10 Best Humidifiers 2018 – 2019: Comparison, Reviews and Buyer’s Guide

the best humidifier reviews at home

As external temperatures fall so does the humidity in our homes. Heating your home exacerbates the situation, and since air with low humidity cannot hold as much heat, you’ll often have to run your heating even harder to achieve comfort. It’s not just about coziness either. Dry air in our homes can cause a number of nasty side effects that can make us unhealthy and worsen various ailments.

Enter the Personal Home Humidifier!

These room humidifiers provide a warm mist or a cool mist or both in order to add moisture to your air. Such products are reasonably priced and cost-effective over the long-term. They are also quite easy to clean in general, so you can enjoy all of the benefits without adding much hassle to your daily life.

Selecting the best humidifier on the market is not simple, unfortunately. There are many products and features from which to choose. Our goal with this guide was to answer the most common questions that consumers have as well as review a large assortment of popular and even not-so-popular humidifiers and break it down for you in bite-sized, information-packed humidifier reviews and comparisons.

Top Rated Humidifiers Comparison Chart 2018 – 2019

HumidifiersWarm or Cool MistHumidity levelSystemPrice
Boneco 7135
(Editor’s Choice)
Both3.5 gallons / 24 hoursUltrasonic Check Price
Honeywell HCM-350
(Best Value)
Cool Mist40 - 60%Steam Humidifier Check Price
Levoit LV600HHBothup to 500ml/hrUltrasonic Check Price
PureGuardian H4610Both-Ultrasonic Check Price
Pure Enrichment MistAire
(Budget Pick)
Cool Mistup to 150ml/hrUltrasonic Check Price
TaoTronics Cool MistCool Mist45 - 65%Ultrasonic Check Price
Sunpentown SU-9210Cool Mist35 - 85%Steam Humidifier Check Price
Vicks V745AWarm Mist40 - 60%Steam Humidifier Check Price
Vornado EV100Comes with Wick1 gallon per 24 hrsEvaporative Check Price
William UltrasonicWarm Mist40 - 65%Ultrasonic Check Price

1. BONECO Warm or Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier 7135

The BONECO 7135 is a machine that many on our team use in their own homes!

It’s an ultrasonic humidifier, which means that it uses high-frequency vibrations to turn water into a fine mist that can then infuse the air. This approach means that you can choose between warm mist and cool mist, which we really like since you can set it to whatever is appropriate for the current season.

Another feature that makes this the best humidifier of 2018 – 2019 is an integrated humidistat. Better yet, it has a deluxe LCD screen too, and that makes it very easy to dial in the exact humidity level you want. The AirOSwiss 7135 will also show you the current humidity level in the room.

The buttons are well organized and intuitive. The automatic mode is on by default and will keep your room at the desired humidity at all times. The BONECO 7135 also features a sleep mode, which maintains a higher humidity level for your sleep period and then automatically reverts back.

Don’t worry about noise. The BONECO 7135 is one of the quietest humidifiers on the market as well. Not only that, but the sleep function puts the machine into an extra quiet mode. We could barely hear anything at all during the standard mode, and the sleep mode was completely silent for practical purposes.

It also has a huge reservoir that can hold up to 1.75 gallons of water. On the highest of three performance modes, the BONECO 7135 takes just 12 hours to turn that entire tank into mist. That makes it powerful enough to handle rooms up to 650 square feet.

It is a little on the pricey side. The manufacturer recommends distilled water. Cleaning is relatively easy, and BONECO provides a three-year warranty, which is quite good. We also found that customers who had to deal with BONECO support were generally very pleased with that experience overall.

2. Honeywell HCM-350 Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier

The HCM-350 by Honeywell is the best cool mist humidifier of 2018 – 2019.

This really is one of our favorite products on the market, and the only reason it comes in at number two in our room humidifier reviews is that we really like ultrasonic humidifiers and having that option between cool and warm. That said, the Honeywell HCM-350 may be the best humidifier for dry skin and allergies.

It’s also received many recommendations from pediatricians as the best humidifier for a baby. Not only does it send out a cool mist, but it’s whisper-silent at all times.

The HCM-350 uses the evaporative approach rather than ultrasonic. It features a 1.1-gallon tank and can output 2.3 gallons per day. That makes it suitable for rooms up to 500 square feet. Honeywell germ free cool mist humidifier also uses a mineral removal filter and offers germ eradication via ultraviolet light.

The size is a bit larger and cumbersome than the other products on our lists, but it has a carrying handle and weighs less than 10 pounds empty. The plastic is also shatterproof and dishwasher safe. You can stick the entire unit in your dishwasher with a cup of bleach and clean this and your appliance at the same time. This option makes it second to none as an easy-to-clean humidifier.

The Honeywell HCM-350 is perhaps the best humidifier under $100. It’s actually a lot closer to $50, and the really makes it one of the greatest values in humidifiers on the market. It isn’t without issues of course. It lacks a humidistat, and while there’s an argument to be made that evaporative technology doesn’t require it, we really still prefer to have it regardless.

3. LEVOIT LV600HH Hybrid Ultrasonic Humidifier

The LEVOIT LV600HH is another spectacular ultrasonic humidifier.

If you want ultrasonic and the choice between warm mist and cool mist but are put off by the price of the BONECO 7135, you’ll want to look closely at the LV600HH. This is one of best humidifiers under $100 if you choose the model with the integrated sensor, and even if you prefer the external sensor, it’s among the best humidifiers under $200—and well under it at that!

The Levoit LV600HH boasts one of the most accurate thermostats on the market. Controls allow you to dial in your ideal humidity, and an LCD screen shows that percentage as well as the current humidity.

Consumers will also enjoy this model as a low-maintenance humidifier. While no model featured here is as easy to clean as the HCM-350, the LV600HH is fairly simple to wash out as well as being a much more robust machine. The manufacturer recommends a 30-minute vinegar soak, and the actual scrubbing and drying that you have to do shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes.

Something else we like about this ultrasonic machine is how stylish it is. Style won’t make or break a selection for us when it comes to humidifier ratings, but this is by far one of the best-looking humidifiers when you have it in a living room or other areas where you’ll host guests. That said, we’ve also found this unit to be whisper-quiet and among the best bedroom humidifiers we tested and reviewed.

4. PureGuardian H4610 Ultrasonic Warm and Cool Mist Humidifier

This ultrasonic model can run for 120 hours without needing a refill!

It’s an excellent option for medium and large rooms and when you need a humidifier that can go a few days without you having to worry about it. It also features patented mildew-fighting technology so that if you do leave it unattended, there’s even less for you to worry about.

The PureGuardian H4610 features a 2-gallon tank and is appropriate for rooms up to 650 square feet. It also features both a warm and a cool mode so you can choose the one appropriate to the current climate.

The H4610 is practically silent as well, so it’s ideal for bedrooms or in rooms where you’ll enjoy movies, music and other entertainment. The digital display also has a nice soft light so that it’s easy to control in the middle of the night but doesn’t light up your entire room, which is a problem with some models.

We like this model for alleviating dry eyes and noses. In addition to being among the best humidifiers for dry noses and eyes, it’s a great option for allergies as well as cold and flu symptoms.

The primary reason why this unit slips a bit on our list is that it lacks an integrated humidistat, which we expect at this price point and on ultrasonic machines in general. It also lacks a demineralization mechanism, so that makes use of distilled water almost a must. If you have hard water in your home, take care since the mist can leave behind a white dust as it evaporates.

5. Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

The MistAire from Pure Enrichment is the best humidifier under $50!

There’s really a lot to like about this budget-friendly machine. We must point out that this model only provides cool mist rather than giving you an option like most ultrasonic. This may be a deal-breaker if you live in a cool climate, but otherwise, it’s hard to complain at this price point.

The Pure Enrichment MistAire has a 1.5-liter water tank and can operate 16 hours continuously without refilling. It doesn’t have a built-in humidistat, which is another sacrifice to expect at this price. While you do have to take care not to over-moisturize, it’s easy to use and is perhaps the best humidifier on our list in that regard.

Automatic shut-off is also included. This means that the humidifier will shut itself down when the water gets low or even when you remove the tank. It also features an optional night glow, which can serve as a night light and is surprisingly soothing. We really like that effect.

A 360-degree nozzle lets you direct the mist. This is really handy when you want to position the humidifier somewhere but have an area in close proximity that you don’t want to receive moisture.

Overall, Pure Enrichment humidifier is a great machine. Sure, there are a lot of humidifiers with a lot more features but not at this price. It’s a wonderful option for those who need a humidifier but don’t want to spend a lot.

6. TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier

This cool mist humidifier from TaoTronics is among the most popular options according to user reviews.

It’s a relatively inexpensive unit. In fact, it’s one of only several products on are list that are ever in the discussion for best humidifier under $30 when it goes on sale. Despite this inexpensiveness, it’s loaded with features that you’d expect on much more expensive machines.

The TaoTronics has an integrated humidistat. An LCD screen informs you of the current humidity level and will show you the current setting when you change it. It also has convenient buttons for on/off, activating the timer, putting it in sleep mode and increasing and decreasing the mist amount.

This cool mist humidifier also supports an optional cartridge that filters the water and eliminates microorganisms. There is no demineralization capability, however, so it’s advised that you use distilled water, and it’s practically a requirement if you have hard water in your home.

With a full tank, this TaoTronics humidifier can operate for 15 hours without being refilled, and that’s at the highest mist setting. It’s also suitable for rooms up to 538 square feet, which we think is pretty impressive at this price. It’s quite quiet as well—38 dB at its noisiest—so it’s great for bedrooms and nurseries.

The biggest negative to this machine is the tank. Filling it can be a pain, and cleaning this humidifier isn’t that easy either. If you can live with those shortcomings, however, you sure get a lot for a little.

7. Sunpentown SU-9210 Digital Evaporative Humidifier

The Sunpentown SU-9210 is one of Consumer Reports top picks among evaporator-style room units, and we concur.

It’s not an expensive unit at all, and it packs a lot of features into a compact, stylish design. Those features include a humidistat that lets you see the current humidity and will activate the machine as needed in order to maintained your desired humidity level.

The Sunpentown SU-9210 works by drawing dry air in and then emitting it as moist air. It does this via a two-speed fan. The tank holds one gallon of water, and there’s a filter to remove minerals and ensure no white dust. The LCD readout even alerts you when the filter is near capacity and must be replaced.

Air is moistened via a wick filter. These filters last at least three months even with constant use and are relatively inexpensive. All in all, this is a really easy machine to clean as well. You just have to empty and wipe out the tank once a week, and the tank is easy to access.

In addition to being easy to clean, SU-9210 is one of the easiest humidifiers to use that we tested. In our opinion, that makes it one of the best humidifiers if you want to gift it to Mom or Grandma and don’t want to give them something that’s a hassle.

8. Vicks Warm Mist Humidifier V745A

Vicks is a household name, and with the V745A, it gives us one of the best warm mist humidifiers on the market and at a fantastic price to boot.

Not only is this model super-affordable, but it’s among the best humidifiers for coughs and all manner of cold, flu and allergy symptoms. It’s also whisper-silent so if you’re sick and trying to sleep, it’ll reduce your symptoms while not keeping you awake in the process.

Another aspect we like about the V745A warm mist humidifier is that it’s filter-free. It has a 1-gallon water tank, can operate up to 24 hours on a full tank and will shut off automatically when it runs out of water or you remove the tank.

It’s also designed to work with VapoSteam. This is a product by Vicks that creates medicated steam when you add it to the water in a machine like the V745A. It really is a game-changer and a reason why many on our team own one of these even though it may not be our primary humidifier.

Vicks V745A also promises 95-percent bacteria-free mist and this unit has been tested and deemed appropriate for kids of all ages, including infants. You should, however, check with a pediatrician before using VapoSteam with kids.

The V745A is also really easy to clean. It took us less than 10 minutes, and on top of the fantastic price, Vicks gives you a three-year warranty.

9. Vornado EV100 Evaporative Whole Room Humidifier

The Vornado brand may be best known for fans, but it makes a heck of a humidifier too.

The EV100 is whole-room humidifier up to 300 square feet. It also functions well as a personal humidifier and has a reputation for being among the best humidifiers for plants.

Our team was impressed with the size and design. This is a bit smaller than you might expect from a humidifier that can handle large rooms. Apparently, this is thanks to the Vortex Action airflow that the company has innovated in the design of its fans—or air circulators as it likes to call them.

This product is also very easy to use and maintain. It features what Vornado calls the SimpleTank system, and while that may sound like marketing speak, it really is quite simple. The cannister detaches easily allowing you to fill it like a pitcher. It also makes cleaning easy, and if you don’t want to do it by hand, a dishwasher is an option like with the Honeywell model on our list.

Vornado also offers a five-year warranty, which is the longest we encountered. Furthermore, it’s a satisfaction guarantee. If you’re dissatisfied for whatever reason at any point along those five years, Vornado will refund your money.

Note that Vornado also sells a 1.5-gallon version of this machine. It’s a little more expensive but allows for 36 rather than 24 hours of continuous usage.

10. Stadler Form WILLIAM Ultrasonic Humidifier

If money is no issue, then we recommend the Stadler Form WILLIAM Ultrasonic humidifier.

It is the best humidifier under $300. It is also one of the most stylish—seriously. The marketing boasts that about how as much care went into the aesthetics as the technology, and we don’t doubt.

That level of attention to detail went into the craftsmanship as well. The materials and construction are just beyond any of the other humidifiers that we tested. That’s a big part of what makes this one of the best home humidifier we reviewed, but the price is why it’s last on our top 10 list.

The WILLIAM features a 1.5-gallon water tank and only weighs 7.3 pounds empty. It has a three output levels, and at the highest level, it can output 3.5 gallons in 24 hours. In terms of coverage, the marketing contradicts itself: 1,000 square feet at one point and 860 at another. The 860 measure is probably the accurate one, but that’s still more than enough for nearly any room unless you live in a mansion.

Despite the fact that we love everything beside its price, it’s hard to recommend because of that. The BONECO 7135 doesn’t quite have the style of this machine, but it’s comparable in most other ways and costs a lot less as well. That said, if you need humidifier for a room larger than 600 square feet or so, then there’s really no other option on the market as good that doesn’t cost a lot more than $300.

How We Selected the Best Humidifiers for 2018 – 2019

Our team took a multipronged approach to reviewing and selecting these top rated humidifiers. These phases are:

  • Objective assessment
  • Subjective assessment
  • Expert opinions
  • Consumer opinions
It’s also worth noting that our team has been reviewing humidifiers and using them in our personal lives for a long time. What that means is that we’ve had years of first-hand experience with many of the products that made our top 10 humidifiers list. That informed our subjective assessments greatly.

We tested and used a wide range of the best home humidifiers on the market. Our team paid particular attention to ease of use, ease of cleaning and features, such as humidistats and auto-shutoff mechanisms. It was also important to test efficiency in terms of electricity, water and any filter media.

The subjective portion of our humidifier reviews was all about how we felt. Our team even slept with these various products in our bedrooms to determine how much better we felt the next morning. We tried cool mist and warm mist in various climates as well. Preferences and personal experiences will vary from one person to the next of course, but our team is diverse, and it was rare that we ever had experiences that were markedly different from each other.

Nevertheless, since personal experience can vary so greatly when it comes to the best and most-efficient humidifiers, we wanted to look outside our team as well. We paid attention to Consumer Reports humidifier reviews and other highly respected professional reviews.

Lastly, we looked to the consumers. We were particularly interested in people who uses these products for months and more and were inspired to return to leave their impressions. It surprised us how many satisfied consumers were willing to come back to a review often a year or more later to update it. There was some truly great insight to be found here.

Who Can Use Humidifiers?

The answer in a nutshell is everyone cannot only use a humidifier but benefit from that use!

A quick note: adhere to whatever recommendations your doctor provides. We’ve never heard of a doctor telling a patient not to use a humidifier, but if a doctor tells you to get a humidifier for specific health reasons, then you should stick to that advice, such as cool mist versus warm mist.

For most people, however, it just comes down to a matter of preference. As long as you’re not overusing your humidifier and you’re keeping it cleaned and well-maintained, you’ll benefit, and your preferences really don’t matter in terms of how much you benefit, so gravitate toward whatever you like.

There’s no ideal relative humidity. There’s a recommended range: 40 to 50 percent. As long as the humidity in your home is around that range, then you’ll be reaping the benefits in terms of your sleeping behavior, skin, nasal passages, throat, eyes, houseplants and so on and so forth.

In terms of comfort, there’s no right answer. Be mindful that there is a relationship between temperature and humidity in terms of how you feel—we’ll discuss this more in the How Does a Humidifier Work section. The 40 to 50 percent range should allow you to keep the thermostat at the lowest possible setting to still feel warm.

The exact temperature and the exact humidity will depend on you and your family. We’re all different. Some people are more sensitive to the humidity and will feel it right at 40 percent or even less. Don’t worry about being “right.” Focus on being comfortable. Everything should fall into place from there.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Humidifier

The most important factors to consider when purchasing a humidifier are:

  • Budget
  • Room type
  • Room size
  • Mist type
  • Special features
  • Noise

Determine how much you want to spend. Generally, $200 provides enough budget to get any of the best humidifiers for large rooms, but you can spend a lot less and still get a really nice machine. If you’re buying products for more than one room, then trying to zero in on a particular budget for each.

Think about the room where you’ll be using the humidifier. The best humidifier for bedroom use is not necessarily the best humidifier for a basement or nursery. If you have to buy one machine that you’ll move around, determine where it’s most important to you to reap the most benefits.

It’s very important that you size your humidifier appropriately. The best humidifiers on the market won’t work well in a room twice the size for which they were designed. It’s better to have a machine that’s too powerful than not enough, so if you’re purchasing one humidifier for use in your bedroom and living room, size it based on the larger area. You also need to factor in ventilation. If a room isn’t well-ventilated, then you’re generally going to need a more powerful humidifier to handle the extra work.

The ideal mist type is mostly a matter of preference. But know that many warm mist humidifiers do present a risk to children. Additionally, warm mist tends to be more effective in cooler climates while cool mist tends to be more effective in warmer clients. Units that offer both warm and cool mist are a really great solution in that you can just switch the mode based on the current weather.

Special features are often what separate the high-end machines from the economy options. We’re of the opinion that an integrated humidistat is a must. Without it, preventing your humidifier from over-moisturizing the air is too much of a hassle. We also tend to prefer timers, auto-shutoff mechanisms and self-cleaning modes, but those are luxuries and not so much deal-breakers.

Finally, pay attention to how much noise these machines generate. Most of the best rated humidifiers are relatively quiet, but there are some that are just noisy as heck. It comes down to your sensitivity and the room where you’ll use it. We found that having a near-silent humidifier in the bedroom was super-important but that we could get away with a bit more noise in the living room.

How Does a Humidifier Work?

A humidifier in your home helps ensure that the air is never too dry. The ideal humidity means that you’re as comfortable as possible at the ideal temperature. Dry air can:

  • Make it harder to breathe
  • Worsen allergy and asthma symptoms
  • Dry out nasal passages and eyes
  • Make skin itchy and leathery
  • Exacerbate flu and cold symptoms

Although all of the top-rated humidifiers help us avoid these problems as well as provide many other benefits, they don’t all work in the same manner. In fact, there are five core types of humidifiers:

  • Evaporators
  • Steam vaporizers
  • Central humidifiers
  • Impeller humidifiers
  • Ultrasonic humidifiers

Evaporators — The evaporator design employs a fan to force air through a moist filter. This approach is generally less expensive than other humidifier options, and you’ll see this technology represented on our list because they are often simple to use and provide excellent value.

Steam Vaporizers — Vaporizers have a heating element that boils water and releases the steam to add moisture to the air. These products are often relatively inexpensive and highly portable, but the approach is more designed to affect the immediate air around a person rather than an entire room or home.

Central Humidifiers — Central systems are the most expensive humidifier option and have to be integrated with the central heating equipment either at the supply or return end. Such systems force water through a humidifier pad, which is also known as a water panel, and the moisture of the pad can be dictated based on indoor humidity levels as determined by a humidistat.

Impeller Humidifiers — This design uses disks that rotate at high speeds in order to infuse the air with moisture. The form of that moisture is cool mist. Since there’s no heat involved, these units never get hot to the touch, and that makes them an intriguing option for use around children.

Ultrasonic Humidifiers — Ultrasonic vibrations are used to create mist and infuse the air with it in this design. An advantage of this approach is that these devices can support both cool or warm mist. Not all products do, but those that achieve it are quite versatile and available in many different sizes.

Are Humidifiers Safe for Newborns?

best humidifier for nursery

Yes! In fact, most pediatricians recommend using a humidifier in a nursery.

Kids—and infants in particular—are much more prone to the symptoms that come from dry air than we are as adults. It isn’t unusual for children to experience nosebleeds and eczema and a wide range of other conditions that will only spring up during winter when you’re running the heat all the time.

Speak to your pediatrician for personalized advice, but many doctors recommend using the evaporator style of humidifier in nurseries. This is also another argument against whole-home solutions. Many people will want a different approach in their nurseries than in their bedrooms than in their family rooms and so forth, and a central system doesn’t allow for that.

Make sure that the humidity is monitored and appropriately controlled. The best humidifier for nursery will have an integrated humidistat and as well as automatic shutoff.

There are certainly some concerns to consider. Placement is an important particularly when it comes to warm mist. You’ll also probably want to used distilled water to avoid minerals in the air. This is a good idea throughout the home but for nurseries in particular. Also, don’t use any additives—such as oils—without consulting with your pediatrician to determine whether or not it’s safe.

Are There Any Health Hazards in General?

No health hazards are associated with the best humidifiers when they are used properly.

There are two main ways in which people use humidifiers inappropriately. They:

  • Over-moisturize the air
  • Don’t clean their machines
Too much humidity is not good for you either! It can be particularly problematic for people with asthma, allergies and other breathing conditions, and it can even make it more difficult to breathe for those who don’t have any such concerns. It can also make it difficult to achieve a comfortable temperature.

The risk of over-moisturizing is why we strongly recommend humidifiers with built-in humidistats or at least having a hygrometer so that you can test it yourself and adjust accordingly.

High humidity also isn’t good for your home. It can decrease the life expectancy of furniture and hardwood floors, and it can promote the growth of mildew and even mold.

An overly moist environment is also a perfect breeding ground for harmful bacteria and even dust mites. Not cleaning your humidifier is a problem in its own right and can also compound the issues that arise from over-moisturizing. Harmful bacteria will grow in a humidifier if not cleaned regularly, and the machine will then distribute that bacteria throughout the room as it humidifies. [1]

That makes your entire family more susceptible to common colds and even the flu!

Keeping Yourself Healthy by Cleaning Your Humidifier

As we just went over in the section above, unclean humidifiers present real risks.

The easiest way to avoid these problems is to clean out your humidifiers on a regular basis. We also recommend using distilled water in order to avoid minerals and microorganisms in the air.

It’s generally recommended that you deep clean your humidifiers once a week. However, we recommend adhering to the manufacturer guidelines for your particular product. All of the best room humidifiers have detailed instructions and advice regarding cleaning because it is so important.

Deep cleaning involves emptying the tank and then rinsing it out thoroughly. You can also use chlorine or a chlorinated product, such as bleach, to disinfect. Rinse thoroughly again. Throughout the week, wipe the device and remove limestone deposits as needed.

Self-cleaning humidifiers can save you a lot of time. These low-maintenance humidifiers often have demineralization capabilities as well as filters that kill pathogens. Note that low maintenance and self-cleaning do not mean no cleaning at all. These products still need to be cleaned by hand but less often.

We also recommend changing out the water between uses. This is mainly a concern when the humidifier sits unused for a long period and thus there’s potential for the water to stagnate.

Final Thoughts: Best Humidifier 2018 – 2019

Well, there you have it. Hopefully your questions have been answered and you have a clearer picture of which of the top-rated humidifiers are actually the best humidifiers for you and your family. Humidifiers are a wonderful investment that really don’t cost that much, have a very low total cost of ownership and provide comfort and health benefits for a long time—it’s not unusual to get 5 to 10 years out of them.

Just take the time to choose the right humidifier for the particular room and room size, and it will serve you well. Brand and model preferences aside, this is a product in general that I believe in and use throughout my own home. The other team members do as well. Whole-home options just aren’t cost-effective to me. The whole-home benefits just aren’t there. I’d just rather have that comfort with me in the room where I currently am, and it seems that the market as whole agrees with me.

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