Humidifiers, and why they're needed

by Vivien Mah    

Beautiful living room with sun shining in

If you are one of those people who equate winter with scratchy throats, chapped lips, and static, a humidifier may very well be the best choice for you. Since cold air is unable to retain as much moisture as warm air, humidity levels drop to low levels when temperatures outside drop below freezing (winter discomfort is even more keenly felt with heated air indoors). Also, keep in mind that the more arid regions of our country experience lower humidity levels most of the year as well.  

Humidifiers add moisture to the air to prevent that specific dryness that causes irritation in many parts of the body. Humidifiers are also particularly effective for treating dryness of the nose, lips, throat, and even your skin, as well as potentially easing certain cold and flu symptoms. 

Benefits of Owning a Humidifier

Humidity can relieve dryness by acting as a natural moisturising agent. They are widely used for relieving headaches and sinus congestion, dry throat, dry skin, irritation of the nose and throat, cracked lips, dry cough, and more.

You may be prone to these discomforts when the air in your home is dry- this is especially common during the winter months, or when an air conditioner is being used during the summer.


Seasonal Comfort:

When it comes to comfort, nobody likes to cope with clothing that clings, and hair that stands up due to static electricity. Bloody and dry noses due to dry air has the ability to turn a nice, pleasant winter into a sad and dreary one. A humidifier will change your home drastically, and has the potential to make your home feel more like the other seasons, so you and your family will be comfortable during the winter.. Just think of the money you will save on body lotion and skincare!


Safe Electronics:

Clothing is not the only victim of static electricity. You may or may not know this, but a spark of static has the potential to damage your computer, or other electronic devices. The repairs are pricey, and the pain that your wallet feels is much more than the pain from a static zap. 


Happier Plants:

Almost all of the indoor plants that we keep are of the tropical variety, and while tangible mist hanging in the air of your home to make your plants happy is not required, they need more than 23%- the level of humidity when the temperature outside dips below freezing. 


Long-Lasting Furnishings:

In extremely dry homes, the wallpaper and paint can be affected to the point of peeling. That expensive textured paint job you paid for could last a lot longer if you simply put some moisture in the air when needed. The slats of a wood floor can separate and leave gaps that fill with dust, which keep them from closing back.

Saving energy and money – When the humidity level is high, your body feels warmer. You understand this principle when you compare how warmth is perceived when the accompanying humidity level is either high or low. 80 degrees Fahrenheit can feel much warmer in Florida (high humidity) than in Colorado (low humidity). The same principle applies to your house; if the humidity level is low, you will feel cooler. Rather than pouring on more dry heat, simply adding moisture to the air of your home will make you feel warmer, save energy, and in the end, you will save money.


Draw-Backs of Owning a Humidifier 


Bacteria and Fungus:

Although air humidifiers are not the only harbingers of villainous organisms, they are the perfect medium for certain varieties. The Legionella pneumophila is one notable bacterium which is the cause of Legionnaires disease, a serious form of pneumonia. Changing or cleaning out your air humidifier filters and tanks regularly should take care of any problems, but if you have an unexplained respiratory illness that will not go away, your doctor may recommend turning off the humidifier.



All air humidifiers produce a level of noise, but some are less offensive than others. The ultrasonic models are the quietest models, with the possible exception of the wet-towel-draped-over-the-radiator method. (The ultrasonic model is, of course, more effective, but wet towels might help when there is no alternative.)


Excess Moisture:

Occasionally, when a humidifier is not regulated, it will be constantly emitting moist air Humidifiers with humidistats or hygrometers (such as our humidifier range) are available and well worth the extra cost since air that contains too much humidity is almost as bad as dry air. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends humidity levels of no more than 50% for the home, but most find 45% to be the ideal humidity level.


If you don’t own a humidistat, it is still fairly easy to regulate the moisture level. If you observe moisture collecting on the inside of your windows, drops of water running down tiles and walls, or even mold growing anywhere in the house, you will know that the humidity levels within your home are too high. All you need to do is to use your humidifier less often.


White Dust:

White dust is formed when the minerals in water evaporate, and fall down. Breathing in white dust is assumed to be potentially unhealthy, although the full effects of white dust on one’s health is still unknown. If you would like to bypass white dust altogether, do use distilled water to mitigate instances of white dust, since distilled water contains much less minerals than their normal counterpart.



Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for general reference only. Please seek advice from professionals according to your needs.