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Best Humidifiers | Humidifier Reviews
Roow Canada 1. Thermopro Inc. Whats New Best Buy Only Sort. Honeywell Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier. Marketplace seller. Stadler Form Oskar Big Humidifier. Show more. FAQ About Humidifiers It's not just a lot of hot air -- a humidifier can do wonders to improve the air quality in your home. What is an air humidifier used for? What are the benefits of a humidifier? What are the different types of humidifiers? Cool Mist Humidifiers Also known as evaporators, these devices work by blowing water through a special filter and releasing it as a mist.
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Warm Mist Humidifiers By boiling water to produce sterilized mist, these steam vaporizers require no filters and are generally less expensive. Ultrasonic Humidifiers Safe, energy efficient, and low-cost, these humidifiers use fast vibrating metal plates to create a fine mist that's blown out with a fan. What features should I consider in a humidifier?
Large humidifiers are used in commercial, institutional, or industrial contexts, often as part of a larger HVAC system. Low humidity may occur in hot, dry desert climates , or indoors in artificially heated spaces. This low humidity can cause adverse health effects, by drying out mucous membranes such as the lining of the nose and throat, and can cause respiratory distress.
In addition, static electricity may become a problem in conditions of low humidity, destroying semiconductor devices, causing static cling of textiles, and causing dust and small particles to stick stubbornly to electrically charged surfaces. Overuse of a humidifier can raise the relative humidity to excessive levels, promoting the growth of dust mites and mold, and can also cause hypersensitivity pneumonitis humidifier lung.
Industrial humidifiers are used when a specific humidity level must be maintained to prevent static electricity buildup, preserve material properties, and ensure a comfortable and healthy environment for workers or residents. Static problems are prevalent in industries such as packaging, printing, paper, plastics, textiles, electronics, automotive manufacturing and pharmaceuticals. Printers and paper manufacturers use humidifiers to prevent shrinkage and paper curl.
Humidifiers are needed in cold storage rooms to preserve the freshness of food against the dryness caused by cold temperatures. Art museums use humidifiers to protect sensitive works of art, especially in exhibition galleries, where they combat the dryness caused by heating for the comfort of visitors during winter.
A "portable" humidifier may range in size from a small tabletop appliance to a large floor-mounted unit. The water is usually supplied by manually filling the unit on a periodic basis. The most common portable humidifier, an "evaporative", "cool moisture", or "wick humidifier", consists of just a few basic parts: a reservoir, wick and fan. The wick is made of a porous material that absorbs water from the reservoir and provides a larger surface area for it to evaporate from. The fan is adjacent to the wick and blows air onto the wick to aid in the evaporation of the water.
Evaporation from the wick is dependent on relative humidity. A room with low humidity will have a higher evaporation rate compared to a room with high humidity. Therefore, this type of humidifier is partially self-regulating; as the humidity of the room increases, the water vapor output naturally decreases. These wicks become moldy if they are not dried out completely between fillings, and become saturated with mineral deposits over time. They regularly need rinsing or replacement; if this does not happen, air cannot pass through them, and humidifier stops humidifying the area it is in and the water in the tank remains at the same level.
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One type of evaporative humidifier makes use of just a reservoir and wick. Sometimes called a "natural humidifier", these are usually non-commercial devices that can be assembled at little or no cost. One version of a natural humidifier uses a stainless steel bowl, partially filled with water, covered by a towel. A waterproof weight is used to sink the towel in the center of the bowl.
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There is no need for a fan, because the water spreads through the towel by capillary action and the towel surface area is large enough to provide for rapid evaporation. The stainless steel bowl is much easier to clean than typical humidifier water tanks. This, in combination with daily or every other day replacement of the towel and periodic laundering, can control the problem of mold and bacteria.
Houseplants may also be used as natural humidifiers, since they evaporate water into the air through transpiration. Care must still be taken to prevent bacteria or mold in the soil from growing to excessive levels, or from dispersing into the air. A vaporizer steam humidifier, warm mist humidifier heats or boils water, releasing steam and moisture into the air.
A medicated inhalant can also be added to the steam vapor to help reduce coughs.
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Vaporizers may be healthier than cool mist types of humidifiers because steam is less likely to convey mineral impurities or microorganisms from the standing water in the reservoir. The heat source in poorly designed humidifiers can overheat, causing the product to melt, leak, and start fires. An impeller humidifier cool mist humidifier uses a rotating disc to fling water at a diffuser, which breaks the water into fine droplets that float into the air.
The water supply must be kept scrupulously clean, or there is a risk of spreading bacteria or mold into the air. These types of humidifiers are usually noisier than others. An ultrasonic humidifier uses a ceramic diaphragm vibrating at an ultrasonic frequency to create water droplets that silently exit the humidifier in the form of cool fog. Usually the mist gets forced out by a tiny fan, while some ultra mini models have no fans. The models without fans are meant mainly for personal use.
Ultrasonic humidifiers use a piezoelectric transducer to create a high frequency mechanical oscillation in a film of water.
This forms an extremely fine mist of droplets about one micron in diameter, that is quickly evaporated into the air flow. Unlike the humidifiers that boil water, these water droplets will contain any impurities that are in the reservoir, including minerals from hard water which then forms a difficult-to-remove sticky white dust on nearby objects and furniture. Any pathogens growing in the stagnant tank will also be dispersed in the air. Ultrasonic humidifiers should be cleaned regularly to prevent bacterial contamination from being spread throughout the air.
The amount of minerals and other materials can be greatly reduced by using distilled water. Special disposable demineralization cartridges may also reduce the amount of airborne material, but the EPA warns, "the ability of these devices to remove minerals may vary widely.
Wick humidifiers trap the mineral deposits in the wick; vaporizer types tend to collect minerals on or around the heating element and require regular cleaning with vinegar or citric acid to control buildup.
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For buildings with a forced-air furnace , a humidifier may be installed into the furnace. They can also protect wooden objects, antiques and other furnishings which may be sensitive to damage from overly dry air. In colder months, they may provide modest energy savings, since as humidity increases, occupants may feel warm at a lower temperature.
Bypass humidifiers are connected between the heated and cold air return ducts, using the pressure difference between these ducts to cause some heated air to make a bypass through the humidifier and return to the furnace.