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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    149

    Hacking a dehumidifier

    Humidity in basement was 72-77%. So I went to Costco and bought a Danby dehumidifier. I thought it would work for few hours and then stop, but no, it's working 24/7 and bringing humidity about 60%.

    This morning I went to the basement to check on it and found out that it was operating like an A/C, though the model I bought is heater/fan/dehumidifier, no a/c. I figured it was cycling and maybe for defrost purposes needed to shut down part of the system and have it work as an a/c for a while.

    I will play with it this weekend, but in the meantime I wanted to know if anyone else out there has hacked a danby dehumidifier to make it work as an a/c on demand?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    4H: Hot, Humid Houston H.O.
    Posts
    3,304
    Do you mean adapting an external stat to control the dehumidifier? That has been done, I'm not even sure that would be called hacking. As far as I know, it has been done with Thermastor equipment and may even be per manufacturers instructions. In the Cinco Ranch experiment headed by Joe Lstiburek, they recommended adding an external stat to an ordinary stand-alone (cheap) dehu, I figure they know how to do it. Regrettably I have not done this before, though have considered it and talked with my HVAC pro about adding a Honeywell stat to a standalone Thermastor Santa Fe Rx. Not exactly a full answer to your question, I know.

    Hope this helps -- Pstu

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Tampa, Florida
    Posts
    1,634
    I've always used an external Honeywell dehumidistat with standalone dehumidifiers. Haven't found one yet which accurately maintains the humidity levels. The built-in old-style mechanical controls tend to run way too long, while the newer electronic units short-cycle. Not sure why no one's bothered to move the humidity sensor to the outside of the unit rather than right next to the coils.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN
    Posts
    241
    Quote Originally Posted by firsthouse View Post
    Humidity in basement was 72-77%. So I went to Costco and bought a Danby dehumidifier. I thought it would work for few hours and then stop, but no, it's working 24/7 and bringing humidity about 60%..
    It amazes me sometimes that people expect tiny unit to reduce humidity of the large basement just by running overnight!


    This morning I went to the basement to check on it and found out that it was operating like an A/C, though the model I bought is heater/fan/dehumidifier, no a/c. ..
    Look the physics of the process is simple. Saturating point or 100% humidity at set temperature - maximum amount of water vapors presented in the unit of air. Saturation point depends on temperature. The lower the temperature than less amount of vapors can be present. If you lower the temperature, excess water will condense. How do you cool air? Create a miniature AC.

    I will play with it this weekend, but in the meantime I wanted to know if anyone else out there has hacked a danby dehumidifier to make it work as an a/c on demand?
    I think your dehumidifier could be defective ( undercharged ), because it should not ice up. As far as rewiring it, you could, but I would not bother. Mine runs for 15min on / 15 off at 24x7, standard controls. First day I turn it on in the spring it runs strait for few hours and than switches to on/off mode.

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