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The first winter after my boyfriend and I moved into our house (we rent it off my mum) we noticed a huge amount of condensation on our bedroom windows formed over night - this wouldn't be too much of an issue as windows are of course wipe clean, however the condensation spread to the painted ceiling where mould soon started to grow. It was too cold to open windows at night and we needed to keep the bedroom door shut as we live with a housemate, so I plugged in an old dehumidifier I had from my old house (had a built in wardrobe where both walls it was against were outside walls so there was alot of condensation in the wardrobe and we got a small dehumidifier to keep it dry). Unfortunately for the size of the room and the amount of condensation that was forming, the little dehumidifier just wasn't strong enough - I was getting fed off scrubbing mould off the ceiling and mum was worried about the long term effects on the house so she decided to purchase for us what I term as an 'industrial' sized dehumidifer. This is the one she bought...
I believe my mum purchased this directly from the ebac website and it was around £200 about a year and a half ago. I have looked online and found it is currently available from a number of different websites at a cost of about £180-£190.
Ebac do consider their 2000 series dehumidifiers to be 'small' sized, but I beg to differ as I have had a dehumidifier before that was about 1/4 of the size. However for reference it is roughly: 21" tall, 9" deep and 12" wide. The 2650e is made out of a moulded white plastic, with a 'grated. area in the middle, which I presume is where it draws in the water from the air. The lower half opens forward to reveal the large water container (3.5l capacity) - this is black plastic and has a handle at the top - you simply pull this forward and it pops out of position allowing you to lift it free from the unit and empty the water. Near the top is a small LCD screen next to some buttons which allow you to make setting adjustments.
I can't find anywhere that says how much electricity this unit uses, but I would imagine it is quite alot when left constantly one. The plus side to this though is that the is an economical/intelligent mode setting where the dehumidifier senses how much moisture is in the air and turns itself off when it's not needed (although of course as it is effectively on standby mode it will still be using some electricity). This is the mode I always leave it on (over winter, we don't need it in the summer) as I find it very effective.
Apparently this dehumidifier is capable of extracting water from up to a 4 bedroom home, and to be effective across the house you are supposed to place it in a central location, with doors open and windows closed. As our problem with condensation seems restricted to our bedroom and we need to keep the door closed, we have had to place it in the corner of the room - this is not ideal, because as you would expect it does make some noise. Again I cannot find any information on the decibel level, but the best way for me to explain it is that if you have the tv on you are unlikely to hear this, but if it starts up when the room is quiet it will seem really loud (emits a humming noise) - this hasn't stopped me sleeping though and you soon forget about it all together.
The dehumidifer has a carbon filter in it, which comes provided and you can purchase spares - I've used this for 2 winters running now and haven't had to replace it yet, although I have no idea how long it's actually supposed to last!
In my experience this is incredibly effective at extracting water from the air and preventing condensation - since we've used this we have had no more mould, and the windows/ceiling have remained bone dry. The amount of water it collects is simply amazing - I usually have to empty the 3.5l container every couple of days (the LCD will glow red when it needs emptying) although it is supposedly capable of emptying 18l a day if necessary.
The noise is the only slight issue I have with the dehumidifier, but as I said earlier - you only really notice it when it is otherwise quiet and the unit first activates. In the great scheme of things, it isn't something worth worrying about.
I would certainly recommend this product if you are experiencing problems with condensation in your house - it will work wonders and although it is an expensive item it will certainly save you money in the long term (I only wish we had it sooner as I need to repaint the ceiling where the mould grew!)
Right now ebac are offering a free 5 year extended warranty (standard warranty is 2 years) on the 2650e, priced at £189.99 on their website.
Short name: Ebac 2650e