Dehumidifiers remove the moisture in the air when humidity levels are high. Humidity levels typically increase in the summertime, making high temperatures difficult to bear. Decreasing humidity levels indoors make the living conditions more bearable. Your body's natural cooling reaction (sweating) becomes more effective and the air loses its sticky feeling. Operating a dehumidifier is an easy way to increase your summertime comfort level.

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First Things First

Safety is the first issue to deal with when you work with any electrical appliance.. Because dehumidifiers remove water from the air and store the water onboard, the chance of receiving an electrical shock is high if the unit is not plugged into a properly grounded outlet. The outlet should be tested with a grounding tester before it is used. A grounding tester can be found at a home improvement store and costs only a few dollars. It plugs directly into a wall outlet and features lights that reveal the wiring condition of the electrical outlet. Wiring corrections can be completed immediately after testing, if required. When the indicator lights show that the electrical outlet is safe to use, the dehumidifier can be plugged in and used.

Dehumidifier Operation Steps

Dehumidification units may or may not feature a power (on/off) switch. This is a safety feature that prevents water reservoir overflow and electrical hazards. If the dehumidifier does not have a power switch, the dehumidifier will turn on when it is plugged in and turn off when it is unplugged. Plug the dehumidifier in to begin operation. The intake port is usually located on the back side of the dehumidifier and is covered by an air filter. This port should never be covered while the dehumidifier is operating. The exhaust port will either be located on the front or top of the unit and may feature different opening sizes. The degree the port should be opened depends on the temperature of the room the dehumidifier is sitting in. If the interior room temperature is low (about 60 degrees) the exhaust port does not need to be open very wide. If the interior room temperature is high (90 degrees or higher) the exhaust port should be fully opened to draw as much moisture out of the air as possible. Some dehumidifiers are able to stop operation automatically at a preset humidity level, such as 50 percent, 60 percent and 70 percent, and it will resume operating when the humidity level rises again in order to maintain a certain humidity level indoors. This is a nice feature to have so the air doesn't become too dry.

Draining Accumulated Water

Dehumidifiers collect the water that has been removed from the air in a collection tank located at the bottom of the unit. The tank should be emptied regularly to avoid spilling. Dehumidifiers feature a water level indicator that shows how high the water level is becoming. Empty the tank before the water level gets too high. Some dehumidifiers feature a continuous drain capability that allows you as the user to install a drain hose onto the unit that will direct the water to a floor drain so you will never have to empty the accumulation tank. This feature is great if a floor drain is available and if the unit will not be moved from room to room.