Choosing the Right Humidifier
When looking at humidifiers, try to factor in all the costs. Impeller and ultrasonic vaporizers might be less expensive initially, but the cost of using distilled water or demineralization cartridges and filters could make them less cost effective in the long run. Evaporative filters have wicks that will need to be replaced which can also run the cost up. While warm mist humidifiers use more electricity to run. Essentially, choosing may come down to personal choice.
No matter which type of humidifier you decide to buy, size should be considered. For a four to five room house, a humidifier needs to output about two to three gallons of water a day. Make sure that it will be easy to fill. Some models come with a filler hose that allow it to connect to a faucet. Other filters might be able to be filled using a bucket or jug. If the humidifier comes with tanks, make sure they will not be too big to fit under a faucet or too heavy when full for you to carry.
It is best to purchase a humidifier that has adjustable fan speeds. Finding one that has a built in humidistat and an automatic shutoff is also a good idea. Some brands will automatically turn off when humidity levels reach a certain level. This ensures that your home doesn't get too humid, which can also cause health problems. Using Your Humidifier
Humidifiers can make a home healthier and more comfortable. Using a humidifier incorrectly, however, can make be more damaging than not using one at all. Always follow the manufacturer's guidelines, and contact your physician if you develop respiratory symptoms that might be associated from using your humidifier.
Humidifiers should be placed about six inches away from an inside wall. Since warm, moist air rises, it is better to place the humidifier on the first floor. Use a hygrometer to measure your monitor the humidity levels in your home. If water begins to condense on windows or the area around the humidifier becomes damp, either relocate the humidifier or reduce its use.
It is very important that all humidifiers are cleaned frequently when in use - at least every third day. Empty the tank and use a brush to clean it. Remove any scale, deposits, or film that has formed on the interior surfaces and wipe them dry. Always unplug the unit before cleaning. The manufacturer's suggestions on the use of cleaning products or disinfectants should be followed. If they do not provide them, clean surfaces with water and a 3 percent solution of hydrogen peroxide.
Whenever the humidifier is not being used, its tank should be emptied and wiped dry. Throw out any used demineralization cartridges, cassettes, or filters, and store the unit in a dry location. When it is time to use the humidifier again, clean the unit thoroughly first.
Looking to purchase a new humidifier? Check out our Humidifiers Buyer's Guide.