What does a humidifier do?

What does a humidifier do?
Humidifiers — You know the word, you probably know what they look like, but what does a humidifier do, how do humidifiers work? Many people see a machine that simply expels water vapor into the air, but aren't familiar with how it operates or the benefits it provides.

Well, search no more! We'll break down the benefits, the 5 different types of humidifiers, and how each type works. And next time your friends raise the same question, you can impress them with all your impressive humidifier knowledge — or simply show them this article!


What Are the Benefits of Humidifiers? 


Hospital Safety

If we're in the hospital, we're there to get better — not worse. You may be surprised to find out dry air is the main cause of for in-hospital infections. When the level of moisture begins to get too low, the dry air begins to affect our natural immune barriers that protect us from infections. Humidifiers can be used as a precautionary defense for all patients. Implementing humidifiers in hospital settings with appropriate relative humidity levels can significantly decrease infection rates. Infections can be a serious health issue and if a little indoor humidity can help prevent that then we're off to a good start!


Allergy & Cold Symptoms

Sore throat, watery eyes, nasal congestion, and endless sneezing are only a handful of common symptoms some of us people with allergies must suffer from. You may even experience similar symptoms with the common cold as well. Did you know that humidifiers could help though? Since dry air is known to affect our natural immune barriers, as previously mentioned, then increasing moisture in the air can help alleviate some of these allergy symptoms. It can provide relief from congestion, reduces cough, and other respiratory conditions. 



Plenty of people notice their lips, skin, and hair dry out in the winter months. That feeling of having cracked, itchy skin just isn't comfortable.

Even an air conditioning unit that is consistently pushing hot, dry air into your home or office can leave your skin feeling parched. 

Adding a humidifier to improve your indoor air quality may help to reduce irritated skin, dry patches, wrinkles, and even rashes. It can also help your hair retain its natural moisture and prevent dry scalp.


Promotes quality sleep

Air conditioners tend to dry out our nasal cavity while we sleep. Humidifiers help prevent irritation throughout the night by keeping our nasal passages moist which provides its own benefits. It can enhance airflow quality, reduce snoring intensity, and overall relieve general irritation of the ears, nose, and throat (ENT).


Home Environment

Apart from helping us, humidifiers actually help your entire house as well. Do you have anything made of wood in your home such as tables, floors, chairs, or cabinets? Any plant life? Pets?

Surprise! They also can all benefit from these devices. Keeping the relative humidity in your home just right can help all wood-based materials last longer, prevent cracks and splits, and look better in the long run. Your houseplants could become more vibrant, full, and overall healthier looking depending on the plants you own — make sure to do your research! Last, but not least, our beloved pets. Similarly to us, some pets can also have allergies and as we've discussed, there are many ways these devices help with allergies!


Kinds of Humidifier

Central Humidifiers

Many people are familiar with portable humidifiers, but did you know you can have one installed directly into your home A/C and water supply? A central humidifier is the most expensive humidifier you can purchase on the market, however it does have its perks. Because this model is directly connected with your air conditioning system, it will be able to add moisture to every room in the house without having to purchase multiple portables. The level of humidity can be monitored and controlled from a single device commonly known as a humidistat. A Whole-house humidifier is low maintenance as well! One annual cleaning should be enough to keep things functioning happily and remaining in tact. If you'd like to learn more we have a whole article dedicated just for you!

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The most commonly used humidifier out there. It uses a fan to speed up the natural process of water evaporating from a wick. A wick filter is used to soak up water from the reservoir while a built-in fan blows over it to allow water to evaporate out of the device and be pushed into the air. It produces a cool-mist and is not a burn risk to children or pets. Humidity levels are self-regulated and don't require constant monitoring. Read more about evaporators in our in-depth article series where we cover each type of humidifier and everything you need to know.

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Impeller Humidifiers

Similar to evaporators, impeller humidifiers also pose no burn risk and are safe to have around your children and pets. They are quite affordable as well! Impellers work by using rotating disks that rotate at high speeds. The disc flings water toward a diffuser that breaks it down into fine droplets that are then expelled into the air. They are single-room use portables that need to be monitored so as not to be overused. 


Steam Vaporizers

Commonly known as the warm-mist humidifier, this vaporizer uses electricity to power a heat source. The heat will be used to boil water in the reservoir to create steam. However, before it is expelled into the air it is cooled down. You can find these steam humidifiers at your local drugstores and they are among the most affordable to purchase. Medical inhalants are commonly purchased with these such as Vicks for cold and flu relief. If you'd like a more in depth understanding of this model then check out our article on warm-mist humidifiers!

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Ultrasonic Humidifiers

How Does an Ultrasonic Humidifier Work? They use sound vibrations at a high-frequency to produce microscopic water droplets. There is no filter built in to the design of these typically. No water is boiled in these models which means you may run the risk of bacteria being present in them. It is important to disinfect these regularly. Ultrasonic humidifiers don't have a fan in their design and so they produce virtually no noise. Prices vary depending on size needed and both warm and cool versions are available. However, most are generally sold as cool mist humidifiers. If you're interested in learning more you're one click away! Head on over to our other article!

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Final Thoughts

Air quality matters! There are too many benefits to reap to not consider adding these machinesinto your home or office. There are too many varying designs to suit customer needs to not follow through with purchasing one!

We've covered how they could help you, your body, your home, and beloved pets. We walked you through what differentiates the styles from one another and how they function. What's left you may ask? You have to decide which one is best for you! 

Still need help? Head on over to our site and check out our very own beautiful, award-winning Carepod One - Stainless Steel Humidifier. Perfect for happier, healthier living!