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MeacoDry ABC 12L Dehumidifier review: Driving away the damp

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(Pocket-lint) – One minute it’s boiling hot and you’re in need of a fan – the Meaco 1056P does a stellar job for that – the next minute it’s freezing, you’ve got washing drying indoors, condensation building up on the windows, and are in need of another solution. Seasons, eh?

That’s where a Meaco dehumidifier can save the day. We’ve been using the MeacoDry ABC 12L Dehumidifier for some months to see what a difference it makes and what applications it can improve in the home.

Design

  • Body finish: White only; Top finish: White, Black, Silver, Blue, Green
  • Dimensions: 46.3 x 30 x 25cm / Weight: 11.6kgs
  • Tank size: 2.6 litres / Hose drainage optional
  • Digital display and mode button controls
  • Washable dust filter
  • Auto-off/Timed off

A dehumidifier is an electronic box that sucks in surrounding air and removes some moisture content from it to maintain a relative humidity level in the air.

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If you have high humidity in the home and that causes problems with condensation or damp – or could cause such problems in the future, whether your home is brand new or a bit older – then a dehumidifier is a very sensible way to condense that moisture into water in a tank system and then, well, go and water your plants with it. Job done, see ya later excess humidity.

That’s not all the MeacoDry ABC 12L Dehumidifier can do though: it’s got a Laundry mode which, when pressed, ups the extraction rate ante, in turn significantly helping to remove moisture from drying clothes. No, you won’t get that fresh and soft outdoorsy feel from such a drying technique – but when it’s raining outside and you’ve got sheets to dry it’s an absolute life-saver, and less expensive than hammering out a heat-based dryer too.

There’s a digital display up top which tells you a relative humidity reading. You can then set what you wish to maintain that humidity at – from 30 to 80 in increments of 5 – or if you wish for it to be continuous (CO). It can be quite startling to see how high humidity gets – we plonked the product in a bathroom to see what a hot shower would do to the surrounding air and it was, inevitably, quickly in the 90s (AKA a Hong Kong high summer in your home).

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One thing to note: there’s no wheels on Meaco’s ABC dehumidifier. That means if you want to move it that you’ll need to pick it up and cart it about – and at 11.6kgs it’s hardly light (heavier still if there’s some water in the tank). We think optional wheels included in the box would be a great way to wheel it from, say, kitchen to living room, with minimal fuss.

Performance

  • 12 litres extraction per day (at 80% relative humidity)
  • Two fan speeds only (Normal / Laundry mode)
  • Quiet Mark approved, 35dB-40dB (from 1m)

The fan settings are two fold: on or high (the latter also being Laundry mode). That’s your lot. At its lowest the sound level is said to be 35-40dB, which positions this product in “library quiet” territory. It absolutely is quiet, very much so, but as with any sustained sound output it’s more the frequency output which can distract – it’s got a hum that sensitive ears will find distracting, in the same way that a household fridge can be. Still, it needn’t be on all the time.

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This particular MeacoDry is the 12L model which, as its name suggests, can extract up to 12 litres of liquid a day (in 80 per cent relative humidity) – it’s got nothing to do with the condensing tank’s capacity. The 10L (yep, that’s 10 litres a day in 80rh) offers slightly less extraction, the 20L (20l/80rh) offers greater extraction.

We’ve found the MeacoDry ABC 12L to do a great job at sucking the moisture out and putting it into its 2.6 litre tank. That tank is easily removable by sliding it out from the rear of the product – although it’s a little messy to pour it away when full without sploshing some excess water about. We think this could be neater designed to avoid mishaps. There’s also an opening for a hose, if you wish to buy that accessory and never need to empty a tank manually (assuming the hose is properly appointed so its extraction ends up outside your home!).

We would rather have a larger tank in this model, though, as 2.6 litres can fill up fast if you’re drying washing. We’ve found it to get to full in under a day in such conditions, which is a surprise – but at least you know it’s doing a darn good job. If bigger is an essential then the ABC 20L offers a 5 litre tank, which is one avenue to resolve that conundrum.

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If the tank does get full then the product knows and will sound a subtle beeping alarm, complete with red light, to let you know it won’t do any more dehumidifying until you empty the tank. It doesn’t sound this alarm forever, thankfully, only for a short period of time. At least it won’t keep going and cause spills.

Verdict

The MeacoDry ABC 12L Dehumidifier is a super way to extract potentially damaging moisture from the air in your home. It’s also a great way to assist with drying washing indoors over the winter period when there’s no sun available or it’s just raining.

It’s not quite perfect – given the humming noise distraction, the relatively small tank capacity (relative extraction rate considered), and that it’s got no wheels to assist in moving it – but for what it does it’s a stellar bit of kit that you’ll be ever thankful for buying.

Or, more realistically, you’ll never really notice all the good it’s going – which is far preferable to finding damp or excess condensation damaging the walls and becoming a playground for potentially harmful mould growth. That kind of peace of mind makes it worth every penny.

And that’s coming from a test in a brand new house, one which complies with current building regulations and has always-on kitchen/bathroom fan extraction in place. Clearly, however, even such modern extraction isn’t good enough – as pointed out by the Meaco’s relative humidity level on its display – and is the reason why we’ll continue to use the ABC 12L Dehumidifier every single day.

Writing by Mike Lowe.





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