Which is the Best Small Dehumidifier? A Review of Compact, Portable & Mini Models

Small Dehumidifier - Which is the Best Compact Model?
A Portable Dehumidifier with Carry Handle

If you own a damp room, boat, caravan or conservatory, but don't have the space for a large machine, a small dehumidifier is a great choice. Dehumidifiers vary in size, with the largest being bulky and heavy - especially whole-house refrigerant models. Fortunately, there are some excellent options that also minimise footprint.

As you would expect, compact models tend to be less powerful and have a smaller water tank. Even so, the best options take up considerably less space but still pull large amounts of water from the air. In fact, several small models are also included in our list of the best dehumidifiers.

In this article, we've listed our top picks for small, portable and mini dehumidifiers, along with a few extra options that provide great value for money. But before we get to the recommendations, we need to explain how we chose them.

How do we Define Small, Portable or Mini?

There are no industry-defined dimensions for residential dehumidifiers. This means manufacturer's claims that their models are "compact" or "highly portable" can't always be trusted. For this reason, we've developed a simple criteria. 

  • Small - we define a small dehumidifier as having a maximum width of 30cm and depth of 20cm. While we don't think height is as important, we look for models with a maximum height of 50cm.
  • Portable - a portable dehumidifier must be compact but also lightweight. For this reason, we think it should have a maximum weight of 7kg, width of 35cm and depth of 20cm. It must also include a carry handle. Choose a portable model if you need a dehumidifier that doesn't take up too much space and is convenient to move.
  • Mini - a mini dehumidifier needs to be considerably smaller than the average machine. For this reason, we look for models with a maximum width and depth of 20cm. As you can imagine, models in this range are considerably less effective, so don't expect high water extraction rates or advanced features. Only choose a model in this category for tiny environments or very mild damp problems.

Note: we are not including non-electric dehumidifiers on this page. These are tiny and don't use electricity, instead removing water passively. While they are lightweight and highly portable, they are not "true" dehumidifiers and are only capable of removing minimal amounts of water from the air.

These criteria are just guidelines. The best option for your environment depends on its exact dimensions and level of dampness. Even so, the criteria should let you quickly see which is likely to be the right option from the list below.

Why are Some Dehumidifiers Smaller than Others?

The best small or portable dehumidifiers are often desiccant models rather than refrigerant. This is because desiccant machines don't include a compressor. While there are a number of advantages to desiccants, including better extraction in lower temperatures, they also tend to have lower capacities and are less energy efficient.

There are often trade-offs when choosing a compact model. While models in the "small" or "portable" category might perform similarly to full-size machines, mini dehumidifiers usually have much lower capacities and fewer features.

Finally, remember that dehumidifiers require space around them to operate effectively. This is because they rely on unobstructed airflow. For consistency, we've listed dimensions for small dehumidifier reviews without operating space - but the machine will need to be slightly away from the wall when in use.

Which are the Best Small Dehumidifiers?

Price RangeImageProductTypeWidthHeightDepthWeight
££ - Mid-RangeEcoAir DD122FW MK5 ClassicDesiccant29cm48cm18cm6kg
££ - Mid-RangeMeaco DD8LDesiccant35cm50cm18.8cm6.4kg
£ - BudgetPro Breeze PB-02Peltier18cm28cm16cm1.1kg
££ - Mid-RangeMeaco 10l Small Home DehumidifierRefrigerant30cm48cm19cm8.75kg
££ - Mid-RangeEcoAir DD1 SimpleDesiccant29cm48.5cm18cm6kg

Our #1 Small Dehumidifier

EcoAir DD122FW MK5 Classic

EcoAir DD122FW

If you're looking for the best compact dehumidifier of 2017, the DD122FW MK5 Classic is our top pick. It's a small desiccant model with excellent water extraction and a useful automatic setting.

With a width of just 29cm, the MK5 is one of the slimmest dehumidifiers we've seen from a major brand. While there are smaller options on the market, you'll struggle to find a more compact model that provides the same quality and value. It's also very thin at just 18cm, so you shouldn't have trouble fitting it into a caravan or boat.

The small size doesn't reduce its water extraction capabilities though. It's great at removing water from both cool and warm environments, due to the desiccant technology, and also includes a laundry mode. Other features include an automatic mode to save energy and low noise output on its lowest fan speed (34dB). This means if you're looking for a small dehumidifier for your bedroom that isn't too noisy, the MK5 could be a good option.

While it's not the least efficient model we've seen, there are dehumidifiers that use much less energy. It extracts water quickly, however, so it won't need to be on full power for as long. As humidity reduces it can automatically switch to economy or standby mode as needed.

Overall, the EcoAir DD122FW MK5 Classic is a great option if you're looking for a small dehumidifier that's still powerful. ​Its slim design is perfect for tight spaces and it comes with a carry handle to easily move it between rooms. We highly recommend this model.

Pros

  • Slim and lightweight design
  • Great water extraction rate in both cooler and warmer environments
  • Automatically switches between full power, economy and standby depending on humidity

Cons

  • Not the most energy efficient
  • Only a 2 litre water tank

Specification

  • Type: Desiccant
  • Noise: 34dB
  • Tank: 2 litres
  • Power: 580W
  • Max Extraction: 7 litres/day
  • Price: ££ - Mid-Range
  • Net Dimension (WxHxD): 29 x 48 x 18 cm
  • Weight: 6kg

The Best Portable Dehumidifier

Meaco DD8L Portable

Meaco DD8L Portable

When it comes to portable desiccant dehumidifiers, the Meaco DD8L is one of our top recommendations. While it doesn't include the advanced features of its bigger and more expensive brother (the DD8L Zambezi), it's a solid dehumidifier with fast water extraction and a highly portable design.

The Meaco DD8L is a compact dehumidifier, although it's not quite as small as the MK5 Classic above. With a depth of 18.8cm it's very thin, but the 35cm width means it only narrowly makes our portable category.

While it's slightly wider than we would have liked, it makes up for this with excellent water extraction rates. The desiccant technology means it can consistently remove water in both cool and warm environments. There are also three fan speeds, allowing you to adjust power usage and noise.

Other features include an off-timer that can be set up to eight hours in advance, a laundry mode, pull up handle, ioniser and automatic restart function. The DD8L also comes with Meaco's Control Logic system. This helps reduce energy costs by monitoring humidity and only switching the machine on when it's needed. 

If you need a portable dehumidifier, the Meaco DD8L is an excellent choice. It's both lightweight and compact, making it easy to carry, and has a range of useful features such as a laundry mode and Meaco Control Logic.

Pros

  • Comes with Meaco's Control Logic to save energy by only switching on when needed
  • Great water extract rate
  • 8 hour timer and laundry mode

Cons

  • Only a 2 litre water tank

Specification

  • Type: Desiccant
  • Noise: 48dB
  • Tank: 2 litres
  • Power: 650W
  • Max Extraction: 7.5 litres/day
  • Price: ££ - Mid-Range
  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 35 x 50 x 18.8
  • Weight: 6.4kg

The Best Mini Dehumidifier for Tight Spaces

Pro Breeze PB-02

Pro Breeze Compact Dehumidifier

There are very few truly mini dehumidifiers on the market - at least that are also effective at removing water from the air. While the Pro Breeze doesn't come close to the extraction power of full-size models, it has a mini design that's perfect for garages, bathrooms, wardrobes, caravans and small rooms.

With a width of just 18cm, the Pro Breeze is one of the smallest dehumidifiers. It's also extremely lightweight, weighing just 1.1kg, and has a short 28cm height.

As you would expect, this means it has a tiny 0.5 litre water tank - although this isn't a major problem as the maximum extraction is just 0.25 litre per day. Despite the low extraction capacity, it does a decent job of removing water from the air. If you have a mild damp problem or just want a dehumidifier as a preventative measure, it can certainly do a job.

One of the biggest advantages of the PB-02 is the price. It has an RRP of £80, but is often available for less than half. It isn't, however, suitable for large rooms, homes or severe damp. You also shouldn't expect any advanced features, although it automatically switches off when full and has a full-tank indicator light.

If you need a mini dehumidifier for a small space, or to tackle a damp problem in a specific area of your home, the Pro Breeze PB-02 is an option to consider. It has a very small design, decent extraction rate (considering the size and price) and is available for a very reasonable price. Just make sure you have realistic expectations - and if you have a serious damp problem, choose one of the models with better extraction rates on this list.

Pros

  • Mini dehumidifier with a tiny footprint
  • Quiet and provides good value

Cons

  • Tiny water tank
  • Low water extraction rate compared to "full-size" models (even the other small electric dehumidifiers on this list)
  • Uses peltier technology which isn't as efficient as refrigerant or desiccant

Specification

  • Type: Peltier
  • Noise: Not Listed
  • Tank: 0.5 litres
  • Power: 20W
  • Max Extraction: 0.25 litres/day
  • Price: £ - Budget
  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 18 x 28 x 16 cm
  • Weight: 1.1kg

Other Compact Dehumidifiers

Meaco 10l Small Home Dehumidifier

Meaco Small Home

The Meaco Small Home is a 10 litre dehumidifier that, as the name suggests, is designed for flats or houses of up to 3 bedrooms. It's also one of the best small refrigerant dehumidifiers we've reviewed, with a compact and lightweight design despite using a compressor.

As it's a refrigerant model, the Small Home excels in warmer conditions. This makes it suitable for heated homes, but we wouldn't recommend it for garages, conservatories, boats or unheated rooms. For those locations, one of the small desiccant dehumidifiers on this list would be a better choice.

With a width of 30cm and depth of 19cm, it's surprisingly compact for a refrigerant model. ​It's also lightweight at just 8.75kg, making it one of the lighter refrigerant dehumidifiers on the market. If you've decided to buy a refrigerant but don't have much space, the Small Home is one of the best options.

Like other models on this list, the Small Home only has a two litre water tank. This isn't a complaint, as it's a side-effect of having a compact design, but you'll need to empty it regularly. There's also a continuous drainage option should you wish to use it.

Other features include an anti-freeze system, automatic mode (for switching the machine off when it's not needed) and an energy efficient design.​

If you're looking for a small refrigerant dehumidifier the Meaco Small Home is a great choice. It does a decent job of removing water in warm conditions and has a compact design - especially for this type of machine. Like other refrigerant models, however, it struggles as temperatures drop and is relatively loud.​

Pros

  • Compact design that's much smaller than most refrigerant dehumidifiers
  • Fast water extraction in warm conditions
  • Relatively lightweight

Cons

  • Just a two litre water tank
  • Not effective in cooler conditions

Specification

  • Type: Refrigerant
  • Noise: 46dB
  • Tank: 2 litres
  • Power: 199W
  • Max Extraction: 10 litres/day
  • Price: ££ - Mid-Range
  • Dimensions (WxHxD): 30 x 48 x 19 cm
  • Weight: 8.75kg

EcoAir DD1 Simple

EcoAir DD1 Simple

If your budget can't quiet stretch to the other EcoAir model on this list, the DD1 Simple (previously known as the DD122) could be a good alternative. It's a compact desiccant dehumidifier with a two litre water tank, although it doesn't come with the advanced features of the MK5 Classic.

The width of the DD1 Simple is 29cm, so it won't take up much space. It also has a thin depth of just ​18cm and weighs only 18kg. This design, combined with the lift-out handle, makes it a great option as a portable dehumidifier.

As the name suggests, the Simple doesn't include many of the complex features found on more expensive EcoAir dehumidifiers. It does, however, have a dial for adjusting humidity settings and a laundry drying mode. The machine is also quiet at 34dB - largely due to the desiccant technology.

While it doesn't include advanced features, it provides excellent extraction rates in both cool and warm temperatures. We also think it offers great value for money - and many people will enjoy how easy it is to use.​

If you're looking for a small dehumidifier on a budget then the DD1 Simple is one of the best options. It performs quickly and efficiently even in cooler conditions, so it's a great choice for an unheated room or garage. 

Pros

  • Simple dehumidifier that's easy to use
  • Excellent water extraction rate in a range of temperatures
  • Highly portable due to its lightweight design

Cons

  • Only a two litre water tank
  • No advanced features

Specification

  • Type: Desiccant
  • Noise: 34dB
  • Tank: 2 litres
  • Power: 580W
  • Max Extraction: 7 litres/day
  • Price: ££ - Mid-Range
  • Net Dimension (WxHxD): 29 x 48.5 x 18 cm
  • Weight: 6kg

Summary

If you have a damp problem in a specific room, or just don't have the space for a bulky machine, a small dehumidifier can make a big difference. While the smallest models sacrifice water tank size and sometimes extraction capacity, there are still some excellent options available.

The problem is that manufacturers often list their machine as "compact" regardless of its actual size.  That's why we've created a criteria for rating whether a dehumidifier is small, portable or mini and used it to list our top recommendations.

We hope this page has helped you find the best small dehumidifier for your home. If you're not sure which to pick, our top recommendation is the EcoAir DD122FW MK5 Classic. It's a powerful model with a great automatic mode and a slim design. If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments section!