warm mist humidifier benefits eucalyptus

Warm Mist Humidifier – Benefits and Impediments

The humidity in your home has so many direct benefits to your respiratory and skin health but you don’t even notice till the air is dry.

And regardless of the temperature of the humidity, moisture is moisture and you will reap the benefits of a humidifier all the same.

But is there any advantage to choosing a warm mist humidifier other than a cool mist?

What are the benefits of using a warm mist humidifier?

1. Kills bacteria and mold
2. Relieve nasal congestion
3. Good for additives like Vicks and eucalyptus
4. Will warm up a cool room
5. Silent
6. Less hard water buildup and fewer particles released into the air

1.  Kills bacteria and mold

Warm mist humidifiers have a built-in advantage to keeping bacteria and mold from forming in and around the humidifier.

What is it?
Heat. Since the water and a warm mist humidifier or vaporizer is heated to a boiling point to create steam, bacteria and mold are a much smaller problem than with a cool mist humidifier because they simply cannot survive the heat.

Does that absolve them of regular cleaning? Not exactly. Any appliance like a humidifier, diffuser, dehumidifier, or air cooler that has a chance for water to be left standing inside it for even a small amount of time can and do have a tendency to grow bacteria in the water.

The chance for bacteria becoming a problem in a warm mist humidifier maybe smaller but it still exists and should not be taken lightly.

2.  Relieve congestion

If you have ever sit in a sauna, then you know the feeling of steam opening up your airways.
For many people, steam has a relieving feeling on their nasal passages and opens up their airways nicely when they are stopped up with congestion.

3.  Good for Additives like Vicks and Eucalyptus

The combination of warm mist and Vicks congestion medicine can make you feel so much better when you are down sick that there is a whole line of Vicks warm mist vaporizers that have been created and sold just for that.

Other essential oils like eucalyptus and peppermint can also be used in conjunction with warm mist and steam to help break up phlegm and open up your airways to breathe better.

4. Warm a Room Up


Warm mist humidifiers will warm up a space and make it more comfortable when the temperature is chilly.

5.  Silent


Warm mist humidifiers and vaporizers are completely silent.

6. Less hard water buildup and particles released into the air



Boiling water has the advantage of separating minerals out of hard water. Which can mean that there is less hard water buildup around your humidifier and less mineral particles that can be emitted into the air when you are using the humidifier.

warm mist humidifierWhat’s not to love?

Well there are a few things…

Disadvantages of warm mist humidifiers


1. Creates a swampy atmosphere
2. Not everyone experiences nasal relief from steam
3. Can be dangerous

1.Create a Swampy Atmosphere


  Warm mist humidifiers can make a room feel swampy. Humidity is not always the most comfortable feeling especially when the temperature is hot.

And when you’re feeling sick, that steamy feeling is not always welcomed.

2.  Not everyone experiences relief from steam.



When the air is dry, adding humidity to the air regardless of the temperature of the humidity will moisten your nasal passages as well as your skin and so forth.
But cool mist can offer more relief sometimes than warm.
Mayo clinic indicates that cool mist can be more of a relief for a cold than warm, but more research is needed.

3. Can Be Dangerous

  Warm mist humidifiers heat water to a boiling point as a means of creating steam to humidify the room.

That means that the water would be scalding hot if it were to spill on someone.

That’s why you will find a universal warning on vaporizers that they should not be used in the baby or children’s rooms.

Hot and Cold Combination Humidifiers

There is really no reason to pit a warm mist humidifier up against a cool mist humidifier. There are specific advantages to using both and they both have their disadvantages.

There are many times when you need a vapor machine to help you breathe better immediately, but don’t need the vapor on throughout the night.

There’s also times when the warm mist feels good, but that doesn’t mean you want to sleep in a steamy room.

Modern humidifiers like the Levoit 6L give you the advantage of being able to use the humidifier as a warm mist or cool.

Being able to diffuse essential oils with these humidifiers is a basic feature anymore.
They can be filled from the top, set on auto and left alone, and
They also have the capacity to schedule and turn them off and on via a smart app that can be used with Alexa or Google Assistant.

Humidifiers like Air Innovations are made from mold resistant materials and can also have ultraviolet lamps that target the water to keep mold and bacteria from ever becoming an issue.

warm mist humidifier disadvantageRecap.

Warm mist humidifiers have specific benefits that you do not get with a cool mist humidifier.


They have the advantage of heating water to a temperature that automatically reduces any bacteria, germ growth or mold that can take root inside of a humidifier.

They also work very well for disseminating essential oils like eucalyptus and peppermint and work great with Vicks. So much so that Vicks has their own vaporizer meant to do just that.

And many people consider steam to be more of a relief to swollen and dried nasal passages with congestion then using cool mist.

And you can’t beat the fact that they are completely silent.

But on the flip side,..

Not everyone likes the feeling of hot humidity especially when they are sick and trying to sleep.

And there is the issue of being dangerous because of the temperature of the water that they create.

Warm mist humidifiers are never recommended for the children’s room where they can get bumped and accidentally spill.

Best of Both Worlds




Humidifiers like the Levoit 6l give you the advantage of being able to operate the humidifier as a warm or a mist humidifier.

There are times when using vapor to disseminate essential oils can be an awesome way to open up your airways but that doesn’t mean that you want to sleep in a steamy room.

Having the option to use the vapor and then turn the humidifier on cool for the rest of the night while you sleep is a great feature/benefit.

This new style of humidifiers also comes with built-in hygrometers and humidistats that allow you to set and leave your humidifier knowing that it will elevate the humidity and turn off when the appropriate humidity is reached.

Most have the option of being able to fill them from the top as well as operate them from your smartphone or an Alexa or Google Assistant.

Humidifiers like Air Innovations also have the advantage of being made from mold resistant materials that resist bacteria and create a much safer humidifier.

Published by

Dennis Reed

Dennis Reed Owner and Author @ BreatheBetterAir.org