How to Sleep With a Humidifier

Christina Sloane

Humidifiers release moisture into the air that provides relief for a dry nose, throat, lips or skin. Many models also produce a soft white noise that facilitates a peaceful night of sleep. But they're not a cure-all -- excessive indoor moisture can contribute to mold growth, so the U.S.

Environmental Protection Agency advocates limiting the use and humidity level of home humidifiers. For optimal safety, the EPA recommends regular cleaning and maintenance of your humidifier.

  1. Fill your humidifier’s water tank with distilled water. The EPA recommends distilled water because the minerals in tap water or spring water may cause deposits and buildup on humidifier components.

  2. Set your humidifier to any humidity level under 50 percent. Higher percentages may lead to mold growth and excess moisture accumulation around the humidifier.

  3. Plug in and turn on your humidifier right before you go to sleep. Turn off your humidifier when you wake up.

  4. Empty your humidifier every day, wipe it dry and refill the tank. Make sure your unit is unplugged before emptying and changing water.

  5. Clean your humidifier every third day to discourage mold growth. Follow the cleaning instructions that came with your unit. If you don’t have the instructions, clean all the parts that come in contact with water with a 3 percent hydrogen peroxide solution.


If the area around the humidifier becomes damp, lower the humidifier’s output volume.