidifier. Soon you will start experiencing dampness, and mold stores in your room can be hazardous.

Dehumidifiers work excellently in a warm room. Dehumidifiers work to extract moisture from the air, regardless of temperature. A dehumidifier works more efficiently in warmer temperatures.

The rate of evaporation from water increases with higher temperatures. Warm air evaporates water faster than cold air, meaning a dehumidifier will extract more moisture from warm air than cold air. 

This article will look at the right temperature when a dehumidifier can work effectively and how temperature affects its working.

Can a Dehumidifier Work Well in a Warm Room?

Yes, a dehumidifier can work well in a warm room. Dehumidifiers work effectively in temperatures above 60 degrees Fahrenheit (°F).

Dehumidifiers function through the process of condensation. Condensation happens after heating water to vapor. Hence for a dehumidifier to work effectively, the room has to be warm.

If your room is not warm, the effectiveness of dehumidifiers goes down and is likely to collapse. The dehumidifier becomes very manky when your room gets up to 15 degrees. If the temperature goes down up to 10 degrees, the operational capability of the dehumidifier becomes awful.

Therefore, when you notice water on the windows, walls, or doors, your first reaction should not be getting a dehumidifier but testing the temperatures of your house. Usually, low temperatures below 60 degrees °F would cause moisture condensation. 

Dehumidifiers perform poorly at low temperatures because they must turn the water into ice to get it from the air. Hence, if your room’s temperatures are shallow, you need to heat the air above 60 degrees °F, maybe using a heater.

The recommended humidity for a room ranges between 30% and 50%. High humidity above 70% and warm temperatures encourage the growth of dust mites. However, if the humidity level drops to about 60%, they die out.

What Temperature Does a Dehumidifier Work Best?

Dehumidifiers work effectively in temperatures above 60 degrees Fahrenheit. A residential dehumidifier can eliminate your moisture problems, provided your house temperatures are 60 degrees °F and above.

However, the ideal temperature in which dehumidifiers can work is between 70 and 90 degrees °F.

Though dehumidifiers can still function in temperatures as low as 41 degrees °F, they are ineffective. They are also likely to collapse.

However, heavy-duty dehumidifiers in the market can work effectively in low temperatures. Heavy-duty LGR dehumidifiers can solve all your humidity problems regardless of the temperature.

Recommendable Dehumidifiers for Certain Temperatures

1. Residential Refrigerant Dehumidifiers

Residential refrigerant dehumidifiers are the best during summer or any other time when it is hot and dry.  If you live where the temperatures are hot and dry, consider the residential refrigerant as it perfectly suits your needs.

However, refrigerant dehumidifiers are not for you if you live in an area with consistent moisture, like a river or hill basement. Residential refrigerant dehumidifiers can be said to be humidity solutions in basements and crawl spaces. 

The refrigerant works by condensing the moisture on the coals. It works effectively on temperatures ranging between 70 degrees and 90 degrees °F. Most people use residential refrigerant dehumidifiers mainly between May and September.

Residential refrigerant dehumidifiers do not work effectively in low temperatures because the inside of the condenser has to be colder than the outside or air in the room. 

If the required temperature range doesn’t get achieved, as the temperature goes down, the dehumidifiers work harder to offer a cold surface, thus reducing their efficiency. Ice and frost can build inside the units if the temperatures drop very low.

In case this happens, most residential refrigerator dehumidifiers stop operation automatically. Hence, low temperatures are likely to alter the entire functioning of the dehumidifier completely.

2. Desiccant Dehumidifiers

They get rid of excess moisture in your house by using a desiccant wheel that turns and pulls moisture from the air similarly to a sponge. The desiccant wheel has a silica gel that draws dampness from the air in the house.

These dehumidifiers are heavy-duty. Besides, they are not designed for residential use but in an office or heavily populated room.

The advantage of desiccant dehumidifiers is that they can work effectively under any temperature range and over a vast area.

The desiccant dehumidifiers can work effectively below 60 degrees °F. They do not use condensers but desiccant wheels that do not condense or cool air.

Therefore, desiccant dehumidifiers can solve your excess moisture issues if you are in a wet and cold area. Unfortunately, these kinds of dehumidifiers do not come cheap. 

3. Low Grain Refrigerant (LGR) Dehumidifiers

They are industrial-grade dehumidifiers designed to eliminate excess air in commercial spaces with challenging environmental conditions.

Compared to a standard refrigerant dehumidifier, low grain refrigerant dehumidifiers are heavier and more expensive. Due to their ability to withstand shallow temperatures, many water damage restoration professionals use them.

These models work similarly to traditional refrigerant dehumidifiers but use a dual cooling system that lowers the air temperature to its dew point.

As a result, they can work more efficiently in low temperatures and humidity ranges than traditional dehumidifiers. These dehumidifiers stand in extreme cold and dry conditions because they use commercial-grade parts.

Note: low grain refrigerant dehumidifiers are not for residential use.

Do I Need to Test my House Humidity Level Frequently?

Yes, you need to test your house humidity frequently. Examining the humidity levels allows you to realize when you need a dehumidifier. If your humidity levels are between 45% and 50%, that is a healthy humidity level, and there’s no need for a dehumidifier.

However, if the humidity ranges are above 50%, you need a dehumidifier with an immediate effect. Without a dehumidifier, you are likely to begin experiencing allergies, dampness, and mold building in your house.

Conventional dehumidifiers drop in their effectiveness with a drop in the surrounding temperatures. Thus if your temperatures are below 70 degrees °F, go for desiccant or low grain refrigerant rather than the residential refrigerant.

Do Dehumidifiers Work in Cold Rooms?

Whether a dehumidifier can work in a cold room or not depends on the type of the dehumidifier. The conventional dehumidifiers do not typically work in cold rooms. 

As you purchase them, you are notified in their manual that the minimum operational temperature required is 65 degrees F and above. Dehumidifiers that can work below 65 degrees °F have special defrosting features like the desiccant dehumidifier.

Why Can’t Dehumidifiers Work in a Cold Room?

The coils must be cold to condense the moist air for the dehumidifier to function. If the temperatures drop below 65 degrees °F, the coil may freeze, hindering the functioning of the dehumidifier.

Portable dehumidifiers widely used in most homes function like air conditioners in homes. The dehumidifier’s fan takes in air, and tries to lower the temperature of the air below the dew point to separate water from it through condensation. The process involves passing the moist air through the dehumidifier coils and condensing the air.

The dehumidifier may continue operating after dropping temperatures below 65 degrees °F so that it does not collect water.

As a result, the unit would continue consuming power yet not carrying out its anticipated function and eventually collapse.

However, you do not have to stay in a high humid house if it’s cold. You can heat the room. Eventually, the temperatures would have risen to the minimum operation required temperature of the dehumidifier, and hence it would function appropriately.

Alternatively, as discussed above, you can go for dehumidifiers designed to function in extreme temperatures.

Do I Need a Dehumidifier During the Cold Season?

Yes, if you live in a cold area and are experiencing high humidity, then you need a dehumidifier. However, you certainly do not need a dehumidifier during winter. 

According to the Department of Energy, dehumidifiers should be turned off during winter. Hence, when it is freezing between November and March, you should switch off your dehumidifier.

There are two main reasons why you should switch off your dehumidifier during winter:

  • Dehumidifiers do not work in cold temperatures: The minimum temperatures dehumidifiers can work at is 65 degrees. Below 65 degrees °F, the dehumidifier would be overworking and eventually collapse. The dehumidifier coils would freeze due to low temperatures, hindering its operations.
  1. There is less humidity during winter: Typically, the air during winter is drier hence less humidity. Thus, even if you may find your dehumidifier can function during winter, there is no reason for its functioning. The humidity levels are between 35% and 50%, which is healthy. 

Is it Easier to Dehumidify Hot or Cold Air?

It’s easier to dehumidify hot than cold air. While the dehumidifier will collect the same amount of water from the atmosphere in the two situations, it will work less in hot air.

It all goes down to the working of a humidifier. Dehumidifiers function by running room air over cold coils, collecting the moisture which condenses out. Finally, the dehumidifier uses that air to get rid of heat from the hit coils at the other side of the loop. 

The dehumidifier placed in a cold room would heat the air to the required minimum temperature and remove moisture from the air.

On the other side, the dehumidifier in the hot room would only cool the air down to the same temperature and remove excess air. 

Though the two processes seem similar in a hot room, the dehumidifier would require less energy to dehumidify a warm space than a cold one.

Therefore, as for the dehumidifier, it is easier to dehumidify hot air than cold air. However, as for you, the owner, the process would collect the same amount of water. Hence, none would be easier than the other. 

Does Temperature Affect Dehumidifier?

Yes, temperature affects the functioning of dehumidifiers. Temperature affects aspects such as grains and dew points.

The temperature significantly affects a humidification system to eliminate excess moisture from air production.

Temperature affects relative humidity and dew point, which, when combined, can interfere with the dehumidification process.

1. Temperature Impact on Relative Humidity 

Temperature and relative humidity determine the dew point of a specified area. A decrease in temperature increases the level of moisture in your house.

On the other side, relative humidity involves the amount of water in the atmosphere, close to the complete air saturation. 

A 100% relative humidity implies that the air can no longer hold any more water vapor, and 50% relative humidity means the atmosphere of the air it’s capable of holding more moisture. Temperature change directly affects the level of humidity.  

If you reduce the temperature, the level of humidity goes up. For example, let’s consider a room of 80 degrees °F and 40% relative humidity.

If you reduce the temperature to 60 degrees °F without altering the amount of water vapor in the room, relative humidity will rise to approximately 48%. 

If you understand the margins in which temperatures rise will affect moisture from leaving, you can determine how much heating your home needs.

2. Temperature Influences on Dew Point 

You can define dew points as the point at which water vapor condenses into liquid water. It is a critical factor in the regulation of humidity in a room. 

Raising or lowering the room temperature without altering water levels does not change the dew point. However, keeping the temperature constant and removing water drops the dew point. 

If you live where temperature levels keep going up and down, you need to understand how to keep them consistent with maintaining an ideal humidity level. Proper ventilation and temperature control measures are crucial in keeping your room in perfect condition.

3. Temperature & Dehumidification 

Temperature and dew collaboratively aid in the removal of excess water from the room. By using dew point, dehumidification systems condense the air on the coil into liquid water, which you drain with a hosepipe. 

Suppose the dew point is below freezing and a mechanical dehumidifier cannot condense the moisture into liquid. In that case, the temperatures have exceeded the minimum required temperature for the dehumidifier to function. 

Hence, you need to look for a house heating appliance or change the unit into a desiccant dehumidifier. You risk collapsing the machine and increasing your electricity bill by leaving the dehumidifier on even if the temperature is shallow.

Does a Dehumidifier Increase Temperature Levels in a Room?

Yes, dehumidifiers increase the temperature of your room. However, the temperature change is very minimal, and you may never notice it. 

You can attribute this to dehumidifiers making the room comfortable by removing excess moisture. The temperature change due to the dehumidifier will depend on the room size and unit size.

If you have a small space and a large dehumidifier unit, you will undoubtedly notice the temperature change because of the device itself.

How Does a Dehumidifier Create Heat?

Dehumidifiers function by heating and cooling air to remove excess moisture in the air. The slight heat comes from the running of the dehumidifier’s compressor. 

The process is as explained below:

  • The humid air is collected and passed through the dehumidifier coils.
  • Since the coils are at the dew point, they pull out moisture from the air. 
  • The water removed is collected in an internal bucket 
  • The dried air is then heated through the condensation process and circulated through the condenser. 

Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Dehumidifier

1. Your House Humidity Level

Dehumidifiers get rid of excess moisture from the room. If your room has the ideal conditions of humidity level, then you do not need a dehumidifier. However, if the humidity levels are higher than recommended, you need a dehumidifier.

2. Unit & Room Size 

The size of the dehumidifier as compared to the room size determines how effectively the machine performs.

If you have a sizable room needing dehumidification, the unit size must correspond to that space. If the device is tiny for your area, you may not feel its significance in the house.

Likewise, if the unit is too big for your space, it will likely release excess heat you may not need in your room. 

When Should I Switch on the Dehumidifier?

It would help if you only switched on the dehumidifier when needed. Dehumidifiers are not like air purifiers that would work throughout the home. Dehumidifiers are only required when the humidity level is above the recommended.

Conclusion 

Dehumidifiers are essential appliances in the room. They work at warm temperatures of above 65 degrees °F. However, if you live in a cold area, there are dehumidifier models that suit your problem. 

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Hubert Miles

I've been conducting home inspections for 17 years. I'm a licensed Home Inspector, Certified Master Inspector (CMI), and FHA 203k Consultant. I started HomeInspectionInsider.com to help people better understand the home inspection process and answer questions about homeownership and home maintenance.
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