Why is my dehumidifier blowing hot air? Dehumidifiers blowing hot air isn’t always a cause of concern. As an appliance using electricity, it’s expected for dehumidifiers to emit some level of heat. It’s normal for most dehumidifiers to heat a room for up to 90F. However, if your device is starting to produce unbearably hot air, that’s the time to take action.
Below, we discuss the possible reasons why your dehumidifier is blowing humid air and what you can do to fix the problem.
Why is my dehumidifier blowing hot air?
If your dehumidifier is blowing air hotter than 90F, the following might be the reasons why:
1. Your dehumidifier is overworked.
Dehumidifiers that are forced to run continuously for more than 24 hours are at risk of overheating. The non-stop operation can overwork the motor, which is the reason why it’s blowing hot air. As the dehumidifier runs hot, its components will be subjected to excessive wear and tear.
A dehumidifier can also become overworked if the humidity in your room is extremely high. That means the device has to work harder to achieve the target moisture level.
Aside from that, the room temperature can also be the reason why your dehumidifier is blowing hot air. During summer, electrical appliances can overheat fast. For dehumidifiers, this means expelling hotter air.
To know whether your dehumidifier is being overworked, you should touch its surface. If it’s too hot, it’s best to turn it off and let it cool down.
2. The water bucket is full.
If your dehumidifier is only running for a few hours, you may want to check the water bucket. Some dehumidifiers will automatically shut down when the reservoir is full. However, other units don’t have this feature, especially cheap ones.
Since the reservoir is full, the unit may stop collecting moisture. The result is that the air entering the dehumidifier won’t be cooled down properly. In some cases, the air will be hotter if the dehumidifier is also overheating.
Take note that aside from blowing hot air, the reservoir may also overflow. This can damage the electrical parts of the dehumidifier or even result in short circuits. Remember that water and electricity are a bad mix.
The quick fix here is to empty the reservoir. But if the water has already overflowed, I suggest unplugging the unit and drying it before use.
3. The dehumidifier is in the ‘fan’ setting.
Another potential scenario is that your dehumidifier is left running on the ‘fan’ setting. Under this setting, the dehumidifier will not collect moisture. Instead, it will just suck in and expel air like a typical electric fan.
If your home is warm, you may perceive the air coming out of the dehumidifier to be hot. Also, there’s a possibility that the dehumidifier is left on fan mode for too long. This will lead to overheating and hot air blowing out of the appliance.
4. Your dehumidifier is due for repairs.
If the reservoir isn’t full and you’re using the right setting, your dehumidifier may be in need of repairs. Some of the parts are probably worn out and need to be replaced.
If your dehumidifier is newly purchased, you can file a warranty claim to the seller or manufacturer. This way, your dehumidifier will be replaced, or you’ll be issued a refund if the unit is proven to be defective.
Moreover, you should check for loose nuts, bolts, and screws that are causing your dehumidifier to malfunction. You should also check for a defective compressor as it can lead to hot air coming out of the dehumidifier.
Overall, if something’s wrong with the appliance, you should check its physical condition. You should do this while the unit is unplugged.
5. Your dehumidifier is dirty.
Dirty filters can also lead to hot air blowing out of your dehumidifier. Clogged filters and dust-covered coils will prevent the appliance from collecting moisture. What happens is that the air passes through the dehumidifier and comes out still moist and warm.
Another potential scenario is that the dirty filters are pushing the appliance to over-compensate. When that happens, the dehumidifier will get hot, as well as the air is coming out of it.
Like any appliance, dehumidifiers require regular cleaning. Some units also come with replaceable filters, which you need to change as often as you use the device.
6. Your dehumidifier is poorly sized.
When buying a dehumidifier, it’s crucial to ensure that the unit matches the size of your room. This way, you’ll prevent any overheating and hot air issues.
A dehumidifier that’s too small for your room will force the motor to compensate. Subjecting the appliance to a load that’s beyond its capacity will easily lead to overheating. You’ll notice warm air coming out of it, which is typically accompanied by unusual sounds from the motor.
Another case is that the dehumidifier is too big for your room. While this may seem like a good thing, a unit that’s too big will cause excessively dry air. And since it’s big, the dehumidifier will consume a lot of electricity. These two factors will cause the unit to generate too much heat.
7. Your dehumidifier has a refrigerant leak.
Except for the desiccant dehumidifier type, most units in the market use refrigerants. This refrigerant will be pumped into the coils, which will then attract moisture from the air that the fan sends inside the dehumidifier. As the air passes, the moisture will condensate on the coils and be sent into the water reservoir.
When the refrigerant leaks, the coils won’t have enough power to condense the humidity. The moisture will be blown out, which will make the air feel warmer.
How to fix a dehumidifier that’s blowing hot air
If you noticed that your dehumidifier is blowing hot air, the following steps could help fix the problem.
✔️Let it rest.
The easiest way to fix an overheating dehumidifier is to turn it off. Letting the dehumidifier cool down will stop it from blowing warm air. You should do this after 6 to 8 hours of running the unit. You shouldn’t wait for the appliance to heat up before deciding to give it a rest.
While you’re letting the dehumidifier cool down, you should also empty the reservoir. A quick check on the filters, compressor, and other components will also let you point out problems before it becomes a big issue.
If you badly need to dehumidify your room non-stop, I recommend getting a second unit. This way, the two dehumidifiers can take turns in removing moisture from the air.
✔️Get your dehumidifier repaired.
If you suspect that your dehumidifier has faulty parts, you should avail of professional repairs. Manufacturers will often have accredited shops to ensure that your warranty is still in effect.
Remember that putting off repairs will cause more damages to your unit. In the long run, it will be cheaper to avail of small repairs than to purchase a new dehumidifier.
✔️Clean the filters and coils.
It’s important to keep your dehumidifier filters in top condition. This way, your unit will have optimal airflow, and the motor won’t have to compensate due to blockages.
While you’re at it, I recommend that you also deep-clean the coils once a year. Here are the steps I perform on my dehumidifiers to ensure that the coils are in good shape:
- Unscrew the evaporator coil out of the dehumidifier. Depending on the design, the coils will be right behind the fan motor. You need to unscrew this out of the unit.
- Use a wire brush. Once I have the coils removed, I use a wire brush to remove the dirt on top of the coils. Always scrape in the direction of the coils to avoid damaging them. You can also use an old toothbrush to remove the layer of dirt.
- Blow it with compressed air. For the entirety of the coils, I use compressed air to dislodge dust and dirt accumulated in between the slats. I don’t recommend hard-brushing the coils because it flattens and gets damaged easily.
- Soak it in detergent. Once I’ve removed most of the dirt, I place the coils on the sink or basin and soak them with soapy water. After that, I rinse it with running water. You can use an old toothbrush to remove any remaining dirt. Make sure to brush in the same direction in which the coils are arranged.
- Clean the other parts. When I have the time, I also wash the housing of the dehumidifier. Once dry, I put it all back together.
✔️Check the refrigerant level.
If your dehumidifier is clean, you should check the refrigerant level. Sometimes, leaks can be unnoticeable until the loss is already affecting the dehumidifier’s functions.
I usually leave this part to professionals. Checking the refrigerant level requires a special tool, which heating and air conditioner companies often use.
Nevertheless, you can always recharge your refrigerant dehumidifier at home. Just make sure that you get the right coolant type that your unit uses.
✔️Upgrade to a newer model.
If your dehumidifier is more than 10 years old, you should consider investing in a new unit. Old dehumidifiers consume a lot of electricity and overheat fast. Worse, it won’t be as efficient in filtering moisture as newer models. As a result, it will keep on blowing hot air while increasing your energy bills.
Also, if your dehumidifier requires at least two professional servicing a year, it may not be worth keeping. Over time, the repair costs will accumulate and cost more than a new unit.
Lastly, if the dehumidifier still underperforms after the repair, you’re better off upgrading to a new one. This is the same case if you’re planning to use the dehumidifier in a bigger room, which will require more moisture extraction power.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What’s the normal temperature of the air coming out of a dehumidifier?
A: Generally, the air your dehumidifier is blowing should only be as warm as 90F. Anything too warm or hotter than that should be a cause of concern. It’s possible that your dehumidifier is overheating, full, or has faulty parts. Still, don’t expect your dehumidifier to always expel cool air.
Q: Is it normal for a dehumidifier compressor to get hot?
A: The compressor of your dehumidifier will get hot to some point. It’s normal to some extent, but you shouldn’t push it to the limits. You should let the appliance rest once it’s starting to blow warm air. This will prevent the compressor from getting damaged.
Q: Will a dehumidifier cool a room?
A: Dehumidifiers have a cooling effect because it reduces humidity. However, this appliance isn’t specifically designed to cool down your room. If you want cold air you can use a portable air conditioner.
Q: Is a dehumidifier a fire hazard?
A: If used improperly, dehumidifiers can become a fire hazard for your home. Dehumidifiers run for hours on end can overheat and catch fire. Also, you should check the quality of the unit and make sure that there’s no recall issued over the specific model.
Q: What can go wrong with a dehumidifier?
A: Overheating is the most common problem among dehumidifiers. This is often the fault of users who run their dehumidifiers for too long. Also, overflowing water buckets are an issue, especially if the dehumidifier doesn’t have an auto shut-off feature.
Q: Why is dehumidifier collecting so much water?
A: Excess moisture collection can be due to the high humidity level in your room. It’s also possible that you’re dealing with a frozen evaporator coil that melted, which caused the reservoir to fill up too fast. Leaks and water damage in your home will also affect the amount of water a dehumidifier collects in a day.
Why is my dehumidifier blowing hot air? It can be due to overheating, full reservoir, refrigerant leaks, or pending repairs. A dehumidifier that’s too small or too big for a room can also encounter hot air issues. It’s best to have your unit checked if the problem persists after performing basic troubleshooting.
Home Air Quality is founded by Bernard K to provide information on Indoor Air Quality in Homes and enlighten people about what they need to know about creating and maintaining a comfortable and healthy home environment.
We believe that “Quality air brings a healthy life.”