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What's an Evaporative Humidifier?

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Question: What's an Evaporative Humidifier?
What is an evaporative humidifier and how does it work? What does an evaporative humidifier do? Is it more expensive than other types?
Answer: Evaporative humidifiers have been in use for decades and are considered the most common or garden variety type of humidifying appliance. The most basic way to humidify a room is to place a pot or jar of water in the room and allow the moisture to naturally evaporate into the air to relieve dryness.

An evaporative humidifier works on the same concept but is more efficient in getting humidity out to the room. Evaporative humidifiers can vary by design - there are non-filter units that simply churn out a water mist or vapor, or the more common wick filter models. With the help of a wick filter to hold and draw the water up to a fan, it expels it from the unit as a water mist or spray. Though the word 'wick' sounds very small, a wick filter can be quite large and takes up most of the room inside of a humidifier's casing.

Evaporative humidifiers are generally cool-mist and available in personal, portable or console models. Since this type of humidifier is quite common and the technology is simple, prices of evaporative humidifiers are usually the lowest, unless the unit is large or it has other features.
Learn the difference between a cool-mist and warm-mist humidifier
Compare prices of humidifiers

Though a bit noisier than an ultrasonic humidifier, a wick evaporative unit is very efficient for increasing the humidity in a room. How quickly the water evaporates depends on different factors including how dry the room is and whether the humidifier fan is operating on a low or high speed.

All humidifiers require regular maintenance and wick filters do require cleaning or changing periodically as recommended by the manufacturer to keep the unit efficient.
Learn how easy it is to change a humidifier's wick filter

Learn more about controlling home moisture
Read more about how to buy a humidifier
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