Winter’s coming, and even here in Santa Clara, dry air is sure to come along with it. It’s time to dredge that humidifier out of storage so you can breathe easy again. But what happens if you don’t clean your humidifier often enough? Or worse, what if you put the humidifier away while it was still damp? Improper care can cause mold to grow in your humidifier and affect the air you breathe.
Luckily, there’s no need to worry—cleaning a moldy humidifier is a pretty simple and straightforward process. We’ll show you a couple of different methods you can use to safely and efficiently get rid of mold in your humidifier.
Why Do You Need a Humidifier in Winter?
As the winter season approaches, you might notice that you’re waking up with a stuffy nose and a dry, scratchy, or even sore throat. That’s because the air tends to be much less humid in the winter months, and that dry air can wreak havoc on your nose and throat.
The dry winter air absorbs moisture from everything around it, including your respiratory system. Breathing this dry air at night can lead to sinus congestion, a sore throat, and even nosebleeds. Dry air can also lead to a dry mouth, which puts you more at risk of cavities because the dryness prevents saliva from washing away bacteria.
Now, that’s not to say that the more humid the air is, the better. The primary contributing factor to mold growth is in fact humidity. You should never let the humidity in your home get above 40% if you want to avoid letting dangerous black mold grow in your home.
How to Clean a Humidifier That’s Full of Mold
The simplest way to clean mold out of a humidifier is to use 3% Hydrogen Peroxide and follow these steps:
- Pour a mixture of four parts water to one part hydrogen peroxide into the tank of your humidifier.
- Give it a good shake and let it sit for at least half an hour.
- Pour out the solution and rinse the tank with water.
If you want a more natural solution to getting rid of mold in your humidifier, you can use distilled white vinegar. The process is similar to that of cleaning a humidifier with hydrogen peroxide, but has some slight variations.
Here’s how to clean a moldy humidifier with distilled white vinegar:
- Pour a mixture of one part water to one part distilled white vinegar into the tank.
- Give the tank a good shake and let it sit for at least an hour
- Pour it out and rinse the tank with water.
With both these methods, you should look inside the tank after rinsing. If you notice that there’s still mold or debris stuck to the inside of the tank, you can use a stiff bristle brush, like a bottle brush, to knock it loose and then repeat the process.
As for the base of the humidifier, we recommend that you always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning to avoid damaging the unit.
How Often Should You Clean Your Humidifier?
WebMD recommends cleaning your humidifier very often—at least once a week. In addition to a weekly deep clean, you should also make sure to empty and dry the tank every day.
It’s crucial that you regularly clean your humidifier so that you don’t actively spread mold around your home. Just because mold grows better in warm temperatures doesn’t mean that it can’t grow and spread in winter too.
Mold Problem in Your Santa Clara, California Home? We’re Here to Help!
Discovering that you have a moldy humidifier might get you thinking about where else in your home you may have mold issues. Our certified technicians at My Pure Environment can assess the level of mold growth in your home, and come up with a thorough plan to address it.
Our Dry Fog technology ensures that nothing in your home gets damaged during the remediation process. If you’re in need of expert demolition-free mold removal services, contact us for a free consultation today!