How Often Should You Run a Dehumidifier in the Basement?

A dehumidifier is a great way to remove excess moisture from the air in your basement. It can help prevent mold and mildew, as well as save you money on heating and cooling bills.

But how often should you run the unit in basement? The answer depends on many factors including humidity levels, ventilation rates, room size, etc.

In this article, we will discuss all these factors so that you can figure out when to turn on or turn off your dehumidifier.

how often to run a dehumidifier in basement

How Often To Run Dehumidifier in Basement?

If the basement has high humidity levels and doesn't have good air circulation then you should run the dehumidifier 24 hours a day.

For basements with moderate humidity levels, you should run the dehumidifier for 12 to 16 hours, but not longer than 18 hours.

If the basement has low humidity and good air circulation then you can just turn it on when needed (at least once per week).

For new basements, the humidity levels will be low for a while--until it's been lived in and there have been some leaks. After about 12 weeks of use you'll know what to do more specifically with your dehumidifier.

In high-temperature climates or during very humid times of year, turn on the unit when it's needed and leave it on for 12 to 16 hours.

If the basement has high humidity levels but is well ventilated, you should run the dehumidifier about half of the time. In low-temperature climates or during very dry times of the year, turn on the unit when necessary and keep it on for about 12 hours.

In the winter, turn off your dehumidifier if you're going to be away from home for more than a day or so. That way there's no need to worry about forgetting and leaving it running all that time when you come back.

Should You Run a Dehumidifier in the Basement All the Time?

The simple answer is, not necessarily.

Though high humidity can create an environment for mold to thrive, non-stop operation may lead to excess energy consumption and unnecessary wear and tear on your device.

The trick here is balance. Consider plugging in your dehumidifier during the muggier summer months when dampness tends to creep up. Alternatively, make good use of its built-in humidistat (if available) that shuts down once optimal levels are achieved.

This way, you manage moisture effectively without stressing out about constant basement patrols! Remember though – each house has a unique set of conditions depending on local climate and design variations; what works wonders for a neighbor might not be so marvelous for you.

Our Recommended Dehumidifiers for 2024

frigidaire 50 pint dehumidifier

Frigidaire 50 Pint Dehumidifier

Yaufey 2500 Sq. Ft Home Dehumidifier

Yaufey 2500 Sq. Ft Home Dehumidifier

AprilAire E100C Pro 100 Pint Dehumidifier

AprilAire E100C Pro 100 Pint Dehumidifier

How Often Should I Run A Dehumidifier in an Unfinished Basement?

If your basement is unfinished and has a finished hardwood floor then don't run the dehumidifier at all. It can cause problems with tannic acid crystals from wood products getting tracked into the house.

In an unfinished basement with a dirt floor, you can run the dehumidifier for up to 18 hours without worry.

Make sure to change your filter every 12 months and have it professionally cleaned about once per year. That's one of the best ways to keep it running efficiently and effectively.

Final Words


Running a dehumidifier is the most effective way to get rid of mold buildups caused by excess moisture in the basement. However, you should better learn more about how often to run the unit to save your money while maintaining the efficiency of the dehumidifier.

Remember to change dehumidifier’s filter regularly, at least once per year to make sure your dehumidifier runs smoothly and efficiently, as well as protect your health from dust and mold accumulation on the old filter.

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My name is Justin Williams. I am the founder and blogger at TheDehumidifierExperts.com (read more about us). I was an allergy sufferer and that is also the reason why I began my trek to finding the best dehumidifier for my own personal health issues. All of the dehumidifier top picks on the site were put through their paces by Lance Perez - our dehumidifier researcher. He put each one through a series of tests to see how well they performed. Then, our editorial team compiled the insights into articles and published them.

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