Whole House Steam Humidifier Pros and Cons

The benefits of a whole house steam humidifier are that it effectively treats respiratory problems like asthma and bronchitis. 

This type of humidifier can be used to provide relief for people with allergies, sinus congestion, dry skin and eyes, nose bleeds, and other conditions.

It also has a low amount of noise when running, which is beneficial for those who have little children or pets at home.

Many people enjoy the convenience of having a whole house steam humidifier because it delivers moist air into all living areas, including bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and more.

What Is a Whole House Steam Humidifier?

A whole house steam humidifier is a device that humidifies the air in your home. It does this by adding water vapor to the air. This can help improve your comfort levels and reduce problems like dry skin and allergies.

There are two main types of whole house steam humidifiers: vented and unvented. Vented models attach to your furnace or boiler and use the warm air from these appliances to produce the steam. Unvented models do not require a connection to your heating system, but they must be installed by a professional.

Both types of whole house steam humidifiers have pros and cons. So, it’s important to weigh them all before deciding which one is right for your home.

How Do Whole House Steam Humidifiers Work?

When the unit is turned on, it heats the water inside a boiler. The hot steam then goes into a large holding tank with holes in its bottom to allow some of this saturated vapor to drain or drip through and humidify your home’s air. 

As more cold air enters the house from outside, the temperature difference between warm moist air coming out of vents and dryer cooler fresh air rushing by causes evaporation which increases humidity levels indoors up to 30% relative humidity (RH) at 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

One of the benefits of using a whole house steam humidifier is that it can also help to reduce dust mite populations because these creatures thrive in low humidity environments. Less moisture in the air means there’s less water available for them to drink, and they will dehydrate and eventually die. 

This is good news for people who suffer from asthma or allergies since reducing dust mites can help improve their symptoms.

A potential downside of whole house steam humidifiers is that if not properly maintained, mineral deposits from the hard water can build up on surfaces inside your home, such as furniture, floors, walls, and ceilings. Over time this accumulation can discolor paintwork and cause tiles to become brittle and crack.

Pros and Cons of Whole House Steam Humidifiers

Here are some of the pros and cons of whole house steam humidifiers.


  • Can improve comfort levels by adding humidity to the air – this can be especially beneficial in the winter.
  • They can help to protect your furniture, wood floors, and other possessions from damage caused by dry air.
  • It May help to reduce respiratory problems, congestion, and asthma symptoms.
  • Can help reduce dry skin and allergies – both of which can be exacerbated by dry air.


  • They can be expensive to install and run – This is mainly because they require a lot of water to work properly.
  • They can be challenging to maintain – You need to make sure the steam humidifier is clean and free of mineral build-up, or it may not work correctly.
  • They can produce a great deal of noise – Again, they use steam as their primary means of humidifying the air.
  • They can take up a lot of space – This may not be an issue for some people, but it could be a consideration if you are tight on space.
  • Unvented models must be installed by a professional, adding to the cost of purchase and installation.
  • May not be suitable for homes with tight construction or homes that use forced-air heating systems.
  • Can produce a lot of moisture, which can cause problems like mold if not appropriately managed.

So, as you can see, there are both pros and cons to using whole house steam humidifiers in your home. It’s crucial to weigh the benefits and drawbacks carefully before deciding whether to purchase one. 

If you decide that a whole house steam humidifier is right for you, be sure to take into account the specific needs of your home so that you can choose the best model for your needs.

Best Whole House Steam Humidifiers

Aprilaire – 800Z 800 Whole Home Steam Humidifier


  • Comfort – Whether your home is in a dry area of the country or an area with seasonal dryness, this humidifier can help you maintain the right humidity levels.
  • When using this humidifier, you don’t need purified water because it features electrode technology. This helps to minimize installation complexity and operating costs.
  • It comes with dual sensors to monitor and respond to outdoor temperature and indoor relative humidity to deliver optimum humidity 24/7.
  • This humidifier also helps you maintain the right humidity for good health in your home. 
  • It is ideal for large spaces because it can cover up to 6,200 square feet in tightly built homes.


  • This humidifier uses a lot of energy, which might increase your electricity bill.
  • Durability is an issue as some buyers have reported having issues after using it for only a few months.

In 1954, Aprilaire invented the first evaporative humidifier for forced air furnace systems. Since then, Aprilaire has remained at the forefront of whole-home humidification methods, including steam humidifiers.

Aprilaire humidifiers use electric currents, and they are easy to install, operate and maintain. The current flow between the electrodes and the resistance of the water may heat it. The electrodes stay in a replaceable canister.

At the end of humidifier season, you replace the canister and electrodes. You don’t need to clean or scrub anything. That is all for this year. The electrodes work because they use impurities in the water to make electricity flow.

The electrode technology for this water filter means that it is unnecessary to have a water filter. It is also easy to install and does not cost money. The hardness of the water can be between 3 and 36 grains, which is a wide range.

If there is reverse osmosis or deionized water, plumb the humidifier before it goes through.

Included in the box: installation instructions, a steam humidifier, a humidifier control with a sensor for inside the house, and an outdoor sensor. The steam hose is 6 feet long. There are also clamps and screws. The canister is 80 gallons.

Are Steam Humidifiers Better?

There is a lot of debate around whether or not steam humidifiers are better than other types of humidifiers. In general, whole house steam humidifiers do have some benefits over other humidifiers. 

However, there are also some drawbacks to consider before making a decision.

Steam humidifiers are the most efficient, but they are also more expensive to install and run. Steam humidifiers are the ideal option if you have high-end wood furniture, flooring, a big house, or need precise humidity regulation. They require a dedicated electrical supply and annual maintenance.

One benefit of using a whole house steam humidifier is that it can help to reduce the amount of dust in your home. This is because moist air helps to prevent dust from becoming airborne. In addition, a whole house steam humidifier can help to improve the overall air quality in your home by trapping pollutants and allergens.

However, one downside of using a whole house steam humidifier is that it can be expensive to install and operate. Additionally, whole house steam humidifiers tend to be more difficult and time-consuming to clean than other types of humidifiers.

Some need to be replaced every year. But others need to be cleaned and scraped because of mineral deposits.

Benefits of Steam Humidifiers

  • A steam humidifier uses less water than a bypass humidifier. Bypass humidifiers typically use 15 gallons of water to create one gallon of vapor, while steam humidifiers may create almost one gallon of vapor for every gallon of water used.
  • Steam humidifiers do not need to have their pads replaced as often as bypass humidifiers.
  • Steam humidifiers are suitable for homes that use heat pumps. They work better than bypass humidifiers in cold air.
  • Steam humidifiers have a heat source that is separate from the heating system. This means that they can keep your home moist, even if the air coming from the heating system is not very hot.
  • Heat pumps and steam humidifiers can work together to make your home more comfortable and healthier. They do this in the cheapest way possible, without any hassle.

Do Steam Humidifiers Cause Mold?

The big question on everyone’s mind is whether or not using a whole house steam humidifier will cause an increase in mold.

Yes, humidifiers can lead to mold growth, but they do so when used without limit. When a humidifier is operated unrestrictedly, it raises the level of moisture inside to a level that readily supports such growth (usually above 55 percent relative humidity).

If you have proper ventilation and your home is moisture-tight, there shouldn’t be any problems with mold. However, if your home has poor ventilation or isn’t as water-tight as it should be, then adding a steam humidifier could lead to more growth of mold. 

Make sure to do your research before purchasing a whole house steam humidifier to ensure that it’s the right fit for your home.

The most common reasons for a failure in a portable humidifier with no humidistat are because it requires constant human monitoring and because the maker didn’t anticipate how often you’d need to service the device. 

Because they can’t be adjusted by any means, these types of humidifiers are most likely to cause difficulties.

Humidifiers with built-in humidistats may also provide unreliable outcomes since most of them are incorrect to the settings on the knob and can be up to 10% off.

All humidifiers can cause this problem. You need to set them on a low setting or turn them off when they aren’t in use.

Humidifiers can make humidity levels much higher than they should be. The humidity can cause mold to grow on walls or windowsills, which is dangerous.

Air humidifiers can also promote mold growth by leaving uncleansed for an extended period, resulting in film or scum that serves as a breeding ground for these microorganisms.

When the humidifier is switched on, it disseminates these germs across the room’s perimeter, where they may easily settle on moist cotton, damp hardwood furniture, or damp window sills with condensation. From there, you will know that there is no living mold in those areas.

How Humidifiers Affect Mold Growth

There are two ways in which humidifiers can cause mold. The first way is when humidifiers are left to run continuously, for long, or at high moisture settings, they can promote mold growth by generating too much humidity (or room where they are put).

Second, when the humidifier water becomes too filthy and clogged with gunk, it develops thin layers of scum that attract molds for nourishment and reproduction.

Mold spores are distributed during humidification, which is the ideal time and condition for them to settle in many materials around the home, wet surfaces like wet laundry cloths or damp carpets.


Overall, a steam humidifier is an excellent investment for any household. They are easy to use and provide many health benefits while also protecting your home from the damage caused by dry air. If you have been looking into purchasing a whole house steam humidifier, I would highly recommend it. 

Not only will it make your home more comfortable, but this type of system can also save on energy costs! However, ensure you conduct in-depth research before making such an important purchase because humidifiers aren’t created all equally. It depends on what you need or want out of one.

I hope this post has offered you useful information, and you’ve learned a lot from everything discussed here. If you have any other questions or feedback regarding this post/topic, feel free to reach out through, and we’ll be happy to help!