The Perfect Dehumidifier for your Basement or Crawlspace
The incredibly damp, often cold, and sometimes unplumbed area in many unfinished basements and crawlspaces are some of the most important places to put a dehumidifier. Why, then, are these also the most difficult places to find a dehumidifier to suit? Don’t worry, I’ve got just the thing for you here – the Friedrich D70BPA – the successor of the successful D70BP.
Let’s get a couple things out of the way before we get into the thick of this review. I want to take a minute to talk to you about the capacity of this machine. 70 pints may sound like a bit much to many of you, especially if you have a crawlspace or a small basement. I would like to point out, however, that crawlspaces and unfinished basements are, by far, the most humid areas in many homes. Therefore, a 70-pint dehumidifier in a loft would be able to service a lot more square footage than a 70-pint dehumidifier in an overly damp basement. In order to keep up with the amount of moisture in a space like this, you want a strong, heavy-duty dehumidifier like this one.
External Drainage Option
Most dehumidifiers drain condensation into a tray and require you to come along and empty that water out every once in a while. Depending on the size of your room, the amount of moisture in your air, and the capacity of your dehumidifier, you could find yourself doing this anywhere between once a week and once or twice a day. Some other dehumidifiers allow you to drain directly out into your home or office plumbing system, but they must usually be hooked directly into that system and depend on gravity (which means that the dehumidifier needs to be placed higher than where you drain the water in).
This one is equipped with a high-power drain pump. That means that your water can be pumped up to 15 feet away to link into the plumbing system. This will allow you to place it in a convenient space, as opposed to a space close to a plumbing hookup. What’s even better is that you aren’t limited to draining this water into a hookup that is below it. This dehumidifier’s pump will allow you to pump the water horizontally or even vertically, if necessary. This is just one part of what makes it great for basements (especially unfinished basements).
Another important consideration for basement and crawlspace dehumidifiers is their ability to withstand the cold. This is especially true in unfinished basements and crawlspaces which are open to the surrounding environment. The Friedrich D70BP can operate in temperatures as low as 41 degrees Fahrenheit, and if necessary the auto-defrost function will automatically start its cycle to prevent the build up of frost on the evaporator coils.
If you aren’t sure how frost can form inside a dehumidifier, allow me to tell you that many of them work by chilling the air and, thus, drawing the moisture out of it. As this moisture forms on cool coils, it can sometimes frost up. This is especially true if your damp environment is already quite cold, like many basements and crawlspaces.
Many Other Notable Features
In addition to everything discussed above, you can set the humidity level yourself using the convenient LED display and buttons on the front of the unit. When your desirable level of humidity is reached, the humidistat built into this dehumidifier will turn off the fan. You can fine tune the humidity level between 30% and 90% in increments of 5 %.
You also get to choose between 2 fan speeds, and when it comes to displaying temperature, you can choose to switch between Celsius and Fahrenheit.
In case you decide to use the bucket (which I wouldn’t recommend – why buy a dehumidifier with a build-in pump if you don’t use the pump?), the auto shutoff function will automatically shut the machine down when the bucket is full. A light will illuminate to tell you that it’s time to empty the bucket.
There’s also an air filter which is removable and washable, and this will help stop airborne contaminants such as dust, allergens, mold spores and mildew. Don’t expect this to replace your air purifier, but it certainly helps.
Given all the functions listed above, the price for this dehumidifier is simply amazing. The auto-defrost feature, electronic controls, a timer, an accurate humidistat and most importantly a three-way drainage system with built-in pump – it’s all there. For the price here on Amazon, I really think that you can’t find a better dehumidifier for your basement.