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9 Best Steam Humidifiers of 2023 | Reviews + Guide

Steam humidifiers are a simple way to improve the air quality in your home for the improved health of the residents. 

Steam from the humidifier. Ultrasonic technology, increasing the humidity of the air in the room.

Humidity in a home can have a number of detrimental effects on both the body and your home. For example, it can damage wooden surfaces and cause pathogens to linger in the air. But controlling the humidity with a steam humidifier can negate these effects. 

However, humidifiers come in all shapes and sizes with a variety of features to boot. There are so many options on the market, from oil diffusion in personal air purifiers to whole-house steam humidifiers. So, how do you make the right decision? 

Worry not! Our comprehensive guide features different models that are worth checking out. We will also help you pick the best one for your needs and budget. 

Let’s get right into it! 

Best Steam Humidifiers 

 

Modern air humidifier on a wooden table. Place for text.

From advanced features to user-friendly designs, this list encompasses a range of top-rated steam humidifiers to enhance the air quality and comfort of your home. So, without further ado, here's the list of the 9 best Steam Humidifiers to create a healthier and more comfortable living environment.

1. Honeywell HWM705B - Best for Easy Operation

Winter months can bring several challenges for your health and the humidity levels of a house. And this is where a warm mist humidifier can come in handy to add moisture back into the air. The HWM705B releases warm mist and is packed with many useful features, making it a great option for any home. 

Honeywell HWM-705B HWM705B Filter Free Warm Moisture...
  • Warm Mist Humidifier: This Ultra Quiet Filter Free...
  • WARM MOISTURE FOR HOME OR OFFICE: This top fill humidifier...

Why Did We Like It? 

Using the HWM705B from Honeywell is incredibly straightforward with the easy-to-use control panel. There are two steam output modes to reach your desired humidity level, as well as an auto shut-off feature for sleeping. Simply switch it to the mode you want and let the humidifier do the rest. 

Additionally, this steam humidifier is able to operate at a low noise level, so keeping it in the bedroom is entirely feasible. The auto shut-off feature is definitely handy as well, making it easier to use for longer periods throughout the day. 

As it releases a warm mist, there is no need to install a filter into it. All you have to do is replace the large-capacity gallon tank with purified water every few days, and it will be good to go. The replaceable canister is easy to remove, thanks to the top grip handle. 

What Could've Been Better?

If there is one drawback to using this steam humidifier, it would be the running cost that it needs while running. The unit needs 275 watts to work, which significantly raises the operating costs, especially if you plan on using it continuously. 



Pros

  • One-gallon water tank
  • No filter required
  • Ultra-quiet operation
  • Auto shut off




Cons

  • High operating costs



Tank Capacity: 1 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 500 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: No | Timer Function: No | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: No | Humidistat: No | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

2. Crane - Best Dual-Functioning Model

Crane has designed a handy house humidifier that also doubles as an inhaler, making it a solid addition for the next humidifier season. It also comes with a medicine cup that can be used to treat respiratory infections during the cold season. With considerable coverage, this humidifier works well to control the humidity levels of any room or house. 

Sale
Crane EE-5202 Inhaler & Warm Mist Humidifier, 0.5 Gallon,...
  • 2 FUNCTIONS: Crane's 2 in 1 device features both a warm mist...
  • WARM MIST HUMIDIFIER: Crane's warm mist humidifier has a 0.5...

Why Did We Like It?

Operating at a coverage capacity of 250 square feet, this steam humidifier is a fit for different-sized areas. From medium-sized rooms to the entire house, it can relieve respiratory infections and dust mites with ease. This is especially useful as an extension of your existing HVAC system. 

A highlight feature of this unit is the ability to attach an inhaler to the top of it. By having this multi-purpose function, dry skin, and other seasonal dryness ailments can be treated. The medicine cup can also be used to reinforce its health benefits. 

Furthermore, the auto shut-off feature will kick in if the humidifier overheats or the installation isn’t done properly. These features make using the steam humidifier and inhaler a better experience in terms of safety. 

 

What Could've Been Better? 

Perhaps one drawback to this versatile model lies in the design of the steam inhaler. As the steam hose is directly on top of the replaceable canister, controlling the steam temperature is practically impossible. Hence, the inhaler function can cause discomfort for users with sensitive skin or young children. 



Pros

  • Easy-to-clean bottom-fill tank
  • Prevents bacteria growth and dry skin
  • Germ-free mist
  • Compatible with anti-mineral pad




Cons

  • Steam output temperature can’t be adjusted



Tank Capacity: 0.5 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 250 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: Yes | Humidistat: No | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

3. Vicks - Best for Children's Bedrooms

For those who have young children, this steam humidifier from Vicks is perfect to use in their bedroom or nursery to keep the humidity at a safe level throughout the winter season. What’s more, it’s designed to help them get the proper sleep and rest they need without any coughing fits. 

Sale
Vicks Nursery 1 Gallon Vaporizer with Night-Light Warm Steam...
  • VICKS WARM STEAM VAPORIZER FOR NURSERY: This warm mist...
  • VICKS HUMIDIFIERS FOR KIDS, ADULTS: This warm steam...

Why Did We Like It? 

The air quality of a room can determine how sensitive the body is to specific pathogens. And this model uses warm mist to keep the relative humidity at 40-60%, thereby facilitating optimum humidity. Moreover, adding moisture back into the air allows for a better night's sleep by keeping the throat and nasal passages hydrated. 

It also has a large capacity one-gallon tank that allows it to operate for up to eight hours. The auto shut-off feature will ensure it turns off once the tank is empty, making sure no injury or damage is possible. 

A common remedy in humidifier season for cold and flu symptoms is using essential oils that are distilled into the air. These oils can be placed on the reservoir on top of the humidifier to mix in with the steam and spread throughout the room to provide relief. 

 

What Could've Been Better? 

Although we used purified water, there was still a considerable amount of flaking and black buildup along the bottom of the tank. Switching it out for a distilled water and table salt solution did not solve the issue either. If you plan on using this model, prepare for heavy maintenance to keep the tank clean. 



Pros

  • Built-in night light
  • Reduce flu virus
  • One-gallon capacity
  • Can be used with essential oils




Cons

  • Debris builds up quickly



Tank Capacity: 1 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 250 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: No | Timer Function: No | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: No | Humidistat: No | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

4. BONECO S250

This fan-powered home steamer from BONECO is a great digital model for the next humidifier season. An electrical current flows through the water vapor to boil it and remove any bacteria and lime. And once hygienically cleaned, a fan cools down the vapor to form a warm mist to control the humidity level. 

BONECO S250 Large Room Steam Humidifier with Hand Warm Mist...
  • High-performance steam humidifier that provides ideal,...
  • Unit automatically adjusts to your desired relative humidity...

Why Did We Like It? 

Right from the operation of the steam humidifier to the easy navigation control panel, the user experience is straightforward and doesn’t have any learning curve. The LED control panel is touch-sensitive, making it accessible to anyone. Furthermore, it features maintenance reminders for water and cleaning, as well as an air quality humidity display. 

Additionally, it uses a unique water filtration system to create a healthy, warm mist. An electric current heats the water to a boiling point and turns it into steam. This steam is then cooled down by the fan, making it safe to be released into the room. 

Likewise, the dedicated cleaning mode on the humidifier makes maintenance a breeze. In this mode, the system begins decalcifying the internals, minimizing the workload to a great extent. The water tank is also removable with a handle and can be used with replaceable anti-mineral pads. 

What Could've Been Better?

One caveat to using this system is the need to replace the filters within the tank to ensure it is performing to the peak of its capability at all times. These pads help in water filtration and are an additional purchase that needs to be replaced every cleaning session. 



Pros

  • Small footprint
  • Quiet operation
  • LED touch display control panel
  • Removes bacteria and lime




Cons

  • Requires regular filter replacement



Tank Capacity: 0.8 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 480 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: Yes | Humidistat: Yes | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

5. Aprilaire 700

Another Aprilaire humidifier model, the 700 line, uses a unique system of air ducts to create a warm mist to return moisture to the dry air. It also features dual sensors to regulate optimum humidity in the home. Plus, it has extensive coverage that spans up to 4,200 square feet. 

AprilAire 700 Whole Home Humidifier, Automatic Fan Powered...
  • BUY WITH CONFIDENCE This humidifier was designed and...
  • FULL COVERAGE up to 5,300 square feet in tightly built homes...

Why Did We Like It? 

Evaporative humidifiers, like the Aprilaire 700,  use the pre-existing HVAC system to heat the water with hot air pulled from the furnace. The fans in this system regulate the temperature to create a warm mist spread throughout the house. Hence, it eliminates the need for a standalone unit that needs to be maintained regularly.

Compared to standalone units, the all-in-one unit is able to function independently without outside influence. Once the setup is installed, you can forget about it as it regulates the humidity for you. 

Aside from that, the dual sensors act as the remote control to put more moisture into the air. There is a constant 35-45% humidity maintained throughout the house while the system is running. And it’s considered the optimal level for preserving moisture-sensitive surfaces and eliminating pathogens. 

What Could've Been Better? 

Although this humidifier is a one-stop shop for all humidity regulation needs, installing it can be pretty challenging. There are many moving parts that need to be taken care of to ensure the humidifier system is working correctly. Hence, we’d recommend employing a professional if you are not knowledgeable enough to install it yourself. 



Pros

  • Minimizes fungi and bacteria formation
  • 18-gallon moisture output per day
  • Autonomous indoor/outdoor temperature sensors
  • Uses evaporative humidifier technology




Cons

  • Challenging to install without expertise



Tank Capacity: 18 gal / day | Coverage Area: Up to 5,300 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: No | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: No | Humidistat: No | Whisper-Quiet Operation: No

6.  Honeywell HM750A1000

A first-of-its-kind, this innovative humidifier from Honeywell has a compact design that can be installed on a wall or directly onto a vent. It has a simple installation process that makes it easy to set up and use. Although it has a small footprint, it is still capable of pumping moisture into the whole house. 

Honeywell HM750A1000 Electrode Steam Humidifier
  • The industry’s only duct- or wall-mountable steam option...
  • Smallest footprint on the market for flexible, simple...

Why Did We Like It? 

Being the first of its kind in the industry, this humidifier has one of the smallest footprints among whole-house steam humidifier models. Among the many benefits that a small footprint brings, the most impressive one is the versatile and straightforward installation process. The unit can be mounted onto either a wall or directly onto the air ducts.

Additionally, the water canister can be removed to separate salt and water for easier disposal. By having a removable canister, maintenance is made incredibly easy. It only requires a replacement once a year, effectively eliminating the need for regular maintenance. 

In terms of performance, the unit is able to humidify the entire house fully. These whole-house humidifier models are incredibly efficient while operating at lower temperatures and can also reduce static shocks. 

What Could've Been Better? 

Controlling the unit is limited to local control, meaning it can not be remotely controlled unless your system has compatible wiring. To take advantage of this long-term feature, you may need to upgrade to a newer HVAC system. Of course, this also entails a new installation and wiring that can become costly. 



Pros

  • Disposable water canister
  • Reduces static electricity
  • Fast startup and checkout
  • Small footprint




Cons

  • No remote control capability



Tank Capacity: N/A | Coverage Area: N/A | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: Yes | Humidistat: Yes | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

7. Steamfast

The SF-920 from Steamfast has a number of useful features built into it that helps give off a warm mist. With a short heating time and two steam settings, this unit gives an excellent performance for its small build. Maintenance is easy as there are no filters in its design and the removable one-gallon water canister.

Sale
Steamfast SF-920 Warm Mist Humidifier and Steam Vaporizer...
  • AUTO SHUT-OFF — Equipped with 2 steam settings, 3-minute...
  • LARGE CAPACITY TANK — 0.8 gallon removable water tank with...

Why Did We Like It? 

With two steam settings to choose from, the SF-920 can be adjusted to have a variable steam output. Between a low or high output, the humidity can be controlled to reach the desired levels. Starting up the humidifier is easy as well, with a rapid three-minute heat-up time. 

Furthermore, the large capacity tank is able to put out up to two gallons of steam every 24 hours. It can be removed for easy refilling and has an integrated handle to give a more secure grip. Its top-fill design doesn’t feature any filters and has a max-fill indicator to help make maintenance easier. 

Another handy feature is the aromatherapy ring located on the top to release essential oil along with the steam. Aromas can help increase the mental and health benefits that are already brought by the humidifying steam. 

 

What Could've Been Better?

One observation among these units is the amount of buildup in the humidifier after every use. Too much buildup can cause the humidifier to malfunction and potentially cause injury. With such a considerable buildup, it does require more cleaning and maintenance as compared to other humidifier models. 



Pros

  • Easy top-fill design
  • 24 hours of steam on low setting
  • Removable one-gallon water tank
  • Auto shut-off feature




Cons

  • Buildup of material after every use



Tank Capacity: 1 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 500 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: No | Humidistat: No | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

8. BONECO S200

Another steam humidifier from BONECO, the S200, has two steam levels as well as a helpful cleaning mode to have the best user experience possible. Designed as a single-room humidifier, it only covers 430 square feet. However, the quality of the air is drastically improved, especially when combined with the essential oil diffuser. 

Sale
BONECO - Steam Humidifier S200 with Cleaning Mode
  • BACTERIA-FREE STEAM: This home steamer ensures the pure,...
  • EASY TO USE AND CLEAN: It's simple to use the analog display...

Why Did We Like It? 

The S200 model from BONECO has an analog control system that can be used to switch between the two team modes. By turning the control knob, the humidifier can go from a low setting to a performance mode. The lower steam setting operates quietly while the performance mode kicks up the humidifier into high gear and performs more efficiently. 

Furthermore, there is a third mode for cleaning to help make maintenance more accessible. Another valuable feature for improving the user experience is the regulation of how much hot water is heated at a time. The steam temperature is maintained to be comfortable to the touch, making it safer for those with pets and children. 

Extending the use case of the humidifier further, there is an essential oil tray to add a fragrance to the room. The fragrance container is located at the spout to make it easily accessible. 

 

What Could've Been Better?

Where the S200 model suffers is in its tank capacity, which is not as large as compared to other models. Although it is a sufficient volume for the rated coverage, there were instances where the humidifier would run out of water prematurely. 



Pros

  • Bacteria-free steam
  • Easy maintenance
  • No filters needed
  • Quiet operation




Cons

  • Low capacity tank



Tank Capacity: 0.8 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 480 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: Yes | Humidistat: Yes | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

9. AIRCARE

Covering up to 380 square feet, this steam humidifier from AIRCARE has a simple design that is a solid addition to improve the air quality of any room. The simple user interface is easy to read and operate. Overall the design is meant to be as simplistic as possible while giving the best performance possible. 

AIRCARE Aria Whisper Quiet Steam Humidifier - (380 sq ft)
  • The Aria is a steam humidifier that provides coverage up to...

Why Did We Like It? 

Simplicity is the main feature of this steam humidifier that is evident from the user interface. The control panel has a single push button to start and stop the humidifier, as well as a refill indicator. Beyond these two features, there is no learning curve or customization needed to operate the humidifier. 

Additionally, the tank is designed to help users further by being a removable part of the unit. Once the tank is empty, the humidifier will shut itself off to save power. However, it is able to run continuously for up to 12 hours on a tank, so refilling is not a regular necessity. 

Another handy feature is the built-in diffuser tray to help spread essential oils along with the steam. It can also be used as a medicinal inhalant to relieve respiratory ailments. 

 

What Could've Been Better? 

As this steam humidifier is meant for smaller rooms, the tank capacity is not very substantial. With a little lower than a gallon of water capacity, there may be a need to refill the tank more often than other models, despite the 24-hour rating. 



Pros

  • Easy-fill, removable tank
  • Essential oil diffuser
  • Auto shut-off feature
  • No filter needed




Cons

  • 0.75-gallon tank capacity



Tank Capacity: 0.75 gallon | Coverage Area: Up to 380 sq ft | Mist Type: Warm mist | Adjustable Mist Output: Yes | Timer Function: Yes | Auto Shut-Off: Yes | Filter Required: Yes | Humidistat: Yes | Whisper-Quiet Operation: Yes

Best Steam Humidifiers Comparison Table

ProductTank CapacityCoverage AreaMist TypeAdjustable Mist OutputTimer FunctionAuto Shut-OffFilter RequiredHumidistatWhisper-Quiet Operation
Honeywell HWM705B1 gallonUp to 500 sq. ft.Warm mistNoNoYesNoNoYes
Crane EE-5202 Inhaler & Warm Mist Humidifier0.5 gallonUp to 250 sq. ft.Warm mistYesYesYesYesNoYes
Vicks Nursery 1 Gallon Vaporizer1 gallonUp to 250 sq. ft.Warm mistNoNoYesNoNoYes
BONECO S2500.8 gallonUp to 480 sq. ft.Warm mistYesYesYesYesYesYes
Aprilaire 70018 gal / dayUp to 5,300 sq. ft.Warm mistYesNoYesNoNoNo
Honeywell HM750A1000N/AN/AWarm mistYesYesYesYesYesYes
Steamfast SF-9201 gallonUp to 500 sq. ft.Warm mistYesYesYesNoNoYes
BONECO S2000.8 gallonUp to 480 sq. ft.Warm mistYesYesYesYesYesYes
AIRCARE Aria Whisper Quiet Steam Humidifier0.75 gallonUp to 380 sq. ft.Warm mistYesYesYesYesYesYes

Steam from humidifier at sunset, moistens dry air surrounded by indoor houseplants during the heating season. Home garden, hobby, plant care. Humidification, comfortable living conditions concept. Steam Humidifiers Buyer's Guide

Buying Guide For The Best Steam Humidifiers

Before settling on a particular model, there are a few factors that need to be considered to make sure you are getting the most suitable model for you. Keep these factors in mind to make the most informed decision. 

1. Coverage 

From the basement to the attic, the square footage of the room can have an impact on how well a model is able to perform. The coverage can vary from portable units which have a smaller area to a whole-house humidifier that is capable of handling the entire house. 

Take note of how much area you need the humidifier to cover before looking at different models. Having a model that is explicitly designed to cover that area will help it perform to the best of its capabilities. 

2. Installation And Maintenance 

Humidifier models have varying degrees of installation complexity. Where some simply come with installation instructions, others may require special professionals to integrate the unit into your home. 

Operating costs should also be considered as there are models which need to have filters replaced at regular intervals. Another facet of operating costs is how much power is needed to keep the humidifier running. However, this facet is more relevant for a whole-house steam humidifier rather than smaller models. 

3. Mist Temperature 

Among evaporative humidifier models, there are two types of mist temperatures to choose from. Some models give the option to change the temperature; however, for the most part, it is either a cool mist or warm mist variant. 

Depending on the outdoor temperature and other environmental-climate factors, a cool mist can potentially do more harm than good. On the one hand, a cool mist can cause bacteria and white dust to build up if not used in the proper context. People with dry skin and respiratory problems like asthma are susceptible to being triggered if exposed to cool mist. 

On the other hand, warm mist steam humidifiers can save wood floors and furniture from deteriorating. It also eliminates white dust mites that are trapped in the wood floors and keep air ducts clean. Many HVAC contractors agree changing humidity can cut down respiratory infections as well by using warm mist humidifiers.

4. Aromatherapy 

An extra feature found in many humidifier models is an essential oil tray that acts as aromatherapy. Look for one that is BPA-free to be able to diffuse medicinal aromas along with the steam. This aromatherapy is handy in relieving respiratory ailments and soothing dry throat and skin. 

Steam Humidifiers FAQ's

  • What are the benefits of using a steam humidifier?

    Steam humidifiers offer several benefits for indoor environments. They help alleviate dry air symptoms such as dry skin, irritated nasal passages, and throat discomfort. Steam humidifiers can also improve respiratory conditions, reduce static electricity, and protect wood furniture and floors from excessive drying. Additionally, they can create a more comfortable living space by maintaining optimal humidity levels.

  • Can a steam humidifier help with allergies and asthma?

    Yes, steam humidifiers can be beneficial for allergies and asthma. By adding moisture to the air, they can help alleviate symptoms such as dry and itchy eyes, congestion, and coughing. However, it’s important to note that maintaining proper cleaning and maintenance of the humidifier is crucial to prevent the growth of mold or bacteria, which can worsen allergies and asthma.

  • Can a steam humidifier be used in any room size?

    Steam humidifiers are available in various sizes to accommodate different room sizes. It is important to choose a steam humidifier that is suitable for the specific room dimensions. Manufacturers typically provide guidelines on the coverage area and recommended room size for each humidifier model.

  • How often should I clean my steam humidifier?

    It is recommended to clean and maintain your steam humidifier regularly to ensure proper functioning and prevent the buildup of mineral deposits or mold. The frequency of cleaning depends on the specific model and water quality. Generally, it is advisable to clean the humidifier every one to two weeks, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

  • Can I use tap water in a steam humidifier?

    It is generally safe to use tap water in a steam humidifier. However, the mineral content in tap water can lead to the buildup of scale or mineral deposits inside the humidifier. Using distilled or demineralized water can help minimize this issue. Some steam humidifiers also have built-in features to reduce mineral buildup, such as self-cleaning functions or replaceable filters.

  • Can a steam humidifier make the air too humid?

    While steam humidifiers are effective at adding moisture to the air, it is important to maintain proper humidity levels. Excessive humidity can promote the growth of mold or bacteria and cause other issues like condensation on windows or dampness in the environment. It is recommended to monitor the humidity level using a hygrometer and adjust the humidifier accordingly to maintain a comfortable and healthy humidity range.

  • Best Steam Humidifiers

    Conclusion 

    Hopefully, you are now a bit more prepared to select the best steam humidifier that meets all the requirements of your home. Make sure the model you choose has all the necessary features you need to improve the air quality. 

    Our top choice has to go to the Honeywell HWM705B for the large capacity one-gallon tank it has. However, the Crane is a close second with its humidifier and inhaler design. For those who have young children, the Vicks is worth looking into as well. 

    No matter the size or specifications of your home, a steam humidifier is a great addition that can make all the difference with mental and health benefits. So, what are you waiting for? Make the investment today so you can breathe easier tomorrow!

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