High 60%+ relative humidity can lead to all kinds of problems in any industry. Damp warehouses, offices, server rooms, and basements can cause stock damage in the short run, and integral damage in the long run (mold growth). The most effective to reduce air moisture from large square footage areas are powerful commercial dehumidifiers.
Commercial dehumidifiers are HVAC devices that use condenser and evaporator, powered by a compressor, in order to condense and remove indoor air humidity. The most powerful dehumidifiers can capture and pump out more than 20 gallons of water per day.
When looking for a new commercial dehumidifier, you have to check several specifications in order to guarantee you’ll get the best commercial dehumidifier for your situation. These specs include:
- Maximum capacity, measured at 90% humidity or at saturation.
- AHAM capacity, measured at 60-80% humidity by Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers.
- Consider the square footage. For a 2,000 sq ft area, you’ll need a stronger industrial dehumidifier than for 1,000 sq ft.
- Power, measured in Watts. Residential dehumidifiers are powered by 500W, commercial ones can exceed 1000W. We’ll also convert these kilowatt-hours (kWh) into dollars ($).
- Energy efficiency, based on the coefficient of efficiency (COP).
- Airflow, measured in CFM.
- Noise levels, measured in decibels.
It might sound a lot but figuring out these specifications can help you tremendously to make an educated choice between the best commercial dehumidifier brands such as COLZER and AlorAir.
In order to help everybody who’s in the market for a commercial dehumidifier to get up to speed with the HVAC specification, we’ve prepared a short and to the point specs-based buying guide.
After the guide, you’ll find a list of the best commercial dehumidifiers, based on these specs. We strongly recommend going through the buying guide first, and picking the commercial dehumidifier for your specific need later on.
Commercial Dehumidifier Buying Guide (Short And To The Point)
The guide is based on the commercial dehumidifier specifications. It’s comprised of 3 distinct topics, consisting of:
- Capacity and square footage considerations. We’ll go through maximum and AHAM capacity, and see what all those 200PPD and 90PPD AHAM mean. In turn, we can estimate area coverage of commercial dehumidifiers with a given capacity.
- Electricity and power. We’ll look at home many Watts, Amps, and Volts power these HVAC devices. More importantly, we’ll see how energy-efficiency comes into play when reducing the monthly electricity bill, based on performance (moisture extraction).
- Secondary specifications. Obviously, the best commercial dehumidifiers should have the highest airflow and the lowest noise levels. However, the general rule is ‘the higher the airflow, the higher the noise levels’. We’ll look into what is a good airflow-noise levels compromise.
Let’s start with the key specifications – capacity:
Capacity (Max At 90%, AHAM At 60-80%, Square Footage)
In short, the capacity tells us how much water per day a commercial dehumidifier can extract from indoor air. This is the most important number on the specification sheet.
If you check the label on the commercial dehumidifier, the capacity specs will read something like ‘198PPD (Saturation), 90 Pints (AHAM)‘. So, which is the capacity, the 198 pints or 90 pints?
It’s both. The capacity of a commercial dehumidifier depends on the initial relative humidity. That’s why we have two difference capacity metrics:
- Maximum capacity: At very high humidity – something like 90% or at saturation levels (100%) – more water can be extracted from the air with greater ease. That’s because a dehumidifier works best at large relative humidity difference between the initial state – 90% in this situation – and final state (40%, or normal humidity). That’s a 50% drop.
- AHAM Capacity: Measured at 60-80% relative humidity levels, the AHAM capacity is the more relevant one. A 90-pint commercial dehumidifier, for example, will have the AHAM capacity of 90 pints, while maximum capacity can be 150 pints. The humidity drop here is about 30%.
You’ll see that some commercial dehumidifiers have a maximum capacity that is drastically bigger than their AHAM capacity. That means they are especially useful for a very damp industrial area; those with 80%+ relative humidity. Example: COLZER 232 has AHAM capacity of 110 pints but it’s max. capacity is incredible 232 pints.
In other dehumidifiers, you won’t see much difference between AHAM and max. capacity. These are the best commercial dehumidifier for areas with elevated moisture levels (60-80% relative humidity).
When figuring out how big a commercial dehumidifier we need, the question is usually formed in the following way ‘We have a 2,000 sq ft area we need to dehumidifier, how big a dehumidifier we need?’.
We have a whole article about how to size your dehumidifier here. Here is a simplified commercial dehumidifier capacity table that gives you an idea of how big a commercial or industrial dehumidifier you need:
|Coverage Area||Relative Humidity||Commercial Dehumidifier Capacity|
|1000 sq ft||60-70% humidity||65 Pint|
|1000 sq ft||70-80% humidity||75 Pints|
|1000 sq ft||80-100% humidity||80 Pints|
|1500 sq ft||60-70% humidity||100 Pints|
|1500 sq ft||70-80% humidity||110 Pints|
|1500 sq ft||80-100% humidity||120 Pints|
|2000 sq ft||60-70% humidity||130 Pints|
|2000 sq ft||70-80% humidity||150 Pints|
|2000 sq ft||80-100% humidity||160 Pints|
Even the most powerful commercial dehumidifiers have an AHAM capacity of 110 pints. If you need a higher capacity for several 1,000 sq ft of coverage area, you need to invest in more than 1 dehumidifier. Some brands such as XPOWER XD-125 offer a pack of 4 and a pack of 8 commercial dehumidifiers for this very reason.
Power And Energy Efficiency (About $0.25 Per Gallon Of Extracted Air)
All that capacity is a function of power input. Commercial dehumidifiers draw up to 1,500W, they run on 120 V and 5-15 Amps. In the power order of electric machines, they are one of the HVAC devices that draws the least amount of energy.
For example, running a 500W dehumidifier for 1 hour will cost 7 cents. Obviously, if you have a 1,000W commercial dehumidifier, running it for 1 hour will cost 14 cents. It’s not a big expense.
However, if you’re running several 1,000W commercial dehumidifiers 24/7, the electricity cost can be significantly higher. In this case, and in all others, it does make sense to get the most energy-efficient commercial dehumidifier. The one that will give extract the biggest amount of moisture out of the air for the lower price.
The energy factor of commercial units falls between 1 L/kWh and 3 L/kWh. The unit for energy-efficiency of commercial dehumidifiers is L/kWh or liters per kilowatt-hour. A liter is a metric unit for volume. 1 liter equates to 2.11 pints of liquid. 1 gallon of water, for example, equals to 3.79 liters. kWh is a kilowatt-hour, a unit for the amount of electricity used.
In short, a 2 L/kWh energy-efficient dehumidifier has to use about $0.25 of electricity for every gallon of water extracted from the air (given US average kWh price of $0.1319). A commercial dehumidifier with higher energy efficiency with use less than that for per gallon, an inefficient one will use more than that.
If you want to make a smart long-term choice, go for a commercial dehumidifier with an energy factor of at least 2 L/kWh.
Secondary Specs (High Airflow, Low Noise Levels)
A perfect commercial dehumidifier has a high airflow and low noise rates.
Here is how these perfect secondary metrics should look like:
- Highest airflow above 250 CFM (cubic feet per minute).
- Noise levels below 55 decibels.
It’s difficult to get both because, as a rule, increasing the airflow will increase the decibel levels. The best commercial dehumidifiers, however, can achieve a good airflow-noise ratio.
Based on these specifications, we have created a list of the top commercial dehumidifier on the market in 2020:
List Of The Best Commercial Dehumidifiers In 2020
#1 Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro (Best Commercial Dehumidifier Of 2020)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||250 Pints (31.25 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||130 Pints (16.25 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.9 L/kWh, 996W (115V, 8.3 Amps)|
|Noise levels:||50 dB|
|Coverage Area:||2,500 to 7,200 sq ft|
|Air Flow:||310 CFM|
Out of all commercial dehumidifiers, the Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro stands out as the absolute best unit to get. Besides all the coveted secondary specs, the most important Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro specs are the ones that matter the most:
- Highest AHAM capacity (130 Pints). The Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro is capable to remove more than 16 gallons of water per day at 60-80% relative humidity. No other industrial dehumidifier comes even close.
- The highest energy-efficiency factor of 2.9 L/kWh. This device is designed to use electricity wisely. In fact, it’s about 80% more energy-efficient than most common large-area dehumidifiers.
With the incredible 130 Pint AHAM capacity, the Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro is capable to remove excess moisture in areas covering from 2,500 to 7,200 sq ft. You can easily use it to reduce humidity in a warehouse or you can also use it as a whole-house dehumidifier.
It performs exceptionally well at high humidity – 90% or saturation levels. Its maximum capacity is 250 Pints – more than any other commercially available dehumidifier; in ideal conditions, it can pump out more than 30 gallons per day.
Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro is powered by 996 W; that’s 115V with 8.3 Amps. It’s built from corrosion-resistant aluminum coils and manufactured in the USA.
What is more, it has a powerful 310 CFM airflow yet it’s incredibly quiet. The maximum noise level reaches only 50 dB; some less powerful commercial dehumidifiers have can maximum noise levels above 55 dB.
Every specification you look at speaks about Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro being the best commercial dehumidifier. The one drawback of every exception device is the higher price; and the Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro is no exception. It does have a premium cost.
Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro is the most energy-efficient commercial dehumidifier with the highest capacity. What is more, it’s rather quiet, capable of removing efficiently at any relative humidity level and, above all else, build to last.
#2 AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 Dehumidifier For Commercial Use (With Built-In Pump)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||198 Pints (24.75 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||90 Pints (11.25 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.88L/kWh, 640W (115V, 5.56 Amps)|
|Noise levels:||58 dB|
|Coverage Area:||Up to 2,600 sq ft|
|Air Flow:||210 CFM|
AlorAir is one of the top brands when it comes to commercial dehumidifiers. Their best unit – according to specifications – is the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90. It’s a mid-sized unit with 90 Pint AHAM capacity that has two distinct advantages:
- High energy-efficiency (2.88 L/kWh). Energy-efficiency of commercial dehumidifiers ranges from 1.5 L/kWh to 2.9 L/kWh. 2.88 L/kWh is as extremely close to the pinnacle of energy-efficiency.
- Build-in pump (convenience). It cannot be understated how a commercial dehumidifier with a built-in pump can ease your life. The build-in pump is the key ‘set it and forget it’ feature.
At tighten humidity levels of 60% to 80%, the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 will extract about 90 Pints (or 11.25 gallons) of water per day. Using the built-in pump, you won’t need to install gravity drainage or mess around with a bucket. The built-in pump automatically pumps the accumulated water outside.
At extremely high humidity (ideal conditions for the function of any commercial dehumidifier) the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 has the capability to extract 198 Pints or almost 25 gallons of water from indoor air per day.
You can see that the wattage needed to power AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 commercial dehumidifier is low – only 640 W. Coupled with the high energy-efficiency, that means this unit will pump out a large volume of water at a very economical electricity expenditure.
Being a mid-sized commercial dehumidifier, the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 can cover up to 2,600 sq ft. It doesn’t have a superb airflow, however, with 210 CFM maximum airflow. The noise level for that airflow is 58 dB – quite high for a 210 CFM airflow dehumidifier.
An additional feature that not many dehumidifiers include is the HGV system. HGV defrosting stands for Hot Gas Valve; it’s a defrosting system that enables the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 to work at extremely low temperatures (36°F). This makes it perfect for cold and damp basements.
High-end specifications with a standard price for a commercial dehumidifier make the AlorAir Sentinel HDi90 one of the best choices. Especially the high energy-efficiency will be responsible for saving up electricity while running.
#3 BlueDri BD-BD-130-BL Industrial Dehumidifier (Highest Airflow Of 410 CFM, Packs Of 4 Or 8)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||225 Pints (28.125 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||105 Pints (13.125 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.41 L/kWh, 860W (115V, 7.5 Amps)|
|Air Flow:||410 CFM|
The BlueDri BD-BD-130-BL is a portable commercial dehumidifier with the maximum capacity of 225 Pints or more than 28 gallons per day.
If you look at its specifications, you should immediately notice it’s enormous airflow. In fact, with the 410 CFM airflow, BlueDri BD-BD-130-BL surpasses all other industrial dehumidifiers. But at what cost? As a general rule, higher airflow comes with higher noise levels. The decibel levels are not included in the specs; however, it’s safe to say this is one loud dehumidifier designed for commercial purposes.
It has an AHAM capacity of 105 Pint; essentially, in normal above-average humidity environment, the BlueDri BD-BD-130-BL will pump out more than 13 gallons of water per day. That makes it one of the most capable industrial dehumidifiers you can buy.
For such a superior airflow, the BlueDri BD-BD-130-BL has a solid energy-efficiency factor of 2.41 L/kWh. It’s surprising to see such a high energy-efficiency for a dehumidifier that is designed specifically for industrial purposes.
The consequence of being an industrial-specific dehumidifier are also the ‘Pack of 4‘ and ‘Pack of 8‘ packages. For a big warehouse, you will probably need several industrial dehumidifiers. You can buy a pack of 4 or 8 BlueDri dehumidifiers in order to create a truly powerful accumulated airflow and total capability to extract more than 100 gallons of water per day.
#4 AlorAir Storm EGR Extreme 190PPD (Most Robust Commercial Dehumidifier)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||190 Pints (23.75 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||85 Pints (10.625 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.88 L/kWh, 640W (115V, 5.5 Amps)|
|Noise levels:||55 dB|
|Coverage Area:||Up to 2,300 sq ft|
|Air Flow:||210 CFM|
The AlorAir Storm EGR Extreme is the toughest commercial dehumidifier you can get. For one, it’s waterproof with a rubber band sealing 100% of the circuit board. It can operate in an extremely hostile environment; as low as 33°F (it comes with the HVG defrosting system which enables it to perform at such low temperatures).
The look of the unit itself is essentially hardcore industrial. If you can lift 78 lbs, you can even move it around yourself. Now, let’s look at the specs:
The AHAM capacity is 85 Pints with a maximum capacity of 190 PPD. Having such a high ration of maximum-to-AHAM capacity means that it will operate especially well in a very wet environment (even up to 100% relative humidity).
What is a positive surprise (something not expected from such a robust device) is the 2.88 L/kWh energy factor. That makes the AlorAir Storm EGR Extreme one of the most energy-efficient commercial dehumidifiers.
With 55 dB noise levels, this is one of the louder units. It has an airflow of 210 CFM which is about average for 85 Pint dehumidifier.
This is one tough industrial dehumidifier. The AlorAir Storm EGR Extreme can operate in the most extreme environments, even underwater, and it comes at a very affordable below $1,000 price.
#5 MOUNTO 135 PPD (Most Portable Commercial Dehumidifier)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||135 Pints (16.875 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||95 Pints (11.875 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.85 L/kWh, 640W (115V, 5.56 Amps)|
Instead of any specific specification, the first thing everybody notices in the MOUNTO commercial dehumidifier are the big wheels. MOUNTO is designed to be as movable as possible; despite 95 Pint AHAM capacity, it only weighs 81 lbs and can be easily moved from space to space.
The MOUNTO has a built-in pump that facilitates the drainage process. That’s exactly what you need if you’re looking for the most portable commercial dehumidifier.
This unit was designed to deal with 60-80% relative humidity. It’s AHAM capacity in this humidity range is 95 Pints (or 11.875 gallons) per day. It will do the job very well. However, at higher humidity, it only has a maximum capacity of 135 PPD. If you are looking to fight off an extremely damp space, the MOUNTO is not the best unit to do that.
The high 2.85 L/kWh energy-efficient is most welcome. This commercial dehumidifier needs only 640 W to run; with 220 V and 5.56 Amps powering it. The lower-than-standard price tag is also a welcoming sight.
#6 AlorAir HD55 Compact Small Commercial Dehumidifier (Best Cheap Unit Below $900)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||120 Pints (15 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||55 Pints (6.875 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||2.4 L/kWh, 410W (115V, 3.6 Amps)|
|Noise levels:||45 dB|
|Coverage Area:||Up to 1,300 sq ft|
|Air Flow:||130 CFM|
AlorAir HD55 is a small and compact commercial dehumidifier. With a 55 Pint AHAM capacity, it is the smallest dehumidifier on the list. Despite its size, it capable to extract up to 15 gallons of water from the air in ideal conditioner.
For smaller commercial purposes, 55 Pint AHAM AlorAir HD55 dehumidifier might just be enough. Weighing only 59 lbs also means you will be able to move it in place with ease. It draws only 410 W which means you probably won’t need a separate generator to run it.
With the 45 dB maximal noise levels, the AlorAir HD55 is actually the quietest commercial dehumidifier you can find. Obviously, that’s a consequence of having only 130 CFM airflow.
It’s surprisingly energy efficient for such a compact device. 1 kWh of electricity will extract, on average, 2.4 liters of water moisture from indoor air. That’s not the most energy-efficient device but its miles ahead of the 1.7 L/kWh commercial dehumidifier.
The best part of the AlorAir HD55 the price. It’s one of the few commercial dehumidifiers under $1,000. In fact, it costs less than $900, and you get a whole lot of great specs and value.
#7 COLZER 232 PPD (Most Powerful Commercial Dehumifier Powered By 1,400 W)
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||232 Pints (29 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||110 Pints (13.75 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||1.55 L/kWh, 1400W (115V, 12 Amps)|
|Coverage Area:||Up to 8,000 sq ft|
|Air Flow:||353 CFM|
The COLZER 232 is big. It weighs 106 lbs and has a 110 Pint AHAM capacity. With the maximum capacity of 232 PPD (or 29 GPD), it’s only overshadowed by the #1 Aprilaire 1870 XL Pro. However, when you look at the electrical power, the COLZER 232 is the most powerful commercial dehumidifier.
It is powered by 1400 W; you’ll rarely see a dehumidifier, even one for industrial or commercial use, to have more than 1000 W wattage. The COLZER 232 draws 12 Amps when running.
The powerful unit should equal to a high-capacity unit, right? Well, sadly, this is not the case with this unit. In essence, it doesn’t use all those 1400 W of energy wisely. With a low energy efficiency of 1.55 L/kWh, it can deliver 110 PPD AHAM capacity. With is quite big, mind you, but not as big as it could have been if the energy-efficiency was better.
Other specs are big as well; the COLZER 232 can cover an area up to 8,000 sq ft because it has a big 353 CFM airflow.
All in all, COLZER 232 might not be as energy-efficient as other dehumidifiers, but it has a very low price for such a big unit. For a price of a bit more than $1,000, you’re getting a 110 AHAM capacity commercial dehumidifier.
#8 XPOWER XD-125 Industrial Dehumidifier
|Maximum Capacity At 90% rel. humidity:||125 Pints (15 Gallons per day)|
|AHAM Capacity At 60-80% rel. humidity:||76 Pints (9.5 Gallons per day)|
|Energy Factor (COP), Power:||1.784 L/kWh, 840W (115V, 7.3 Amps)|
|Air Flow:||235 CFM|
XPOWER XD-125 is another version of industrial-specific dehumidifier that you can buy in a pack of 4 or even 8. It has a modest AHAM capacity of 76 PPD and it is powered by 840 W.
Both these specs mean that the XPOWER XD-125 is not the most energy-efficient industrial dehumidifier. While most of the best units have an energy factor of about 2 L/kWh, the XPOWER XD-125 has an energy factor of only 1.784 L/kWh.
What is more, the 235 CFM airflow is not something to be proud of. For industrial use, it’s better to have a high airflow despite the higher noise levels. In construction or in a warehouse the decibel levels are not as important as performance.
XPOWER XD-125 is also one of the pricier industrial dehumidifiers. At a price tag of about $1,300, this is quite an expensive unit, especially given the subpar specifications.
Do You Have A Question Or Input About Commercial Dehumidifiers?
If you’re unsure about any specific section or dehumidifier, you can use the comments to pose a question. We’ll try our best to give you the advice you need.