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May 23, 2008  |  Difficulty: Easy

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Humidifiers are excellent tools that aid in sinus pressure relief, headache relief, and recovery from infections. Quiet humidifiers are frequently used in bedrooms and nurseries at night to keep air humid and, make sleeping easier and healthier.

When choosing a humidifier, there are various product features to consider. Humidifiers are available for home installation and portable use. Selecting a portable model is typically the wisest choice. A combined air conditioner/humidifier will be more expensive, inefficient and could even become over run with mold (adding to respiratory problems instead of easing them).

The consumer also determines whether to purchase a cool or warm mist humidifier. Scientifically speaking, there is minimal therapeutic difference between the two types of mist. However, people in warm climates gravitate toward cool mist models that lower room temperature, while people in cold climes like warm mist that keeps the air from feeling clammy.

Apart from the myriad of choices offered, some features are important to optimal performance and safety. Be assured upon purchase that your unit does not release mineral dust (as some cheaper units do) as these small particulates can aggravate the respiratory system. Also, buy a humidifier with easy maintenance. Talk with the retailer before purchase to determine how the unit is cleaned and with what frequency. A humidistat is important to help you determine the level of humidity in the room. Set the level to 30%- 45% for best results. Humidity exceeding this level can create more dust mites and mold spores. Properly setting the humidity level will also aid in water tank longevity. Lastly, buy a unit with an automatic shut off function. Humidifiers that run constantly can run out of water and become a fire and safety hazard if they do not have an automatic switch.

In the long run, humidifiers can positively influence the health of your home. Choose a high quality model that will add to comfort safely. Do not bother with cheap ineffective and unsafe models that could become dangerous and worsen indoor air conditions.

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