We have all seen the commercials on TV where people are freezing in their homes, they turn on their ultrasonic humidifier, and then magically, everything is warm.
Ultrasonic humidifiers can be a great way to help you maintain your home’s humidity levels. These humidifiers work by adding moisture to dry air which can help prevent your breathing passages from drying out.
However, it is crucial to understand the risks associated with using this type of product before making any decisions about purchasing one for yourself or your family.
The advantage of these devices is that they can also help reduce asthma symptoms and improve sinus congestion.
However, there are some dangers that you should be aware of before purchasing one of these devices for yourself or your family members.
What Is an Ultrasonic Humidifier?
An ultrasonic humidifier is a device that uses ultrasound to vaporize water and create mist.
They are often used as an alternative to evaporative humidifiers, which can produce contaminants such as mold or mildew if not cleaned properly.
Ultrasonic humidifiers also put more moisture into the air than evaporative humidification; they work by forcing vibrations through the liquid (in this case, water) at frequencies of 20 kHz and above, turning it into a fine mister without requiring heat like other types of home appliances do.
How Do Ultrasonic Humidifiers Work?
Ultrasonic humidifiers create humidity by vibrating a metal disc at ultrasonic frequencies. This creates a fine mist that is released into the air. The water in the tank is turned into a cool, clean mist that can help relieve congestion and other respiratory problems.
In addition, ultrasonic humidifiers are quiet and energy-efficient, making them a popular choice for bedrooms and nurseries.
Here is a step-by-step process of how this humidifier works:
First, water from the tank travels through a cartridge that removes minerals. Then it goes to the sound-making part of the machine.
Next, the piezoelectric transducer vibrates at high frequencies to produce mist droplets that form in the humidifier’s nebulizer chamber.
Finally, a circulation fan blows the mist droplets out of the humidifier and into the area to be humidified.
Benefits of Ultrasonic Humidifiers
Ultrasonic humidifiers come with a wide range of benefits. They include:
- Ultrasonic humidifiers are good at humidifying the air. But they can also make it wet. This is not good because it makes the air have too much moisture in it, leading to things like mold and dampness. That is why ultrasonic humidifiers should have a humidity sensor that turns them off when the air already has enough moisture in it.
- Ultrasonic humidifiers can be very small because they are so simple. The water reservoir is the only thing that limits how small an ultrasonic humidifier can get. So they are a good choice if you need a tight space for your humidifier.
- Ultrasonic humidifiers have a quieter sound than evaporative humidifiers. Ultrasonic humidifiers may also make a humming noise, but this is not as loud as an evaporative humidifier.
- Ultrasonic humidifiers do not generate any heat. They are safer than other humidifiers that boil water to produce water vapor. This might be especially important if you use the humidifier in a child’s room. But there are also evaporative humidifiers that don’t need anything besides air, and they don’t create heat or boil water either.
- An ultrasonic humidifier’s wick or filter will not need to be replaced during its life span. The wick/filter in an evaporative humidifier builds up minerals over time, especially if hard water (water with many minerals dissolved in it) is used. These filters must be changed regularly, increasing labor and operational expenditure.
Dangers of Ultrasonic Humidifiers
Ultrasonic humidifiers come with several dangers, which we will explain below to help you understand them.
They Can Over-Humidify Your Space
Ultrasonic humidifiers are so effective at maintaining humidity that they may cause more moisture to be added to the air than is required, putting you at risk of excessive dampness and mold formation.
We all know that regular snoring can trigger many health problems, including stuffy noses and wheeze.
Besides that, your room may have cracks like paint cracks and furniture drying out if the air is very humid.
There is no need to worry about the humidity in your crawl space as long as you keep the temperature at a level of between 30 and 50 degrees (suggested by CDC).
You Might Be Breathing Bacteria
Ultrasonic humidifiers do not boil the water and use vibration technology (a metal diaphragm or a similar component vibrates at a high frequency, propelling water droplets to your space).
Because of this, there is a chance that impurities within the gadget will be released into your rooms, as well as the generated fog.
In comparison, warm-misted humidifiers like evaporative humidifiers heat the water first before expelling bacteria-free steam into the room.
NOTE: Regularly cleaning the humidifier will help keep germs off of it.
Mineral Deposits are Dangerous
Ultrasonic humidifiers produce white dust because of the vibration, which can cause lung injuries to your kids if they breathe it in.
Certain forms of airborne pathogenic germs are also dangerous to seniors and individuals who suffer from respiratory allergies.
You may also dislike the white dust that covers everything and furniture in the space.
The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) says that you should use de-mineralized water or any water with a lower mineral content in your dishwasher. Check the owner’s handbook for the manufacturer’s instructions on utilizing the type of water.
Other Important Measures
- The EPA also recommends that you clean your humidifier at least once a third day (or more often if necessary). You don’t need to spend money on those expensive disinfectants, even warm water and ordinary dish soap will do.
- If your ultrasonic humidifier comes with or recommends demineralization cartridges, you may do so. However, opinions on the effectiveness of these accessories differ.
- You may also add a little vinegar to the filthy water, making minerals too weak to create issues.
It’s also worth noting that manufacturers are not resting, and new technologies to combat mildew and mold in the water tank have recently been developed.
If you’re concerned about bacterial exposure, an ultrasonic humidifier with antibacterial features is available.
Alternative to Ultrasonic Humidifiers
If you are looking for another option to use an ultrasonic humidifier, other options may be better for your home.
An evaporative humidifier will work well in larger areas and help cool the room if it is hot outside. This type of humidifier uses a fan to draw air through moistened pads, adding moisture into the air in your house or office. Pads need to be replaced often, so this unit has maintenance costs associated with it, but they are low compared to ultrasonic units.
These units do not emit much noise either, so if sound bothers you at night, this might be worth considering as an alternative to the traditional quiet hum of an ultrasonic machine running all night long.
Another option to consider is a steam humidifier. These units work by heating water until it becomes steam and then releasing the moisture into the room. This type of humidifier does produce heat, so if you want to add humidity to a cold room, this might not be the best choice.
They also come with a higher price tag than ultrasonic or evaporative machines, but many people feel that the increased performance and lack of noise make it worth the investment.
The third option to consider is a mist humidifier. This type of unit adds moisture to the air by using a fan to blow air over an atomizer or nebulizer, which “breaks up” the water into tiny droplets and disperses them throughout your home.
These types of units can often be found at a cheaper price. So, they are less expensive than evaporative or steam models. But this also means that there is no heat option, which may not work well in colder climates during the winter months.
Best Ultrasonic Humidifiers
LEVOIT Humidifiers for Bedroom Large Room 6L
- Thanks to its advanced hybrid design, this humidifier provides warm and cool mist. Therefore, it allows you to enjoy the best quality experience.
- It has a warm mist feature that offers 4x faster humidification than other leading cool-mist humidifiers.
- Remote control – This humidifier also comes with remote control features that make it easy and convenient to use.
- As some buyers have reported the humidifier encounters burning and degrading after only a few months, Durability is an issue.
- It’s important to have a baking sheet under this humidifier for safety purposes.
- The buttons on the face of the unit are also not reliable.
This simple and efficient humidifier is designed to help you combat super-dry air. You can enhance your humidifier experience with a warm and cool mist.
If you’re looking for faster humidification, this is the right unit to consider buying. You can select a warm mist if you want humidification that is 4x faster than cool mist.
It also features ultrasonic technology that generates uniform mist, quickly disperses throughout your space. What’s more, since the unit has a remote control, you can control its settings anywhere in the room.
GENIANI Huron Humidifier
- This two-in-one humidifier and diffuser enable you to fill your room with your favorite essential oils.
- It features a “smart mode” that allows you to automatically maintain a healthy humidity level with a built-in intelligent sensor.
- Ideal for baby nurseries – It has a soothing night light that helps kids fall asleep.
- Thanks to its top fill feature, refilling has never been easier with this humidifier. Pour water into the small insert at the top of the unit.
- It has hidden and complicated cleaning instructions
- This humidifier puts out a large amount of white dust
- Some buyers have reported the unit stopped working after a few months
The GENIANI Huron Humidifier is a 2-in-1 humidifier and diffuser with a lot to offer users. It can work in large spaces of up to 220 sq. ft.
It also includes a smart humidity mode that helps to automatically maintain an optimal humidity level, thereby saving you time to do other things.
This humidifier also helps you distribute essential oils into the air and alleviate sinus and allergy symptoms.
Its top-fill design gives two easy ways to fill the tank. You can remove the lid to fill up the humidifier or pour the water directly into the special hole in the lid.
Pure Guardian H4750AR Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier
- This humidifier helps to guard against dry air in your home. This makes it perfect for people with dry skin.
- It features an aromatherapy tray that helps to create a relaxing environment with your favorite essentials.
- The humidifier also comes with a night light, 12-hour timer, and 3-speed settings. However, there are no evaporating pads or wicks to clean or replace.
- The humidifier might encounter issues or quit working after using for a while
- With each use, the humidifier continues to get louder
This ultrasonic humidifier is available in different sizes and includes several unique functions to meet your specific demands.
This humidifier can create a soothing atmosphere with the optional aromatherapy tray, which includes a few drops of essential oil. It also features available 3-speed settings. When it’s time to refill the water tank, a low-water warning light lets you know.
It also has a gentle glow night light and a delay. Those with dry skin may benefit from using a Pure Guardian humidifier, which produces a more pleasant living space.
Ultrasonic Technology quietly releases a fine mist to provide comfort and sleep better. Soothing Cool Mist Improves Comfort and Sleep While Making Life More Pleasant for those with dry skin.
Silver Clean Protection prevents algae growth on the water tank’s surface. With your favorite essential oil, the Aromatherapy Tray may be used to create a relaxing atmosphere. Oil not included.
Are Ultrasonic Humidifiers Dangerous?
Ultrasonic humidifiers can be dangerous if not used correctly. Typically, humidifiers are safe to use when installed and cleaned appropriately. Ultrasonic humidifier dangers include:
- Overheating – This can cause the humidifier to start a fire.
- Toxic gas release includes benzene and formaldehyde, which can be released if the water used in the humidifier is not clean.
- Bacteria growth – If the water is not cleaned regularly, bacteria will grow and cause respiratory problems.
- Leaking water and creating mold growth in the home or office environment.
- Because of poor installation and maintenance practices, toxic chemicals are being released into the air.
- No automatic shut-off when the tank level drops below a certain point.
To avoid these dangers, it is essential to always read the instructions with your humidifier and follow them closely.
Additionally, be sure to clean your humidifier often using vinegar or bleach. If you are unsure how to do this, contact the manufacturer for specific instructions.
Finally, never leave your ultrasonic humidifier overnight or when you are not home.
Is an Ultrasonic Humidifier Safe to Breathe?
In general, yes – but it’s essential to take some basic precautions to avoid the health risks associated with their use. Be sure to clean your ultrasonic humidifier regularly and replace the water frequently. And if you are particularly sensitive to noise, consider opting for a that emits less sound.
While an ultrasonic humidifier is generally safe to breathe, it’s important to be aware of some potential dangers associated with their use. They include:
- If not properly cleaned and maintained, ultrasonic humidifiers can become breeding grounds for bacteria and mold. These microorganisms can be released into the air you breathe and cause health problems such as respiratory infections, asthma attacks, and other respiratory illnesses.
- If the water in the ultrasonic humidifier is not changed often enough, it can become contaminated with bacteria, mold, and other impurities.
Can Ultrasonic Humidifiers Make You Sick?
Yes, according to research studies that have taken place over the past few years. This is because an ultrasonic humidifier tends to cover every surface in your bedroom with bacteria and mold spores.
These particles can be dangerous for especially vulnerable people such as children, the elderly, or those living with a chronic illness like asthma or COPD.
Many respiratory infections start small, but they could get serious fast if not addressed early enough.
Why Do Ultrasonic Humidifiers Create White Dust?
Ultrasonic humidifiers create white dust because they emit particles of water that are smaller than normal household dust. These tiny droplets scatter light and create a white appearance.
Ultrasonic humidifiers can also produce an aerosol mist. This mist contains small particles of moisture, which can be breathed in by you and your family. Inhaling these particles can cause several health problems, including:
- Respiratory infections
- Asthma attacks
- Lung damage
If you have an ultrasonic humidifier, it’s important to take steps to reduce the risk of exposure to these harmful particles.
The dangers of Ultrasonic humidifiers are severe. The risks associated with these products can lead to serious injury or even death, which is why consumers must educate themselves on the potential hazards before purchasing one for their home.
I hope this post has helped you learn more about some of the dangers and benefits that an ultrasonic humidifier has to offer.
If you have any questions regarding this topic, please don’t hesitate to reach out through email.