What is the Best Desiccant Dehumidifier – (Reviews & Buyer Guide)

Best Desiccant Dehumidifier imagesThere is nothing like the smell of damp, mildew-infested air to remind you that you need a dehumidifier. Whether it is to keep allergies at bay, prevent mold growth, or keep your house cooler, a dehumidifier is essential for every home. 

If your location leaves you susceptible to humidity all year round, then you need a desiccant dehumidifier.

We present to you the best desiccant dehumidifier alongside four great alternatives. 

My Overall #1 Rated Pick
My overall top pick for the best desiccant dehumidifier Ivation 13-pint. Despite being smaller than the others (except the Eva-Dry, of course), it functions under a wide range of temperatures, is visually appealing, and won't even wake up the cat.

Last update on 2024-06-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Desiccant Dehumidifier Reviews

Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

1. Ivation IVADDH09 – Best for large rooms

Ivation 19 Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier...
  • 19-PINT DESICCANT DEHUMIDIFIER – Highly Efficient Desiccant Rotor Removes Moisture, Odors & Mold While Warming Ambient Air; Perfect for Colder Seasons
  • LIGHTWEIGHT BUT POWERFUL – Enjoy Adjustable Humidity Control & Whisper Quiet Operation for Small Spaces Up to 410 Sq/Ft in Home, RV, Boat or Laundry Room
  • USER-FRIENDLY LCD DISPLAY – Sleek Digital Interface Lets You Power On/Off & Adjust Humidity, Fan Speed, Timer/Sleep Mode, Vent Swing & Screen Brightness
  • MULTIPLE DRAINAGE OPTIONS – High Capacity Reservoir Holds Up to ½ Gallon of Water for True Portability; Includes Connection Hose for Continuous Drainage
  • VERSATILE PERFORMANCE – Works in Temperatures from 33°F to 104°F; Convenient Carry Handle, Washable Filter, Alerts, Auto-Shutoff & Adjustable Swinging Air Vent

Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

It is hard to find a residential desiccant dehumidifier that can compete with a compressor-based system at moisture removal. That is why many people would rather buy the latter.

If size is what you are after, then this may be what you’ve been looking for.

With its sleek plain white shell and ample capacity, the Ivation IVADDH09 is a classic desiccant dehumidifier that prioritizes performance over presentation. This unit expels 19 Pints Per Day (PPD), which is impressive for a desiccant dehumidifier.

This model also works in room sizes as large as 410 square feet, making it suitable for almost any living space, kitchen, and home office. It also comes with a full operating range, as it can function in 33° to 104°F, something no refrigerant dehumidifier can do.

A large LCD panel operates the Ivation IVADDH09 with easy-to-use tabs and functions that allow you to manipulate the humidity level, fan speed, and the ever-popular sleep mode, which reduces the sound to a respectable level.

You can also set the humidity level between 35% and 85%. Bear in mind that the ideal indoor humidity level for a house with air conditioning is between 40% – 60%. Humidity above 60% tends to attract mildew.

This device delivers such exceptional service in a wide range of settings that it is a surprise the water tank only holds 4 pints of water. So, depending on how humid or cold it is, you might have to empty the tank one or more times a day.

However, if you don’t plan on moving the unit about and there is a water outlet nearby, you can use the continuous drainage function.

There is also an alert for the water tank, so you don’t have to keep checking to see if it’s full. Other handy features are auto shut-off, anti-tilt, and you can also reduce the LCD’s brightness.


  • Wide temperature range
  • Easy to use
  • It covers a large area
  • Usable nearly all-year long
  • Removes more PPD than most desiccant dehumidifiers


  • Not very attractive
  • Relatively small bucket     

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2. Eva-Dry Wireless Mini Dehumidifier (E-500) – best for small spaces

Eva-dry E-333 Mini Dehumidifier, Pack of 1, White...
  • ✔ EASY TO USE: This mini dehumidifier is spill and mess free. Just hang and go! Non-toxic, child and pet safe! Your small rooms will be dry and odor free. Works for areas up to 333 cubic feet.
  • ✔ MINI DEHUMIDIFIER GOES A LONG WAY: Super dry dehumidifier unit lasts 20-30 days before recharging the silica gel beads. Absorbing capacity up to 6oz.
  • ✔ SMALL, SLEEK DESIGN: This portable small design lets you hang or conveniently place the dehumidifier anywhere to fight pesky humidity! Cars, closets, boats, cabinets, gun safes, and even gym bags! A very convenient cool gift for everyone!
  • ✔ 100% CORDLESS DEHUMIDIFIER: Moisture out: Cords out! No cables or batteries required. Just charge your device and say bye-bye humidity! Renewable and rechargeable moisture absorber. Lasts up to 4 weeks before recharge.
  • ✔ SATISFACTION : SUPER DRY ODOR-FREE LIFE! Our dehumidifiers are top quality! Super durable and reliable. Comes with an industry-leading 5 year so you can get rid of moisture and not worry about mold or leaks!

Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

When you research any bestseller list, you will always find the Eva-Dry Wireless Mini Dehumidifier. Many people argue that it is the best desiccant dehumidifier and for a good reason.

Coming in at 5.25″ x 2.5″ x 5.25″ and weighing 1.8 pounds, this is by far the smallest dehumidifier on our list and the cheapest too, at under $20.

The E-500 is a small but mighty dehumidifier that can work in spaces of up to 500 cubic feet. It is great for closets, bathrooms, cars, boats, and RVs.

Because it uses silica gel technology, it can never spill the moisture it absorbs. It also works without a cord, so you don’t have to worry about your dehumidifier driving up your electric bills or carbon footprint.

When the unit is filled, the orange silica gel beads turn green. It usually takes between 2-4 weeks for the system to get full, depending on the humidity. You then need to recharge the dehumidifier for 12-14 hours, and it will be ready for the next round.

Unlike the other desiccant dehumidifiers on our list, this can’t be used in rooms and can only absorb 6-8 oz of water. However, this is the only one that can fit in where nothing else can.

This device’s other advantages are that it is noiseless, child-friendly, pet friendly, and environmentally safe. Despite its small, disposable size, it comes with a 5-year warranty and has a 10-year life span.


  • Affordable
  • Noiseless
  • Child and pet friendly
  • Energy efficient


  • Can only handle small spaces
  • Only absorbs a small amount of water

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3. Meaco Zambezi – best for elephant lovers

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Did we really include the Meaco Zambezi because every purchase helps preserve elephant-life? No, we did not, but in an ideal world, that alone would make it one of the best.

The Zambezi 8 delivers reliable performance despite its simplistic appearance. This desiccant dehumidifier is capable of removing 17 pints of moisture from the air daily.

Despite having a smaller PPD rating than the Ivation, it has a much larger water tank at 6.4 pints, which comes with an anti-mold coating.

Alongside the decent-sized bucket, there is also a continuous drain option, and yes, the model does come with a hose. It also has an anti-spill cover for the water tank and a full-tank alert.

Another thing we like about the DDL8-Z2 is that it has three operating speeds: normal, minimal, and laundry. So, if you need your clothes to dry quicker, you have more options.

Speaking of laundry, the louver of the Zambezi DDL8-Z2 is motorized and adjustable, which is rare for a desiccant dehumidifier. The system also has a unique ionizer, which can help kill viruses, bacteria, mold, and other irritants within a range of 32 feet. 

When it comes to noise, this machine isn’t half-bad. The noise level is 39 dB at the lowest speed, while the highest is 49 dB.

 The best thing about this unit is the range of functions. There are over 20 controls, including a Daily Run Timer, humidity alert, auto-restart after a power outage, and a variable humidistat.


  • Ionizer technology for purifying the air
  • Lightweight
  • Large bucket
  • Supports wildlife preservation


  • High electricity consumption
  • Reports of poor customer service

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4. Ivation 13-Pint – Best overall desicant dehumidifer

Ivation 13-Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier...
  • 13-PINT DESICCANT DEHUMIDIFIER – Highly Efficient Desiccant Rotor Removes Moisture, Odors & Mold While Warming Ambient Air; Perfect for Colder Seasons
  • LIGHTWEIGHT BUT POWERFUL – Enjoy Adjustable Humidity Control & Whisper Quiet Operation for Small Spaces Up to 270 Sq/Ft in Home, RV, Boat or Laundry Room
  • USER-FRIENDLY LCD DISPLAY – Sleek Digital Interface Lets You Power On/Off & Adjust Humidity, Fan Speed, Timer/Sleep Mode, Vent Swing & Screen Brightness
  • MULTIPLE DRAINAGE OPTIONS – High Capacity Reservoir Holds Up to ½ Gallon of Water for True Portability; Includes Connection Hose for Continuous Drainage
  • VERSATILE PERFORMANCE – Works in Temperatures from 33°F to 104°F; Convenient Carry Handle, Washable Filter, Alerts, Auto-Shutoff & Adjustable Swinging Air Vent

Last update on 2024-06-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

We are back to Ivation because they arguably created a better version with the 13-pint model. The obvious downside to this is the smaller daily pint removal rating, but it makes up for it in other ways.

Despite being small in size (weighing in at 13.96 pounds), the bucket can hold up to 3.8 pints of water, which is marginally smaller than the much larger 17-pint model. It also comes with a hose for continuous drainage.

This version can work in rooms up to 270 square feet, making it ideal for kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, boats, and laundry rooms. Just like its bigger sibling, it can also work in cold temperatures, going as low as 33°F.

The air outlet can be adjusted when you need to dry your laundry, carpet, or rooms affected by flooding. You can also use it to heat your room during winter, as it can remove 11.8 PPD when the temperature is 41°F.

From an aesthetic point of view, this 13-pint model is more visually appealing than the larger option.

It also comes with a simple LCD that will allow you to set the humidity level between 35% – 85% at 5% increments, schedule the timer for between 1 to 12 hours and swing the air vent.

Due to its small size and technological upgrade, it is very quiet, even during winter.


  • Works well under most weather conditions
  • Energy efficient
  • Easy to use display


  • Quite expensive compared to similar-sized alternatives
  • Low PPD rating

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5. Keystone Junior Desiccant KSTAD70DD7 – best for neglected areas

Keystone 14 Pint Desiccant Dehumidifier | 3 Fan...
  • 14-PINT DESICCANT DEHUMIDIFIER: Effectively removes up to 14.37 pints of moisture from the air per day. It has a 4.22-pint water collection tank to make this possible. It is easy to use with an anti-spill cover, tank full alert, and auto shut-off when full.
  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY AND ENERGY EFFICIENT: Unlike traditional dehumidifiers, there is no compressor or condenser which means there is NO refrigerant, making them lighter and quieter.
  • UTILIZE THE MANY MODES: This dehumidifier runs off of four modes - Medium, Normal, Minimum, and Laundry. There are three Fan Speeds - Low, Medium, and High to meet your needs.
  • ULTRA QUIET: dehumidification at just 38 dBA, making it popular for bedroom use. You can also use this to efficiently remove wetness out of the air to improve you air quality in your basement, bathroom, garage, cellar, boat, RV, or anywhere else in your home or apartment. Get ready to breathe clean air again!
  • QUICKLY GET RID OF DAMPNESS: Protect your garage, car, bike, tools, and more from dampness. Remove the “sticky” feeling from the air in the summer, dry clothes after washing, help prevent condensation problems in the winter, and help maintain a healthier humidity level in your home.

Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Our last entry is a pleasant surprise from Keystone. This particular model is the newest of the bunch and so doesn’t have many reviews, but it has emerged as one of the best on the market.

The DD7L is listed as a 14-pint desiccant dehumidifier, though it can actually remove 14.3 PPD in optimal conditions, and it has a 4.2-pint bucket. Unlike the bigger (and arguably better) Ivation 17-pint, it has four modes: medium, normal, minimum, and laundry.

The four modes maintain an automatic level of between 35% RH (laundry mode) and 60% RH (minimum mode). While this works great in living areas, it can run continuously, making it great for basements, crawl spaces, and small boats.

If you want to keep it out of sight, you can also use the continuous drain option. The unit uses Meaco logic technology, which allows it to run automatically – it shuts off by itself when it reaches the optimum relative humidity and returns when the RH goes above the pre-set level.

Another area the DD7L performs well is the noise level. At 38 dB, it won’t disturb you while you sleep or while you work.

Even though most of its features are great, its major downside is the limited control options. The vent is also fixed, so using it to dry your laundry is not the most convenient. But then again, you’re probably not buying a desiccant dehumidifier just to help you dry laundry.


  • Attractive price
  • Two-year warranty covers parts and labor
  • Sturdy design suitable for basements and crawl spaces
  • Auto-restart makes it great for isolated areas


  • Limited control function
  • Small bucket

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon

Why should you buy a desiccant dehumidifier?

Buying a dehumidifier is a sizeable investment, so it is important to know precisely what you will be getting in return. The first thing to know is how a desiccant dehumidifier differs from a compressor-based dehumidifier.

The answer is in the name. Quite simply, a classic desiccant dehumidifier works with a desiccant material, to remove moisture from the air.

Electrical or consumer-grade versions use a desiccant rotor, fan, and a condenser to turn warm humid air into dry air.

Compressors, on the other hand, work similarly to air conditioners and refrigerators.

They use a refrigerant to cool the air instead of a condenser to heat it. The technology for compressor-based dehumidifiers is more commonly available, making them cheaper and easier to find.

To help you choose the best desiccant dehumidifier for your home, here are their pros and cons:

Advantages of a desiccant dehumidifier

  • Operates in low temperature

When it comes to performance, the most important advantage of a classic desiccant dehumidifier is that it can work in cold weather, given that humid air is also a problem during winter.

Compressor-based dehumidifiers work with a refrigerant, so the machines freeze up in cold temperatures. You, therefore, have to make sure you don’t put them on when the temperature reaches 41°F. This is a significant drawback if you have humidity problems during winter.

While most refrigerant dehumidifiers should not be operated below 66°F, most desiccant dehumidifiers can go as low as 40°F. Note that the Ivation models still function at even lower temperatures.

  • Better for the environment

Another advantage of a desiccant dehumidifier is that it does not use refrigerants, which is a significant contributor to climate change.

Refrigerants are 1,000 times as potent as carbon dioxide. Though they may not always damage the ozone layer (depending on the type of refrigerant used), they trap a lot of hot air in the atmosphere, thus contributing significantly to global warming.

Let’s also not forget that disposable and rechargeable desiccant dehumidifiers are very energy efficient.

  • Lower noise levels

Nobody should lose sleep or not be able to watch TV or work simply because they are trying to remove excess moisture from the air.

If you are sensitive to noise and want a dehumidifier in your bedroom or home office, you should probably choose a desiccant dehumidifier. From the Eva-Dry, which is noiseless, to the larger models that can manage 40 dB, you can expect decent operation without disruption.

Compressor-based dehumidifiers, however, tend to be a lot noisier due to the compressor and the fan. Each of these components makes a mild racket. Combined, it can be unbearable.

As compressors begin to wear, they begin to make even more noise. Note that desiccant dehumidifiers won’t remove as much moisture in low or quiet modes and can be very noisy when on laundry mode.

  • Lightweight

Due to the lack of a compressor, desiccant dehumidifiers are very light and portable. They usually weigh less than 20 pounds, while most compressor-based models weigh at least 30 pounds.

So, while the Zambezi is nearly twice the size of the Midea MAD20C1ZWS 30-Pint, it weighs half as much. That makes compressor dehumidifies difficult or discouraging to move around.

Besides being lightweight, wireless versions can also be used in closets, gym bags, and other restricted areas.

  • Good for cold areas

Unlike compressor dehumidifiers, desiccant dehumidifiers blow out warm air. This makes them great for heating cold rooms and for drying laundry.

Of course, this sets them up for disappointment when summer comes. So really, you may see this as both an advantage and disadvantage.

  • More consistent moisture removals

Suppose you have owned or currently own a compressor-based dehumidifier. In that case, you may have noticed that you don’t have to empty the bucket as often when the temperature or humidity levels change.

So, your 70 PPD compressor-based dehumidifier could give you as little as 15 pints per day in low temperature or low humidity.

Even though desiccant dehumidifiers can’t remove moisture from the air as well as refrigerant dehumidifiers, their PPD ratings remain fairly consistent, even as the weather changes.

Why is that? 

Manufacturers designate pint-per-day ratings based on optimal testing levels, which are 65°F and 60% humidity. That means when either the temperature or humidity levels change, the output will decline drastically.

The best desiccant dehumidifiers aren’t as vulnerable to the weather or varying humidity levels, which is why they stay truer to their PPD ratings.

Disadvantages of desiccant dehumidifiers

  • Low PPD rating

The most significant disadvantage of desiccant dehumidifiers is that they cannot remove as much water from the air as refrigerant dehumidifiers.

Our top pick for residential use maxes out at 19 PPD. Even though industrial versions can expel 50 pints of water from the air daily, that is still little compared to compressor dehumidifiers.

A compressor dehumidifier on the low end can still give you 30 PPD, while the top picks can do three times as much, easily. Not only do they remove more moisture, but they also have much larger buckets and continuous drainage.

Even though compressor dehumidifiers’ output declines significantly in cold weather, they could still outperform desiccant dehumidifiers until the temperature drops below 40°F.

  • Relatively expensive

For very little bang, desiccant dehumidifiers cost a lot of buck, which makes the fact that they can’t remove as much water from the air even more frustrating.

The Ivation 13-Pint model is relatively inexpensive for a desiccant dehumidifier, even though it costs about $30 more than the hOmeLabs 1,500 Sq. Ft Energy Star Dehumidifier that removes 22 PPD.

The only exceptions are the desiccants that use silica gel beads. however, even these can’t do much when there is a lot of moisture in the air.

  • It can give off a bad smell

A desiccant dehumidifier works by absorbing the moisture in the air, which often means also absorbing strong smells or odors. These smells get heated and are released back into the air, thus creating or worsening the stench.

This does not happen all the time, but it can occur with smells ranging from cigarettes to new furniture.

The Meaco Zambezi offsets this by using a sterilizing ionizer to neutralize viruses, germs, and some odors. Many manufacturers also apply a special coating to absorb and trap odors.

There are other advantages and disadvantages that depend on the type of dehumidifier you use.

Types of desiccant dehumidifiers

1. Disposable Desiccant

The most common and cheapest type of dehumidifier is a disposable desiccant. They are not technically dehumidifiers, but they do the same thing.

They are made from desiccant materials such as calcium chloride crystals or silica gel beads. These are ideal when you need to lower the moisture levels in areas without electricity supply, like closets, cars, safes, and bags.

2. Rechargeable Desiccant

Rechargeable dehumidifiers are the next step up. They function like disposable desiccants, but the difference is once they are full, you can recharge them and put them back to work. Most of them use silica gel beads.

They are also called “wireless desiccants” as they work without electricity. The most popular option is the E-500, which, as mentioned previously can last up to a month on a single charge (depending on the moisture levels in your closet, of course).

Besides lasting for a long time, they can also function in slightly bigger spaces than disposable desiccants, though not in large rooms.

3. Consumer Grade Desiccant

This is what comes to mind when most people think about a desiccant dehumidifier. They are shredder-sized machines that work on electric power and can be used in a broader range of locations than the types mentioned above.

The amount of moisture they can absorb in a day is many times more than the previous two options.

4. Commercial Desiccant

If you are looking to buy a desiccant dehumidifier for a big office, warehouse, or large living space, this is what you’ll need.

Commercial desiccants not only remove moisture in the air faster, but they can also work in extremely low temperatures. If the moisture levels in your house are outrageous, these would come in handy.

Related Article:

Dehumidifiers For Large Spaces

Thermo-Electric Dehumidifier for Homes and RVs

How to choose the right desiccant dehumidifier

woman in bed watching desiccant dehumidifier function Now that you know the different types of dehumidifiers, you have probably narrowed down your options from our list of best desiccant dehumidifiers.

But just in case you are still on the fence, here are some other factors to consider:

Location/Dehumidifier Capacity

The first thing to consider is where you are going to use the device. Naturally, this also goes along with the dehumidifier capacity you need. If you need something small for just your closet, then something with a low moisture removal rate will work fine.

For bedrooms, living rooms, and small offices, the Ivation 17-pint or the Zambezi will be your best bet, as they can work in larger spaces but also have very quiet functions.

Noise level (decibel level)

When you compare the noise levels of desiccant dehumidifiers to compressor dehumidifiers, any option from our list seems right.

But the quietest desiccant dehumidifier for rooms is the Ivation 13-Pint, as users have confirmed that it really is whisper quiet in low modes.

Temperature range

The best desiccant dehumidifier for very low temperatures is the Ivation. It has the broadest range in the bunch by a significant margin, and there is no sugar-coating it.

if you’re looking for something to work in even lower temperatures, you might be better served by disposables, unless you have over $1,000 for a commercial desiccant.

Drainage options

Given their relatively small bucket sizes, it is a good thing all of the units reviewed have a continuous drainage option, except the E-500. Given that the Meaco Zambezi has the largest water tank at 6.4 pints, it takes the crown for drainage options.

Control features

With over 20 control features and a motorized louver, the Meaco Zambezi is also the device to beat. The laundry mode is a particularly great function.

However, if you are just looking for something to pre-set, plug, and play, then the Keystone Junior is your winner. Its auto shut-off and auto restart functions make it perfect for places you rarely visit, like storage basements and crawl spaces.

Warranty and customer service

With an astonishing 5-year warranty and a 10-year life span, nothing beats the E-500. An honorable mention is the Keystone Junior. Even though the warranty is only for two years (which is standard for most machinery), it covers parts and labor, which is pretty awesome.


Q: What size dehumidifier should I buy for a bathroom?

A: It depends on the size of your bathroom. If you have an average-sized bathroom of between 20 to 146 square feet, any dehumidifier below 13 PPD will work.

Each desiccant dehumidifier has a description that tells you what size of room it can function in properly.

Q: How long does a desiccant dehumidifier last?

A: A desiccant dehumidifier typically lasts between 3 – 5 years. Those using silica gel beads like can sometimes last twice as long.

A desiccant dehumidifier will last longer than a refrigerant dehumidifier on average because the latter uses more complicated and delicate materials.

Q: Will a desiccant dehumidifier smell or put off an odor when it’s in use?

A: Not necessarily. While some desiccant dehumidifiers absorb and disperse odors, manufacturers are beginning to counter it by using special coatings and ionizers. Some new systems also give off a slight smell when they are first being used or recharged.

Q: Can I find a residential desiccant dehumidifier rated higher than 30 PPD?

A: It is hard to find a residential desiccant dehumidifier that can remove up to 20 pints of moisture every day, let alone 30. If you find a system listed at 30 PPD, it might be an old one, and the rating hasn’t been updated.

Some commercial desiccant dehumidifiers can be used in residential areas, but they are costly.

Q: How much does a desiccant dehumidifier cost to run?

A: It depends on how long you use them, what settings you use and where you live. While many desiccant dehumidifiers can be energy-efficient at slow speeds or sleep mode, they increase drastically at the fastest speed.


There is no debate that desiccant dehumidifiers are king when it is winter or even summer peaks. Other benefits such as their longer life spans, being better for the environment, and being lightweight make up for their significantly lower PPD ratings.

For us, though, the best desiccant dehumidifier is the Ivation 13-Pint. Despite being smaller than the others (except the Eva-Dry, of course), it functions under a wide range of temperatures, looks good, and won’t wake up the cat.

What gives it the edge over the Ivation 17-Pint is that it costs much less.

What do you think of our list? Do you have any suggestions, questions, or complaints? Let us know in the comment section below.

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Jesse Pinkman is a passionate HVAC professional writer who grew up repairing any home appliance on which he could lay his hands. He is responsible for ensuring that every article we publish is SPOT ON. When he's not in the office, he enjoys hiking, watching football, and spending time with his family.