Should a dehumidifier run constantly?

I’ve always been a bit of a homebody, but I recently discovered that the air in my house was not as inviting as I had thought. After researching, I realized the humidity levels were too high and needed a dehumidifier.

Dehumidifiers should not be run constantly to avoid excessive dryness, which may lead to health and property issues. Instead, they should be used as needed for optimal results.

Should a dehumidifier run constantly

I quickly learned that the key to solving my problem was balancing keeping my house dry and preventing it from becoming too dry.

Should A Dehumidifier Run Constantly?

A dehumidifier is an invaluable tool for managing humidity levels in a home, as it prevents mould and mildew from forming due to excessive moisture. Although running a dehumidifier constantly may seem like the most efficient solution to controlling your home’s air quality, it can be more harmful than beneficial.

Dehydrated air can cause irritation of the skin and eyes, infection of respiratory organs, and even cracks in wooden furniture. To avoid this detrimental outcome, you should use a hygrometer (or humidistat) to measure the relative humidity level in your home before running your dehumidifier.

This will ensure that the device does not run beyond what is necessary to achieve optimal humidity levels – typically between 40% to 60%.

Although running a dehumidifier constantly may be tempting, it is essential to keep an eye on the humidity level in your home and adjust as needed. Doing so will save money on energy bills while protecting furniture and occupants from dry air conditions.

What is Relative Humidity (RH)?

Relative humidity (RH) measures how much water vapour is in the air relative to the amount of moisture that can be held at a specific temperature. It is typically expressed as a percentage and essential to maintaining healthy air quality in our homes. The ideal RH is between 30-50%, with higher levels leading to an increased risk of dust mites, mould and mildew growth.

Relative Humidity and Temperature

Why You Shouldn’t Run Your Dehumidifier Constantly:

Running a dehumidifier constantly is the best way to keep your home comfortable and healthy, but it’s not recommended. Doing so can cause various issues, such as

  • Safe humidity level
  • Cost and electricity consumption
  • Constant vigilance of the machine
  • More frequent replacement
  • Wear and tear

1. Safe humidifier level:

Keeping a dehumidifier running all day, every day, can result in humidity levels that are too low. This can create an uncomfortable environment for people and pets, as well as putting your home at risk of damage from dry air

  • Nosebleeds
  • Dry skin or throat
  • Itchy eyes

All these issues are caused by humidity levels that are too low.

Safe humidifier level

2. Cost and electricity consumption:

Moreover, running a dehumidifier constantly can also be expensive in terms of electricity costs. Depending on the size of your machine, it can use up to 200W per hour. This will lead to an increase in your electric bill and carbon footprint.

Cost and electricity consumption

3. Constant vigilance:

Another issue with constantly running a dehumidifier is that you must continuously monitor it. Dehumidifiers come with bucket-like reservoirs that fill up over time as they pull moisture from the air. If you don’t check the reservoir often enough, water could overflow and cause damage to your home or create mould.

Constant vigilance

4. More frequent replacement:

Finally, running a dehumidifier constantly can lead to more frequent breakdowns or replacements. This is because the constant strain on the machine will cause it to wear out faster than if you only use it occasionally.

5. Wear and tear: 

Continuous operation stresses the dehumidifier’s components, leading to faster wear and tear. This can shorten the lifespan of the appliance and require more frequent maintenance or replacements.

Wear and tear of dehumidifier due to continus running

For all these reasons, it’s best to run your dehumidifier sparingly and use it only when necessary. Checking your humidity levels regularly and investing in a draining hose attachment will help you balance out its efficiency while keeping your home comfortable and healthy.

Is it Safe to Leave a Dehumidifier on All Night?

Many wonder if leaving a dehumidifier on all night is safe. The answer is yes, but there are certain things to consider first.

Dehumidifier on All Night
  • Tank capacity
  • Auto On/Off Feature
  • Noise
  • Temperature regulation

1. Tank capacity:

When considering whether to leave your dehumidifier on all night, tank capacity is essential. The larger the tank capacity, the longer you can run your dehumidifier without emptying it.

A large tank allows the device to continuously collect moisture and filter it out of your home for hours. This ensures that your space stays dry and comfortable without disruption due to a full tank.

How to empty a Dehumidifier

Tank capacity is also essential if you have large areas or multiple rooms needing dehumidifying. A larger tank and increased power output will allow a dehumidifier to run continuously for extended periods, thereby keeping your home moisture-free.

2. Auto On/Off Feature:

The Auto On/Off feature is an essential component of a dehumidifier, as it helps to conserve energy while ensuring that your home’s humidity levels stay within the optimal range. This feature allows the device to start and stop operating according to programmed settings such as time and relative humidity.

With this automated functionality, you can rest assured that your dehumidifier will switch on whenever the air in your home becomes too humid and switch off when enough moisture has been removed.

By allowing for hands-free operation, this feature makes it convenient to leave a dehumidifier running all night without worrying about energy costs or having the device run continuously longer than necessary.

3. Temperature regulation:

Dehumidifiers can be a great way to help control the temperature in rooms in hot and humid climates. By reducing humidity, they can make minor adjustments to make the room more comfortable for sleeping. This is especially beneficial during times of high temperatures and humidity levels.

4. Noise level:

Noise level is an essential factor to consider when looking for a dehumidifier to leave on at night. Nobody wants to be woken up by the sound of their dehumidifier running all night, so it makes sense that you would want one with a noise level that won’t disturb your home’s peace.

Noise level of dehumidifier

The noise levels of dehumidifiers can range from barely audible whispers to loud rumblings, depending on the model and settings. Many modern models come equipped with low-noise technology, allowing them to work quietly without disrupting your sleep or other activities in the house.

These devices also often have adjustable fan speeds and delay timers, allowing you to control the noise level according to your needs. This way, you can set the fan speed and timer so that the dehumidifier runs at its quietest, allowing you to leave it on all night without worrying about loud noises keeping you awake.

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How Long Should a Dehumidifier Run Per Day?

It is generally best to run a dehumidifier for at least 12 hours daily. Of course, this may vary depending on certain factors such as the unit’s built-in features, size of the room, amount of dampness in the atmosphere, capacity of the machine and running costs.

If your room has an unusually high level of moisture, you should select a dehumidifier with an auto shut-off feature. This automatically switches the appliance off when the water tank is full or reaches the desired humidity level. Alternatively, some dehumidifiers have a continuous pump connected to a floor drain, which drains out excess moisture and saves you from emptying the reservoir regularly.

How Much Does It Cost to Run a Dehumidifier 24 Hours a Day?

How much does it cost to run a dehumidifier 24 hours a day? Most modern dehumidifiers have humidistats that regulate humidity levels and turn the unit off when they’re no longer needed.

To calculate your unit’s running cost, multiply the hourly energy consumption by the number of hours it operates. Generally, dehumidifiers cost between $25 and $350 a year to run.

Smaller, portable models are the most affordable, whereas bigger units that extract 70 pints of moisture daily are more expensive. At the same time, dehumidifiers typically last several years. Running one 24 hours a day can strain its compressor and increase your running costs. 

What If You Run The Dehumidifier Constantly?

Running your dehumidifier in continuous mode can harm the machine as certain parts are overworked, and you may incur extra energy costs. Running a dehumidifier for too long can cause the compressor to heat up and malfunction.

For these reasons, it’s best to have your dehumidifier running when necessary. The dehumidifier will turn off when its tank is full, so it’s essential to empty the tank regularly. Otherwise, your dehumidifier won’t be able to work effectively and efficiently at controlling humidity levels in your home.

All-in-all, constantly running your dehumidifier could be a better idea as it can cause problems and reduce lifespan.

When to Turn Your Dehumidifier Off:

Whether you use your dehumidifier regularly, seasonally, or as needed, it’s important to remember to turn it off occasionally.

Here are some tips to help you out:

  • Take a break for a few hours each day and allow the dehumidifier to shut down automatically.
  • Check any areas in the room that are flooded for signs of mould growth while your dehumidifier is off.
  • Clean any patches of mould you find, or get it professionally removed if need be.
  • Remember, dehumidifiers can only prevent mould from growing, not kill it off.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to ensure your dehumidifier is working efficiently and that the air in your home stays healthy and clean!

What To Do If Your Dehumidifier Doesn’t Stop Running

If your dehumidifier won’t shut off, here are a few steps you can take to try and resolve the issue:

  1. Check the dehumidifier’s bucket to ensure that it is properly attached and in place. If there is an issue with it being blocked or not connected correctly, this could be preventing it from shutting off.
  2. Look at the humidistat setting and make sure it is set correctly for the current conditions in your home or room.
  3. Ensure you are not running too many appliances on the same circuit, as this could prevent your dehumidifier from shutting off properly, especially if they’re heavy energy consumers such as hairdryers or microwaves.
  4. Check to see if the filter on the dehumidifier needs cleaning, as this could be causing it to run constantly.
  5. If all of these steps fail, you may need to contact a professional to examine your machine and determine what is causing the issue.

It could be something as simple as a faulty part or require more extensive repair work. 


Running a dehumidifier constantly can significantly benefit your home’s health and well-being. Not only will it reduce the humidity levels in your living space, but it can also drastically improve the air quality by removing harmful pollutants. The process is cost-effective and easy to maintain, making it an excellent choice for any household. Investing in a dehumidifier can help ensure your family enjoys clean, comfortable air for years to come.

Related F.A.Qs:

When should I turn off my dehumidifier?

It is recommended to turn off your dehumidifier when the humidity levels reach their optimal range. This varies based on the specific model but typically falls between 40-50% relative humidity (RH).

How often should I empty my dehumidifier?

Emptying and cleaning out your dehumidifier’s condensation bucket at least once a week is recommended. This will help ensure the unit runs efficiently and prevent mould or mildew growth in the unit. 

What is the most efficient way to run a dehumidifier?

The most efficient way to run a dehumidifier is to use a humidistat, or humidity gauge, to monitor the humidity levels in your home. As the humidity level rises, you can turn on your dehumidifier and set it to an appropriate level. You can also set a timer so that the dehumidifier runs during the most humid times, such as in the morning or evening.

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