May 2023

Many people face the issue of excessive dryness or humidity in the air at home. This can lead to discomfort, health issues, and even damage to the property.

Introducing a dehumidifier or humidifier can help regulate the moisture levels in your home and create a more comfortable and healthy living environment. But before buying one, it’s important to first deduce which device you need for your living space and current situation.

In this article, we’ll compare dehumidifiers to humidifiers and cover the benefits of each device. With this guide, you’ll have a better idea of which to use for your home!

What Is A Dehumidifier?

A dehumidifier regulates the humidity levels in indoor spaces by absorbing and removing excess moisture from the air. It not only helps to prevent the growth of mould and mildew, but also reduces musty odours. It’s particularly useful in humid countries like Singapore.

Selleys Dehumidifier is a desiccant dehumidifier that absorbs harmful formaldehydes, freshens up the air, and absorbs moisture in high-humidity areas.

It can be used to remove excess moisture from wardrobes, shoe racks, cupboards, bathrooms and newly renovated homes.


You only need to use Selleys Dehumidifier once to remove any trace of formaldehyde!

When using the dehumidifier for the first time, the beads inside will turn brown, indicating that the formaldehyde in the environment has been absorbed into the beads. Subsequently, when a new box of dehumidifier is used, the beads will remain white, indicating that only moisture is being removed from the environment and there are no more traces of formaldehydes.

Types of dehumidifiers

There are 2 main types of dehumidifiers for home use: refrigerant/electronic and desiccant dehumidifiers.

Refrigerant/electronic dehumidifierDesiccant dehumidifier
  • Uses a cool metal plate or an evaporator coil to collect condensation.
  • Moisture in the air condenses on the metal plate/coil and is then collected in the dehumidifier’s water tank.
  • The now-dry air is heated to room temperature and sent back out into the surroundings.
  • Utilises desiccants to lower humidity.
  • Examples of desiccants include silica gel and zeolite. These materials absorb moisture easily from the air.
  • What Is A Humidifier? 

    Using air conditioners can cause the air inside your home to be very dry. This can worsen ailments such as dry skin and respiratory issues.

    In such situations, a humidifier is the perfect appliance to alleviate dryness and increase moisture in the air.

    Types of humidifiers

    The primary types of humidifiers that can be found in homes are cool mist and warm mist humidifiers.

    Cool mist humidifierWarm mist humidifier
  • Cool water vapour is emitted from the humidifier to increase moisture levels.
  • Particularly handy during hot and dry days.
  • Examples of cool mist humidifiers include evaporative and ultrasonic humidifiers.
  • Water is boiled in the device and cooled before the vapour is released. Since the water is boiled, the mist is free from harmful bacteria or mould spores.
  • Can be used to alleviate symptoms such as nasal congestion.
  • Additional essential oils or inhalants can usually be added into the water.
  • As heating elements are present, parents should ensure that the humidifier is kept out of reach of children.
  • Comparing Dehumidifiers vs Humidifiers

    Each appliance affects the moisture levels in your home differently. Here are some key differences between dehumidifiers and humidifiers:

    PurposeRemoves moistureIncreases moisture
  • Eliminates mould and mildew
  • Removes odours
  • Hydrates skin, lips, and eyes
  • Improves health conditions like asthma and eczema
  • Usage
  • For high-humidity, damp environments
  • In rooms, wardrobes and shoe racks
  • For low-humidity, dry environments
  • In air-conditioned rooms
  • Purpose

    Dehumidifiers and humidifiers work in opposite ways to alter the moisture content of the air in a room. 

    Dehumidifiers remove moisture, resulting in drier air being released back into the environment. On the other hand, humidifiers add moisture by releasing vapours.


    Dehumidifiers: Eliminate mould and mildew

    High-humidity environments allow mould, mildew and bacteria to proliferate. This can subsequently result in respiratory and other health problems.

    Mould and mildew on furniture and walls can also become a costly issue to address. If you suspect that the humidity level in your room is too high (i.e. walls or furniture feel damp from condensation), it’s best to get a dehumidifier as soon as possible.

    • Dehumidifiers: Remove odours

    High humidity levels can result in musty odours. This issue is usually found in rooms that are always cold or wet, such as the bathroom. Placing slightly damp clothes and sweaty shoes in wardrobes and shoe cabinets can also cause those areas to stink up.

    Using a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture can help to eliminate the smell.

    Humidifiers: Hydrate skin, lips, and eyes

    Some signs that your room may be too dry include lips and skin cracking even after moisturising, and red and dry eyes after spending long periods in an air-conditioned room. Introducing a humidifier is a good way to hydrate the room and yourself!

    Humidifiers: Improve health conditions 

    Those who suffer from eczema, asthma, or other respiratory ailments may find their conditions aggravated in a dry and low-moisture environment. 

    Adding a humidifier can make your skin feel less itchy and irritated. Additionally, it can lubricate the mucous linings in your respiratory tracts, leaving them less agitated.

    However, be careful to not over-humidify your home as it may lead to the growth of bacteria, which can in turn worsen symptoms.


    Dehumidifiers operate best in humid environments and climates, where there is plenty of moisture to remove. This includes bathrooms and laundry rooms. 

    On the other hand, it’s better to use humidifiers in dry and cold rooms. They can prevent the spread of unwanted mould and mildew.

    How To Choose A Dehumidifier

    Size of the room

    The most important consideration is whether you need a dehumidifier for your whole house or just a specific room, such as a bedroom or bathroom. Bigger spaces will require a refrigerant/electronic dehumidifier with a larger water tank capacity, so be sure to check the manufacturer’s specifications for the recommended room size.

    If you’re looking to remove dampness and odours from smaller spaces such as a wardrobe or storeroom, a simple desiccant dehumidifier will get the job done. 


    For the removal of allergens or pollutants from your home, look for dehumidifiers that have ionizers.

    Cost of running the dehumidifier

    Consider the cost of running a refrigerant/electronic dehumidifier and look for models with energy-saving features such as an auto-stop function that turns off the machine when the tank is full, or a timer. 

    How To Choose A Humidifier

    Size of the room

    The first factor to consider is the size of the space that you want to humidify. Using too small of a humidifier in a large room may not fully rectify the problem, so be sure to choose a humidifier with a water tank capacity appropriate for the space. 

    Sensitivity to noise

    If you’re sensitive to noise or are using the humidifier in the bedroom, it’s best to opt for an ultrasonic humidifier, which is the most silent option available. 

    Warm vs cool mist

    Another important consideration is whether to choose a warm mist or cool mist humidifier. Warm mist humidifiers tend to use more electricity but can also heat up the room in cold weather. On the other hand, cool mist humidifiers are more energy-efficient and are better suited for use in warmer climates.

    FAQs About Dehumidifiers And Humidifiers

    A dehumidifier extracts moisture from its surroundings to prevent mould growth and remove odours. On the other hand, an air purifier doesn’t affect humidity levels but instead circulates clean, allergen-free air. 

    There are, however, some dehumidifiers in the market that come with ionizers that can double up as air purifiers.

    While an air-conditioner can remove some moisture, that isn't its main purpose. Dehumidifiers are designed specifically to eliminate moisture and will, therefore, be a more effective solution.

    We don’t recommend running your dehumidifier for the whole day. To avoid drying out your home or space too much, you should run it between 10 to 12 hours a day. This will keep the humidity at an optimum level of 35 to 50%.

    Humidifiers don’t clean the air or remove any particles from it. Their intended purpose is to increase humidity and moisture levels in an area. 

    An air purifier will do a better job of removing allergens and contaminants in the air.

    It depends on the purpose you’re trying to fulfil. If you want to increase humidity and moisture levels, opt for a humidifier.

    If you’re looking to create a relaxing environment using essential oils, a diffuser will be ideal. It can even introduce a little moisture into the room!