It can be difficult to know which is the best humidifier for your home. Should you use warm mist or cool mist? Which works better in terms of square footage? Which one should you grab when there are so many options out there? Don't worry, we have all the information you need right here to pick out the best humidifier.

honeywell humidifier in a home

Best Cool Mist Humidifier

Honeywell UV Germ-Free Cool Moisture Humidifier

  • 1-gallon water tank
  • Designed for medium rooms

Feast your eyes on the Honeywell UV Germ-Free Cool Moisture Humidifier. This bad boy has been ranked the top cool mist humidifier from consumers and publications alike. There are quite a few features that come with this humidifier.

The Honeywell will last you about 24 per filling, it guarantees that it's up to 25 percent quieter than other evaporative humidifiers, is a great size for medium rooms, such as a bedroom, and UV technology is said to kill up to 99.9 percent of any bacteria, mold, fungi, or viruses in the water after two hours of continuous use. The UV light is also replaceable and the humidifier comes with instructions on how to go about replacing it.

If having a quiet humidifier is up your alley (and why wouldn't it be) then the Honeywell is certainly one you should consider. Their first two settings have very little noise, though their highest setting is a bit noisier. Don't fret too much, however, because the highest setting isn't loud enough to be a burden.

This humidifier is also significantly easier to clean and the water tank and tray can be placed right in the dishwasher. If you don't have a dishwasher, however, it's nothing to sweat about because the large tank opening allows you to get a sponge or a dishrag in there with ease.

Buy it at Home Depot for $72.99.

boneco humidifier

Best Warm Mist Humidifier

BONECO/Air-O-Swiss Warm or Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier 7147

  • 1.5-gallon water tank
  • Can be used for rooms up to 600 square feet

The BONECO/Air-O-Swiss Warm or Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier 7147 is advertised as both a warm and cool mist humidifier, but we have one we like a little better for warm and cool mist. So, instead, this is the one we chose for the best humidifier solely for warm mist.

This one is a very quiet humidifier that comes with a digitized display of the room's humidity. It's not a big, honking machine either so you don't need to worry about where to place it or wonder if it will take up tons of room.

One of the coolest things about this humidifier is that it comes with an auto mode, which is fairly reliable and easy to use. The company says "Auto Mist Technology (AUTO Mode) monitors the temperature and automatically adjusts the output when conditions change." In addition being able to adjust the humidifier to your own needs, you can rest easy with auto mode and let the BONECO take over for a while. It also sends you reminders every so often about when to clean the system or when to refill the water.

It also comes with a few added parts such as a replaceable demineralization cartridge which reduces lime scale and mineral residues and a hydro cell that adds to the freshness of your humidifier.

Buy it on Amazon for $89.99.

boneco humidifier

Best Warm And Cool Mist Humidifier

BONECO Warm or Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier 7135

  • Up to 3.5 gallons
  • Can be used in rooms up to 650 square feet

Here's our pick for the best of both worlds. Yup, we've gone with another BONECO humidifier because these guys know what they're doing when it comes to keeping the air in your home nice and moist.

Like the previous model, the BONECO Warm or Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier 7135 is another quiet humidifier that offers you a digital display and an optional warm or cool mist. This one also comes with the some of the same technology as the previous BONECO humidifier, such as an automatic function that adjusts the moisture when the conditions change, a replaceable demineralization cartridge which reduces lime scale and mineral residues and the same hydro cell that adds to the freshness of your humidifier and keep the water fresher, longer.

You'll also be able to adjust the levels with this one too and this humidifier comes with a sleep mode so you don't have to listen to any white noise while you sleep.

This is one of the best humidifiers out there, so the relatively hefty price tag is justified. It'll set you back about $200.00 depending on where you go, but with its life expectancy and an assortment of cool features, you can rest easy knowing your money went to good use.

Buy it on Amazon for $289.

taotronics humidifier

Best Humidifier On A Budget

TaoTronics Ultrasonic Cool Mist Home Humidifier

  • Up to 1 gallon
  • Good for 431-538 square feet

If you're looking for the best humidifier on a budget, then the Taotronics Ultrasonic Cool Mist Home Humidifier is more than likely your best bet. It comes with an array of different features including a virtually silent mist that won't keep you up all night, a microporous cartridge that filters the water going into your air, up to 15 hours of mist, and the ability to control the humidity levels. This guy also comes with a refill indicator so you know when it's running low on water.

This low-cost humidifier comes with a built-in timer, LED display, and a nozzle that rotates 360 degrees so you can spread the moisture around the room comfortably without needing to think of a strategic place to put it in your home. If you're heading out somewhere or don't want to worry about adjusting the settings constantly, the timer for this one allows you to set the humidity from one to 24 hours. Also, if you're worried about the LED lighting, it can be turned off, so you don't need to worry about it lighting up your space all the time.

Of course, you won't get the same amount of features that you would for, say, a high-cost model, but on a budget, this is easily one of the best humidifiers out there.

Buy it on Amazon for $47.99.

a humidifier in a home
A humidifier hard at work Flickr / byzantiumbooks

Warm Vs. Cool Mist

Warm Mist

Warm mist humidifiers are considered to be one of the healthiest options out there for a humidifier. The reason is that it uses warm water and the warm mist that comes out has the potential to kill off any bacteria that could be growing on the humidifier. It also fights off any mold or bacteria that could be filtered into the air.

It's recommended that warm mist humidifiers stay in smaller rooms like a bedroom. They can also be used for the office. Warm mist humidifiers tend to work better in the winter months as well because it helps moisten the dry air. Dry air is the culprit for dry skin and nasal congestion. Dry air also adds to the static electricity in your home, which means that clothes have the potential to stick together and that you'll shock yourself whenever you touch a metal surface. Proper moisture circulating through the room reduces dry air which makes for a happier nose and skin!

These guys are also great because they don't come with an internal fan like cool mist, which means that they're more likely to be quiet when you use them. If you're using them at night or when you're under the weather, that feature really comes in handy.

There are warm mist humidifiers out there that also pump out medicated mist in order to help with the common cold. Warm mist humidifiers are the best kinds to use when you're feeling sick or during the winter months when the air is particularly crisp.

Cool Mist

Cool mist humidifiers come in two forms: ultrasonic and evaporative. They both do the same thing but their mechanics are different. An evaporative humidifier has a fan and wick filter. The water flows through the filter and then a cool, invisible mist comes out. An ultrasonic humidifier spritzes a visible mist into the air and uses ultrasonic vibrations to break the water into droplets. It's also much quieter than an evaporative humidifier because there's no fan on the inside.

In contrast to the warm mist humidifiers, these ones are better for humidifying larger areas like a living room or family room. Cool mist is also safer for kids so you can avoid any potential accidents with warm water present in a nursery or child's room. There have also been plenty of articles and research to suggest that cool mist humidifiers helpchildren with nasal congestion and coughs.

Additionally, depending on the size that you grab, cool mist humidifiers are also capable of humidifying an entire home.

humidifier letting out mist

Health Benefits

Everyday Health reported that Mark A. Zacharek, MD, residency program director for the department of otolaryngology and head and neck surgery at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit says humidifiers are great for nasal congestion. "Humidifiers can help nasal congestion in that they provide for more moisture and humidity within the nose. The nose is supposed to provide humidity and warmth and clean the air that passes through it. Forced heating systems in homes and workplaces often over-dry the nasal passages, aggravating allergies and sinusitis," he said.

As previously stated, warm and cool mist humidifiers work to help break down nasal congestion, but cool mist is best for children to nip any harmful accidents in the bud before they start. There are so many options out there for cool mist humidifiers that are meant solely for children as well, so you have lots to choose from.

It's also a great way to avoid any over the counter medication if you're someone who doesn't want to give their children multiple doses of anything. It can be an effective way to avoid taking any over the counter medication yourself, as some people like to fight colds in more natural ways.

Stephen Canfield, MD, Ph.D., an allergist at ColumbiaDoctors Midtown in New York Cityspoke with Prevention about what happens when the air is too dry in your home. He told them "when humidity levels are low, people tend to experience dry eyes, cracked lips, and irritated sinuses." He suggested that people crank the humidity in the air up to about 45 percent. 45 percent is the sweet spot for a lot of people, but you can have it range anywhere between 30 to 50 percent.

If you don't take care of your humidifiers it can actually lead to sickness, so be sure that you follow the directions for each humidifier.

These are the ones that we like best, but there are other options out there for you and your specific needs. Humidifiers are a great way to help with illness and nasal congestion, so if you haven't had one before then it might be time to look into getting one.

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