Does a Cool Mist Humidifier Make The Room Cold?

Does a Cool Mist Humidifier Make The Room Cold?

Why Choose a Cool Mist Humidifier?

There are a lot of reasons to go with a cool mist humidifier than a warm mist type. Cool mist type usually has a slightly better humidifying coverage than its counterpart. It will moisturize your skin, prevent chapped lips, stop allergies from spreading and improves air quality. An asthma attack will less likely from triggering with a more damp, breathable air. Cool mist humidifier is also typically cheaper and smaller although by a very thin margin. What’s stand out is the lower power consumption than warm-mist due to the lack of heating elements. Lastly, cool-mist is best paired with baby or children at home as it is less hazardous from leakage.

Do Cool Mist Humidifiers Cool Down a Room?

No, cool mist humidifiers will not make the room colder. In fact, it will actually make you feel slightly warmer as high humidity can prevent sweat and retain body heat. Whether it is an ultrasonic or evaporative type, its sole function is to disperse moisture into the room and increase the humidity level. Rather than depending on a humidifier to lower the room temperature, a fan or an air conditioner would be a much more effective tool.

Can a Cool Mist Humidifier Make you Sick?

A humidifier will make you sick if is not properly maintained with mineral residues collecting in the bucket. An unclean cool mist humidifier is notorious for spreading mold and bacteria into the room. Inhaling will the allergens lead to all kinds of illnesses. So clean your humidifier every 3-7 days or when residues are spotted. Refill only with distilled or purified water that has fewer impurities in it.

Are Cool Mist Humidifiers Dangerous?

Unlike warm mist models, cool mist humidifier is very safe as the water vapor will not cause any burn even if you touched it. Perfect if you have nosey children or pets at home that might accidentally tip over the humidifier. Take note though, a dirty cool-mist humidifier with mineral residues build-up will still pose a dangerous threat to our health. So remember to perform routine maintenance on the humidifier to reduce the risk of allergies.

When To Use a Humidifier? (Winter, Spring, Summer, Autumn)

When To Use a Humidifier? (Winter, Spring, Summer, Autumn)

Which Type of Humidifier is Best For Winter?

Warm-mist humidifiers will be better for winter use but only by a close margin. It is powered by a steam vaporizer that emits heat during the humidification. Not only it will affect the room temperature, warm-mist humidifiers is great in clearing nose congestion, inflammation, and nose bleeds, and dry throat. On the other hand, a cold-mist humidifier is also a good option with either an evaporative, ultrasonic, or impeller type. An evaporative humidifier relies on a fan to pull air in, pass through a water-saturated wick filter before pushing the damp air out. An ultrasonic humidifier uses a small metal plate that vibrates ultrasonic frequency to create the water droplets. The water droplets will then exit in the form of mist. An impeller humidifier uses the combination of rotating disc and running diffuser to create mist. You can learn more warm-mist VS cold-mist humidifier here.

When To Use a Warm Mist Humidifier?

A warm-mist humidifier is best used during the winter season when the air is dry and cold. The generated heat from steam can help warm the room up. Perfect for a good sleep during a cold night. Use a warm-mist humidifier if you have no toddler, children or pets at home. The hot boiling water may cause a burn risk if they touch on the steam or knock over the dehumidifier. The heating mechanism will have less mineral build-up and operates quietly in the background. If you want a piece of mind with less maintenance or cleaning to worry about, go for this.

When To Use a Cold Mist Humidifier?

Go with a cold-mist humidifier if you value affordability and energy-efficient. In general, it will disperse more moisture thus cover more ground than warm-mist type. The perfect choice if you have a newborn or a baby at home. Not only cooling air is much smoothing to breathe into, it will help soften mucus blockage and relieve allergy symptoms. Cold Mist Humidifier could be the key difference between a happy baby or a cranky one.

Can You Use a Humidifier in The Summer?

A humidifier can be used in any season (winter, spring, summer, autumn) as long as the humidity level is below 30 percent. However, summer is the least popular time to use a humidifier as the air is already hot and humid. This is well reflected in the sales volume of a humidifier where there will be a dip during the summer period.

Why Use a Humidifier in Winter?

Winter is the best time to use a humidifier as the temperature will be low and the relative humidity level will fall below 30%. During the cold festive season, we will crank up the heater to keep ourselves warm and cozy. Without any opening windows, the uncirculated hot air will dry out the moisture in the room leaving the air stale and uncomfortable to breathe in. By keeping a humidifier running during the winter, it will improve room air quality even when the heater continues to work in the background. A humidifier will also help reduce allergy symptoms and respiratory diseases linked to dry air e.g. flu and cough. For the best result, running an air purifier together would help trap airborne dust, allergens, and germs from being redistributed back in the air.

When Not To Use a Humidifier?

You should never use a humidifier when the relative humidity level is higher than 50 percent. To find out how damp is your room, get a moisture meter that will not cost you more than 20 dollars. If your humidifier is showing signs of mold or microbes infestation, get it clean before anything else. If you do not have distilled or demineralized water to fill in the bucket, do not use a humidifier as you may end up spreading more contaminants. Finally, look for signs like constant musty mold smell or wood items started to decay. The increasing numbers of mold growing on the wall and ceiling are also a good indicator of excessive moisture thus not to use one.

Does Humidifier Help Cough Or Make It Worse?

Can a Humidifier Make a Cough Worse?

Can Humidifier Make Cough Worse?

A clean humidifier will not worsen a cough. Instead, a humidifier can ease coughing by adding moisture into a dry environment. Breathing in dry air can irritate your nose and throat thus making you cough more. It will also affect your lungs as the fluid in nasal passageways will evaporate quicker resulting in swelling, dry mouth, cracked lips, rashes, sore throat, and dry cough. On the other hand, excessive humidity can increase the body temperature, increase airway resistance, worsen asthma, and trigger cough.

How Does Humidifier Help Cough?

Humidifiers are household appliances that help relieve cough and discomfort by releasing moisture into the air. The increased humidity will moisten the dry nasal passages and removes excess mucus for easier breathing. A humidifier will also reduce inflammation, nasal congestion, and prevent cough from spreading to other people. In the long-run, it can help alleviate seasonal allergies (allergic rhinitis), COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) mainly chronic bronchitis and emphysema. A breathing-related illness that is especially dangerous to children and elderly.

Can Humidifier Give You Cough?

A well-maintained humidifier will not give you a cough. However, a poorly-maintained, dirty humidifier will tickle in one’s throat. You will be at risk of “humidifier fever”, a condition when you inhaled vapors contaminated with mold, fungi, bacteria, viruses that aggravate cough and other illness symptoms. Routine maintenance is a must to ensure the humidifier is in tip-top condition. Here are the safety precautions one must take to when using a humidifier.

What Is The Ideal Indoor Humidity For Home

What Is The Ideal Indoor Humidity For Home

What Is a Good Indoor Humidity In Winter?

For winter months, the ideal indoor humidity level would be between 30-40%. The reason we lower the recommended RH level to 10 percent is to avoid any condensation on the windows. As air is drier during winter, a humidifier can make a big difference in moisturizing the air.

What Is a Good Indoor Humidity In Summer?

For summer months, the ideal indoor humidity level would be between 30-60%. As air carries more moisture from the hot climate, a dehumidifier would make perfect sense to reduce dampness in a home. By increasing the RH level by 10 percent, it prevents the dehumidifier from overburden and a big surge on the electricity bill.

Ideal Indoor Humidity Level By Outdoor Temperature

The lower the outdoor temperature, the lower the indoor humidity level should be. This is according to the Minnesota Department of Public Service and many manufacturers’ manuals. Keep in mind that outside temperature is only one of the determining factors. You may also need to account for the number of windows, heating, and air conditioning in a home. The recommended indoor relative humidity level below will give a gauge of what needs to be set in a dehumidifier.

  • If outdoor temperature is over 50˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 50%
  • If outdoor temperature is over 20˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 40%
  • If outdoor temperature is between 10˚F to 20˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 35%
  • If outdoor temperature is between 0˚F to 10˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 30%
  • If outdoor temperature is between -10˚F to 0˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 25%
  • If outdoor temperature is between -20˚F to -10˚F, indoor humidity level should not be more than 20%
  • If outdoor temperature is between -20˚F or lower, indoor humidity level should not be more than 15%

Ideal Indoor Humidity Chart

Outside Temperature (°F)Outside Temperature (°C)Indoor Relative Humidity
+50˚F or higher+10°C or higher50%
+20˚F or higher-7°C or higher40%
+10˚F to +20˚F-12°C to -7°C35%
0˚F to +10˚F-17°C to -12°C30%
-10˚F to 0˚F-23°C to -17°C25%
-20˚F to -10˚F-29°C to -23°C20%
-20˚F or lower-29°C or lower15%

Signs Of Excessive Indoor Humidity

Too much humidity will make you feel sick and uncomfortable all day long. This is because in a damp environment, the body cannot regulate its internal temperature through evaporation. Excessive moisture will also create a breeding ground for mold/ mildew, destroy your home structure and have an adverse effect on your health. In short, indoor humidity level above 60% is too high in a house so do look out for below signs and symptoms.

Signs Of Low Indoor Humidity

We are talking about dry air with a humidity level below 30 percent. Too little humidity will also affect your breathing comfort and damage your home possessions. You will feel the chill even at higher temperature due to our body moisture evaporates quicker. Low humidity will lead to all kinds of irritation mainly on your nose, skin, and throat. Even though the impact is not as obvious as excessive humidity, there are some clear signs that you are treading on thin ice.

  • Dry, flaky, and itchy skin
  • Eczema, allergy, and asthma flare-ups
  • Chapped and cracked lips
  • Sore, scratchy throat (from dry out mucous membranes)
  • Coughing, wheezing, and chest tightness
  • Nosebleeds
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Headache
  • Sleepless night from constant night cough and throat irritation
  • Increase in static electricity
  • Cracking, warping and shrinking dried wood e.g. door frames, cabinet, chairs, tables
  • Creaking wooden floor

Maintaining Ideal Indoor Humidity In House

Managing indoor humidity should be the utmost priority for every homeowner. Here are some quick tips to maintain the indoor humidity level within 30-50%. For places with high humidity problems, avoid steam shower, boiling water, or drying clothes inside. Opt for a cold shower and dry your clothes outside instead. Open windows and doors if you’re not running on any air conditioner or ventilation. Otherwise, use air conditioner, exhaust ventilation fan to prevent air from being stagnant. Fix any leaky pipes, crack roof or clogged gutter. Caulk and seal windows and doors to prevent hot air from creeping out and cold air from infiltrating. Little things like charcoal briquettes, desiccants or moving your house plants away do help but at a minimum level.

For places with low humidity problems, just do the opposite of what we have alluded earlier. Feel free to boil water with stove, enjoy a hot shower and dry clothes indoor. Get more houseplants that will clean the air and provide moisture. This may sound weird, placing bowls of water at every corner does help bring room dampness up. Remember to inspect home ventilation, ductwork, and insulation for any leakage while you’re at it.

But none of the above methods is as effective as getting a humidifier or dehumidifier. It is without a shadow of a doubt the best tool to maintain ideal humidity in a house. A humidifier increases the dampness level in your home by dispersing moisture. Dehumidifier does the opposite by decreases the dampness level with moisture absorption. While both machines will work in conjunction with an air purifier, air conditioner, and heating system, there are some running costs on it. In the long run, it is definitely worth every penny you paid as it can save you from enduring countless home repair damage caused by rotting building material. More critically, you can never put a price on one’s health.

Humidifier Cause Mold? Symptoms and Prevention

Humidifier Cause Mold? Symptoms and Prevention

Mold in Humidifier: Real or Myth?

Mold in a humidifier can make you sick. A dirty humidifier (cool-mist or warm-mist) will have mold growing it that can become airborne contaminants during humidification. As warned by Consumer Product Safety Commission and EPA, a humidifier that contains mold will actually do more harm to our health particularly for people suffering from asthma. Most mold and bacteria patches can be spotted in the water tank. However, mold and bacteria accumulation can also happen on the ventilation, filter or fan blades that are hidden inside. If your humidifier is part of a HVAC system, checking on mold infestation can be tricky without professional help.

What Happens If You Don’t Clean Your Humidifier?

If you continue using a dirty humidifier, you’re at risk of falling sick from exposing to mold, bacteria, or germs. White dust, fungi, and germs will be released into the air together with the mist. When we inhaled the allergens into our body, the harmful microbes will begin infecting our nose, lungs, and respiratory system. At this point, one may experience allergy reactions from the common flu, cough to the more severe hallucination, and heart failure.

Mold in Humidifier Symptoms

  • Stuffy nose with flu
  • Postnasal drip cough/ Wheezing
  • Bloodshot/ dry eyes
  • Itchiness on throat, skin, and eyes
  • Rashness/ Eczema
  • Chest tightness
  • Breathing Difficulty
  • Headache, Dizziness
  • Forgetfulness
  • Constant joint pain

Can a Humidifier Cause Mold In a Room?

If a humidifier continues to supply moisture to a room with excessive wetness, it can cause mold to build up rapidly. Mold flourishes in a high humidity environment and will start spreading on porous objects. From wall, ceiling, windows, windowsills, bathroom, door, to wooden furniture, nothing is spare. So do not operate a humidifier if the room dampness level is high and make sure the humidifier is clean.

Humidifier Mold Prevention Tips

If you notice your humidifier is starting to give in to mold, it’s time to perform some cleaning. In general, cool mist humidifier (evaporative or ultrasonic) requires maintenance every 3-7 days. On the other hand, warm mist humidifier would require less maintenance due to the nature of its heating elements. If you decided to keep the humidifier back to storage for future use, make sure the unit is thoroughly clean and dry especially in the reservoir. Store it in a dry location to prevent mold infestation.

Below are the steps to get mold out of a humidifier without any fuss.

How to Clean Humidifier Mold

  • First thing first, unplug your humidifier before proceeding with the cleaning. Wear rubber gloves to avoid direct contact with mold.
  • If the water bucket is full, empty out the remaining water in the reservoir.
  • Apply a few drops of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide or white distilled vinegar and mix it up with water. Pour the natural solution into the bucket and let it soak about 10-20 minutes. Empty out the remainder solutions.
  • Use either a toothbrush, sponge or scrubber and scrub all the surfaces with mineral build-up. Once the mold and mineral patches fall off, rinse the bucket and flush out the remaining residues.
  • Repeat the mixing and scrubbing process if there are still leftover residues.
  • Use a dry cloth and start wiping both inside and outside of the water bucket. After that, let it air-dry before refilling the bucket with only distilled water.
  • Resume back the humidifier operation and let it run for at least 10-30 minutes.

How Does a Cool Mist Humidifier Work? (Evaporative, Ultrasonic, Impeller)

How Does a Cool Mist Humidifier Work? (Evaporative, Ultrasonic, Impeller)

Types of Cool Mist Humidifiers

Before we go deeper on how do cool mist humidifiers work, there are 3 common types in the market. They are evaporative, ultrasonic, and impeller humidifiers. Each type will have a unique set of technology with its own advantages and disadvantages. They also vary in pricing, effectiveness, and maintenance needed. If you are looking for a compact humidifier to improve sleep, alleviate cough, sinus, and asthma, anyone of the cool-mist will do.

How Do Evaporative Humidifiers Work?

An Evaporative humidifier uses an internal fan to pull air into the unit. The air will have to flow pass a saturated wick filter absorbing water through the reservoir. The now damp air will be propelled out into the room air stream. The cycle will continue until the humidity level has reached the desired point. Because evaporative humidifier does not use heat to circulate moisture, it is safe for everyone including baby. The upside of using evaporative is the cheaper price tag and less white dust discharge than an ultrasonic humidifier. The downside is regular cleaning is needed on the wick filter to prevent mold and bacteria growth in the bucket. You can reduce the mineral buildup in the appliance by refilling with only distilled water.

How Do Ultrasonic Humidifiers Work?

An ultrasonic humidifier uses a piezoelectric transducer/ ceramic diaphragm that oscillates at an ultrasonic frequency to create water droplets. As the plate vibration speed increased, the water droplets will not be able to hold on to the surface and force to exit as the form of water vapor. The dissipated tiny mist (about one micron in diameter) will then be absorbed into the air. Ultrasonic humidifiers are safe as the generated high frequency does not pose any health risk to the users. The benefit of using ultrasonic humidifiers is the environmentally friendly aspect as it does not use any filter. It is also the most silent compared with evaporative and impeller humidifier. However, an ultrasonic humidifier will have higher gray and white dust deposits internally than evaporative. Hence you should only use demineralized water to reduce the amount of white dust from spreading across the room.

How Do Impeller Humidifiers Work?

An impeller humidifier uses a rotating disc that flings water through a diffuser. The running diffuser will then break water particles into fine droplets. The water droplets will then release into the air in the form of a mist. Like evaporative and ultrasonic, impeller humidifiers are very safe and used in other appliances. It is also inexpensive given it is simple technology with no complicated parts. Most impeller humidifiers will cover a wider range of humidification than other types. The bad is of course, the clearly audible mechanical noise from the rotating disc. Only use distilled water that will help reduce the spread of microbes and germs during the whole humidification.

So Which Type of Cool Mist Humidifier Should I choose?

There is no wrong in picking either one of the humidifiers. If I’m on a budget constraint, I would opt for an evaporative humidifier as it is cheaper by 10-50 dollars. If I want a complete silent model for bedroom use, I would go with the pricier ultrasonic humidifier with less maintenance needed. If I want an easier to clean humidifier with fewer mineral residues, again go with ultrasonic or impeller. Ultimately, a humidifier is there to increase the dampness level in a room and all cool-mist types will be able to achieve that. Focus on the brand reputation, availability, reliability and durability instead.