The overall UK market for dehumidifiers has experienced modest growth in recent years, with 1-3% growth estimated in 2012/2013, though growth in 2014 was significantly higher at 9%. The positive trends have continued in 2015, although a slowdown in construction in the latter half of 2015 is thought to have impacted on overall market growth, resulting in estimated growth of around 3% in 2015. Key market influences include a more buoyant economy, growth in the industrial sector and higher levels of construction in the domestic and commercial sectors.
The domestic sector accounted for just over 40% of the market in 2014. This sector has experienced good growth in recent years supported by RMI and rising levels of housebuilding. In addition, the extensive flooding and prolonged wet weather in 2014 that affected some areas of the UK, supported demand for dehumidifiers. Other drivers in the domestic sector include a higher level of product awareness; increased awareness of condensation problems; greater marketing activity by manufacturers; wider availability of dehumidifiers; and increasing price competition supported by the growth of lower value imported products.
The performance of the non-domestic sector has been mixed in recent years, largely due to the varied performance of different end-use sectors. Key drivers for growth include rising demand and investment in, among others, several industrial sectors including the food processing and manufacturing sector, pharmaceuticals, electronics and automotive. A higher level of building and construction activity is supporting the dehumidifier market, particularly building dryers to the hire sector and direct to building contractors. Other sectors include growing demand for warehousing and storage facilities, largely driven by online purchasing. This often involves electronic products or similar, where the use of dehumidification is vital to ensure the quality of the product. This is also an important factor in other sensitive ‘electronic’ environments such as data centres.
In general, the positive trend in the dehumidifier market is expected to continue in the medium term, with the market forecast to see annual growth of 4-5% between 2016 and 2019. In product terms, it seems likely that there will continue to be a shift to greater integration of products offering air handling and air control features. The focus on energy efficiency is likely to support the growth of multi-functional products offering air conditioning and dehumidification etc. A prominent feature in the dehumidifier market in recent years has been the high level of price competition, driven by the introduction of many foreign and ‘own-brand’ products, particularly in the domestic sector – and this is likely to continue. There is some overlap in the non-domestic sector with heating, air conditioning, ventilation suppliers also offering dehumidifiers. It seems likely that the supply structure will become increasingly blurred, with companies offering products that provide greater integration across the air handling/air quality industry.