Cold season has been cruel to my family this winter. We seem to take turns getting sick, feeling better, then getting sick all over again. This week Kellan has suffered from a particularly bad cold. I wanted to give him some relief from the dry air in our house, so I bought a new humidifier. They can help to relieve cold symptoms, but there are five humidifier tips to keep in miind.
- Don't add too much moisture to the air - If there's condensation on the walls or windows the next morning, that's a sure sign there's too much water vapor in the air. That can cause mold and harmful bacteria to grow. Consider buying a humidifier with a humidistat, or a device that measures moisture in the air.
- Use distilled water - Tap water contains minerals that build up in the tank of your humidifier. When it's released in the air, it can promote bacterial growth. Distilled water has lower mineral content.
- Avoid warm mist humidifiers - Cool mist is safer for children. Even if you think it's out of their reach, you never know if they get curious when you aren't close by.
- Clean your humidifier regularly - Remove water that was left over the previous night and dry the tank before filling it up again. Also, disinfect your humidifier to stop the spread of mold or bacteria in the air. Use vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, or bleach solutions for best results.
- Replace the old humidifiers - Over time, it becomes more difficult to completely get rid of deposits in your humidifier so it's best just to start over and than risk the spread of allergens or mold.
If you want more information on humidifier safety, you can check out the EPA website here.