Many people use a food dehydrator as a cost effective alternative for using an oven or air-drying food to preserve it since both options can be time consuming and less energy efficient than using a food dehydrator . Since most of us are on tighter budgets these days, price becomes an important part of our decision making when choosing commercial dehydrating equipment. This is why it may be helpful to familiarize yourself with the types of food dehydrators available on the market today. See our guide below for a list of 10 important questions you need to answer when comparing commercial dehydrating equipment.
1) How many trays will I need?
2) Do I want an expandable unit that can later accommodate more trays if needed, or do I only plan to use a few at a time?
3) What are my budget limitations? Are there any models out there for under $100 dollars that meet my needs/capabilities requirement?
4) Am I just looking for basic dehydrator with no bells and whistles or do I really want one with special timers & digital control panels?
5) Are the materials used in commercial dehydrating equipment made of glass or plastic?
6) Does it have a fan to aid in the dehydration process and if so, is the unit self-cleaning?
7) What size is my food that I want to dehydrate? Do I just need a few trays or do I plan on drying larger quantities at one time?
8) Will this require much counter space in my home when in use or should it easily fit into cabinets when not in use?
9) What type of thermostat does it come with (manual dials, digital)? Is it accurate +/- 5 degrees Fahrenheit?
10) Will I need various accessories such as a fruit roll-sheet or jerky gun.
10) Will I need various accessories such as a fruit roll-sheet or jerky gun?
If the commercial dehydrating equipment you’re considering purchasing does not have an adjustable thermostat, then you may want to invest in a digital thermometer so that you can monitor the internal temperature of your unit while it is running. We recommend this model from Lavatools . It features a clip on back which attaches to the side of your unit and sends alerts when the desired temperature has been reached.