Quick Review Summary
The Ivation IVADM10 is one of three different Ivation thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested for review. It’s the smallest least heavy duty of the bunch, but it’s also the least expensive. This unit normally retails for well under $50 (approx.). We look at both the positives and negatives of this dehumidifier in our review below. As you read through our review keep in mind that this is a very inexpensive, light duty thermo-electric dehumidifier. It should be used for very specific light duty applications and by no means can it serve as a replacement for larger, more expensive, and much more heavy duty compressor based dehumidifiers. As long as you use this dehumidifier correctly – in the correct setting and under the appropriate conditions – it stands as a viable option among the myriad of thermo-electric dehumidifiers currently on the market. However, if you don’t use it correctly, you will be disappointed by it. We hope to educate you on how, when, and where the IVADM10 should be used in our review below.
Note: Throughout our review we will compare the IVADM10 to the seven other thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested, and more specifically, to the two other mini thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested – the Evadry EDV-1100 and the Gurin DHMD-210. The Evadry and the Gurin look almost exactly the same as the Ivation outside of the brand name on the outer plastic shell of the dehumidifier. They are the exact same size (they have the exact same dimensions) and have very similar specifications (moisture removal rate, water tank size, etc.). So, which of these three mini thermo-electric dehumidifiers is the best? We hope to answer this question (in addition to many others) as we review the IVADM10 below.
Performance Test Results
We measured noise output at close range directly above and slightly to the front of the dehumidifier. The IVADM10 was the second quietest thermo-electric dehumidifier we tested. It was measured to produce 47.2 dB of noise at close range. Note that this noise output, which is already low at close range (47 dB isn’t much louder than a completely noiseless room), drops off dramatically as you move away from the dehumidifier. At longer range (approximately 10 ft away from the dehumidifier) the noise output for this unit was below that of our sound meter’s measurable range (below 40 dB). The take away here is that the IVADM10, while already very quiet at short range, is almost imperceptibly quiet at any reasonable distance away from the dehumidifier.
Compared to the seven other thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested, the IVADM10′s noise output was well below average – that is to say, it was more quiet than most of the other thermo-electric units we tested. Compare its measured noise output at close range of 47.2 dB to the 44.5 dB of noise produced by the most quiet thermo-electric dehumidifier we tested, the Gurin DHMD-210. The IVADM10 was the second most quiet at 47.2 dB and the next most quiet unit was the larger capacity IVADM45 which was measured at 48.9 dB. The average noise output at close range for all of the thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested was 53.2 dB.
Why is the IVADM10 so quiet? The IVADM10 was one of the more quiet thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested because it is also one of the least heavy duty thermo-electric units we tested. It does in fact remove the least amount of moisture of any of the units we tested – its low moisture removal rate requires only a small low CFM fan to pull air through the dehumidifier. Because this fan is the only moving part on the dehumidifier and because the one on the IVADM10 is so small and “light duty”, the dehumidifier produces very little noise.
Moisture Removal Rate
To measure the moisture removal rate of the compressor based dehumidifiers we tested we placed each unit in a 50 sq ft test environment and raised the humidity in the room to above 90%. We then measured the time it took for each dehumidifier to lower humidity in the room from exactly 90% relative humidity down to 40% relative humidity.
Due to the fact that thermo-electric dehumidifiers dehumidify at such a low rate (even the smallest capacity compressor based unit removes 30 pints of moisture per day while the average thermo-electric unit removes less than 1 pint per day) we simply could not use this same test to measure the moisture removal rate of the thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested. We were forced to dramatically adjust testing conditions to accommodate this type of dehumidifier’s snail-like moisture removal rate. So, instead of raising the humidity in the room to 90%, we only raised it to 80%. And instead of measuring how long it took for the dehumidifier to lower the humidity down to 40% RH we measured how long it took the dehumidifier to lower the humidity in the room down to only 75%. Thus, we measured how long it took each mini dehumidifier we tested to dehumidify the room from 80% down to 75% relative humidity. If we raised the humidity in the room any more or required that the dehumidifier dehumidify the room any more then we wouldn’t have been able to perform our testing within a reasonable time frame. We had to limit the conditions of the test to such an extent so that we could conduct each trial in under 30 minutes.
That being said, the IVADM10 took approximately 12 minutes to dehumidify our 50 sq ft test environment from 80% down to 75% RH. The control for this experiment was measuring how long it took the room to drop in humidity from 80% down to 75% with no dehumidifier in the room. Under these conditions (no dehumidifier in the room), the room humidity naturally dropped from 80% RH down to 75% RH in 18 minutes. Thus, the IVADM10 improved the rate of dehumidification in the room by about 33%. That is to say, it lowered the time it took the room to dehumidify by 33%.
Compared to the two other “light duty” mini thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested (we tested two other “light duty” mini units and five other “heavier duty” units for a total of eight thermo-electric dehumidifiers that we tested), the IVADM10 garnered the best moisture removal rate test results. It took the Evadry EDV-1100 and the Gurin DHM-210 18 minutes each to dehumidify the same room from 80% down to 75% RH. Thus, these two units had essentially no impact on the dehumidification of the room.
In summary, while the IVADM10′s impact on room humidity was minimal, it did make some impact while the other two mini thermo-electric units we tested made no measurable impact at all. It is for this reason that we recommend the IVADM10 over the Eva-Dry and the Gurin if you’re looking for the best option out of the three for moisture removal in a small humid room.
Area of Coverage
Ivation markets this dehumidifier as being capable of dehumidifying spaces up to 1,100 cubic feet. Our test environment was approximately 500 cubic feet (50 square feet) and as our test results show above, the IVADM10 made a minimal impact on room humidity in the same room. For this reason, we do not recommend that you use this dehumidifier in any space larger than the size of our test environment – approximately 500 cubic feet or 50 square feet. We realize that this is less than half of what the manufacturer recommends but our own in-house testing indicates that using this unit in any room larger than approx. 50 sq ft will drastically reduce its efficiency. This dehumidifier is only able to handle very mild humidity in very small rooms. Again, we do not recommend that you use it in any space larger than 50 sq ft.
Manufacturer Specified Moisture Removal Rate
This unit is rated by the manufacturer to only remove 6.08 ounces of moisture per day. Compare this output (6 ounces = 3/8 pints) to even the lightest duty compressor based dehumidifier (a 25 pint unit for example) and you’ll immediately realize that the IVADM10 removes upwards of 50 times less moisture per day. In other words, this unit (and really any other thermo-electric dehumidifier on the market) removes moisture very very slowly.
The bottom line is that you shouldn’t use this dehumidifier in any sizable room (any room greater than 50 sq ft in size) and you also shouldn’t use this dehumidifier if you need to remove humidity at any reasonably high rate of speed. If you only have a small room to dehumidify and you don’t need it dehumidified quickly then the IVADM10 is certainly a viable option and, among the three “light duty” thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested, it is, in our opinion (based on our own test results) the best option currently available.
Included Features, Functionality, Build Quality, Warranties, and Value
The Ivation IVADM10 is the least power hungry of all of the thermo-electric dehumidifiers that we tested. It’s rated by the manufacturer to draw only 13.5 watts of power. This is almost half as much as the Evadry EDV-1100 which draws 22 watts of power and the Gurin DHMD-210 which draws 22.5 watts of power.
Durability (Build Quality)
This is a small dehumidifier – it’s less than 9 inches tall, about 6 inches wide, and only 5 inches deep. It’s also a very light dehumidifier – it weighs less than 2 pounds. Like every other thermo-electric dehumidifier the IVADM10 has a plastic outer shell that protects its internal parts – two heat sinks, a Peltier module, and a fan – that do the actual dehumidifying. We can infer from its size and from its price that the parts used to construct this unit are smaller and cheaper than the same parts used on larger heavier duty units. That being said, the parts that make up any thermo-electric dehumidifier are for the most part fairly durable, whether they’re smaller and cheaper such as on this model or larger and more expensive such as on the IVADM45, for example. This is because the parts themselves lack a complex design and thus do not have any easy to break, sensitive components. The Peltier module is cheap, but even a cheap Peltier module has such a basic design that it’s sure to last for several years. The heat sinks are made of metal – not much to break there. The fan is perhaps the weakest part comprising the dehumidifier but on most thermo-electric dehumidifiers, including this one, it’s a generic 12V computer style fan. So, if you have even the slightest skill at fixing things or know someone that does, the fan on this unit breaking is an easy fix.
The bottom line here is that the fan, heat sinks, and Peltier module are the key parts making up the core of the dehumidifier and they’re all either hard to break or easy to fix. This particular model (the IVADM10) is also not that expensive to begin with so replacing the whole unit isn’t too costly either. Reliability and durability is definitely much more of a concern when you’re looking to purchase a more expensive compressor based dehumidifier. We discuss the difference in assessing compressor based vs thermo-electric dehumidifier durability in greater detail in our thermo-electric dehumidifier buyer’s guide.
The IVADM10 has a high rate of negative reviews. The most common reason for each negative review – that the dehumidifier failed to meet buyer expectations. We hope that we’ve made it clear even up to this point in our own review, that this type of dehumidifier should not to be used for the same type of applications that compressor based dehumidifiers are used for. While limited in functionality, a thermo-electric dehumidifier, and the IVADM10 specifically, does have its uses. This type of dehumidifier can be a good investment, but only if it’s used correctly. Unfortunately, many consumers buy a thermo-electric dehumidifier (like the IVADM10) and expect it to work just as well as a much more expensive compressor based unit. As we’ve stressed repeatedly in our review, this is simply not the case.
With that being said, our recommendation is that you read carefully through the consumer reviews for this dehumidifier to determine whether the problems outlined in those negative reviews are really things that are of a concern to you. What we’re trying to say is that if you’re looking to purchase one of these units and you know what you’re getting into (most notably low moisture removal rate), then it’s likely that you’ll find that your own experience will contradict that of the negative reviewers for this product. If you go into your purchase with the correct expectations you’ll find that this dehumidifier does what it claims to do and does do it fairly competently.
Ease of Use
The IVADM10 is very easy to use. Simply turn the unit on and it will start dehumidifying immediately. When its water collection tank fills up to capacity the “Full” LED will turn on and the dehumidifier will stop dehumidifying. Simply remove the tank, empty it, and replace it and the dehumidifier will resume normal operation.
The manual for this dehumidifier is easy to read and follow. Our only complaint is that temperatures and volumes are given in SI units. For example, the recommend ambient temperature in which you should operate the dehumidifier is given in degrees Celsius and the water tank capacity is given in liters. It would have been nice to see the manufacturer adjust these numbers and units for a US audience.
Water Tank Size
The IVADM10′s water tank has a capacity of 17 ounces. Recall from our earlier discussion of the unit’s moisture removal rate that it’s rated by the manufacturer to remove up to 6.08 ounces of moisture per day. This means that you can leave the dehumidifier on for two to three days before needing to empty its 17 ounce tank.
Like every other thermo-electric dehumidifier on the market the IVADM10 is highly portable. The components making up the dehumidifier are all very small and light – the Peltier module weighs next to nothing, the aluminum heat sinks are light, the fan is light, and the plastic outer shell is light. The IVADM10, specifically, is also very small. It can easily be placed under a sink, in a closet, etc.
We were not able to obtain any information regarding the manufacturer’s warranty on this item.
The IVADM10 is one of the least expensive thermo-electric dehumidifiers we tested. It retails for approximately $40. Comparable units are similarly priced. The Evadry EDV-1100 is slightly more expensive – it retails for about $60. The Gurin DHMD-210 is normally the same price – it retails for about $40 also.
If you’re comparing this model to other Ivation units, the IVADM15 is also about $40, the IVADM20 is about $50, and the more heavy duty IVADM35 and IVADM40 are about $90 and about $100, respectively.
To put it bluntly, the IVADM10 is a cheap dehumidifier. It has a low price and with that low price comes limited functionality. If you have a mild humidity problem in a small room and you’re patient enough to allow the dehumidifier to dehumidify over several days, then the IVADM10 can be a good option for you.
The IVADM10 removes moisture faster and more effectively than both the Evadry EDV-1100 and the Gurin DHMD-210. It also uses less electricity to do so. For these reasons we recommend the Ivation over both other units.
Do we recommend the IVADM10 over the more heavy duty IVADM35 or IVADM45? We invite you to read our review for each of those units (by clicking on the link over their model numbers) and decide for yourself whether the improved performance you’ll see out of them is worth their larger price tags.