Yes. The water from the dehumidifier is actually clean water even comparable to distilled water, provided that your unit is clean and the tank was emptied beforehand. When we say clean, we are talking about both the internal and external parts of the device.
Otherwise, the water collected by the dehumidifier that sits in the tank for a long time or from unclean units, might as well breed bacteria and cause further health and environmental issues.
If we talk about the way a dehumidifier works, given all parts are clean, including the coils, we can say that when the water evaporates and goes into the air, it is already considered pure since it has left all the impurities behind.
When the dehumidifier extracts these vapors (considering the coils are clean!) and collects them into the tank, it is, in fact, collecting clean water.
Research suggests that the water dripped and collected by your dehumidifier is perfectly clean and pure, but not advisable for drinking.
Why would you drink the water collected from the dehumidifier anyway? Unless of course, we are talking about survival and armageddon.
Some Call The Dehumidifier Water a Gray Water
Because the water collected from dehumidifiers are already considered to be wastewater, some call it, Gray Water. It may be categorized as gray water but it is way cleaner than the usual gray water we know.
It’s called gray water because it’s untreated and is a by-product of any household uses such as the wastewater after bathing and doing the laundry. The name was coined from the color of the water after it has been used with the mentioned processes.
Gray water is not precisely dirty and not entirely clean. It has the presence of pathogens but without any fecal contaminations. So if you are asking about the sink and toilet water, they are extremely excluded, they are often referred to as black water.
Dehumidifier water, on the other hand, is clear in color unless the unit itself is dirty. It did not go through other processes except on how the device works.
So What’s the Water Collected from the Dehumidifier Called?
The water from the dehumidifier is rightly called condensate water. The water vapor present in the air that the dehumidifier extracts becomes liquid and is referred to as condensate.
The process that the dehumidifier undergoes in order to collect water is far different than that of gray water.
Although, I am not saying that the dehumidifier water is totally clean, however, you can reuse it better than gray water.
No one can justify that the water collected from your dehumidifier is perfectly clean because some internal parts may still be infested with bacteria and dirt.
Why You Cannot Drink the Water from the Dehumidifier
Science says, that condensate water is not good for human consumption due to its contents, yet there are many more practical ways to use it so dehumidifier water does not just drain the pipes.
However sure you are that you have maintained and cleaned your dehumidifier well, it still not highly advisable to drink. Although it may be in a clean state, there are still presences of microorganisms, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), metals, viruses, and pollutants.
Apart from these harmful elements, the water collected in the bucket of your dehumidifier might lack essential minerals needed by our bodies.
Because dehumidifiers have many cooling parts inside, the water collected may contain heavy metals from getting contact with internal cooling coils; plus, it no longer contains minerals and may be corrosive to metals especially with iron and steel.
What are the Different
Uses of Dehumidifier
You might be wondering by now that if we cannot consume the dehumidifier water, then what would be the best ways to make use of it?
When we say, dehumidifier water, whether it’s clean or have been sitting a while in the tank still has many practical uses and this is what you will be learning next.
Previously, I’ve also wondered what to do with the water my dehumidifier has collected since it’s been quite a lot, luckily, I’ve found some very useful tips and I will share it with all of you.
Some may collect a lot of water because they own bigger dehumidifiers while some may gather a few. Regardless of how much water your dehumidifier bucket has collected, please don’t throw it yet, you might want to try these practical tips!
Watering Inedible Plants
One of the most practical ways to dispose of extra water at home is to give it to your plants. Instead of throwing the water away, why not give it to your plants so they too can quench their thirst?
So far, dehumidifier water has shown no harmful effects on plants. In most residential areas, dehumidifier water is treated like harvested rainwater. They are perfect for plant irrigation purposes only.
However, it’s still highly recommended to only use dehumidifier water to inedible plants or those for ornaments only. Your herbs, vegetables, and other edible plants might consume the condensate water and might absorb the contents, although there is still no scientific basis for this.
If you have run the dehumidifier the whole night, for sure you’ll get a lot of condensate water in the morning, you can store the water in a large container so you can dispose of at the same time or you can practically just shower your plants right after collecting it from the water bucket.
Apart from watering your plants, you can also add the condensate water into your steam iron. This is a perfect alternative solution for those living in areas with issues of hard water.
If you are using hard water for your steam iron, you might have gross issues with limescale, so the water you have collected from the dehumidifier is an excellent solution to iron your clothes without any issues at all.
As for me, it is still best to read your iron’s manual to understand what kinds of water you can use in it. There is no harm in reading the labels anyway!
Do you know that an average American uses 1.6 gallons of water in a single toilet flush? What’s more surprising is that older toilets use 3.6 gallons of water in just one push.
Toilet flushing, in fact, has the most water consumed in an average home. Imagine yourself using the toilet at least 5 times a day, that would accumulate to a total of 31% of overall household water use. We can altogether help lessen this by using the dehumidifier water for flushing toilets.
You can collect and store the condensate water and use it to flush toilets. Have a bucket ready inside the toilet so when it’s time to use, simply lift and pour it down the bowl.
If you still got plenty on hand, you can also use dehumidifier water to clean the house. What I recently tried was to scrub the garage floor clean with this water.
And, I’m telling you, it will not just help you dispose of the water but it will also help you save some bucks on water consumption.
I know some of you might react and be concerned about the micro-organisms mentioned earlier, but I did not just use plain dehumidifier water alone, I mixed it with bleach and detergent to make sure, these invisible elements are out!
Car Wiper Refill, Car Batteries, and Cleaning
Another practical tip is to use this water for car cleaning. Just add detergent and it will do the job well.
You may also use dehumidifier water as a car wiper refill, so you don’t have to spend a dime on buying distilled water. Dehumidifier water is close enough to distilled water due to the condensation process but of course, distilled is way too clean.
However, when it comes to wiper refills, dehumidifier mixed with detergent is also a great and more practical choice.
What About My Pets, Can they Drink Dehumidifier Water?
No. Like us, cats and dogs too need enough minerals from water in order to survive and dehumidifier water is not a good idea.
Usually, a basement dehumidifier may contain airborne oils, smokes, and other household chemicals that might endanger our pets when they consume it.
One of the things I was curious about was if this kind of water can be used for fish tanks but then, based on my research, it might not be a good idea after all.
Can I Filter The Dehumidifier Water to Make it Clean?
I had a funny thought while doing a few of my experiments with dehumidifier water and I would like to share it with you. I think when you run this kind of water under a filtration system, it will be safe and consumable. You only need to perform a series of water tests.
There are many DIY or Do-It-Yourself videos and articles online that tackle about filtering dehumidifier water to make it drinkable.
Several options like:
- 1Plain boiling
- 2Boiling and freezing dehumidifier water
- 3After Boiling then filtering through a coffee filter or using a coffee press
- 4Testing the water solution and use a purification system
But, which one is true and effective? Here is a video that shows water collection from a dehumidifier.
Here is my take on it.
Remember, we all have different inhouse air conditions and this is what we should first consider. Not all of us are able to just collect the dehumidifier water and purify it.
If you live in a city that is highly polluted, then forget it. You may be able to filter and purify the dehumidifier water but it will also cost you a fortune, so why waste your money? But, for survival purposes and water conservation, then it’ll work.
However, if you are living in suburban or residential areas, you can submit the dehumidifier water for testing or you can get a TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) meter to check the absorption of dissolved solid particles such as salt, ionized solids, minerals, and even an increase in electrical conductivity.
Testing Dehumidifier Water Safety
Once you get the result, this is where you need to act on. After running the TDS meter and it shows 500mg/liter or ppm (parts per million), it’s normal and finely considered potable.
To be precise, here is the complete information regarding water palatability as per WHO (World Health Organization) guidelines:
Water Palatability Measurement
Safe to say, we can only allow ourselves to dive between the excellent and the good ratings.
When your dehumidifier water passes the TDS meter, it means, it’s safe to drink. It’s close to pre-distilled water with just some contaminants. And this is what you need to remove next.
At this point, since you are now aware that your water is safe to drink, you can consider using a water purification or filtration system.
Some only consider basic filtration which is boiling. We know that boiling kills microbes that can cause harmful health effects.
Others run it through a filter like those of coffee and tea and then drink it, right after boiling. But the best option is if you run it through a good water filtration unit, complete with reverse osmosis, filters, and even alkaline remineralization.
Use A Water Filtration System
Like this high-capacity water filtration system below. What’s great about it is the multifunction ability to provide us with a safer and healthier water supply.
Apart from the filtration and alkaline remineralization, it also acts as a water softener and removes 99% of contaminants, including 98% of lead content.
I highly recommend using this type of filtration system in case you are planning to convert your dehumidifier water into drinkable water.
Dehumidifier water is actually subjective. If we are talking about the highly-maintained and properly cleaned unit, then we can probably say, it’s clean. If we also consider testing and filtering the dehumidifier water then, it is clean and safe to drink. But then, if we are not sure about the unit’s cleanliness, then it’s reputation is also questionable.
In general, it may be considered wastewater and not good for human consumption, however, we have just learned that there is still a way to remove impurities and consumer it. Otherwise, if you are hesitant to try this, then there are still many ways to make use of it.
Mommies will be happy to know that they can still recycle the dehumidifier water instead of just draining it. You can use it to water the plants, iron your family’s clothes, clean the house, refill the car’s wiper and battery, and more.
I hope you learned something new today just like how surprised I was with the technology we have now and my experiments with dehumidifier water.