Humidifiers can be used in naturally dry environments to maintain a comfortable level of humidity. Warm mist humidifiers work by heating up water and letting it evaporate and diffuse around the room, creating a cool, pleasant atmosphere. Having a humidifier in your bedroom and office can make a world of difference if you’re particularly sensitive to dry air and often have dry, itchy skin that’s prone to irritations.
One of the greatest advantages of a warm mist humidifier is its ability to run silently, never disturbing you when you work, sleep, or relax. Admittedly, it will need some maintenance, as it needs constant input of water to operate. In addition, most models have a filter that you’ll have to clean regularly to avoid unpleasant smells. Still, getting a humidifier can make your home or office feel a lot more comfortable, which is why in this article we are going to help you choose the best warm mist humidifier.
General Warm Mist Humidifier Information
Warm Mist Humidifier Uses
You can use a warm mist humidifier to make the air in your bedroom, living room, or office more pleasant and soft. This can help you focus better and generally improve your well-being. However, warm mist humidifiers can also be used for medical purposes, as humid air may bring relief to patients suffering from certain conditions.
For instance, it is known that regardless of whether you use a warm or cool mist humidifier, the resulting moisture in the air helps reduce coughing and makes the throat feel less dry and tense, which is useful for people who suffer from colds, respiratory diseases, and even asthma. If you sing a lot, you may also want to place a warm mist humidifier in your studio or rehearsing space to help your throat recover from all the singing. Finally, humidifying the air around you can help with some skin diseases, making the skin less dry and less likely to crack.
How Does A Warm Mist Humidifier Work?
Warm mist humidifiers have special tanks which need to be filled with water in order for the device to function. Once the tank is refilled and the humidifier is on, the water will be heated up so that it starts to evaporate and add moisture to the air in your room. Depending on which warm mist humidifier model you have, the technologies used to heat water will vary, providing different levels of efficiency and durability.
Cool Mist VS Warm Mist Humidifier
The main difference between these two types of humidifiers is that warm mist humidifiers speed up the evaporation process by heating the water, while the cold mist ones use fans or ultrasonic vibrating units to spread the moisture around the room.
Warm mist humidifiers are usually quieter and do not affect the air temperature as much as cool mist humidifiers do. On the other hand, cool mist humidifiers are a safer option for homes with children, particularly for the kids’ bedrooms because they are cool to the touch and don’t produce hot steam that can cause burns. Therefore, a warm mist humidifier is the only choice for baby.
- quiet and compact
- auto shutdown feature
- large tank
- the absence of a filter may be a disadvantage if you only have access to hard tap water
This Vicks warm mist humidifier is a great option for larger rooms, as its tank can be filled with enough water to function independently for 24 hours at the smaller output setting. At maximum output, the humidifier will still require no refills for at least 10 hours, which is impressive compared to most other warm mist humidifier models.
According to numerous Vicks warm mist humidifier reviews, the two settings are enough for most use scenarios. The unit also has auto shutdown, so you can leave it on all night without worrying about it running out of water before you wake up. If that happens, the humidifier will simply shut down and you’ll be able to refill it in the morning. This model doesn’t have a filter, but you can use a hard water additive to avoid too much buildup in the tank. Vicks offers numerous accessories for this model, so you can always upgrade it if you feel like you’re missing a certain feature.
Overall, this warm mist humidifier from Vicks is a solid performer that will serve you and your family for years. It is reasonably compact, quiet, affordable, and can function independently for quite a long time, so it does deliver quite a lot of bang for your buck.
Overall performance 9/10
- auto shutdown
- refill light indicator
- large tank
- easy to clean
- some users have experienced problems with the auto shutdown feature
This Honeywell top-
The tank is enough for the unit to run for one day on the lowest setting without refills. If you want to inhale some medication along with the warm, humid air, you won’t even have to purchase any additional accessories, as this humidifier comes with a special cup where you can pour your medicine.
A great product that won’t cost a fortune, this Honeywell humidifier will help you get through the dry season and enjoy the air around you!
Overall performance 9/10
- lots of useful features
- large tank
- easy to clean and operate
- customer support may be unresponsive
If you’re still not sure whether you want a warm or cool mist humidifier, why not get both? This model from Homedics is a 2-in-1 solution, operating in both modes so you can have the best of both worlds. It also has a huge water tank that can last for up to 65 hours of continuous use without the need to refill.
The Homedics warm and cool mist humidifier has a built-in LCD display to help you tweak the unit’s settings to your liking. In addition, it also has a built-in humidity sensor and a shutdown timer with one, two, four, and eight hour presets. The Homedics 2-in-1 humidifier also comes with the auto shutdown feature to provide maximum safety, as well as a built-in nightlight, which can be handy if you use the humidifier in a child’s room. Last but not least, this model produces clean mist that’s not contaminated with microbes thanks to the clean-mist antimicrobial technology. And if all of that wasn’t enough, the humidifier even comes with a special bonus cartridge that can be used to demineralize water.
The amount of features packed into this Homedics warm and cool mist ultrasonic humidifier is simply amazing, even considering that its price is slightly above average. However, some users have experienced problems with Homedics customer support, so you need to take that into account before purchasing the unit.
Overall performance 9/10
- very affordable
- straightforward and easy to use
- filter free, so no hassle with replacements
- extremely sensitive to the water quality
For people who value simplicity and cost-efficiency, this compact Sunbeam warm mist humidifier could be the best introduction to the world of portable humidifiers. The unit is very minimalistic, only offering the most essential features. It doesn’t have any adjustable settings, but it does have the auto shutdown feature, which is very important for your safety.
The humidifier can be filled with slightly more than one gallon of water, which would make you think that it can operate for at least 15 hours without any refills. As it turns out, this model is very sensitive to the quality of water it gets. The harder the water you pour into this humidifier, the less runtime till next refill you’re going to get. This is not a huge problem because it will still run for at least six hours on a single refill, but it’s an issue that’s not present in other models on our list.
This filter free warm mist humidifier from Sunbeam is a very straightforward model that only needs to be refilled and cleaned from time to time. If you don’t have a lot of money to spend on a new humidifier, or if you just want to experiment with humidifiers and see whether they’re useful for you, this is a great option that is surely worth the price.
Overall performance 8/10
- an affordable 2-in-1 model
- powerful output
- big tank for independent functioning
- some users have experienced water leaks from the tank
Another 2-in-1 model on our list, this Crane ultrasonic warm and cool mist humidifier uses the new antimicrobial technologies to keep you and your family safe from germs. The humidifier has a 1.2 gallon tank that is enough for at least 12 hours of non-stop functioning without refills. The unit is very powerful and can output lots of mist on higher settings, so be sure to first try your new humidifier on a low setting and increase it if you need to.
Thanks to the ultrasonic antimicrobial technology, this Crane warm mist humidifier is perfect for colder seasons, when flu and common cold are on the rise. The machine will not only clean the air for you, but also make it more humid and more suitable for breathing when you have nasal congestion or a sore throat.
Unlike the other 2-in-1 model on our list, this versatile humidifier doesn’t cost a lot more than your average warm mist humidifier. Of course, you won’t be getting all the convenient “premium” features, but what you get is enough to keep your air clean, humid, and germ-free, which is the ultimate purpose of a humidifier anyway!
Overall performance 9/10
Warm Mist Humidifier Tips and Tricks
In most areas, tap water contains a lot of minerals. This may be a benefit if you drink the water, but it can be a serious drawback for warm mist humidifier use. The minerals will stay in the filter as the water evaporates, creating the need to clean the filter every day. For more “pure” mist and less frequent filter cleaning, opt for distilled or purified water. It can be easily found in most stores that sell household items or ordered online, and it will improve your experience using a warm mist humidifier.
Warm mist humidifiers are great in just about any respect, but it is not a good idea to place them in a child’s bedroom. The water in the tank stays heated as the humidifier functions, so if someone happens to accidentally spill the water, it will cause burns. In addition, the steam may also hurt your child if they get too close to the humidifier. Thus, make sure that you use warm mist humidifiers in areas that are not accessible to children and pets.
If you live in a cold climate, consider purchasing a large room warm mist humidifier for your living room even if the air in it is humid enough as it is. The humidifier will disperse the steam and make the air feel pleasantly warm. You can use it in the evenings to create a warm, relaxing atmosphere in your living room as you unwind after a long day at work.
Warm Mist Humidifier FAQ
How to clean a warm mist humidifier?
Your humidifier produces warm mist that likely leaves a considerable amount of minerals behind. Consequently, it’s important to clean your warm mist humidifier on a regular basis. Fortunately, the whole procedure is easy with most models and won’t take a lot of time.
First of all, turn the humidifier off and unplug it. Make sure that the tank (as well as any remaining water) is cool to the touch. Next, remove the tank and disinfect it, preferably with bleach. Pour the bleach solution into the tank, then let it sit there for around 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, remove the misting chamber and the tray from the machine. You can use a sponge to gently clean them (as well as the base) under running water, but if you want to make sure they’re squeaky clean, you can apply undiluted vinegar to the sponge. Don’t forget to rinse everything in warm water to remove any traces of vinegar.
Finally, rinse the tank to remove the bleach and give all components at least several hours to dry. Once you are sure that all of them are completely dry, reassemble the humidifier.
Which is better: cool mist or warm mist humidifier?
Warm mist humidifiers are generally a better choice for most rooms because they are more compact, quiet, and affordable than cool mist humidifiers. However, even the best warm mist humidifier is never completely safe because it produces hot steam and the tank contains hot water that could be spilled. Thus, you might want to get a cool mist humidifier for your baby’s bedroom if you can’t place a warm mist humidifier in a spot where the child would not be able to reach it.
When to use a warm mist humidifier?
Warm mist humidifiers should be used in environments with naturally dry air. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier at a moderate output setting if you simply prefer very humid air, or to create warm, humid air in your home during cold season.
How to use a warm mist humidifier?
Using a warm mist humidifier is very easy. All you have to do is pour some water into the dedicated tank, choose your preferred settings, and let the machine do its job for the next 4 to 10 hours. Once most warm mist humidifiers are out of water, they will automatically shut down. If you want the machine to keep running, refill the tank and turn it back on. Otherwise, let the tank dry out to avoid unpleasant odors and unplug the machine if you don’t intend to use it for another several days or even weeks. Clean your warm mist humidifier on a regular basis so that it does not become home to thousands of microorganisms, some of which could be harmful to your health.
We highly recommend the Homedics humidifier because it’s very versatile and equipped with just about any feature you could want from a home air humidifier. If you don’t want to spend that much on a humidifier, we advise you to take a closer look at the Honeywell model for a well-rounded unit or the Sunbeam humidifier if you’re after an entry-level machine that won’t break the bank.