Will a Humidifier Damage Wood Floors?

Kay Wagers

Humidifiers can ease breathing problems caused by dry winter air. They can also protect wooden floors and furniture by preventing the shrinkage and warping caused by cold and over-drying during the winter.


Humidifiers emit moist air into a room, increasing the room's humidity levels. They work by pulling the moisture from a water reservoir, either by using an evaporative belt or a rotating drum covered in absorbent padding. A properly functioning humidifier will not damage wood floors.


Although the fine spray of moist air that is emitted by a humidifier is too light to soak and damage a wood floor, problems can occur if the humidifier's reservoir leaks. If the leak goes unnoticed, water can soak into the wood floors, warping the boards and damaging the support layers beneath them.


Checking a humidifier often for leaks will minimize your risk of damage to the wood floors, as will placing the humidifier on a piece of wood or a plastic tray, which can act as a protective barrier for your floor. Repair or replace a leaking humidifier immediately.