Dehumidifiers 2018 Review & Ratings

Compare dehumidifiers in New Zealand with Canstar Blue. Panasonic, DeLonghi, Dimplex, Goldair and Mitsubishi Electric were compared on value for money, reliability, ease of use, functionality, quietness and overall satisfaction.

See our Ratings Methodology.

Most Satisfied Customers | Panasonic

Global brand Panasonic a winner with Kiwi consumers

Panasonic, dehumidifying New Zealand

This year Panasonic have been awarded the Canstar Blue Customer Satisfaction Award with an impressive five-star rating in every category.

Who doesn’t like being warm and dry?  In a world of conflicting opinions, I think we can all agree that whether it’s hot or cold, humidity usually makes things more uncomfortable.  Luckily for us, in the 1950’s someone invented the dehumidifier, a machine that extracts moisture from the air to reduce humidity. But, where most of us may think of humidity as a summer thing, it can also cause big problems in the winter too.  When it’s cold, often our first thought is to put the heater on, but heaters don’t help with humidity and damp and it’ll also cost you a lot more to heat a damp room than a dry one.

Worryingly, almost half of the people surveyed, told us they occasionally experienced mould (a symptom of a damp) in their home and a further 17% said it was a regular occurrence.

Mould inside your home can be a serious health risk and contribute towards chest, throat and nasal infections.  In serious cases, prolonged exposure to mould can cause problems with your lungs and exacerbate serious conditions such as asthma, so it’s important to take steps to keep your home well ventilated and dry, and that’s where dehumidifiers can help.  Two thirds of the people we surveyed said they have noticed a positive difference since they started using a dehumidifier.

Reasons to dehumidify your home

There are a few surprising reasons as to why you should use a dehumidifier that we thought you should know about.

  1.   Goodbye dampness.  Perhaps the most obvious reason is going from having a damp home to having a dry home.  Home should be a warm and cosy place to come home to, the last thing you want is a damp home.
  2.   Mould.  Dehumidifiers combat mould and mildew (a form of fungus).  A damp home creates the perfect conditions for mould and mildew to form, but it struggles to form in less than 50% humidity.
  3.   Dust mites.  These are invisible occupants of your bedspreads, mattresses, curtains, carpets, rags and every other fabric.  Unfortunately, they live in most homes, but when they multiply then your home becomesis damp which can cause allergic reactions.
  4.   Get rid of musty smells!  Musty smells are a by-product of the growth of mould and mildew which release foul gases that get absorbed into fabrics and cause that horrible smell.
  5.   Health. All of the above have an effect on your health and eradicating them with a dehumidifier will lead to a healthier home environment
  6.   Condensation. Condensation usually appears in the form of a foggy window, but can lead to wood shrinking, damp patches on walls and wallpaper peeling.  Condensation is inevitable and it’s important to not let it damage your home.
  7.   Cooling down. It is harder for our bodies to get rid of internal heat when there is moisture or humidity in the air causing us to remain overheated.  So, although usually used in the winter, dehumidifiers have their moments in summer!

Don’t forget though, as well as using a dehumidifier, it is essential to get good airflow moving through your house and this can easily be achieved by opening windows for around 20 minutes each day.

Types of dehumidifiers

There are two main types of dehumidifiers to consider.

Refrigerant Dehumidifiers. These work by condensing moisture out of the air.  Damp air is sucked into the dehumidifier and is cooled to below its dewpoint temperature by using a cold evaporator coil.  This of course causes condensation to drip into a water-holding pan which can either be removed manually or through a hose where the water is automatically removed.

Desiccant Dehumidifiers.  Slightly different to refrigerant, these dehumidifiers work by passing air through a rotor which contains moisture absorbent desiccant material.  After the moisture is removed, dry air can be blown back into the building, thereby converting damp air into dry air. Rather than being removed manually, water collected within the desiccant wheel is removed by adding heat so the vaporised moisture can then be removed from the room.

Pros and cons of each type

Running cost:

Typically, refrigerant dehumidifiers consume less electricity and are therefore cheaper to run.

Operating temperature:

The different types of technology perform differently in low temperatures.  Desiccant dehumidifiers have no problem operating in lower temperatures as the absorbent material extracts moisture regardless of temperature.  Whereas, refrigerant dehumidifiers have a harder time because the dewpoint is harder to reach, meaning that extracting moisture condensation out of the air is more difficult to achieve.


Refrigerant dehumidifiers use compressors which usually make them louder than desiccant.

Extraction rates:

These will vary depending on make and model and there are always discrepancies, but refrigerant dehumidifiers as a rule of thumb can extract larger amounts of moisture per day.  They are popular when materials need drying rapidly and in early stages of flood restoration.

Tips for operating

  •         Wash air filters once a month to help the fan operate efficiently.
  •         Keep an eye on temperatures. Most dehumidifiers operate less efficiently when the temperature falls below 18 degrees Celsius.
  •         Maintain good air-flow. Keep your dehumidifier away from the wall for good air circulation.

Things to look out for

  •         The best models have a digital humidistat, which his like a thermostat for humidity
  •         ‘Literage’ refers to the amount of water the industry claims the dehumidifier will remove from the air over 24 hours.
  •         Avoid mini dehumidifiers.  They typically make big claims but are realistically only good for small spaces like closets and campervans.
  •         It is sometimes a good idea to ask in the store to plug it in and turn it on to get an idea of how loud it’s going to be.  Especially if it’s going to be running in a living space.

Frequently Asked Questions

Canstar Blue commissioned I-view to survey 2,500 New Zealand consumers across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers who have purchased and used a dehumidifier for domestic purposes in the last 3 years, in this case, 576 New Zealanders.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.

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