How to Clean Humidifier: 5 Steps of Deep Cleaning for Cleaner Indoor Air

How to Clean Humidifier guide: Humidifiers are purchased for a reason. These are the devices that help home or rooms to People purchase humidifiers for various reasons. One of these reasons is to help their homes or rooms to maintain humidity levels and improve indoor air quality for better health.

Through this, this device prevents us from having chapped lips, cracking, or dry skin, especially during colder seasons. Its usage had proven that it would significantly help protect yourself from dry, uncomfortable winter-y challenges. The use of this device can help us avoid dryness and poor air quality in our homes. This device is beneficial for your overall health.

When was the last time that you have checked on your humidifier? Well, this fancy device may not be that type of device that will annoy you. But, if you didn’t clean it, that can be a problem.

Read Top 10 Best Whole House Humidifier Review 2020 that you can buy for your house.

Why Is It Important To Clean a Humidifier?

There are a couple of reasons that will suggest “How to Clean Humidifier” importance. First from our list is to ensure that it is still functioning. Of course, everyone would love to lengthen the period that the device can serve its purpose. If it would be a great loss for you as a malfunctioned device would mean that it wasn’t a good buy apart from taking care of your humidifier.  If you don’t clean it regularly it would become a breeding ground of bacteria and mold.

Proper care to your other appliances will ensure its longevity and usage. As a humidifier holds standing water, it is the place where various bacteria can build up easily. In the simplest way of cleaning it, you will get to use such a device for long. Never ignore routine maintenance of cleaning your home humidifier, that may put your health at risk of various bacterial infections.

The second in our list of importance is to prevent the risk of spreading mold and harmful bacteria into thin air. Without knowing the proper way of cleaning and disinfection, there is water that will get stuck and stay into the water reservoir. With this, the device is still releasing dirty water vapors into the air. That’s why you need to read How to Clean Humidifier Guide.

You are already putting everyone’s health at risk because of air quality. Some of the health problems include include lung inflammation, severe coughs, sore throat, asthma, anxiety, and other breathing issues. A routine cleaning of your humidifier may reduce this health problems.

Let’s Prepare the Cleaning Tools

The best way to ensure humidifier’s performance through the years and avoiding contaminating the air is by cleaning it. While cleaning may not be a highly chosen task, but whether we like this since it is for our health, we will gladly comply with this task. So read carefully how to clean humidifier guide.

No worries, you don’t need any expensive cleaning products or complicated steps to clean it. All we need to have read this “How to Clean Humidifier” guide and put a little bit of effort exerted in cleaning as following:

  • Gloves and goggles
  • Clean towels
  • A bucket full of clean water or more
  • Soft Brush
  • Bleach hydrogen peroxide can also be a substitute
  • White-vinegar

These are just some of the typical household essentials that we will be using through the cleaning process.These may not be among the expensive brands of cleaning materials, but it has the same cleaning power.

All these cleaning products are available in any hardware store. Every humidifier has its water tank and operating base. So, regardless of the size and brand of the device that you are using, rest assured that these materials will help you throughout the cleaning process.

There is a chance that your humidifier might have additional parts or pieces. But no worries, if there is any, it will just be one of those easy-to-clean plastic components. When doubt, you can always check on your device’s instruction manual and other supporting documents on how to take care of it properly.

Before you start cleaning, don’t forget to wear gloves as well as goggles when using bleach solution and other chemicals during the cleaning process as bleach water may cause harm to your hands.

5 steps of How to clean humidifier
Steps of How to Clean Humidifier

5 Steps on How to Clean Humidifier

Let’s prolong the usage life of our humidifier as well as improve our home’s indoor air through cleaning! Here are the following steps to deep clean your device:

Step#1 Unplug, Disassemble, and Clean

Unplug first your humidifier before you start detaching its components. Remove the water tank’s content as well as the other removable parts of the device. Once removed, set them apart from each other to easily recognize which part goes from what part. If your device also comes with an air filter, be sure to remove it properly. These filters can clean using running water and set it aside to air dry. Try to use cold water to clean the filter.

Step #2 Deep Cleaning using White Vinegar

Pour just enough amount of undiluted white vinegar on all parts where water flows regularly. You can also take warm water to dilute vinegar and make a cleaning solution. Use equal parts water and vinegar.

For those small washable parts, soak them into a container filled with vinegar. Give the vinegar solution at least 30 minutes to breakdown any mineral buildup on those parts. Sarah Drake who is the brand manager at Honeywell for seasonal humidifiers, suggested that. You have to be very careful while cleaning the heating elements of your humidifier.

You can use a small brush. The soft-bristled type is best for the job. It will help to remove any residue stuck on it. There are some humidifier that comes with cleaning tools such as a brush but if you don’t have it, no worries. You can also use clean cloth to remove any dust from the small parts of the humidifier. 

You can always opt for a smaller, soft-bristle brush to clean. Smaller brushes are also great to use for parts o that are difficult to reach.

Step#3 Disinfect your Water Tank

Since disinfecting the water tank may take half an hour so that you can do both step #2 and #3 at the same time. For the disinfectant solution, mix one teaspoon of bleach on one gallon of fresh water. Then, pour this cleaning solution to the humidifier tank, filling the halfway part of it. 

The mixed solution to the tank should swirl to make sure it covers the inside part. If you have and prefer, you always substitute one teaspoon of bleach with 3% hydrogen peroxide or white distilled vinegar. 

You can also use 1 teaspoon of liquid chlorine bleach with 1 gallon of water to make a bleach solution. Drake who is the brand manager of Honeywell also suggests that a bleach solution can remove bacteria easily.

Step #4 Rinsing Time!

When you soaked every parts by the solution, it is rinsing time! Use clear water to rinse the tank, base, and other components thoroughly. It may take several rinses before the strong bleach smell dissipates.

Just make sure to do a thorough rinsing to remove the bleach smell. Shake well every component to remove and avoid trapping moisture inside them. Place each of these components on fresh dry towels to remove any residual smell of bleach as well as to have them air dry.

Step#5 Reassemble Parts

Once everything has completely dried, it is now time to reassemble them and use them again. Don’t forget to put a new air filter if it is applicable. Refill the tank with non-mineral water and then plug it in.

Now, you will be back in regular programming, staying indoors, enjoying the fresh and soothing humidity. Never turn your humidifier on without a thorough cleaning.

By following the steps listed above, you are sure that your humidifier will be functioning like how it should be.

Top 4 Maintenance Tips for Better Humidifier

From the previous paragraphs, we have given you a step-by-step guide on how to clean a humidifier.While those steps will is the basic steps for cleaning, you will greatly appreciate it if you are cleaning your cool mist humidifier.

Anyways, the key to maintaining the quality and performance of a device is through proper usage and regular maintenance. Get that better results with the following tips:

1. Deep cleaning should be done once every week

Follow the deep cleaning steps as listed above only once every week.  Doing it once a week is highly recommended if you are using the device regularly. 

Regular cleaning or a weekly cleaning will ensure that the indoor air that you are breathing is 100% clean and not with bacteria or mold spores.

2. Remove old water from the tank or basin before using

While it could be wasteful to just throw away the water from yesterday’s stop – a new day has come, which means new water is preferred. The water from previous use may look clean to you, but you can never tell if there are bacteria that grow there already.

After removing the suspicious old water, make sure to change it with a new one. Pour only the recommended type of water to avoid problems.

Instead of tap water, use only distilled water for your humidifier. Why? Tap water has still minerals in it compared to the distilled-type. These minerals can be easily dispersed together with the water vapor inside the room. It may increase a small amount of white dust into the air.

As it is getting mixed up into the air, it can become white dust that will be covering the entire room and increases mold growth. When this happens, it’s not right for you and your health, as these minerals also help bacteria growth. Say no to tap water; yes, to distilled water or hard water.

4. Clean and drain properly before storage

If you are not using your humidifier, don’t just place it inside its packaging and keep it inside the cabinet. As no one knows how long the device will be saying in storage, it is only reasonable that it is thoroughly cleaned and drained. The damp and dirty humidifier is the best place of mold growth and may affect the overall performance of the device.


Better follow this How to Clean Humidifier guide or regret later – the choice is yours. There you have it – several additional tips for maintenance as well as useful tips for your humidifier. Apart from correct usage, cleaning plays the lead role in ensuring functionality and promoting air quality. Still, if you are thinking that cleaning humidifier regularly is a hassle for you, you can switch to an antimicrobial humidifier.

Also, everyone is probably aware of the various types of humidifiers, and if you feel that the cleaning guidelines above may not be suitable to the one that you have at home, don’t hesitate to consult your manual for care instructions. You will never go wrong in checking the user’s manual to ensure that you are cleaning the device correctly and, hopefully, not doing anything that will shorten its lifespan. Also don’t forget to share this “How to Clean Humidifier” guide with your friends if you find it helpful.