The 5 Best Dehumidifiers for Crawl Spaces: Avoid Humid Headache

Researched & Written by Craig

Does your home have a crawl space?  Have you ever thought to check the humidity levels in it?  Even if you don’t live in a particularly humid climate, you might be surprised to find that the humidity level in your crawl space can be dangerously high.

The air in your crawl space will rise and be carried throughout your home, so you’ll want to attend to the issue without delay. If you find that your crawl space’s humidity levels are high, you might also notice problems with mold, mildew or have family members with skin and respiratory irritations.

Getting a dehumidifier for your crawl space can be incredibly beneficial to your health and the structural integrity of your home.

Did you know that the humidity can cause the headaches you might sometimes experience upon waking up in your home?

Read on about how easy it is to purchase and install a crawl space dehumidifier.

Benefits of Dehumidifiers for Crawl Spaces

Installing a dehumidifier in your crawl space is, of course, meant to decrease the humidity. This will have a knock-on effect and provide other benefits, including:

Comfort – It’s not nice feeling hot and sticky in your own home. Humidity levels can make you feel groggy and tired. High humidity will also mean that you’ll be a sweaty mess, which is not likely the persona you want to showcase to the world. Air conditioners can take out some of the humidity from your home, but then your house might wind up being colder than you want.

Energy efficiency – Running air conditioners to lower your home’s humidity level is not an efficient use of energy. Oftentimes, if you reduce the humidity, then you’ll feel cooler and not need to use your air-con as often.

Structural integrity – High humidity levels can seriously affect your home’s structural integrity and cause excessive, expensive damage. Rot due to moisture exposure is a real concern if the wood can no longer support your home’s weight.

Your family’s health – We are assuming that the thought of dust mites, mold, or mildew taking hold of your walls and furniture is not a welcomed idea. Now imagine sucking all of those allergens into your lungs every time you and your kids take a breath. Improving your home’s air quality can limit the likelihood of respiratory issues, eye irritation, allergies, and headaches.

Pests – Many pests love moist environments (ewwww… we said moist and pests in the same sentence!). Now get ready to be really disgusted. Cockroaches, millipedes, centipedes, silverfish, fleas, and mosquitoes all love humid environments. Getting the humidity levels down can make your crawlspace less habitable for these creepy crawlies.

The 5 Best Dehumidifiers for A Crawl Space: Reviewed

Quietest Dehumidifier

TOSOT 4,500 Sq Ft Dehumidifier

TOSOT Dehumidifier
Can remove up to 50 pints daily

Do you need a dehumidifier only for certain times of the year?  Then the TOSOT 4,500 Sq Ft Dehumidifier might be perfect for your needs. It is incredibly efficient at getting humidity levels down in an area quickly and quietly. It’s a heavy unit, coming in at almost fifty pounds, so you likely won’t want to be carting it from room to room though it is more feasible than with other dehumidifiers on our list.

Display and buttons are on the top of the unit

If you intend to keep this dehumidifier in your crawl space, bear in mind that the display and buttons are on the top of the unit, which is already over 24 inches tall.

The removable drain bucket is easy to take out and dump, but it can be finicky to install the continuous drainage pipe.

ProsCons
Will turn on automatically after a power outageDoes not include a drain hose, but one can be attached
Can pump out water up to 12 vertical feetTends to warm the room that it is in
Quiet while operationalWarranty only for one year
Automatic shut off
Works quickly

Our Verdict

For the price point, the TOSOT 4,500 sq. foot dehumidifier is a surefire winner.

It can quickly drop the humidity in your home within only a few hours and will do so at a quiet whisper. This machine isn’t as ‘set it and forget it’ as some of the pricier machines on our list, so you likely wouldn’t want to be running it all continuously throughout the year.

Best Humidifier for Small Spaces

Ivation 13-Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier

Ivation 13-Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier
Designed with cold spaces in mind

The Ivation 13-Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier might be small, coming in at just under twenty inches in height, but it gets the job done quickly and effectively. This machine is incredibly convenient if you need it to be used in a poorly insulated room or RV as the desiccant rotor still works efficiently down to 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Easy to move at only 15.45 pounds

It is very portable at just over sixteen pounds and comes with a built-in handle. If you are looking for a laundry room dehumidifier, then this would also be our top choice as the output fan is adjustable and can be tilted for extra drying power. There’s no need to buy additional air filters as the filters are washable with either a vacuum or soap and water.

ProsCons
QuietSmall water capacity
Compact & LightweightOutflow air can warm a room
Works at low temperatures
Smart sensors to maintain humidity

Our Verdict

The Ivation 13-Pint Small-Area Desiccant Dehumidifier wouldn’t be the best choice for a large crawl space.

However, if you are need a dehumidifier for an RV, laundry room, or smaller crawl space or basement, this machine is ideal.

It’s simple to use, easy to move, can work at low temperatures, and automatically turns off when filled to capacity.

Best Heavy Duty Dehumidifier

ALORAIR Basement/Crawlspace Dehumidifier

ALORAIR Basement/Crawlspace Dehumidifier
Specifically designed for crawlspaces and basements

What are you looking for in a crawl space dehumidifier?

Of course, you want it to take down the humidity effortlessly. The Sentinel HDi90 Dehumidifier can take out up to 90 pints of moisture per day!  It is also incredibly quiet and can work in spaces up to 2600 sq. feet.

 

Compact design can fit just about anywhere

It comes with a five-meter drain pipe. Once installed, you can pretty much forget about it, as the machine will automatically turn on depending on your preset humidity levels.

There’s no need to worry about a power cut, since the Sentinel HD090 Dehumidifier will automatically turn back on to your previous settings.

ProsCons
Easy to installPricy investment
Remote monitoring function (remote sold seperate)
5-year warranty
Can work at low temperatures
Ducting options

Our Verdict

If you have a large crawlspace or basement great room that needs to have the humidity kept in check, then you’ll never regret buying the Sentinel HDi90 Dehumidifier.

It’s a trusted brand name with a robust warranty. Once installed, you’ll need to clean the coils about once annually and check the filter every quarter, but that’s about it. It’s a pricy machine, but it gets the job done with minimal interference.

Best All-Round Crawlspace Dehumidifier

Waykar 40 Pint Dehumidifier

Waykar 40 Pint Dehumidifier
Can remove up to 40 pints of moisture daily

Are you looking for a dehumidifier that will work in your crawl space but could work equally well in other rooms in your home?

If so, then the Waykar 40 Pint Dehumidifier will do the trick. Its sleek design doesn’t look industrial, so it will blend seamlessly with your décor. We especially love this machine’s portability with a built-in handle and wheels that can rotate a full 360 degrees.

It can take up to 40 pints of moisture out of the air per day, but with a .66-gallon water tank, you’ll likely either need to empty the unit twice a day or run a hose for continuous drainage.

ProsCons
Easy to move and lightweightLouder than you might like
Sleek design
Manual or continuous drainage
Washable air filter
Very easy to use

Our Verdict

If you want a dehumidifier specifically for your crawl space or for a large area, we recommend getting another on our list.

However, if you want a highly portable dehumidifier that is simple and effective, then this machine will do the trick. It will get the humidity in your house down wherever you place it. We wouldn’t mind having it in the living room or the basement.

Best Commercial Dehumidifier

Aprilaire 1850 Pro Dehumidifier

Removes up to 95 pints of moisture per day

Do you already know that you need a dehumidifier for your home and are tired of cheaper units that tend to break after a year or two?

If you are willing to splurge, then you won’t regret purchasing the Aprilaire 1850 Pro Dehumidifier. It can work for your crawl space, basement, or it can be ducted to your HVAC system to do your whole home up to 5200 sq. feet.

Small and mighty, you can set this up just about anywhere

At only 14.5 inches tall, you can fit this unit in pretty much anywhere, and the leveling feet ensure that it lays flat wherever you need it.

This dehumidifier can work almost entirely independently as once set; it will automatically control the humidity levels depending on your settings.

ProsCons
A trusted brand in dehumidifiersIt is undoubtedly pricier than others on our list
Can handle up to 95 pints of moisture per dayHeavy - may need two people to move
Constantly measures the humidity and works accordingly
Quiet operation
5-year warranty, but check the fine print

Our Verdict

Forking out this kind of money on a dehumidifier might not be for everyone, but if you know you need a dehumidifier, then there isn’t a better brand to splurge on than Aprilaire. It’s a well-known brand that stands by its 5-year warranty.

Though it is relatively easy to install, getting it professionally ducted to your HVAC means that the warranty will remain valid, and the machine can decrease the humidity of your whole home. Once installed, you just need to change the filters. This is certainly a sound investment into your own comfort and the protection of your home.

Crawl Space Dehumidifiers: Buyer's Guide

Buying a dehumidifier for a crawl space means that you should be on the lookout for different features than if you were purchasing one for your home’s general living area. Crawl space dehumidifiers can be a pricy investment, so you want to ensure you buy the right product for your needs. Consider some of the following:

 

Budget – Everything always comes down to price. However, keep in mind that affordability might not be based on price alone since many of the higher-priced dehumidifiers are more robust and come from trusted brand names with extensive warranties. It’s not worth scrimping on cost if the structural integrity of your home or your family’s health might be at risk.

 

Capacity – Generally measured in pints, the capacity of a dehumidifier will tell you how much water it can remove from the air per day. A small-capacity would be 25-35 pints per day, whereas a large capacity dehumidifier can remove well over 60 pints per day.

 

Size – Crawlspace dehumidifiers are designed to work in cramped spaces, but you still want to ensure that the unit you buy will fit into the necessary space in your home. First, it is critical to know where you intend to put your crawl space dehumidifier and where it will be drained before making your purchase choice.

 

Noise – Again, think about where you will place your crawl space dehumidifier and try to have it away from bedrooms or living rooms.

Some machines are quieter than others, but they will still go on and off automatically depending on the humidity level, and you don’t want this to be an annoyance.

 

Installation – Some dehumidifiers are very easy to set up and install. However, first, check the warranty as you might need the unit professionally installed to keep your warranty valid. Moreover, if you intend to duct in the dehumidifier to your HVAC, then it might be best to call in the professionals.

 

Drainage – Think about how you are going to remove the water that the dehumidifier collects. Many units have a drip tray or a hose that can be drained into a sump, drain, or sink. Knowing where you intend to put your dehumidifier based on drainage might contribute to your choice of machine.

 

Humidistat – You can customize your dehumidifier’s performance so that the machine will automatically shut off when a humidity target is reached.

 

Air purification – Some dehumidifiers include an air purification system, which helps to clean the air in your crawl space before it has a chance to rise into the rest of your home. You will need to change the filters every so often, but this is well worth the health benefits.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I put a regular dehumidifier in my crawl space?

We know that crawl space dehumidifiers are more expensive than many others on the market. It is technically possible to put a ‘regular’ dehumidifier in your crawl space, but the effectiveness will depend on a few factors.

 

First of all, keep in mind that a crawl space dehumidifier is designed and built to be compact and run pretty much all on its own, with minimal interference. So the real questions should be: how often do you want to go into your crawl space?  How effective do you need your dehumidifier to be? 

 

If you have a large crawl space that is easy to access, then a regular dehumidifier might suit you just fine. However, if you don’t think you want to be checking on your dehumidifier daily, then spend the money on a dehumidifier specially meant for a crawl space.

What humidity levels should my crawl space be?

The ideal humidity level for a crawl space would be set at 55%, although a range of 30-60% is acceptable. Many of the dehumidifiers on our list have an in-built humidity monitor or hygrometer. If you are looking to check the relative humidity in various places in your home, consider initially purchasing a separate hygrometer this one that is super easy to use and inexpensive.

Do I need to clean the mold or can I just dry it out?

Yes – you certainly should clean any areas that you find mold growing in your home. Sadly, books and the like might need to be thrown away. However, walls, ceilings, and furniture can often be saved if you keep washing the area with warm water and soap a few times.

 

Drying out the mold with a dehumidifier will help eliminate mold growth, but it won’t’ remove it. In fact, after the mold dries, it may release even more mold spores, which will scatter through your home and contaminate your dehumidifier. As such, it is essential only to use a dehumidifier if you intend to clean as well.

Will mold die if it dries out?

Mold is all around us and is continuously in the air, whether inside or outside your home. Mold spores are float in the air and are incredibly small. In order to control the spread of build-up and spread of mold in your home, it is necessary to maintain the indoor moisture or humidity level.

 

Depending on the type of mold, it can grow on wood, carpet, fabric, paper, and food. Mold can be various colors, including yellow, pink, orange, red, black, or green, with the color affected by the type of mold, the moisture level, and what it is digesting (yuck!). Regardless of how much you clean, it is near impossible to remove all mold spores from your home, so what can be done to stop embarrassing mold in its tracks?

 

Without moisture, mold will die, but the mold spore will not. Mold spores just become inactive without a source of moisture to keep them growing. They are crafty little things and can only be kept in check by continually ensuring your home is free of water leaks, limiting condensation, and maintaining a 30-60% humidity level in your home.

 

This is where appliances such as dehumidifiers and air conditioners can make a real difference to your home’s health and the people who live in it. While these don’t actually kill mold or mold spores, they will reduce humidity, which will make your home a less hospitable environment for the mold to grow.

Conclusion

The air in your crawl space will rise and be carried throughout your home. This means that any humidity, mold, and other allergens will rise as well. The humidity in your crawl space must be maintained at a safe level to protect your family’s health and save on potentially expensive repair bills due to rot, mold, or mildew. The dehumidifiers on our list are all specifically designed to be put into crawl spaces and run with minimal interference.