Winter does not just bring cold weather; it also carries dry air with it. Dry air or low humidity leads to skin allergies and irritations, sinus infections and other cold and flu related symptoms.

To combat these conditions, people use humidifiers for the home or the office.

A humidifier is an appliance that works to increase the amount of moisture or humidity in an indoor location, especially in places that experience low humidity due to cold winters.

The moisture generated by an effective humidifier helps promote clean and healthy air – air that is free from bacteria, dust and other similar irritants.

The rise in humidity levels also helps in bringing relief to cold, cough and flu symptoms, promoting soft and smooth skin, reducing snoring, and aiding in better sleep.

Types of Humidifiers

All humidifiers aim to do the same thing: to increase the level of humidity in the air. However, humidifiers come in many shapes and sizes, with countless models that contain different features.

In order to better understand and therefore choose from these many models and brands, you need to know the main distinctions between these different units.

Humidifiers are classified into two main types: warm mist humidifiers and cool mist humidifiers, based on the kind of output each type produces.

  • Warm mist humidifier. The warm mist humidifier uses heat to boil water and turn it into mist that will be sprayed into the air.

The heat generated by this type is said to kill microorganisms present in the water, so they cannot be sprayed into the air and infect people. However, this type is more expensive and poses a high risk of burning and scalding.

  • Cool mist humidifier. Instead of using heat, this humidifier uses ultrasonic and evaporative technologies to turn water into mist.

This type is cheaper and quieter than the warm mist humidifier, but can produce white dust that settles in the area where the humidifier is placed.

What is the Evaporative Humidifier?

The evaporative modifier is a kind of cool mist humidifier that uses evaporation as the main step in creating humidity.  The basic evaporative humidifier has a small wicker filter inside its body.

The filter, also called a wick, absorbs the water which is then transformed into vapor by a fan that propels the vapor into the air.

Unlike other kinds of humidifiers, the evaporative type has the ability to regulate its operation. What this means is that when the air around the humidifier reaches an ideal amount of humidity, the appliance will stop evaporating the water in the basin and will not start again until the level of humidity drops.

The wick or the belt plays an important part in the evaporating and the mist-producing process. Therefore the wick must be maintained properly according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Maintenance includes regular cleaning and replacement. Most wicks need to be replaced monthly, but there are some models whose wick filters do not need replacement, but need extra-meticulous cleaning and maintenance.

Why should you get an evaporative humidifier?

People have different needs and reasons for getting different types of humidifiers. In general, people opt for the evaporative humidifier because:

  1. It runs quietly

Unlike warm mist humidifiers that need to boil water, these humidifiers do not make bubbling or gurgling sounds while is spraying cold mist. This makes evaporative units ideal for nurseries and bedrooms.

  1. It does not use a lot of electricity

Unlike its warm mist counterpart, the evaporative humidifier does not need a lot of power to make its fans run, making it cheaper than warm mist models.

  1. It easily covers large areas

You surely do not want humidity just in the immediate area surrounding the humidifier. Evaporative humidifiers work wonders in pushing cool mist around a room and moisturizing dry, indoor air.

In choosing an evaporative humidifier, make sure to get one that has bacteria, dirt and mineral-trapping filters. This is to ensure that the air you will be breathing is clean and free from impurities.

This filter should not just act as a sieve to separate mineral particles from the mist, but also serve to neutralize bacteria present in the water.

You must also look at the other features being offered by the humidifier. Does it have adjustable moisture settings or an auto shut off safety feature? Does it come with a night light? How easy  is it to clean and maintain?

All these questions will help you in deciding which evaporative humidifier to get.