It is very important that you know how to clean a humidifier. The cleaning and regular maintenance of a humidifier is the worst part about owning one. No one likes doing it, but it has to be done if you want your humidifier to work properly.
If you have a single room humidifier that uses a filter or a mineral pad, make sure you replace the filter/pad on a regular basis. Dirty filters and mineral pads can cause a problem not only for your house but for your health as well.
The purpose of the humidifier filter or mineral pad is to trap all the bacteria and dust that comes from the water you use to fill the tanks. If the filter or pad isn’t changed regularly, the bacteria will end up being released into the air of your room. This can cause fungi and molds (wiki) to grow in your house.
The bacteria and mold spores will float around in the air and could end up getting into your food, drinks, your throat, and nose. You can end up having some serious respiratory problems.
The manufacturer will have instructions included on how to clean a humidifier. It’s very important that you follow those directions and not try to do it your own way. You might end up damaging the unit or not cleaning it well enough to get rid of all the bacteria and dust.
If you are using tap water to fill up the tank, then you will have to clean the humidifier and tank more often. This is especially true if you have hard water. Manufacturers sometimes suggest that you use distilled or purified water to lower the number of bacteria that are in the water.
Many humidifiers are made of plastic parts. You have to be very careful how you clean these parts because the plastic can break easily. Using a toothbrush to clean the dust inside the unit is a good way to ensure that you won’t damage any parts.
Putting a teaspoon of bleach in a gallon of water in the tank will help get rid of bacteria. Let it sit for about 20 minutes then rinse the tank out until any bleach smell is gone.
You can also pour a cup of vinegar in the unit’s reservoir ONLY and let it sit for 20 minutes. Dump out the vinegar and then pour a cup of water in the reservoir only in order to get rid of the vinegar. Pour the water out after that.
You can then use the toothbrush to get rid of any mineral buildup and dust. Make sure you don’t get any water on the bottom of the unit or on any internal parts.
If you clean your humidifier once a week according to the manufacturer’s instructions and change the filter or mineral pad every few weeks, the unit should work properly and you won’t have any bacteria or mold build up in your home.