What Is The Best Humidifier For Asthma?

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that humans should keep their indoor spaces somewhat humid, but no more humid than 50%. Other sources recommend 30% – 45%. Maintaining the optimal humidity level is necessary for both our comfort and health.  For asthma sufferers it is even more important to make sure there is enough humidity in the air to help prevent attacks and keep symptoms in check.

In this post I’ve listed some of my favorite humidifiers so that you can find the best humidifier for asthma. If you’re in a rush, then my top recommendation would be the TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier. I’ll be reviewing that, and each of the following in detail this post. To know the exact price of each humidifier, click the “Check Price” button below each individual review.

How to Choose the Best Humidifier for Asthma

According to the Mayo Clinic, a humidifier can ease the breathing for both asthma and allergy sufferers, especially if the sufferer has a cold or other respiratory infection. BUT the mist that the humidifier puts out into the air must be clean and free of allergens.

Anything that contains water will be prone to forming mold and mildew, which are both asthma and allergy triggers. So, you might say that a humidifier is a double-edged sword. If you know that you will religiously clean a humidifier, it may be a good idea to get one. If you think you would be lax about cleaning a humidifier, it might not be the best solution for you.

If you do suffer from asthma, it’s a good idea to consult to your doctor before getting a humidifier. Your doctor may tell you to get a humidifier but to keep the humidity within a certain percentage range. You may want to get a humidifier that tells you the relative humidity (on a hygrometer). Of course, you can always purchase a hygrometer separately if it is not featured on your humidifier.

And, of course, there are many nice-to-have kinds of features that you may wish to consider, for example humidifiers which also filter and clean the air.

Asthma Symptoms and Causes

 

What are the Advantages / Benefits Of A Humidifier for Asthma?

As I noted, the humidity level in your house needs to stay around 50% to maintain optimum health. Air that is too dry irritates some health issues and dries the skin. The throat, sinuses, and nose all need to be moistened to remain clear. When the air passageways are clear, we breathe better, which lets us have a chance to get some sleep at night.

On the other hand, if the air is too humid, mold and other allergens might start to grow.  This is another problem for allergy and asthma sufferers, as these can trigger attacks.  This is why it is important to maintain the optimal humidity level and to not fall too far below or above the 50% humidity range.

When the air is too dry, humidifiers can help to prevent the onset of a cold or the flu and greatly relieve allergy symptoms. They also relieve asthma sufferers, provided the air is clean and the humidity is not too high.

Things To Look For In A Humidifier For Asthma And Allergies

All humidifiers moisten the air, but they differ in many ways. For example, some of them clean the air as well as moisten it. Here is a list of things you will want to consider when you look for a humidifier:

  • Design
  • Night light
  • LED light
  • Nozzle direction
  • Warm or cool mist
  • Made for vapor medication
  • Made to also clean air
  • Water tank capacity
  • Square footage affected
  • Easy of filling tank
  • Ease of assembly
  • Ease of use
  • Ease of cleaning
  • Accessories offered
  • Settings offered
  • How quiet unit runs
  • Automatic low water level shut-off feature
  • Length of running time on one tank
  • Mist output per hour
  • Fan strength
  • What comes with the humidifier
  • Brand reputation
  • Durability
  • Warranty length
  • Availability of customer service

Precautions for Using a Humidifier For Asthma / Allergies

Humidifiers for asthma and allergy sufferers should be discussed with your doctor. Mold and mildew present health threats to asthma sufferers. Tap water minerals used in the machines can cause bacteria to grow in your humidifier. It can also cause white mineral dust to form in the room. Even with the use of distilled water will, regular cleaning is necessary because any water-filled item will harbor mold and mildew if it is not cleaned regularly. Any filters will also need to be changed regularly.

Any time that you have an electrical gadget that uses water, extra precaution needs to be taken to prevent shock, burns or other mishaps. That is especially true of a humidifier since they are often used during the night when we are sleeping.

Be sure to watch the water level. Although most newer-model humidifiers have an automatic shut-off feature, that feature can fail. If the unit runs out of water, it will overheat, smoke, and could catch on fire. It is best to watch it, as if it does not have the shut-off feature. As a good practice it is smart to always fill the machine to capacity before you go to bed and check the water level in the morning.

The Best Humidifier For Asthma Reviews

1. TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier

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 This little 8.1” x 5.3” x 11.8” wonder is much-loved by customers. One customer raved that it “doesn’t soak everything.” That is because this one comes with a humidistat, which controls the humidity. And with its large tank, you won’t have to worry about the TaoTronics running out of water.

Pros
  • Nice design
  • Well-made
  • Easy-carry handle on tank
  • Easy-fill tank
  • 4L (1.06 gal) tank
  • Maximum humidity increase is around 300ml/hour
  • Works between 12 and 30 hours on one tank
  • Handles large rooms, up to 322 square feet
  • Quiet, 38cB
  • LED display
  • Humidistat controls the humidity level
  • 3 mist levels
  • Nightlight mode
  • Sleep mode (shuts off LED screen)
  • Auto shut-off when water level gets low
  • Reduces static electricity
  • Helps you breathe better and sleep better
  • Protects your furniture
  • Well-packaged for shipment
  • Microporous cartridge filter to protect against microorganisms and odors
  • Cleaning brush included
  • User guide included
Cons
  • Spring-loaded cap at bottom of tank may eventually break
  • Cartridge does not prevent the unit from causing white dust from the minerals in water
  • Tank opening too small to wipe down
  • Need to purchase Protec anti-microbial drop-in cartridge balls (or similar) for the tank

2. Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

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This little humidifier lets you point its nozzle away from fabric, pets, plants, electronics and onto you. It measures 10.9” x 9.2” x 6.9” and weighs just 2.27 pounds. It is able to humidify areas up to 250 square feet for up to 16 hours. You get a user manual, a disk cleaning brush, and an AC power adapter when you purchase this humidifier.

Pros
  • Sleek design in a beautiful blue color
  • Optional night light
  • Nozzle can be pointed in any direction (360 degrees)
  • 5L (.4 gal) water tank
  • Humidifies areas up to 250 square feet
  • Easy-to-fill water tank
  • Easy to assemble
  • Easy to clean
  • Low and high settings to direct the mist
  • Quiet
  • Light weight
  • Automatic shut-off feature if tank is missing or water level is low
  • Humidifies the air up to 16 hours
  • Puts out 150 ml water per hour
  • Relieves dry mouths and throats
  • Relieves coughing
  • Helps you breathe
  • User manual included
  • Disk cleaning brush included
  • AC power adapter included
  • Trusted brand
  • Rigorously tested
  • Durable
  • 2-year warranty
  • 7-days-per-week customer service
Cons
  • Water tank sometimes leaks
  • Grows mold and mildew in places it can’t be cleaned
  • LED light too bright for sleeping

3. Vicks 1-Gallon Warm Mist Humidifier

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Who didn’t have Vicks medication rubbed on their chest to relieve congestion when they were growing u? Now the Vicks medication can be put onto a Vicks humidifier that boils the water and puts purified warm medicated mist into the air. Measuring 12” x 7.9” x 14.2”, this unit is large and must be refilled more often than the other humidifiers.

Pros
  • Puts out 96% bacteria-free warm mist
  • Can handle large rooms
  • Medicine cup for use with inhalant medication
  • 2 settings
  • Soft light
  • No filter
  • Relieves coughing and congestion from colds and allergies
  • Helps to breathe easier
  • Quiet
  • Easy to clean any place where mold grows
  • Tank handle
  • Clear tank to view water level
  • Automatic shut-off when tank is empty
  • Can use with Vicks humidity monitor, Vaposteam, or a cleaning ball
  • 3-year warranty
Cons
  • Customers complained of being charged to have defective parts replaced
  • Minimal manufacturer’s instructions
  • Requires regular sanitation
  • Creates white mineral dust from the water’s minerals
  • Design makes it hard to clean
  • Manufactured by Kaz, not Vicks, though Vicks markets it as their own

4. Honeywell HCM350W Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier

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Another well-known name in the industry, Honeywell has created this large (17.5” x 9.4” x 11.8”) humidifier which also purifies the air. As if that weren’t enough, this unit also keeps the relative humidity between 40% and 60%. I also like that you can use your tap water with this one and not see white mineral dust all over your house.

Pros
  • 1-gallon tank
  • 3 settings
  • Runs 24 hours on low setting
  • Kills 99.9% of bacteria through its UV technology
  • Evaporative technology prevents over humidifying
  • Reduces static electricity
  • Helps you breathe better and sleep better
  • Protects your furniture
  • Does not create a lot of white mineral dust
  • Relieves coughing and congestion
  • Easy to thoroughly clean
  • Tank can go into dishwasher (no detergent, no high heat, heated dry)
  • Easy to fill the tank
  • Recessed handle on tank for easy carrying
  • Can purchase specially treated Honeywell replacement filters
  • Can purchase Protec cleaning ball
  • Can purchase Honeywell humidity monitor
Cons
  • Performance declines drastically when the filter needs replacement
  • The filter needs to be replaced as often as 2 to 6 weeks if using tap water
  • Hard to clean the tank where the handle is attached
  • Wick, tank and tray all constantly need sanitation

The Air Control Guy Winner: TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier

It was hard to come up with a top pick for the best humidifier for asthma sufferers.

The Pure Enrichment MistAire is a great unit that has some nice features. The Vicks 1-Gallon Warm Mist is a wonderful humidifier for people who regularly use the medication to open their airways. The Honeywell HCM350W purifies the air and has a timer.

However, the TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier has a humidistat, which shuts off the machine once the humidity reaches the desired humidity level. The ability to keep the relative humidity around 50% is very important for asthma sufferers. For that reason, I’ve selected the TaoTronics Cool Mist because of the humidistat feature that controls the humidity level in the room.

For more like this, check out our latest posts on Humidity Control (Humidifiers & Dehumidifiers) and Air Purifying.

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