If you’re trying to recycle excess water, you might wonder if dehumidifier water is safe to drink. These devices have large tanks that fill up with water, often feeling wasteful when it goes down the drain.
You might be tempted to fill your glass with this product; however, you shouldn’t because it’s probably not safe to drink, mainly due to how the water is stored. However, do not fret if you’re a recycling enthusiast because there are other clever ways of recycling dehumidifier water.
Here’s what you should know about drinking water from a dehumidifier and other ways of using the water:
How Does a Dehumidifier Make Water?
Dehumidifiers work on two principles: refrigeration and absorption. In refrigeration, humid air passes through chilled coils or grills with the help of an electric fan. When the water hits the cold surface, it condenses, and the clean air is sent back into the room.
A drip chamber in the dehumidifier collects the condensed water. Even though the water vapor goes through the condensation process, the water at this stage is still not clean or safe to drink. Bacteria and mold spores are common in humid air, and the condensation process is insufficient to purify the water from these impurities.
If a dehumidifier uses the absorption method, water-absorbing material will cover the entirety of a large cage. This cage revolves and absorbs most of the humidity in the air; consequently, the air becomes much less humid.
The next step is a hot electrical fan, which blows warm air. When air passes in front of the fan, drainage of the vapors in the atmosphere occurs, and a dehumidifier releases the clean air back into the room.
Why You Shouldn’t Drink Water From a Dehumidifier
Both dehumidification methods described above are thorough in their job; however, they’re still not successful in making the water drinkable. You might mistake dehumidification for distillation and think drinking this water is safe. However, it’s best to understand that both processes have different purposes.
The distillation process helps purify water by bringing water into boiling through heating. As the water evaporates, it leaves behind impurities. The evaporated water in the form of vapor is transferred to another cold container, converting the water into liquid water.
On the other hand, condensation involves turning passing water vapor into cold coils, which convert it into liquid. During this process, the water exposes itself to metal impurities. The water vapor doesn’t remove mold spores, mold, or algae before condensation occurs.
Additionally, the dehumidifier tank provides a favorable environment for the growth of molds and bacteria. Therefore, there’s a big possibility that the water in your dehumidifier tank might have a few impurities.
A dehumidifier doesn’t evaporate water before condensing; therefore, the water collected from the device is unsafe and undrinkable.
Can You Drink Water From a Dehumidifier If You Boil It?
Although the two principles, i.e., refrigeration and absorption assist dehumidifiers, perform their functions exemplary, they don’t clean the water. Therefore, in the end, water collected still has impurities, which could lead to a health hazard if you drink the water.
Drinking water from a dehumidifier after boiling is not advisable because the condensate contains lead and other metals that make up the dehumidifier parts. Therefore, unlike distillation, you can’t purify water from a dehumidifier through boiling.
Is Water From a Dehumidifier Distilled?
A dehumidifier pulls water out of the air through the condensation process; therefore, this water is free of minerals and pathogens, but that isn’t the same as being distilled.
Water from a dehumidifier is essentially the same as distilled water because it derives from water vapor. However, household dehumidifiers aren’t sterile and are likely to contain microbes and dust from the air in the room. Therefore, you can use humidifier water to do some tasks that require distilled water but not for drinking.
Distilled water is free from pathogens or minerals because it comes from steam. In the commercial distillation process, water boils to produce steam. This water is nearly pure because only the water molecules and some ions become a gas, leaving all the minerals, pathogens, and other impurities behind.
The hot steam then goes through a condenser coil, where it cools and turns back into a liquid. Finally, the liquid slowly drips out of the loop and into a collection vessel or tray. In a perfect system, this water would be almost pure, and in sterile commercial units, you could drink it or use it for any application that requires mineral-free water.
Your dehumidifier works similarly; however, it pulls water vapor from the ambient air instead of using concentrated steam. In theory, the water would also be pure and suitable for drinking; however, you shouldn’t consume it.
Water from a dehumidifier is not sanitary; a fan blows air from your room or house through the condenser coil, and once it runs for a while, you might notice that the blades collect dust. This dust is often a breeding ground for mold, bacteria, and other pathogens that thrive in humid conditions.
The ‘distilled’ water from a dehumidifier is also in contact with the condenser coil, which is unsanitary.
Can Dogs Drink Water From a Dehumidifier?
Just like humans, dogs cannot drink water from a dehumidifier. The impurities and toxins such as lead and other metal impurities are hazardous to humans’ and dogs’ health.
How Can You Use Water From a Dehumidifier?
You probably cannot allow water from a dehumidifier to waste if you’re a recycling enthusiast; you can find ways to use it safely. Here are some of the ways:
Is Water From a Dehumidifier Good For Plants?
Irrigating with dehumidifier water is one of the ways of ensuring that it doesn’t go to waste. Drain it into a watering can and start watering your garden or lawn.
However, you can’t use dehumidifier water for tomato plants or other edible plants because it contains traces of lead and other metals from the dehumidifier components. Therefore, it’s best to only water plants you won’t eat because the food crops can absorb metal toxins, which might intoxicate your body.
Using the water to irrigate flowers and other inedible plants in your garden is best.
You Can Use the Water to Flush Toilets
You can use the water from your dehumidifier to flush toilets and ensure you don’t waste it. All you have to do is to pour it into your toilet tank until it fills and then flush the loo.
Water from a dehumidifier doesn’t contain minerals like tap water; therefore, you can use it in a steam iron. The water won’t cause minerals to build up in your iron and deposit on your clothes.
This water is safe for daily household cleanings, such as cleaning your floors, sink, car, dishes, clothes, and dishes. All you have to do is mix the dehumidifier with soap to kill any microbes present and go about with your cleaning.
Check this too: Hisense Dehumidifier Troubleshooting & How-to Guide
You shouldn’t drink water from a dehumidifier because it contains toxins that harm your health and your pets. However, you can use this water for other uses such as household cleaning, steam ironing, flushing toilets, and watering inedible plants in your garden.