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Which home humidifier is best?

Home humidifiers are used to address a variety of needs. They can help soothe illnesses and allergies, alleviate the effects of a dry environment and can even help regulate temperature. Choosing the right humidifier for your needs can be complex, as any given model may not have the features you need.

One of the best home humidifiers is the Levoit Smart Classic 300S. It features a large range of options, including smart-home connectivity so you can easily control it from anywhere.

What to know before you buy home humidifiers

Types of vaporization

Home humidifiers vaporize water using one of four methods: evaporation, ultrasonic vibration, steam and impelling mist.

  • evaporation Humidifiers are simple and successful. A wick gathers water and its vapor is dispersed with a fan. Many humidifiers use this method.
  • ultrasonic vibration humidifiers are equally common. Soundwaves are sent coursing through the water, sending a layer of mist out of the machine. These models may not be suitable for homes needing high levels of humidity.
  • Steam humidifiers, also known as warm mist, are less common. They use a heat source to generate steam. More often you find this as an option in expensive humidifiers rather than steam-only models.
  • Impelling crap humidifiers cause water to be forced together at high velocities, sending the cascading droplets through the air. These tend to leave residues behind and are rarely found.

Filterless vs. filtered

Many home humidifiers are filterless. This saves you the recurring cost of replaceable filters and makes them easier to use.

But be careful: filterless models allowed to run with old standing water or hard water can be hazardous to your health. Unused standing water will develop bacteria that will be expelled with the water when next switched on. And filterless models filled with hard water will disperse the minerals inside into the air to gather as dust around your home, or worse, be inhaled.

Avoid these situations and your filterless model will be safe.

What to look for in quality home humidifiers

Ease of maintenance

Humidifiers require maintenance, not just to continue operating, but to prevent health problems. Typically, this just involves a good cleaning every month or so. However, some models have odd configurations that make it difficult to scrub the areas that need scrubbing. Check the user reviews to see how easy a given humidifier is to clean.

Noise

Home humidifiers usually operate between 30-60 decibels, or the difference between a whisper and a standard conversation. Those with fans are usually the loudest. Some include noise dampeners such as “night mode,” which limits the decibels the humidifier generates.

coverage

All humidifiers have a coverage range, which is the total size in square feet they can effectively add moisture to. Some are only suited to spaces as small as a kitchen pantry, while others are large enough to add moisture to an entire small home.

How much you can expect to spend on home humidifiers

Home humidifiers are available in three price tiers. Basic models for occasional, one-room use rarely exceed $30. Midrange models for regular use in average-size environments go up to $80. Beefy whole-home models can cost as much as $150.

Home humidifiers FAQ

What’s the difference between warm- and cool-mist humidifiers?

A Each offers its own pros and cons, with some top-dollar models being able to do both. Warm-mist humidifiers are best used in cold environments, as their heating element usually raises the room’s temperature. The heating element also helps to kill bacteria, but can be hazardous to both children and animals and will draw more energy. Cool-mist models are safer to use and draw less energy. They tend to be louder, thanks to an internal fan and also are quicker to develop bacterial growth.

What percentage of humidity should my home be kept at?

A That depends mostly on preference. Most homes have humidity ranges between 30%-60%, with humidities outside this range tending to cause health problems. Try setting your home humidifier to 45% humidity and adjust from there until you feel comfortable.

What are the best home humidifiers to buy?

Top home humidifier

Levoit Smart Classic 300S

What you need to know: This humidifier is packed with useful features.

What you’ll love: It’s available in two colors, gray and blue. It can be controlled directly, with an accompanying app or by smart assistants such as Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. The tank can hold up to 6 liters and run uninterrupted for up to 60 hours.

What you should consider: Some consumers reported problems with the humidifier leaking. The smart-related features require the use of tracking information and will add you to mailing lists automatically.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best home humidifier for the money

Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

What you need to know: This low budget humidifier is perfect for occasional use.

What you’ll love: It has a 1.5-liter tank and can operate unattended for up to 25 hours. A night light is built-in. An automatic-off feature prevents the humidifier from running when empty or with the tank removed. It includes a cleaning brush.

What you should consider: It requires regular maintenance to avoid breakdowns and prevent buildup of mold and mineral deposits. There are occasional reports of leaks.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Home Depot

Worth checking out

Elechomes Warm And Cool Mist Humidifier

Elechomes Warm And Cool Mist Humidifier

What you need to know: Another excellent humidifier with plenty of helpful features.

What you’ll love: It’s available in both white and black. It can operate in both cool and warm settings to best fit the season. A remote allows you to control it from a distance. A bright LED display is easy to read. Night mode limits noise and switches off the display.

What you should consider: Cleaning it can be difficult and protracted. There are some reports of leaking. Some units have issues with overheating.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Jordan Woika writes for Best Reviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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