Several friends have recently asked me to help them choose a humidifier in their home. I was able to offer the following experience:
1. Before using a humidifier, always use a hygrometer (also known as a humidity gauge) to learn exactly what the relative humidity is in the area you want to humidify. Our company sells the Acu-Rite Digital Humidity Gauge. It is worth every penny; hang it on the wall so you are constantly reminded. We have one in our home in our nursery and we use it daily. You only need to humidify the air if the relative humidity in the room is less than 40 percent. If it is over 50 percent, do not run a humidifier.
2. If the hygrometer indicates the humidity is under 40 percent, it is ok to use a humidifier; otherwise you will be adding too much moisture to the air.
3. Placement of the humidifier in the room is very important. Humidifiers need to be elevated off the ground. Otherwise, the area directly around the humidifier will become to moist. This can create several problems, slippery wood floors that can cause falls or mold / mildew if carpeting is directly below. Our solution to this problem is to place the humidifer on a small table about two feet off the ground. We put a towel directly under the humidifier to protect the table.
4. It goes without saying that the humidifier should be cleaned regularly. The one we use, the Air-O-Swiss AOS7135 Ultrasonic Humidifier, lets us know when it needs to be cleaned.
5. In my experience, all humidifiers are a little cumbersome to fill. The one we use is no exception. The resovoir has to be removed and turned upside down. The tank is too big to fit under our sink so we fill it in the bathtub. Be patient; the gain of having a little one sleep all the way through the night is well worth the trouble.