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A Complete Guide on Dehumidifiers

Like anything else in this world, humidity is great in the right doses. As soon as moisture levels rise, it creates discomfort in our day-to-day lives, as well as cause various health issues. 

Mould on the walls, stale cereals and grains, never dry laundry, asthma attacks – the list of complications goes on and on. 

Excess amounts of humidity can also cause problems during construction work when you need the concrete, the glue and so on to dry fast, and they never do. 

Here is where a dehumidifier comes in to save the day. 

Regardless of the kind you decide to purchase, it will make your life that much easier and healthier. 

Let’s discuss the best dehumidifiers UK market has to offer, examine their types, and understand how exactly they can be beneficial to you. 

Dehumidifiers Overview

Let’s take a quick glance at dehumidifiers to understand the general idea. 

What does a dehumidifier do, you may ask? 

Well, a dehumidifier is a device that extracts excess amounts of humidity from the air in a particular area, turning it into condensate. 

In other words, it dries the air, making it comfortable for everyone. 

There are many different types of the best dehumidifiers with various ways of drying the air. We will discuss them at length further.  

Some are meant for installation, while others can be placed in a room. Some have sophisticated features, while others are very basic models with minimal settings. 

They also come in various sizes, and it’s up to you to understand whether or not you need one and, if you do, how extensive and elaborate the whole system needs to be. 

In many cases, people are unaware that there is a solution. However, in most cases, people don’t even realise they have a problem. 

Many of us take it as a give. Well, we do live on an island after all, and naturally, the climate here is very humid, and we need to adjust. 

However, it’s not the case in the modern world. To make sure you recognise the problem you have, we have collected some clues to look for and make sure that your life is not affected much by where you live. 

Signs You Need A Home Dehumidifier 

Let’s see the red flags that point to the fact that you need a dehumidifier. 

Mould

Mould is not just a very unpleasant thing to look at and gives the house a very old feel and look, but it can also be very dangerous, as it’s a form of fungus. 

The way mould reproduces is through spores that are released in the air and then spread and attach to surfaces with moisture. 

Bear in mind, that if you have mould in your house, this means you are breathing that fungus as well, which can be very dangerous for people with respiratory problems, as well as small children. And depending on the kind of mould you have, it could be poisonous and cause serious health issues. 

The best home dehumidifier will alleviate these issues, letting you live healthy in a nice home.  

Stale Grains And Cereals 

How nice it is to wake up in the morning, pour yourself a nice bowl of cereal with milk, and enjoy that crunchy haven with a cup of coffee and the morning newspaper. 

Now imagine how disappointing it is when your cereal is stale and becomes soggy right after pouring the milk (unless you are the weirdo that likes soggy cereal).  

High humidity doesn’t do your grains any favour when it comes to their long-term storage. They will either go bad or become pretty much inedible. 

It’s a real issue in our country, as sealing some food is possible, but mostly not practical.  

Your problem can be easily solved even with a cheap dehumidifier, and you can enjoy your crunchy mornings as usual. 

Unpleasant Smell

Unpleasant smells usually occur in places where there is moisture build-up. Bathrooms and laundry rooms are great examples of such places in every home. If you don’t have a great ventilation system in your bathroom, or sometimes even if you do, frequent showers and humid air, to begin with, will not let the moisture dry or evaporate quickly, leading to unpleasant smells. 

Such smells of humidity can also come from mould. 

As a rule, dry areas don’t smell, unless it’s something dirty. Bathrooms, on the other hand, retain moisture purely because of their design and the constant presence of water. 

If you place a small dehumidifier here, you will always have dry towels that smell fresh and nice and only the pleasant smell of shampoos, body washes and other products. 

Moist Clothes and Laundry 

In a very humid climate, clothes can dry for days and still feel wet and moist. In case you don’t own a dryer and are forced to air dry your laundry, it can become a real nightmare. 

However, even if you do have a dryer after you hang your clothes in the wardrobe, they can become moist, as the air in your house has a very high humidity level. 

Fortunately, there are mini dehumidifiers that you can hang in your closet, as well as larger models that will make sure your clothes get dry fast to provide you with the level of comfort you deserve. 

The History of Dehumidifiers

When it comes to the history of this very handy device, we have Americans to thank, as the forefather and inventor of dehumidifiers was an American engineer named Willis Carrier. 

In 1902 the first dehumidifier was born to dry the air in one of Brooklyn’s printing houses. Carrier is also the person who invented air conditioning, for which we should thank him every day. 

Dehumidifier Types

As with any modern technology, people approached it differently, and it has different processes at its core of the operation. Thus different types of dehumidifiers extract humidity from the air using various concepts and can be used in numerous cases and purposes. 

But let’s first understand the process that these machines do – dehumidification. 

What is Dehumidification?

Dehumidification is a process in which moisture, humidity or water vapour is extracted from the air, simultaneously preserving the original temperature. 

It’s important to note that dehumidification does not cool or heat the air but merely removes the excess moisture from it.  

How does a dehumidifier work? 

So how does the dehumidification process actually work? 

Well, here is where we come to the most interesting part of having different technologies, extracting the humidity in various ways, and are designed for multiple uses. 

In order to describe how dehumidifiers work, we need to present to you the categories of dehumidifiers and their types, as some consume electricity. In contrast, others need a simple charge and are considered non-electric, like the desiccant dehumidifiers.  

Without further adieu, let’s dive right in and see which dehumidifiers work how and where are their best uses. 

Categories of Dehumidifiers 

Here we present you the four main categories of dehumidifiers and will explain how they work. 

Electric or Refrigerant Dehumidifiers

Electric or refrigerant dehumidifiers are probably the most popular ones on the market today. 

The logic behind their operation is very similar to ACs, which sucks in the air by means of a fan, run the air through the cooling coils, and separate the condensate. Here is where it differs from an AC. A dehumidifier then runs the dry air through the second set of heating coils and only then blows the dry air back into the room. In comparison, the AC blows the cool air. 

These kinds of refrigerant dehumidifiers have very high-performance markers in room temperatures; however, their efficiency slowly declines with the temperature decline. The major reason why this occurs is that the cooling coils may form ice on them, hindering the operation. This may happen at temperatures of 18°C and below. 

The optimal temperature and relative humidity level that can provide the highest efficiency of the dehumidifier is 20°C and above and 45% humidity. 

Any industrial grid and powerful house dehumidifier is a refrigerant one, as only they can provide enough power to effectively dry the air in moderate to big spaces. Also all the dehumidifiers that are meant to be installed in the ventilation systems, regardless of a house or a commercial building, are electric ones.  

Desiccant Dehumidifiers 

If you have ever bought a camera, computer, shoes and other products, you then have seen the small packs named “silica gel”. And surely, we have all wondered, what is that doing here? 

Well, it’s a small pack of absorbent material that is meant to protect the product from any kind of moisture by absorbing it, keeping your camera safe, as moisture is especially dangerous for electronic products. 

There are two types of desiccant dehumidifiers – electric and non-electric ones. 

Electric ones blow the humid air through a wheel, which is filled with desiccant material. The wheel slowly rotates, absorbing the humidity. The humidity is either drained with a pipe or is collected in a special tank. 

These dehumidifiers are best suited for cooler places and are often used in numerous industries to achieve levels of humidity below 35%. If you want to invest in one, it will be best suited for a garage, workshop or basement. 

Electric desiccant dehumidifiers are a bit on the higher end when it comes to power consumption, with a marker of about 600-800 W/hour. 

On the other hand, the non-electric desiccant dehumidifiers do not use any energy to ensure their operation. The air just passes through their desiccants freely. However, they need to be recharged to heat the gel and make it suitable for absorption again.  

This type of small dehumidifier is great for small rooms, closets and other small spaces and perfect for long-term use, as they require minimal supervision and electricity consumption. 

Thermoelectric Dehumidifiers

These are not very popular home dehumidifiers, as the efficiency is on the lower end and may have problems with ice build-up. On the other hand, these ones are much quieter, as they don’t have a mechanical compressor but rather something that’s called a Peltier heat pump. 

You may find this technology in some of the small dehumidifiers. 

Ionic Membrane Dehumidifiers 

This process uses an SPE or solid polymer electrolyte membrane system to move humidity from sealed spaces that operates on a molecular level and removes the moisture through electrolysis. 

This system is perfect for places that are hard to reach and maintain. It is also completely silent and does not require any maintenance whatsoever, and is very reliable in a long-term operation.

The downside of this method is that it’s not highly efficient and has a capacity of 58 grams/day dehumidification at most. 

Ionic dehumidifiers are usually used in scientific and medical settings to protect equipment or its components from moisture. 

The Benefits of Owning a Dehumidifier

Here is a small list of all the obvious benefits that you can get when purchasing and installing the best dehumidifier UK has to offer. 

Better Respiration 

If you are prone to allergies or have asthma or any other respiratory problems, you will feel so much better and will be able to take a deep breath with a wall-mounted dehumidifier installed in your home. 

The reason for such a statement is the fact that humid air is much more dancer than a dry one and contains more particles, which makes it harder to inhale. And those of us who have any respiratory issues are much more affected. 

Thus, to be healthier and protect your children from possible allergies that can be caused by dust, dust mites, mould, and much more, a dehumidifier can be an answer.  

Dry Clothes

The days of constantly moist clothes and laundry are over! You will no longer need to iron everything one extra time to dry it or wear moist clothes. The air-drying of your laundry will be much easier and quicker. 

You will feel the difference as soon as you install any dehumidifier UK market has to offer. 

Longevity of Electric Appliances 

Believe it or not, but your TV, sound system, and pretty much any electric appliance you own will thank you for installing even a small dehumidifier. 

The moisture in the air sits on surfaces, getting into every nook and cranny of your electric appliances, carrying dust and other particles that can significantly lower the lifespan of your devices.  

Lower the Electricity Bill 

How can an electric appliance lower your electricity bill? When you think about AC working all day and how much more energy it needs to use in order to cool the humid air, you will see that a small, low energy dehumidifier will make a great difference, as the AC will run much less and save you money. 

Alongside lowering your spendings, it will prolong the life of every single appliance you own, lowering costs on repairs and replacements. 

Shorter Construction Time Frame

An industrial dehumidifier can help a great deal for those who are professional construction workers, or those, that love renovating their house. 

A successful construction or renovation requires fast drying of materials like glue, cement, and many other binding agents. It also needs to be dry, as humidity and moisture can prolong the process and, in some cases, even hinder it. 

In order to prevent unwanted accidents and a way too long construction period that leads to much higher costs, and an industrial dehumidifier will be a great help and help you scale your projects, giving you an opportunity to take on more work and expand your business. 

No Mould 

As we have already stated, moisture and humidity are the ideal conditions for mould to grow. And bear in mind that it can form pretty much anywhere – on the walls, ceiling, and it’s not limited only to places around the sink in the kitchen and the bathroom. It can form on your walls of the living room, basement, bedroom and so on. 

The list of illnesses caused by mould is very long, and it’s especially dangerous to those of us with pre-existing respiratory issues, asthma, and allergies. 

Even a mini dehumidifier placed in the place where you noticed signs of mould development will make a huge difference, and you will feel much better and safer in your own house. 

In case you want a more thorough solution, you should install either a wall mounted dehumidifier, or one, placed right in your ventilation system, so have dryer air across the whole house. 

No Unpleasant Smells 

The smell of moisture in the house is very apparent from the moment you get into the area. It is very unpleasant, but can also cause mould, attract insects and many more problems to the people living there. 

The unpleasant smells can be eliminated by using one of many simple desiccant dehumidifier UK has to offer. Place one in each room, and you are all set! They don’t make any noise and won’t cause you any inconvenience. 

However, again, if you want a more fundamental solution, install one in your ventilation system, and every room will smell fresh and nice. 

No Dust Mites

Dust mites favour humid climates and so small that they can’t be detected with a naked eye – they are only visible under the microscope. They feed off of dead skin cells and make homes in places where they could be found, like the bedding, clothes, rugs and carpets.

They are also causes of some allergies, which is a very unwanted side effect of having microscopic uninvited home pets. 

A dehumidifier can ease this problem. The drier air is not their favorite environment, thus cleaning all soft surfaces in your house will cause their extinction from your home. 

No Sticky Surfaces 

High humidity not only makes us sweat and become sticky, but also makes hard surfaces around us sticky. 

The table, the TV, especially appliances in the kitchen, which are already exposed to excess amounts of humidity and condensation from cooking, that also contain particles of oil and food, which makes the surfaces that much more stickier. 

Here your options are either a desiccant dehumidifier placed in the area, or the one installed in your ventilation system or a wall mounted dehumidifier.  

How to choose a Dehumidifier

There are several factors that play a key role in answer to the question of which dehumidifier to choose. 

You need to know what’s your problem, what type of dehumidifier you think you need, where you will use it, and how much it will cost you. All that will lead you to the best dehumidifier for your needs, and help you a great deal. 

Let’s discuss the factors one by one, so you picture the decision making process from A to Z, when it comes to choosing the best dehumidifier UK market has to offer. 

Assess Your Needs

In this stage, you need to understand what kind of problem you are facing and what will be the main use of the dehumidifier. 

Above, you can see all the benefits of owning a dehumidifier and all the signs that can clue you in on the fact that you need one. 

Depending on where you need to install the dehumidifier comes the choice, as there are many different types, which we have already discussed. 

Let’s see some of the most common uses of dehumidifiers and understand which one would work better. 

Swimming pool 

The swimming pool is a naturally very moist and humid space, as the ventilation is not all that great. Plus, the constant large body of water provides a never-ending source of moisture.  

So you don’t have mould and unpleasant smell in the swimming pool area, you need to install either sanding or a wall mount dehumidifier. 

Here are the products we think would work best in a swimming pool. 

Home

If you want to use the dehumidifier at home, then you have 3 options, either one to install in your ventilation system, that will provide dryer air in the whole house, a portable one, to transport from one room to another, or place in the most humid areas, or a wall mounted one, that will be permanently installed, and will be just like the AC, in one place. 

The latter will work best for small apartments and studio apartments, where you don’t have many deviations or square footage to worry about. 

The portable dehumidifier will be a great choice for those, who need dehumidification in specific areas of their house, like the bedroom, the bathroom, the kitchen and so on. These ones are simple in use and usually silent.

Here are the best home dehumidifiers UK market has to offer. 

Basement

This part of the house can be particularly prone to mould girth and high levels of moisture, as it’s very close or outright in the ground. 

However, it’s a very important part of the house to keep dry, as it can be seen as the foundation of your house. Moisture attracts all kinds of insects, and you are lucky if it’s just something unpleasant. 

It can also be termites that will eat the wood, slowly destroying your home. It could be rodents, like rats, who are very much attracted to still moisture and are to spread many diseases. 

Installing a basement dehumidifier will help you solve these issues and keep a clean and safe household. 

These are our recommendations for this kind of use. 

Single room

Depending on the size of the room and the level of humidity, you can either have a small portable option – like a desiccant dehumidifier, that will just sit there and won’t even notice it’s there. That’s an option for the smaller rooms with not very high levels of humidity. 

For bigger and more humid rooms, you can either get a portable dehumidifier with an extraction capacity of about 12 litres per day or a wall mounted dehumidifier that you can turn on and off on a needed basis.  

While all the options are valid, the portable floor dehumidifier could be the best option, as it’s versatile in its use – you can take it anywhere with you and move it from the bedroom during the night to the living room during the day. 

They are also usually very quiet in operation, have timers and automatic shut off if the condensate tank is full, so you don’t have to worry about them too much. 

Here are some of the options we would recommend for the single room dehumidifiers.  

Bathroom

The bathroom is probably the most humid area of the house and needs humidifier extraction on a higher level than other places. 

While having a great ventilation system is extremely important, placing a bathroom dehumidifier can be a real lifesaver. 

It can become especially damp there if you are a big family, taking showers at different times a day, or even more than once a day. It leads to the moisture never even dries on any surface, making it easy for the mould to grow, smells to become apparent and eventually unpleasant.

In order to have dry towels and shower curtains you need to invest in a dehumidifier for bathroom, which will make sure the quality of your life goes up, while eliminating the inconveniences and dangers brought forward by the moisture and humidity. 

The list of best bathroom dehumidifiers you can find below. 

Boat

While you might think that boats are meant to withstand the harsh realities of being on the water 24/7, as they are made for that kind of environment, a dehumidifier will prolong its life, not letting any mould and rust destroy your boat. 

Mould and rust are equally dangerous for boats – rust for metal boats, mould for wooden ones. They will eat at the body of the boat, become its part, and eventually gouge a hole in it, compromising its integrity, putting you and anyone on it in danger. 

Plus, the excess humidity can be harmful to everything else on the boat, not just its body. Think about all the small cabinets, the equipment, the tools, and anything else you might have there. 

In order to prolong your boat’s life and everything else on it for as long as you can, a dehumidifier is a must-have and will be a great asset in your care package. 

These models of dehumidifiers are the most suitable to be installed on a boat.  

Construction/Renovation

If you are a construction worker, own a construction business, or just decided to make a renovation in your house, one room at a time, you will need an industrial dehumidifier, to make sure that your construction work gets finished fast. 

As many materials like glue and concrete need to get dry fast, so they don’t hold the work for too long, a dehumidifier will be a god sent. 

Industrial dehumidifiers that we have are big and heavy, but come with wheels and skids, which make them portable and easy to load and unload from a truck. They are also very powerful, with strong fans and can dry up the space really quickly. 

They also feature a continuous drainage system, that allows you to have a more hand off approach with them. Just turn them on, clean the exhaust pipe to secure space, and you can come back the next morning to find the space much drier than you left it, moving your work along nicely. 

Here are the best industrial dehumidifiers that we can offer you. 

Look for the Right Features

There are many different features that most dehumidifiers have, while others are very simple and have just an on and off button if that. 

Below are the most important and actually important features you need to pay attention to when deciding which dehumidifier to get for your specific needs. 

Extraction Capacity 

This is one of the main indicators to look for, as it tells you how many litres of moisture per day the set dehumidifier can extract from the air. 

This indicator solely depends on what kind and type of dehumidifier you are getting. This feature ranges from as little as 250 milligrams per day for small desiccant dehumidifiers to 60 liters per day and more for big home, and industrial dehumidifiers.   

The kind you get solely depends on your needs. If you are getting a dehumidifier for your bathroom, the 7L-16L one would work perfectly and would be sufficient. If you want a mini dehumidifier to put in your closet, to make sure your clothes stay dry, a tiny desiccant dehumidifier will suffice. 

In case what you need is the one to install in your ventilation system, or for construction purposes, then the bigger the dehumidifier, the better, to make sure it takes care of all your needs, without breaking a sweat. 

Drainage

This is an important thing to look at, and again, everything depends on your needs. For wall mounted dehumidifiers, ones installed in the ventilation systems, and ones meant for boats and swimming pools, continuous drainage is highly important. 

What this means, is that there is a dedicated small pipe that comes out of the dehumidifier unit so the condensation water can be extracted. What this actually means, is that it works much like the AC, where you don’t have to worry about what to do with the condensate. 

Most dehumidifiers that we just mentioned do come with such drainage pipes and even offer automated pump out of the condensate. 

The smaller, portable dehumidifiers, while coming with the continuous drainage option, usually have tanks dedicated to accumulating the condensate. 

These ones need a bit more hands on approach, as need to empty the tank when it’s full. Luckily, these models come with a built-in auto shut off when the tank is full, not to overflow and damage the device itself. 

There are also desiccant dehumidifiers that don’t come with a tank or continuous drainage pipe. These ones, as we have explained earlier, contain silica gel, which absorbs the moisture in the room. 

These are the smallest dehumidifiers and can only be used in small spaces like a single room, a closet and so on, as their extraction capacity is very low. 

Thus, depending on how you are going to use the dehumidifier and where comes the important question of how to drain the condensate. If you are not going to mount the unit permanently or use it for construction purposes, continuous drainage is not critical. 

Plus, the condensate tank allows the dehumidifier to be more portable and versatile in use.  

Other features

There are surely many different features that one needs to pay attention to when getting a home dehumidifier. 

Below are the most common and second on the priority  list of your needs, after the capacity and drainage. 

However, this list is not full, as there are numerous other features that some of the dehumidifiers have that can bring more comfort and simplicity to their use. We have decided to focus on the main one, which can be critical to some people and leaving out ones that are added extras and are present in a fraction of dehumidifiers UK market offers. 

Safety measures

This is a particularly important feature for those who have small children in the house or are often out of their houses. 

Different dehumidifiers have different safety features, but the basic ones include the automatic shut off when the tank is full, the filter cleaning indicator, and the anti-spill feature. 

These features can come in very handy, when you need to go out of the house and want to come back to a pleasant ambience in the house for time for dinner and bed. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the dehumidifier short-circuiting or damaging your flooring. 

Some industrial grid dehumidifiers also include the anti clogging design, which doesn’t allow any dust build up to hinder the dehumidifier’s operation. 

Humidistat 

This is a great feature allowing you to set the desired humidity levels in the area. The comfortable humidity level for humans ranges from 40-60%. Anything more or less than that, and you will start feeling unease. 

Most of the dehumidifiers with a built in humidistat will also turn on and off automatically as soon as the desired humidity levels are achieved. 

This feature allows for a more hands-off approach and simplicity in operation. 

Portability

This is an important feature, if you are going to need the dehumidifier in different places, and for industrial dehumidifiers. 

The home dehumidifiers usually come with either two or four wheels, so moving them around is not a pain. Some of the small dehumidifiers have handles on the top or on the side to ease the moving process for you. 

The industrial ones also come with wheels and skids for easy transportation from one place to another. 

Timer

This one is an amazing feature for those trying to keep the levels of humidity steady without a humidistat. You can set the timer, usually between options of 2-4-6-8-and 12 hours, to run the dehumidifier. 

In case you want to turn it on and go out, making sure by the time you come the house is nice and cosy, look for the timer feature. 

Noise levels

Noise levels can be important for those who will use the dehumidifier during their sleep. 

Usually, the noise levels are not high for the small dehumidifiers or the home options, but they can be very high for the industrial models. 

Keep in mind the noise levels and check them in case that’s an important indicator for you, and you have many appliances working in your home and don’t want to add to the white noise another one. 

Air filter 

Most home dehumidifiers have air filters to protect the dehumidifier from dust and other particles that are present in the air. 

However, some also have ionic filters that purify the air, making it cleaner and healthier in your house. 

For those of you with small children and those with allergies and asthma, the better air filtration can be a great asset, as the dehumidifier will clean the air alongside carrying out its main purpose, which is dehumidifying. 

Allocate the Budget 

The choice of the dehumidifier you will also get highly depends on the budget that you have. Maybe the right and better solution for you would have been a sophisticated model; however, since your funds are limited, all you can get is the simpler one. 

That is ok, as having any dehumidifier in your case might be better than having none.

If you are faced with the choice of getting a simple or small dehumidifier or not getting any at all, always go with getting one. While you might think that a more sustainable and long-term solution is to save some money and get a fundamental solution to your problem, your house may become very hard to live in or start decaying as mould or rust starts spreading.

Also, meanwhile, you wait, the quality of your life might lower, with allergies flaring up, frequent asthma attacks, or having to clean your house more often, and having to iron everything just to dry your laundry. 

However, if money is not an issue, then the budget for the dehumidifier should be according to the type of dehumidifier you decided to get, and what kind of dehumidification needs you have. 

In case you are not planning on moving anytime soon, then splurge for the full home installation, integrating the best home dehumidifier into the ventilation system. It will keep a nice and comfortable level of humidity in the whole house, letting you have a healthy and comfortable life, free of inconveniences and worries. 

Nevertheless, a portable home dehumidifier is also a great option, especially now they are making them very nice and sophisticated, with a huge amount of different settings. There are even models with air filters that will clean your air, along with drying it, timers, high or low capacity ones, and many more that we have already discussed earlier.

In case you need something more serious and powerful, like an industrial dehumidifier for construction work and home renovations, that will be a more expensive option and might require a bit more investment on your part. 

However, don’t hesitate, as your renovation or construction will be over before you know it with an industrial dehumidifier and save you money in the long run, as you can take on more work since the timeframe of your construction is so short.  

Keep your eyes open

As around, if you know anyone using a dehumidifier. Read all the dehumidifier reviews you can get your hands on, and keep an eye on new developments in this area. 

You should always do your research, read independent website reviews and third party reviews to be sure you have looked at the product from all angles. 

Just like you research what kind of innovations are present in the latest tech products, or research well before getting a photo camera, washing machine, AC, and any other new appliance at home, do your due diligence and get a profound understanding of each type of dehumidifier before you decide to make a purchase. 

They are different, and innovations are being rolled out each year, if not more often. Thus, understanding their differences will help you a great deal in choosing which dehumidifier to get. 

Also, it will help you not get carried away by chasing the newest models, with a whole bunch of settings you won’t even use if all you need is a simple, small dehumidifier. It will be great for your pocket, and you will get the most value for your money.