All the Basics on Humidifiers

A humidifier is used to add moisture to homes and businesses that may otherwise lack it. During the winter months the combination of low or freezing temperatures and heating systems leads to dry and very stale air. Dry air can irritate skin, lips, colds, flues, sinus issues, coughs and even the structure of your home.

If your home needs a humidifier it can be an overwhelming decision determining what humidifier is right for your home and for your family. The first decision to make is whether you want to purchase a warm mist humidifier or cool mist humidifier.

Warm mist units use electricity to boil water and release steam into the air. These are the most economical because the units are cheaper and use tap water instead of distilled. Two problems may occur with a warm mist humidifier. The first is the extremely hot water dispensing into the air may cause burns. The other problem is the machine can become very hot so if left on the carpet or upholstery it may cause a fire. Simple precautions and awareness will prevent these problems from occurring. Warm mist units do require more energy than cool mist humidifiers. However, you can use tap water instead of distilled.

The other choice is a cool mist humidifier. There are three types of cool mist humidifiers to consider. The first is an ultrasonic humidifier. This machine creates cool mist by the means of vibrations. The second is impeller technology. Disks break up the water and project it into the air. Finally there is the evaporative style that uses a fan to blow the water into the air. Regardless what type of cool mist humidifier is used, distilled water must be used because the water goes directly into the air without filtering. There is one major danger with the cold humidifiers. Due to the lack of heat, the water in the tank is susceptible to breeding dangerous bacteria.

There is an easy way to prevent this problem, be sure to clean your humidifier as suggested by the manufacturer. Simple cleaning procedure is empty the tank and washing with water daily. Be sure to clean your warm mist humidifier as well when the filter is dirty. A dirty filter can send harmful particles into the air. Make sure you only run a humidifier when needed. Although they solve dry air problems, too much moisture can cause serious problems.

She is a marketing executive for global consumer brands, media, and high tech businesses. She loves writing about shopping, product reviews, fashion, travel, green innovation, arts & entertainment. She spots consumer trends, explores and assembles ideas, and provides creative solutions to business challenges. Currently, she writes for

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