Meaco are a real force when it comes to manufacturing dehumidifiers. Not only have they produced consistently high quality and effective dehumidifiers for over a quarter of a century but, in recent years, they have led the way in dehumidifier innovation. And, in our opinion, are leaving their competitors standing still.
In recognition of their impressive strides (more on this below) we’ve awarded Meaco our dehumidifier manufacturer of the year award. In this guide, we provide our opinion on 4 of Meaco’s top models in our comparison table (after hands-on testing ALL of them).
Plus, we’ll lift the hood on 2 of Meaco’s most innovative models as trialed them for a full year to tackle everyday problems around the home – from drying washing to clearing heavy condensation and give our honest opinion on how well they performed.
So, if you’re considering a Meaco dehumidifier for your home you’ve come to the right place.
Our Top Picks & Recommended Meaco Dehumidifiers
Prices & information last updated on 2020-08-10
Why Meaco Dehumidifiers?
Before we move onto looking at the results of our year-long trial we would be remiss if we didn’t talk a little bit about why Meaco caught our attention.
After-all, there are more than a few good dehumidifier manufacturers who produce effective units for domestic and commercial use.
But, where Meaco have really excelled is by making a series of clever iterative changes based directly on careful consideration of their customers’ needs and DIRECT feedback.
The end result is that they have not only innovated drastically in a marketplace which is traditionally slow moving but they have responded and adapted in a very unique way that NONE of their competitors have.
Using this fresh approach they have produced some of the best dehumidifiers we’ve ever tested with unparalleled performance, and unique, one-of-a-kind features. This has caused Meaco to jump light years ahead of their competitors – who will soon, no doubt, be attempting to clone these changes.
Here are just some of Meaco’s recent innovations and ethos as a company which impressed us:
1 Sterilizing ionizer
Many dehumidifiers sport ionizers which are only effective at removing dust from the air and only within a one-meter radius of the dehumidifier. The DD8L Zambezi was the first dehumidifier to arrive complete with a sterilizing ionizer. This powerful system not only eradicates viruses, mould, bacteria and dust from the air in your home but is also effective over an incredible 10m range. No other domestic dehumidifier can match this impressive performance.
2 Responds to consumer needs
Some of the most valuable feedback you can receive as a manufacturer is from the people who use your products. Rather than ignore this feedback or view it as criticism, Meaco listened and responded.
In fact, they listened so well they took 3 years developing and incorporating their customers’ feedback into their dehumidifiers. To our knowledge, no other dehumidifier manufacturer has responded to their client’s needs in such a positive way.
3 Across the board innovations
Meaco were the first to introduce 6 world firsts into a desiccant dehumidifier ranging from featuring a digital display to a daily run timer and energy saving Laundry+ plus technology. Individually these are wonderful improvements but combined they create an impressive dehumidifier which is designed to be easy to use, run efficiently and save money.
4 DC motor
The 25L Dehumidryer was the first dehumidifier in Europe to incorporate a DC motor into its design. Whilst this might not sound all that exciting it is important because it helps reduce the running costs of the machine.
In fact, the harder a DC motor works the less power it consumes. Meaning you can use the Dehumidryer regularly without the fear of running up large electricity bills. This was a smart move by Meaco who seems aware that energy efficiency is important to its customers (because of ever-increasing energy bills) not just raw power.
5 Environmental concerns
As with any products containing circuit boards and electronics recycling is important. Many circuit boards contain heavy toxins such as cadmium, mercury and lead. These chemicals, if not disposed of properly, can leach into the earth and contaminate food and water supplies.
So it is great to see that Meaco are part of the ‘Distributor Take Back Scheme’. They provide instructions on how to make sure your old Meaco products are recycled safely on their website: https://www.meaco.com/recycle-old-machines
6 Winner of numerous awards
Both The Good Housekeeping and Which? have awarded many of Meaco’s dehumidifiers a best buy award.
7 Comprehensive website
The mark of a good company is the level of support provided after purchase. An area which Meaco excels. Looking at their website not only do they feature live chat (an easy way to get help and advice) but it is also very easy to contact them.
They also provide manuals and guides for their dehumidifiers (so you’ll never be caught out if you lose your manual) and they even provide an easy facility to register your warranty. Which shows a real commitment to the products they produce and their customers that buy them.
Long Term Testing Results: Our Review of the 25L Dehumidryer and DD8L Zambezi
So, we’ve waxed lyrical about Meaco’s innovations but what really counts is just how well these dehumidifiers work and how long they last.
Well we’ve hands-on tested all 4 of Meaco’s dehumidifiers shown in our comparison table above and we put 2 of these models through their paces for a full year. This is what we discovered:
Meaco Zambezi Review: A Year Long Test
A Brief Overview:
To say the DD8L Zambezi was just ‘another dehumidifier’ would be understating the sheer amount of smart technology that has been packed into its unassuming case.
In fact, the Zambezi has been fashioned with 6 world firsts (for a desiccant dehumidifer) ranging from important health features such as its Sterilising Ionizer to user experience improvements in the form of a unique, digital LCD display.
It also features an impressive array of functions which are designed to lower running costs whilst ensuring your home remains damp free. For example, Meaco Control Logic ensures the dehumidifier only runs when it is needed and reduces energy consumption by switching off the dehumidifier when your desired humidity threshold has been reached. While the Meaco Control 20+ will cause the dehumidifier to temporarily kick into high gear when the humidity raises 20% above your set threshold.
Both of these functions ensure your home remains dry whilst only using more energy when required. That’s quite an impressive resume of functionality by itself.
However, Meaco did not stop there. You’ll also find their Laundry+ technology within the Zambezi. This automatically adjusts the Zambezi’s energy usage between 650, 350 and 40 watts to ensure your clothes are dried as cheaply as possible. A very handy function since dehumidifiers are incredibly useful for drying your clothes during the colder Autumn and Winter months.
Showering produces a lot of humidity in the home. After a few people have showered condensation saturates the walls and windows and humid steam fills the bathroom like a fog. So, this seemed a first ideal test for the Zambezi’s dehumidifying power!
On placing the Zambezi into the bathroom the initial Relative Humidity (RH) was at 71% and a temperature of 24°C. To test how fast it could suck moisture from the air we ran the Zambezi at its most powerful setting and closed the door.
After 10 minutes the relative humidity had fallen to 59% and the temperature had risen to 27°C! So, the bathroom was quite balmy! After a further 10 minutes, the bathroom was pretty much dry and the RH had fallen to the 50% mark. A perfect job. Virtually all of the condensation from the window had also vanished – which was great to see because this would often remain damp for long periods after showering.
In fact, during the test we noticed the Zambezi adjusting its fan speed in response to the humidity in the room. Proof that its smart, energy saving technology appeared to be working.
So far so good. But, we’ve been using the Zambezi for the past year across the home to tackle a variety of problems. Here are our observations:
Our Observations After a Year Of Use:
The Zambezi may not appear the most portable of dehumidifiers measuring in at 35.8cm x 20cm x 54.8cm but it is, in fact, incredibly easy to lift and carry. This is in part thanks to the fact it only weighs 7.8Kg and because it has been fashioned with a very sturdy, folding carry handle.
This portability is key because it increases its usefulness. If you have a damp problem upstairs or in an outside shed then moving the Zambezi to wherever it is needed is fast and easy and allows it tackle damp virtually anywhere.
Because the Zambezi is so portable it has taken its far share of knocks and bumps as it has been moved around. However it has withstood these daily rigors incredibly well.
There are a few marks on the plastic case but we found these can be cleaned off and no visible damage has remained. It was also good to see that despite this abuse the plastic case has remained intact with no splits, cracks or chips.
We have also observed some noticeable benefits to using the Zambezi in the home. A pink mould (serratia marcescens) used to grow on our bathroom ceiling due to poor air circulation and damp conditions – particularly during the winter months when opening windows to reduce humidity is not feasible.
Since using the Zambezi to quickly eradicate damp after bathing this is no longer a problem and the mould has not returned. We have also noticed that the ‘clammy’ feeling rooms, such as our kitchen used to have, have gone.
Over the course of a year, we have noticed no noticeable drop in performance and the Zambezi still works as well as it did on day one.
Generally speaking this dehumidifier requires little maintenance. Typically the only manual intervention you’ll need to perform is to empty the tank and to clean the filter every week or two (depending on use).
Emptying the tank is easy and the Zambezi will beep to alert you it needs emptying in addition to showing a ‘full tank’ icon on the display. One thing we did note is that the top of the tank is covered with a plastic lid which has a square hole in the top right corner for emptying. Occasionally water can slosh out of the hole whilst you are emptying it if you pull the tank out too quickly or in a jerking motion.
As for the tank itself: the anti mould protection does work and there is no sign of mould or its associating musty odour accumulating within the tank.
When it comes to the filter you do need to give this the occasional clean (as you do with most dehumidifiers) and a good vacuum or wash under a warm tap does a great job of keeping it spick and span – just remember to dry it fully before placing it back in the machine.
We did notice the Zambezi was especially sensitive to a dirty filter which caused it to show an error ‘C1’ on the display. After cleaning the filter and unplugging the device for 10 minutes the Zambezi soon fired back up. Since cleaning the filter regularly this error has not returned and we assumed it may have overheated. But, this was a fault on our part, not the appliance. There is even a sticker on the Zambezi reminding you to clean the filter regularly.
Whilst we don’t always take advantage of every last bit of functionality the Zambezi offers it has become an indispensable item within our home. Since having it many of the problems within the home caused by us creating excess condensation have vanished and it even keeps the bathroom nice and toasty!
It isn’t the cheapest dehumidifier around but its portability and ability to tackle any kind of condensation around the home and beyond make it possibly the best dehumidifier we’ve ever tested.
Meaco 25L Dehumidryer Review: A Year Long Test:
A Brief Overview:
The 25L Dehumidryer is a veritable power-house of a unit designed to provide a cheaper alternative to using a tumble dryer to dry clothes in your home. A motorised louvre and powerful fan emulate outdoor drying conditions and blasts warm air over your clothes whilst at the same time lowering the ambient humidity (it is a dehumidifier after all!).
In our ‘Why Meaco?’ section above we mentioned a DC motor as one of the many innovations Meaco have introduced into their dehumidifiers and the Dehumidryer features just such as the motor. This helps ensure the 25L is economical to use and on average it will cost around 4p per hour to run (based on 15.32p/kWh)
But, a DC motor isn’t the only feature Meaco have included to help reduce the running costs of the 25L. An ‘Auto’ mode monitors the ambient humidity and automatically switches between actively drawing humidity from the air, or not, and whether to use a higher or lower fan speed – all depending on how high or low the humidity level is. This intuitive technology ensures the dehumidifying power of the 25L is only applied when needed and is an excellent money saving feature.
We couldn’t finish our introduction to the 25L without mentioning the ‘Laundry’ mode. This setting configures the 25L to run in the most efficient way possible to dry washing. You can find out more about this and the results from our test below:
Test Results: What We Think
Drying washing seemed an obvious first test for the 25L.
Pressing the power button and then pressing the ‘mode’ button twice places the 25L in ‘Laundry Drying’ mode. At this setting, the 25L activates its 4th (and highest) fan speed setting which is reserved exclusively for drying washing.
The air flow it produces is very impressive (280m³/h) and it is part of the reason why the Dehumidryer is so effective at drying washing. After placing the 25L next to a washing hanging on a drying-rack (as Meaco advises) we could see the clothes moving as though it was in a gentle breeze. We’re sure this was a large part of some of the impressive results we observed. The 25L dried thinner garments, such as cotton t-shirts and bed linen, remarkably quickly. In fact, it took around 30-40 minutes for these items to be virtually dry.
As for thicker garments or items with material which produces a heavy hemline the Dehumidryer does take longer. The time varies by we often found that 3-5 hours is often enough time to dry these kinds of items, depending on the ambient temperature, with really cold days sometimes taking a bit longer. Especially if the room is cool.
This is still a very impressive drying time considering how little the Dehumidryer costs to run and the other added advantages it provides:
To begin with the room the 25L is working in will warm up due to the operation of the dehumidifier. This increases the efficiency of the device because it can remove more moisture from the air at warmer temperatures. This, in turn, drys your washing faster.
Another benefit is that the excess condensation, musty odours and damp which often comes by drying your clothes on radiators or heated drying racks are completely eliminated. This was a huge benefit for us because it not only left our clothes smelling fresher but also allowed us to stop using our heated drying rack – which was expensive to run and no-where near as effective as the 25L.
The 25L is not as fast as a tumble dryer, but it was never designed to be. What it was designed to do was dry your washing effectively and cost-effectively and at this, the 25L excels. When you combine this with the additional benefits above and the fact it still does the job of a regular dehumidifier the 25L represents excellent value for money.
Our Observations After a Year Of Use:
Because the Dehumidryer is a compressor dehumidifier it is quite hefty and weighs in at 15Kg making it one of heavier dehumidifiers you can buy – which is about as heavy as domestic dehumidifiers get.
Moving it from room to room is, however, fairly easy thanks to the caster wheels on the base of the unit. But moving it up and down stairs you can feel the weight of this machine – so if you’re looking for an easily portable unit the Zambezi might be a better option.
Build and functions:
Just like the Zambezi this appliance is very well built and after a years use this machine is in excellent shape and shows no signs of any physical deterioration and has withstood the rigors of family life exceptionally well.
For instance, the child lock has prevented one particular nephew of ours from constantly pressing the buttons and the protective grill located inside the louvre vent has done an excellent job of protecting little fingers from touching the fan. It has also protected the machine itself from the odd toy and even sweets that have been dropped in the vent (by the same nephew in-case you were curious).
Setting up the 25L has also been incredibly easy. One press of the power button and pressing the mode button twice is all that is needed to activate laundry mode. Setting the timer is also very easy and a dedicated timer button runs in 1-hour increments up to 12 hours. Typically we’ll leave the 25L to run for 3-4 hours using the time and laundry dry functions overnight or whilst we our at work, and the combination has been very effective.
When it comes to maintenance the Dehumidryer is virtually hands off. As with most dehumidifiers, you will need to clean the filter regularly. But, we’ve found the Dehumidryer to not nearly be as sensitive as the Zambezi in this regard. In fact, we’ve occasionally forgotten to clean the filter for a month or more of regular use and the Dehumidryer has powered on.
Emptying the water tank is also exceptionally easy thanks to the folding carry handle. Plus because the tank itself can hold a whopping 5 litres we’ve often found that it only needs emptying after 2-3 days worth of drying washing.
Along with the Zambezi, the 25L is one appliance we’d be genuinely hard-pressed to part with. It is our go-to appliance for drying washing and even though it doesn’t get used around the home as much as the Zambezi it is often found quietly working away drying our washing at all hours.
So can it replace your tumble dryer? We’d definitely say yes and in our home it has…
To Sum Up
Dehumidifiers might not be the most interesting of home appliances but the benefits they bring to the home cannot be understated. Damp, mould and mildew can lead to health complications such as wheezing, coughing or eye and nose irritation. Not only this damp can cause expensive damage to your home.
A dehumidifier prevents both of these problems occurring so its good to see Meaco providing a slew of well-considered improvements to this understated home appliance. During our year using two of their latest models, we found them indispensable around our home. From rapidly drying our bathroom after showering or kitchen after cooking to drying washing and removing condensation from windows, there uses are many. When coupled with Meaco’s exceptional build quality and useful features we’re happy to give Meaco our Dehumidifier Manufacturer of the year award.
If after reading this guide you think a Meaco dehumidifier might be right for you we recommend taking a look at their ABC range. These dehumidifiers are quiet, effective and very budget friendly. However, if you’re happy to invest more in your dehumidifier, the 25L or Zambezi are excellent options to consider.
Bestselling Meaco Dehumidifiers
- Top of the Which? Best Buy table since 2014
- Superior compressor performance right down to 10°C -
- Two- year warranty - can be extended to five years
- Ultra-Quiet – Meaco’s quietest compressor dehumidifier at just 35dB
- 12 Litre Performance – Removes up to 12 litres of water per day
- Energy Efficient – Just 2.4p per hour based on 15.2p/kWh
- Verified low energy consumption - ultra-low running costs for your home
- Meaco Control Logic - Smart functionality ensures maximum efficiency
- Comes with a free HEPA filter - Helping clean and purify your home's air
Prices & information last updated on 2020-08-09