The garage can actually be quite a humid place. High humidity in a garage can lead to permanent damage to equipment and materials, as well as cause a rise in pests and mold. Overall, the best solution to a garage which traps humidity in any season is a garage dehumidifier. These are smaller units than whole-house dehumidifiers and are also cheaper and easier to set up.
- Signs You Need a Garage Dehumidifier
- Garage Dehumidifier Pros and Cons
- Things to Look For
- Product Comparison
- Misconceptions About Garage Dehumidifiers
- About Installation of a Garage Dehumidifier
Signs You Need a Garage Dehumidifier
Before you take the plunge and decide to start looking for a great garage dehumidifier, you’ll want to make sure that you need one. You can tell from several key signs which you can collect by taking a quick walk around your garage, observing as you go.
Mold and Musty Odors
Use your eyes and nose and pay attention to any new growths of mold that might be popping up in the corners of your garage. Mold will often appear in corners or near windows, where condensation tends to collect. Mold is really easy to find; just look for dark spots or fungal growths that are a different color from your garage’s walls or floor.
Musty odors are another telltale sign of mold growing where you can’t see it. Mold and mildew love to grow in small, dark places that are hard to clean, so rely on your sense of smell to inform you about any unnoticed fungal guests.
Water Damage and Excessive Condensation
Condensation occurs when your garage collects too much moisture from the air. This isn’t a problem by itself, but excess condensation can fuel the growth of mold and mildew. In addition, too much water in your garage can lead to wet, leaky places everywhere, damaging tools, wood, or your supplies. Water damage in your garage can be quite expensive to replace.
If anyone in your family dislikes spending time in the garage due to allergic reactions, it’s a good sign that there are insects which are breeding or mold and mildew. Reducing the humidity in your garage will assist with both of these possible allergy starters.
Termites and other insects will often be attracted to wet, rotting wood, which is caused by excess moisture in the air. If you see wood that’s turning color and starting to crack, you might expect to see some small, buggy guests sooner rather than later.
Garage Dehumidifier Pros and Cons
So what makes a garage humidifier a good investment? Let’s go through their pluses and minuses so you can determine if they’re a good fit for your garage.
What makes it different?
Garage dehumidifiers are usually larger than smaller models that you might find in a bathroom or washroom. They’ve got decent containers for storing water, which is important, as dehumidifiers work by creating condensation in their reservoirs, then pushing dry air out into their environment. In addition, many garage dehumidifiers come with auto-defrost functions to ensure that they keep working even during a cold night in your garage. Small home dehumidifiers might not have this capability.
Pros of a Garage Dehumidifier
Reduce moisture in the air- Garage dehumidifiers keep your garage, and more importantly, the things in it such as cars, tools, and clothes, dry during the humid months of your climate. This is vital when it comes to long-term storage of many things.
Keep away mold and mildew- These machines reduce the moisture in the air and thus the occurrence of these household blights. You’ll be healthier without mold in your life.
Reduce cleaning of the garage- You’ll spend less time cleaning up wet spots and grimy windows if your garage is drier than not.
Saves you time- All of the above factors combine to require you to spend less time cleaning and maintaining the garage and the items in it and give you more time to enjoy your garage.
Cons of a Garage Dehumidifier
There are two cons to keep in mind, however.
Cost- The dehumidifier will cost to buy and to power, although most models are not particularly expensive. Still, something electric constantly running does add up over time.
Maintenance- You must empty and clean the dehumidifier regularly. This doesn’t take long, but shouldn’t be forgotten, either.
Things to Look For
When shopping around for a good garage dehumidifier, keep a few things in mind so you don’t waste time thinking about substandard models.
Certain garage dehumidifiers are sized and powered for large garages. Obviously, if you’ve got a small space to work with, you can get away with buying a more energy-efficient model and not lose anything in terms of reward. Keep your dehumidifier energy-efficient by buying one that’s sized and powered proportionately to your garage.
In terms of pints, anything above 30 is enough for a two-car garage. Anything below 30 should be considered for smaller, one-car garages. Larger dehumidifiers capable of square feet over 3000 should be used for two-car garages, and likewise, those with ratings lower than 3000 square feet should be used for 1-car garages.
Larger tanks for water are great since they mean you need to empty them less frequently. This is ideal for larger garages that are going to take more time to full dehumidify anyway. Smaller tanks are better for smaller garages.
In addition, maintaining the dehumidifier in a clean state will help it work more effectively, preventing it from wasting electricity while it has a full reservoir.
If you plan to work in your garage at the same time as your dehumidifier, think about finding a model that doesn’t whine very loudly. Otherwise, you might grow sick of it after a little while.
|Dehumidifier||Pints/day||Square Feet Suitable For||Features|
|Ivation 70-Pint Energy Star Dehumidifier with Pump||70 pints||4500||Hose connector, auto shutoff/restart, washable filter|
|HomeLabs 4000 Sq Ft Dehumidifier||70 pints||4000||Fan wheels, continuous drain hose|
|Frigidaire 70-Pint Dehumidifier||70 pints||2000||Humidity control, control lock|
|Yaufey 30-Pint Dehumidifier||30 pints||1500||Wheels, drain hose|
|IW25 In-Wall Mounted Dehumidifier||n/a||1500||Mountable, drains into plumbing|
This is the best choice for two-car garages, due to its capacity and power. Its capacity is 2.25 gallons so you won’t need to empty it too often despite its strength. It comes with a pump for drainage out of the window or into a sink. It also has a bunch of great settings and programmable features.
- Large capacity
- Fast dehumidifying rate
- Programmable settings
- Hose included
- Wheels for movement
- Somewhat loud
- Size: 11.1×15.3×23.5 inches
- Weight: 45.4 pounds
- Warranty: n/a
Next, we’ve got the HomeLabs 4000 Sq Ft Dehumidifier. It balances great power with a 1.6-gallon reservoir, but since it removes 70 pints of water per day you’ll need to empty it frequently at first. It comes with wheels and handles for easy movement, as well as a quiet fan to keep your garage comfortable.
- Excellent power
- Easy to use and store
- Quiet fan
- Low storage tank
- Size: 15.4x11x24.3 inches
- Weight: 40 pounds
- Warranty: 2 years
This is the best choice for one-car garages since it’s got great power for its effective square footage. It comes with programmable controls and controls to modify your garage’s humidity, as well as a lock to prevent anyone from tampering with it.
- Programmable controls and humidity lock
- Great water suction for square footage
- Wheels for easy movement
- High noise level
- Size: 11.6x15x24.4 inches
- Weight: 47 pounds
- Warranty: 1 year
This is one of the best garage dehumidifiers with a pump, and it works well enough for 1500 square feet. Its small size makes it a great pick for smaller garages or basements, and it’s got auto shut-off controls and a water pipe in addition to its pump to make maintenance as hands-free as possible.
- Pump system
- Hose included
- Timers and auto shut-off controls
- Small capacity for water
- Size: 12.2×8.2×18.9 inches
- Weight: 23.8 pounds
- Warranty: 1 year
Finally, this dehumidifier is mountable. You can mount it either on the ceiling or the wall, and it attached to existing plumbing, eliminating the need for a reservoir entirely. It’s quite pricey, but a great long-term solution for those who constantly deal with high humidity.
- Quiet operation
- Hooks up to plumbing, eliminating the need to remove water
- Mountable where you like
- Size: 14.5×9.4×25.5 inches
- Weight: 47 pounds
- Warranty: 2 years.
Misconceptions About Garage Dehumidifiers
Myth: Ventilation solves humidity problems. Unfortunately, this isn’t true. Humidity in your garage is often caused by outdoor humidity, so ventilation will only increase the humidity indoors. The only time this might be an acceptable idea is during the winter, when outdoor humidity is generally low.
Myth: Air conditioning can help lower my humidity. Air conditioners can cool the air but don’t do anything to remove the water within the same space. As a result, lowering the temperature without removing water can actually make humidity worse, since the water in the air takes up more space as it’s coalescing.
Myth: Raising the temperature will remove humidity. Water does not evaporate as you raise the temperature, as anyone who lives in America’s South can tell you. Instead, water might coalesce even more frequently as you turn up the heat, and you’ll sweat more, too!
About Installation of a Garage Dehumidifier
Installation of these machines is actually quite easy compared to many larger types of dehumidifiers, such as whole-house dehumidifiers or crawl-space dehumidifiers.
Most models are able to be installed by hand. Simply set them up in your garage with plenty of space around them so that they can suck in moist air and expel dry air without affecting the same air over and over again. Keep the reservoir bay accessible so that you can empty it periodically.
You can also install pipes or a hose into the reservoir bay and transfer collected water straight out into the yard if you like. You’ll still need to clean the bay periodically, however.
A dehumidifier for garage humidity can be a great investment for the long-term comfort and safety of your garage. They can be of use no matter the season and protect everything you store, as well as free up time that you might otherwise spend combating mold and messes. We hope we’ve been able to help you find the best garage dehumidifier for your garage!