[Editor’s note: Please see end of post for the latest updates on popular dehumidifiers]
If you live in the midwest and have a basement, a dehumidifier is a must. The downside is that they are expensive, usually costing $200 for the 70-pint version and often don’t last more than a year. The old saying “they don’t make them like they used to” holds true when it comes to dehumidifiers. I still remember the brown one we had growing up and it worked year after year.
My goal for this post is to keep a running log of my latest experiment, figuring out how to optimize a dehumidifier purchase, ensuring that I don’t spend $200 every year. The dehumidifier I currently use I purchased from Amazon with a 3-year warranty (outlined below). First, a few points I’ve found in my research:
- No manufacturer makes a consistently long-lasting dehumidifier. Reading the reviews on Amazon is a great way to see just how prone to failure dehumidifiers are.
- I haven’t found a company that warranties their dehumidifiers over 1 year, making these virtually disposable machines after 1 summer of use.
- Dehumidifiers are heavy to ship, but Amazon still offers competitive pricing compared to my local hardware store.
In the summer of 2015 I purchased a Soleus Air dehumidifier. It worked great for the first year, but when I went to plug it in for the summer (2016) it wouldn’t pull any air. It was past the one year mark which meant the manufacturer was unwilling to warranty the product. I eventually wrote to the store I purchased it from and received a $40 gift card to my local hardware store from Soleus Air. It was a nice gesture, but keep in mind that these things usually cost around $200.
Last year I did more extensive research on Amazon and purchased this Frigidaire 70-Pint dehumidifier. I actually was able to purchase it for $185.16 on Jet.com using a 15% off discount code for being a first time customer. The cost is now $229.33 on Amazon which is why I avoided this unit for my current dehumidifier. The reviews were actually quite positive but more importantly I found many reviews citing the positive experience with the Frigidaire warranty. It comes with a 1 year warranty and a 2-5 year warranty. In years 2-5 the consumer must pay for diagnostic, labor and parts which I believe makes the warranty useless after year 1.
When I went to plug it in for the summer of 2017, I received a “F0” error. Knowing I was approaching the 1 year mark I immediately emailed Frigidaire and provided them the information on my unit. They quickly acknowledged it needed to be replaced after a few questions about my setup. After a few weeks I received a voicemail stating they couldn’t find a local dealer for me to receive a replacement and would be sending a letter outlining the steps I should take to receive a gift card in the amount I paid for the unit. As of writing I am just waiting for my gift cards to arrive in the mail.
Dehumidifier #3 (and the extended warranty)
For my current dehumidifier I took a different approach. My goal was find a reasonably priced 70-pint dehumidifier and purchase the extended warranty offered by a third party. This is my first experience with purchasing a warranty plan through a third party on Amazon. For most purchases I avoid any extended warranty, but given the track record of dehumidifiers it is in my opinion money well spent. I purchased this Keystone 70-pint dehumidifier which was $182. On the side of the screen you can see 1-year or 2-year protection plan is offered.
Clicking on the protection link will tell you who is offering the warranty. In my case it was a company called Asurion, but there are other companies that offer this on Amazon. Based on my experience Amazon will offer the third party protection plan on the side through whichever company is offering it at the cheapest price. Digging into Asurion online it appears that they specialize in phone insurance but obviously they have expanded their warranty plans in conjunction with Amazon. Based on my quick research, they appear to be a reputable company and for $20 I thought it was a worthwhile experiment.
Note that if you click Learn More you’ll find that they offer a 3-year warranty which I then added to my cart with the dehumidifier. Protection actually begins after the 1-year manufacturer warranty meaning in theory I should be able to get a replacement if it ever breaks for a total of 4 years after purchase. I searched for “dehumidifier” on the Asurion reviews and found 2 cases where purchasers used the warranty successfully on a dehumidifier purchase which gave me some confidence in testing this out.
So far the dehumidifier continues to function properly so I haven’t had to test out the warranty or Asurion itself just yet. For others looking to buy a dehumidifier with a long warranty this seems like a good option to look into. I’ll continue to update this post on my experience.
Note: This post contains Amazon affiliate links. If you click a link and end up buying a dehumidifier (or any other items), I will receive a commission. Thanks!
Update #1 (7/17/17):
I received my prepaid visa gift card from Frigidaire. Working with their warranty department was painless. The 70 pint Keystone dehumidifier continues to work well.
Update #2 (5/16/18):
It seems as though the Keystone dehumidifiers are no longer shipped and sold by Amazon and there are much cheaper options than those linked above. This hOmeLabs 70 Pint dehumidifier has over 1500 reviews on Amazon. At time of writing the 3 year protection plan is just $6.17. The Frigidaire 70 pint dehumidifier I purchased above and subsequently had issues with remains available albeit at a higher price.