INTRODUCTION TO HUMIDIFIERS
Have you ever heard the advice that getting a humidifier can help with the symptoms your body experiences from dry air?
If you don’t know a lot about humidifiers, you are not alone. However, you’ll be happy to know that these devices are very simple and widely available for purchase with a lot of different options to fit your needs.
Finding the best humidifier to fit your needs is easy if you know what to look for. Here we have compiled all the information you need to know about single room humidifiers. You won’t find specific information about whole house humidifiers (although some of the same things apply to both).
There are a number of benefits you can get from helping to moisten the air around you. In the winter time, the air in your house can get as dry as the air in the Sahara Desert! That may come as a surprise but it’s absolutely true. No wonder you feel itchy, can’t breathe well and feel the need to cover your cracked skin.
Humidifiers have a fairly self-explanatory name. The purpose of these devices is to add humidity to the air in your home. Single room humidifiers are smaller devices that are portable and can be used in any room of the house to add humidity to a more concentrated area. There are also whole house humidifiers that hook up to your central air system and spread the humid air all around the house.
So, what are the benefits you stand to get from adding more moisture and humidity to the air? When you increase the level of relative humidity – it is relative to the temperature of the air – you can gain these benefits:
Babies and young children tend to feel the effects of dry air even more than adults. They are smaller and more prone to uncomfortable skin conditions or breathing problems caused by dry air all around them. Keeping a small humidifier in your child’s room can help to keep their skin from drying out, might improve their breathing and in some cases can also help them avoid getting sick.
If you suffer from allergies, the right kind of humidifier might be the best thing you ever buy. Choose wisely to make sure you get one that is ideal for allergy sufferers and you can benefit from having more comfort in your nasal passages and an easier time breathing during cooler months. Allergies stuff you up and dry out your nasal passages, sinuses, throat and eyes but a humidifier will help to keep you moist and healthy no matter what the air is like around you.
Dry skin causes many uncomfortable conditions like eczema, rashes, itchiness and much more. You can help to avoid any of these uncomfortable skin conditions with a simple humidifier to keep your skin feeling moist and fresh all year round.
As mentioned above, when your throat and nasal passages are dried out you can get very uncomfortable and might feel horribly stuffed up. A single room humidifier might be the best cure for you as it will help to keep you moist on the inside, allowing your body to function as it should and to stay comfortable as you breathe.
Did you know that drier air feels colder than moist air? This is why sometimes the summer months feel hotter at the beach or in tropical areas than in temperate or desert areas. Dry air makes moisture evaporate off of your skin more quickly while humid air keeps the moisture on your body for longer and keeps you warmer. If you can increase the humidity in your home, you may be able to turn your furnace down as many as 3 – 5 degrees in the winter! This saves many families over 5% on their annual power bill.
Just as your skin and body suffer from dryness, your home may also be suffering from the dry air. If your wallpaper is peeling, your wooden floors seem to be cracking or you are noticing more creakiness in the home than normal you may want to invest in a good humidifier. When wood and other building materials become dry they tend to crack and warp causing damage to the home. Humid air can help to keep the materials moist and avoid these issues altogether.
TOP 3 SINGLE ROOM HUMIDIFIERS
1. Seneo 2.6L Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier, Essential Oil Diffuser
This is a great unit to use in your bedroom overnight as it emits a soft and calming LED light through the plastic shield as it operates.
The Seneo has a 2.6 liter water tank that can last for around 6 hours on high, enough to get you through the night comfortably. Once the water runs out, the device automatically shuts off to keep you safe and to lower your energy bill.
In addition to the normal features of the device, it also acts as an essential oil diffuser. Some oils can work well with the humidity and help to calm you or improve your sleep overnight while also making your room smell great. There is a separate tray for oils near the base of the device so you can use whichever oils you like and can keep track of how much you are using.
Ultrasonic technology is used to create the cool mist that comes from this humidifier, making it less prone to bacterial growth or mold issues and avoiding any heat creation. Cool mist is great for your room as it will not affect the overall temperature of the room, has the same great effect as any warm mist or steam humidifier and it is safe if you walk through the mist.
– Built in essential oil diffuser
– Easy to set up and refill
– Water level is visible through the cover –
– LED lights are soothing and pleasant
– Not ideal for constant daytime use as the tank is too small and needs to be refilled often throughout the day
– Some customers have experienced leaks upon arrival. However, it’s possible to get a replacement through Amazon.com
The Seneo 2.6L single room humidifier acts as a good device for those looking to get an overnight humidifier for their room. It’s well built for this purpose and works just as it should. If you want a humidifier to use during the day or for large areas, this is not a good device for your needs.
2. Bolegner Multi-Color Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier, Aroma Essential Oil Diffuser, 2.4 Liter Tank
One of the great things about this ultrasonic single room humidifier is that it gives off almost no noise. You can hardly tell that the device is on during the night, which it perfect for those light sleepers that might get disturbed by noises as they sleep.
It has a 2.4 liter tank that lasts about 8 – 10 hours, so you can get the perfect amount of humidity for the entire night as you are sleeping. Once the water tank is running low, the device will automatically shut off the help preserve it and keep you safe.
This humidifier also has a changing LED color display that cycles between 7 different colors or stays on the color of your choice. Even after the water runs out, the LED colors will still keep running to make your room into a more soothing environment.
A built-in filter will help to ensure that the moisture you are getting in the air is free of germs or bacteria while the ultrasonic mechanism will also assist in killing harmful bacteria before they can do any damage. You can also take advantage of the essential oil diffuser that is built into the humidifier to add aromatherapy benefits to your already improved air quality.
– Beautiful LED light settings
– Easy to put together and use
– Cleaning is simple
– Device is very quiet
– Added expense of purchasing filters
– Oil diffuser does not always have a long life
If you’re looking for a bedroom unit, this is the kind of humidifier you can use easily without the hassle of trying to place a larger floor unit somewhere. It has a long running time, the built-in oil diffuser is great for aromatherapy and it has a soothing appearance with LED colored displays. Not a great unit for those that need to humidify during the entire daytime or have a large space to humidify.
3. Honeywell Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier, HCM-350
Honeywell is a famous brand for many household appliances and thankfully this single room humidifier does not disappoint those looking for a larger device.
With its 1.5 gallon tank you can expect to have this humidifier running for 24 hours without it needing to be refilled again. The tank is easy to fill by simply placing it in the sink and removing the cap. It is built to sit nicely in the sink without toppling over.
This is a cool mist humidifier. While it does not produce heat to kill bacteria, it uses UV lighting technology to get rid of bacteria, mold, and other problematic growth before they can cause any issues. All of the mist that is released into the air passes through filters as well, helping to ensure that you are breathing clean and fresh air without any mildew smell or mold problems.
Replacement filters are easy enough to find for this device, and they will only need to be changed every 6–7 months assuming constant use. Regular maintenance is easy to undertake as the unit disassembles to expose its individual pieces very easily for you to clean.
– 3 year limited warranty ensures you get the best from your humidifier
– Filters help to keep your air cleaner
– Easy to find replacement filters and to do maintenance
– Great for large spaces
– Kills bacteria before they can get into the air
– Runs quietly, despite the large size
– Tank is heavier and harder to carry for refills
– Larger size makes it more difficult to place in a room
Anyone in need of a larger unit to run 24/7 can get some great benefits from this humidifier. Not only will it help you at night without disturbing you but during the day the humidity levels will also not drop down again to create a dry air environment. It’s a good unit for medium to large spaces in your home.
ξ COMPARISON TABLE OF POPULAR HUMIDIFIERS
TOP 3 WHOLE HOUSE HUMIDIFIERS
1. Aprilaire 500 Humidifier 24V Whole House Humidifier
For well-insulated houses that are 3000 square feet, this Aprilaire model is a good choice. On the highest setting it will use up to 0.5 gallons per hour of water to create humid air although the actual water usage is about 3 gallons per hour to achieve this moisture level.
This system is built into your central ventilation and works alongside your furnace. The hot air from the furnace blows through the wet filter and collects water particles to carry along as it goes to different parts of the house. This makes the notoriously dry furnace air considerably more humid and pleasant.
Aprilaire 500 has a digital control that helps to keep usage of the device to a minimum, saving you from higher electrical and water bills from over-usage. It is easy to install in your system and lasts for years without failing.
– Works well for multi-level homes as well as single levels, depending on total square footage
– Start feeling the effects of the humidity in a matter of hours
– Compatible in homes with furnaces and other alternative heat supplies (wood stoves, gas fireplaces etc)
– Install the unit in just a few hours on your own with the included directions
– Recommended connection to hot water line not cold water
– Some issues reported with electrical controls
If you have a larger home and you want something that you will not have to mess with, this is the type of unit you will want to look at. As long as the total square footage of your home is close to or less than 3000 square feet, you will be able to use this
2. Vornado Evap40 4-Gallon Evaporative Humidifier
Homes of up to 1000 square feet will be able to get the benefits of this evaporative humidifier. You can easily set the automatic humidistat to your desired relative humidity level and let the automatic function on the device balance out the levels of humidity in your home.
While this unit is not designed for very large homes, it is very effective for the rooms it does cover making it easier for you to be comfortable in your house during the winter. This Vornado unit has a 4 gallon tank that you can quickly and efficiently refill. The tank will last for around 24 hours, meaning you only have to refill it once a day to keep your house humid and cozy.
– Easy to disassemble and clean, avoiding bacteria and mold growth
– Can fit anywhere in your home
– Lasts for an entire day
– Humid air goes through a filter, cutting down on unwanted particles in the air
– Great for long lasting, extended use in the home
– Not intended for larger homes above 1000 square feet, unless you get multiple units
– Water containers are heavy when full
If you want a console-type whole house humidifier that will deliver solid performance for a smaller home, this can be a good unit for you. It doesn’t need to be refilled more than daily for normal use, maintenance is relatively simple and the humidity levels will be well-balanced while it is running.
3. TaoTronics Ultrasonic Humidifier
Apartments and smaller homes can benefit from this unit but one single unit is not meant to humidify large homes or huge spaces. With multiple units you can cover the whole house very efficiently although one unit is enough for areas of around 540 square feet.
The humidified air travels through a micro-porous filter that traps many different micro-organisms and other problematic things in the air. A fully filled tank of water equals to just over a gallon, giving you around 15 hours of operation time.
Being an ultrasonic humidifier, this unit is extremely quiet. It will not bother even the lightest sleeper if it is running overnight. After the water has run out, the humidifier will automatically stop operating to save power and keep the device safer.
– Easy to refill and use
– Convenient automatic features
– Unit can be placed anywhere around the home
– Great for large rooms and for homes with wide open spaces
– Ideal for many apartments or single floors of multi-floor homes
– Need to refill the base first and then the tank, or else you will fill the tank twice
– Multiple units are necessary for larger homes
While this TaoTronics whole house humidifier is not meant for very large spaces, it’s a great device for those homes that just need one level of the multi-level home humidified or else for smaller apartment homes. If you want a great and highly efficient humidifier unit for a large, open room this is also a great choice.
ζ COMPARISON CHART OF TOP WHOLE HOUSE HUMIDIFIERS
After you select your humidifier, how can you then make sure you get the best results from it? Proper use and maintenance can help you get the most out of your new device. Here are some tips to help guide your use of your humidifier:
– Using The Right Water
If your water has a lot of minerals it might not be a good idea to use it in the humidifier. Not only will it possibly clog up the device and cause problems but if the minerals become part of the mist or steam you can have issues breathing in minerals that shouldn’t be in your body. This might not be a big deal unless you are in a very hard water area. To avoid this problem, get a humidifier with a good filter or use filtered, distilled, or purified water.
– Cleaning Your Humidifier
Humidifiers must be cleaned regularly. Although they only use water, they can trap other things in the water basin which will either cause problems with the machine itself or will get into the air you are breathing. Once the humidifier runs out, you can disassemble it and wipe it out with a disinfectant. Make sure to get all of the cleaning products rinsed out before you use it again! Doing this cleaning routine regularly will help you avoid any mold or bacterial growth inside the water basin.
– How To Maintain A Humidifier
When you read humidifier reviews, you can sometimes see people talking about how simple or difficult maintenance is for a particular humidifier being reviewed, but what does this usually involve? Generally, maintenance involves filling and re-filling the water tank, cleaning out the water basin, changing filters, and thoroughly cleaning the entire unit. These tasks are easier on some humidifiers than on others, such as smaller humidifiers. The size of the water tank can be a deal-breaker for those who cannot carry larger loads so make sure that won’t be an issue for you before you make a purchase!
– Checking Your Humidifying Progress
How can you know when you are accomplishing your goal of humidifying the air? You can easily find out how high or low the relative humidity levels are in a certain room or your home in general with a humidistat. This device is similar to a thermostat (in fact, some even come included on a regular thermostat), except that it detects the humidity levels in the room around it, tell you exactly what percentage of relative humidity the air holds.
– Avoiding Mold And Bacteria Growth
Cleaning out the water basin regularly is not the only thing you should do to avoid mold. Make sure that the area you place your humidifier in is not collecting moisture in any way. If moisture and condensation are collecting around the humidifier, turn it to a lower setting or place it somewhere else in the room to avoid any mold problems. Similarly, if you find that condensation is forming anywhere around the house, especially on the windows, you might need to consult your humidistat to make sure your humidity levels are in the ideal zone. Condensation can lead to mold growth around the edges of your windows and window frames.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
Humidifiers are a great investment to make when you are suffering from symptoms of dry air in your home. They add the necessary moisture back into the air you’re breathing and give you a lot of benefits into the bargain.
Find out for yourself just how good you can feel when you use a humidifier.
Check out our list of the 3 best humidifier units on Amazon.com and place your order today!