warm air vs cold air humidifiers

hi all. what’s the difference? besides the obvious.

any benefits to either one?


I think it depends on what you want it for. When I was a kid, cool mist was reccommended for kids with asthma, then it was hot, now I think we’re back to cool. For me, I have both. The hot I use when anyone is congested with the cold or flu. It’s one of those with the little “bowl” on to for putting things like Vicks Vapo-Mist which is great with chest congestion. The cool I use when me or the boy are having asthma problems. YMMV

We had a warm humidifier, then a nurse at the pediatrician’s office told us to get a cool mist unit, to help with congestion when the baby had a cold.

But the cool mist had a couple of characteristics that we really didn’t like. First, it makes the room cold. The warm one gives a room a nice warm humid feel, and the cool mist one just makes it chilly. This isn’t what I want when I have a cold.

Second, the cool mist one leaves a white film over all the furniture in the room, even after just one night of use. And it’s not easy to wipe off.


Were you using distilled water in the humidifier?

I believe there are 2 types of cool mist humidifiers.
you can get one with a wick or one with an ultrasonic element. I use a wicking humidifier. I had a warm one, but we have high mineral content in the water which eventually destroyed it; at least i can easily replace the wick on the new one.
The ultrasonic ones (sometimes called “cool mist”) are potentially bad. you HAVE to use distilled water with them. they work by creating a mist of tiny droplets which very quickly evaporate. problem is the minerals in the tiny droplet which remain in the air as a super-fine dust. you dont want to be breathing that!

Concerning distilled water, you can also buy filters which remove the minerals from the water.

Consumer Reports compared cool misters and vaporizers two or three years ago. Their preference was for vaporizers primarily because they are less likely to develop a mold or fungus build-up (which could affect allergies). Of course, you can use plain tap water in vaporizers and not worry about dust.

Even worse, it’s very bad for tape decks, VCR’s and CD players