How To Recharge A Dehumidifier


Some evaporative and air conditioning dehumidifier models use a coolant, known as a refrigerant that can be recharged.

Different types of dehumidifiers and how they are recharged
Different types of dehumidifiers and how they are recharged

10 Steps To Recharge A Dehumidifier

  1. Recharging takes place with your dehumidifier running.
  2. Remove the valve cover from the valve.
  3. Connect the valve to the filling line and tank. But, do not open it.
  4. Flush any surplus air from the filler’s line. This prevents compressor damage.
  5. Tighten the connection between the valve and the pipe. 
  6. Open the value. Check the coolant level on the gauge.
  7. Refill the coolant reservoir in short bursts.
  8. Stop, when the pressure reaches the correct level
  9. Turn off the filling line valve
  10. Remove the filler line
My Dehumidifier Is Not Removing Moisture Do I Need To Recharge It
My Dehumidifier Is Not Removing Moisture Do I Need To Recharge It

My Dehumidifier Is Not Removing Moisture? Do I Need To Recharge It?

If your dehumidifier is not removing moisture then there is definitely something going on. You need to try and figure it out. One of the reasons why your dehumidifier could be malfunctioning may be because it needs recharging. How do you figure this out? Read on.

1. What type of dehumidifier do you have?

As you look at dehumidifiers, there are so many different kinds. They all work in different ways. Not all dehumidifiers can be recharged.

The most popular dehumidifier is a refrigerant dehumidifier. Then there are desiccant dehumidifiers. There are battery-run dehumidifiers. There are also absorbent dehumidifiers that are cordless, battery-less, and have rechargeable batteries. 

Only some refrigerant dehumidifiers have ports on the cooling line and can be recharged with refrigerant. Check the dehumidifier manual [link] or check with the manufacturer. 

You will need an A/C air conditioner recharge kit with a gauge set, refrigerant tank, and the appropriate connectors for the refrigerant your dehumidifier uses. The red port is the high-pressure side while the blue is the low-pressure side. 

It is easy to recharge desiccant dehumidifiers, especially those that use silica gel. The ones that use color beads will let you know through a change of color. They will change from orange to green to show that they need to charge. And recharging these types of dehumidifiers is simply plugging it in for 8-10 hours and it will be ready to absorb more moisture. 

 2. Can you Recharge Yes or No?

Now that you have had a look at the type of dehumidifier you have, you can make the next decision. 

If you have a desiccant dehumidifier with silica gel, then the decision is easy. The recharge process is easy and affordable. So you can go right ahead and plug it in. 

As mentioned before, not all refrigerant dehumidifiers can be recharged. You may need to consider buying a new dehumidifier. 

If your dehumidifier is a refrigerant, and has recharging options then the answer is YES!!! You can look into how to recharge it. 

Keep in mind that if you recharge your dehumidifier and that does not resolve the issue with the appliance not collecting water then you may have a leak or other problem.

Is it cost effective or worth it to recharge your dehumidifier? Your options are to:

  • Replace your dehumidifier,
  • Repair your dehumidifier, or to
  • Recharge your dehumidifier.

Replace A Dehumidifier

How old is your dehumidifier?

Sometimes replacing may be your best option. If your dehumidifier is more than five years old it may be close to the end of its usable life. You may experience more problems along the road. It may not be worth spending more money on it.  What does it cost to buy a new dehumidifier versus recharging your existing dehumidifier?

What size is your dehumidifier?

The size of a dehumidifier also plays a part in figuring out if it is worth recharging or repairing. If your dehumidifier is between a 10 pint and a 60 pint in size, it may not be cost-effective to recharge it. Recharging cost for a dehumidifier can be between $50-$200. You may find it a lot cheaper to buy a new dehumidifier. 

Look at an area versus moisture table to see what size dehumidifier is suitable for your space.

Repair A Dehumidifier

Behind the intake of your dehumidifier is a cooling coil. The cooling coil is also called an evaporator. When your dehumidifier is on, the cooling coil should be cool to the touch. If the evaporator is not cold, then it’s likely that refrigerant has leaked out. [Caution: do not touch electrical or other parts if you are not sure what you are doing]

Yes, you can recharge your dehumidifier. But, realize that recharging your dehumidifier won’t fix a broken dehumidifier. There may be a leak somewhere in your system. If you recharge your dehumidifier and it’s not working a few weeks later then you have a different problem.

Recharge A Dehumidifier

Determine whether your dehumidifier requires a recharge. If your dehumidifier is wasting electricity by not removing moisture, you must recharge, fix, or replace it.

You can’t re-charge your dehumidifier whenever you want. Remember that the chemical refill has some environmental consequences. Especially if your dehumidifier requires Freon.

If your dehumidifier isn’t sucking up moisture, but the fan and motor are still running, consider recharging it. In an ideal world, you should never need to recharge your dehumidifier. Still, recharging is probably worth it. 

Here’s the disclaimer. Note that the EPA; The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency does not recommend replacing Freon or refrigerant by yourself for both environmental and health reasons.

Thankfully a lot of modern dehumidifier manufacturers are aware of the environmental and health consequences of recharging dehumidifiers. Consider recharging or replacing your appliance with an energy-efficient model.

Equipment Needed To Recharge
Equipment Needed To Recharge

Equipment Needed To Recharge

If you are going ahead to recharge your dehumidifier, then you have a choice to make. You can recharge it yourself. Or, you can hire a professional to recharge your dehumidifier for you.

You will need an appropriate recharging kit along with the correct refrigerant for your model. If you have the knowledge, service skills, and tools – then go for it. Or, you may need to buy a recharging kit and the appropriate refrigerant.

What is professional recharging for a dehumidifier?

You can also contact a reliable HVAC business to give you a quote and timeline for the recharge. When you hire a HVAC professional you don’t need to worry about the tools and consumables. You just need to decide if the recharge price is worth it. Ask for a warranty.

Working with a HVAC professional may be expensive. Keep in mind that they have experience handling and recovering refrigerant chemicals. They have to pay for coolant that is expensive. Overall, engaging a HVAC professional means the job will be done correctly.

Before Recharging A Dehumidifier
Before Recharging A Dehumidifier

Before Recharging A Dehumidifier?

Before recharging the unit, you should check the following important indicators:

  • Check to see if the motor and fan blades are working. If they aren’t, make a note of the difference. Another troubleshooting might resolve this. 
  • Examine the humidity level. You may need to make some adjustments to get rid of excess moisture content in the air. 
  • Refrigerant leakage, which could lead to poor performance.
  • At this point, you should decide. Is recharging cost-effective? Or, is buying a new dehumidifier a better investment? [3]
DIY Steps To Recharge Dehumidifier

DIY Steps To Recharge Your Evaporative Dehumidifier

  1. To begin, place an online order for the recharge kit. It’ll make your job a lot easier. They include a small gas can or cylinder that can hold R-22, R-410A, or any other gas.
  2. You should be mindful of the type of gas you’re using. It has to be able to work with the dehumidifier compressor motor.
  3. Turn off the power and disconnect the power cord.
  4. Get all the tools you’ll need to open it.
  5. Now is the time to open your appliance. Take lots of pictures. Pictures will help you put things back together.
  6. Start by removing the back or top component.
  7. After you’ve finished opening it, look for a value near the compressor hose.
  8. Then get the refrigerant can and connect it. Take pressure measurement. 
  9. Safely refill gas by opening the transfer value from the container with the unit running. Fill in short bursts. Pay attention to how long the transfer value is open. 
  10. After the dehumidifier has been recharged, you can remove the refrigerant can and reassemble all parts. Use the previous photos you took.
  11. Finally, double-check all the components.
  12. Note if you have a desiccant dehumidifier: It is preferable to replenish the desiccant type of humidifier by drying it out. This type of humidifier also has electric recharging capabilities. It can help you save time. [4]
Safety Measures To Consider When Recharging
Safety Measures To Consider When Recharging

Safety Measures To Consider When Recharging

  1. While doing the repair, use safety equipment. This means using gloves, wearing a mask, and wearing safety goggles.
  2. If you are unsure, it is a good idea to enlist the help of a specialist.
  3. Make sure there isn’t any kind of open flame or fire nearby.
  4. Furthermore, most dehumidifiers need recharging after heavy use. How long your dehumidifier lasts depends on usage as well as age.
What is a coolant and is it necessary for a dehumidifier
What is a coolant and is it necessary for a dehumidifier

What Is A Coolant, And Is It Necessary For A Dehumidifier?

You can’t recharge all dehumidifiers. Some dehumidifiers that use a refrigerant or coolant gas with valves can be recharged.  

If you’re not sure if you can recharge your house dehumidifier, look at the manual / maintenance guide. The manual usually describes the type of equipment you have, how it works, and how it looks on the inside.

Type of Coolant

R-410A, often known as Puron, is commonly used in newer dehumidifiers. Puror is a greener, refrigerant and friendly to the environment. 

Another type of older coolant is R-22. R-22 stopped being widely used by manufacturers around 1995. If your unit uses R-22, it means you have an appliance from an older generation. [5]

If you have outdated equipment, you may need to contact a professional who still has R-22 on hand.You might be out of luck if you have an old R-22 dehumidifier and can’t locate someone to recharge it. 

Because R-410A is more pressured than R-22, you cannot use it in the same machinery. You’ll blow the gaskets and kill the dehumidifier if you try to use R-410A in a device designed for R-22. 

It may be time to consider buying a new dehumidifier.

Different types of dehumidifiers and how they are recharged
Different types of dehumidifiers and how they are recharged

Different Types Of Dehumidifiers And How They Recharge

Condensate and desiccant dehumidifiers are the two most common types. There is a third option known as Whole House, which is a type of central unit. Condensate dehumidifiers are stand-alone dehumidifiers. They absorb water from the air and are commonly found in homes. Each type of dehumidifier has a different recharging method. 

Let’s have a look at them:

Desiccant Dehumidifier

Desiccants work by absorbing moisture. They are appropriate for high humidity at low temperatures.

Desiccant dehumidifiers, particularly those that use silica gel, are simple to recharge. Most manufacturers use gel with color beads that change from orange to green when it’s time to charge. Put the device into a wall socket and wait at least 8-10 hours for it to charge. 

You’re drying out the silica desiccant inside the device. You do this by heating it with a tiny internal heating component. This permits the silica gel to absorb moisture once more.

Condensate or Evaporative Dehumidifier

After a lengthy period of use, condensate types may need recharging. Recharging is usually done as part of device troubleshooting. A refrigerant dehumidifier is another name for them.

If the device stops collecting water or working, check the refrigerant level. [6]

I am having problems with recharging my dehumidifier 

An initial alternative before recharging is maintenance. Consider cleaning your unit and any filters and grills if it isn’t working. Make sure your device is off when you clean it. 

Cleaning and vacuuming the inside coils that keep the device running is one of the first things to do. Dust accumulates in this area, making breathing difficult after a period of time. You can also clean the fan and the shaft that goes with it.

The next step is to tighten screws that hold the fan shaft and other items in place. Fasteners can come loose and rattle the dehumidifier. Loose screws and bolts cause a rattling sound and parts can fall out of place. You should also inspect the fan motor to ensure that it is operating.

Last but not least, inspect the internal compressor. The compressor is in charge of drawing air into the machine and then releasing it into the room. [7]

What happens if I do not recharge my dehumidifier?

If you do not recharge or repair your dehumidifier, its ability to remove moisture from the air will decline. If your appliance is ineffective you have to ask yourself if it’s even worth keeping around. 

Dehumidifiers are designed to last from 3 to 7 years. Nothing lasts forever. The life of your appliance depends on how much you use it, maintenance, as well as its age. How you use it refers to its placements so air can move in and out of the appliance as well as how frequently it’s on.

Recharging your dehumidifier may give it a fresh lease on life. But regular maintenance is still the best way to keep it running for longer. 

Final words

Figure out what kind of dehumidifier you have and if it uses refrigerant or coolant. Some units have stickers on them. You may look up all this information in the device manual. Also, you can go on the company’s website, where the product is available. 

Determine that your device requires coolant or refrigerant to function. After that, start looking for a reputable HVAC company. Make sure they have experience working with dehumidifiers. Find out how much it costs to recharge versus replace.

If you need to keep replacing dehumidifiers every few years, consider getting a larger size appliance. Keep this in mind. Larger dehumidifiers are cheaper to run than smaller units.

Your total cost of ownership is the purchase and the electricity you pay. Buying a larger size unit is a wise move because they are efficient, run for fewer hours, and the cost per pint of water removed is less. 

Condensate dehumidifiers made these days are energy efficient and do not need frequent recharging. Do your research as you consider recharging, repairing, or replacing your dehumidifier. In truth, only a few larger modern dehumidifiers need recharging, and this varies by model.