How To Fill A Cool Mist Humidifier

Cool mist humidifiers can do a lot to relax you. They relieve congestion and help you breathe better. However, humidifiers have different mechanisms, so refilling them can be difficult to figure out. We researched how you can refill your cool mist humidifier and have answers for you. 

Although humidifiers come in different forms, all of them have basic mechanisms you can use to open them and fill them with water. Here's how you can do it:

  1. Remove the tank from the base
  2. Twist the cap to the "unlock" position
  3. Place the tank under running water to fill it up
  4. Put the cap back on and twist it to lock
  5. Place the tank back on the base
  6. Plug the humidifier into an outlet and turn it on

Cool mist humidifiers have a lot to offer for a small cost. However, you want to maintain them so they can have a longer lifespan. Keep reading to learn about how a humidifier can elevate your daily routine, and how to maintain one. 

Modern air humidifier on marble table in kitchen. - How To Fill A Cool Mist Humidifier

How To Fill A Cool Mist Humidifier

The white humidifier moistens dry air. Improving the comfort of living in the home, apartment. Improving the well-being of people.

Before filling up a cool mist humidifier, make sure the unit is unplugged from the power source to avoid accidents while removing the tank from the base. Then, turn the cap to unlock—refer to the machine’s manual to know which way to turn. 

After unlocking, fill it up with water. Technically, you’ll be fine whether you use tap or distilled water, although distilled or filtered water is recommended.

Make sure to secure the cap tightly on the tank before placing it on the base and powering it on.

See it in action here:

Benefits of Cool Mist Humidifiers

Cool mist humidifiers can improve your quality of life. It's a small addition to a space, but it's packed with benefits that you can take advantage of. Here are the benefits of cool mist humidifiers. 


Cool-mist humidifiers are usually affordable. For the respiratory benefits, you'll potentially get, the small investment is clearly worth the cost.

Helpful for allergies

If you live in a dry area, you need a humidifier to inject moisture into the air. The lining of the nose and mouth can dry out, making you an easy target for bacteria and viruses. 

Irritation can decrease once humidity is enhanced. This will cause you to breathe better and your allergies alleviated. 

Safer for children and pets

Little baby looks at the humidifier. Moisture in the house concept

One of the reasons cool mist humidifiers are preferred by some people is because they have kids and pets in the house.

Pets and children may accidentally knock over the humidifier, and it's safer to spill cold water than hot, boiling water. 

You can easily clean up  cold water, but hot water may result in burns that can harm children and pets. 

Prevents chaffed lips and dry skin

Dry indoor air is sometimes the culprit for dry skin. If you're sensitive to dry air, a humidifier can easily put out moisture in the air and keep your skin dewy. 

Check out this cool-mist humidifier on Amazon.

Can you use tap water in cool mist Humidifiers?

A man uses a humidifier at home. Filling the reservoir with water in the room

It is generally safe to use tap water in cool mist humidifiers. You will still benefit from the vapor being emitted, but the undesirable effects will mostly be on the machine itself.

You may start seeing fine, white dust on the machine. But don't worry—it's not "dirt" per se. It's only the mineral deposits that tap water naturally contains. 

These mineral deposits are not harmful to your lungs, but if you're bothered by this, you can always purchase humidifier tablets that you can dissolve in your water while it vaporizes. 

You can also use distilled water if you want the cleanest air possible. Distilled or filtered water can help avoid minerals from blocking your humidifier, which will eventually improve the lifespan of your device.

However, even if you use distilled or tap water, mold can still form on the machine if you don't clean it often.

The pink mold is a result of the natural minerals contained in the water, but you don't want them to form in your machine, since they could worsen your condition and put a damper on indoor air quality. 

Check out this related post: Can You Use Tap Water In A Humidifier?

Cool Mist vs Hot Mist: Which is Better?

Here are the qualities of cool mist and warm mist humidifiers that will help you determine which one fits your lifestyle best. 

Cool Mist Humidifiers

Cool mist humidifiers can be divided into two categories: evaporative and ultrasonic. The mechanisms are slightly different, but they emit the same result: they let you breathe in the cool vapor that's been released from their nozzle. 

Ultrasonic cool mist humidifiers are proven to be more effective, but they can have a slightly higher price point than evaporative cool mist humidifiers.

This is because they have a vibrative plate that can break up water molecules that produce a cool mist and alleviate respiratory inflammations.

Warm mist humidifiers 

On the other hand, warm mist humidifiers operate in a different manner.  They have a mechanism that boils water through which steam is released, creating a warm mist inside the room. 

Absorbing pads are used to filter out the mineral deposits. They saturate the air better with moisture, dampening the air more effectively and alleviating allergies caused by dry air. 

Warm mist humidifiers are also better at killing bacteria and germs, but be sure to clean them regularly to avoid the growth of germs in the machine itself. 

Check out this warm mist humidifier on Amazon.

How to Clean Cool Mist Humidifiers

a man opens the lid of a humidifier to fill it with water. using a humidifier at home

Cleaning your humidifier is essential to making sure that you breathe in the relatively clean vapor.

Although it is virtually impossible to have 100% pure, clean water, you can at least avoid breathing in water that can potentially be in contact with mold and gunk, which can happen if you don't clean your humidifier.

Here is how you can clean your humidifier:

  • Remove the power source from the machine and disassemble it. 
  • Pour two cups of vinegar into the tank. Swish the unit around so the vinegar cleanses every surface. 
  • Let the vinegar drain into the reservoir once you place the tank into the base. It will loosen the mineral deposits and make your machine clean again. Wait up to 20-30 minutes. 
  • Drain the vinegar and use an old toothbrush to clean the crevices and corners. Wipe a sponge on larger parts.
  • Rinse, let dry, and reassemble. Fill up with water and use the machine again. 

How often should you clean a humidifier?

Although most people don't clean until they observe gunk and mineral build-up, you shouldn't wait until this is the case. It is best to clean the machine at least once every week, especially if you use it frequently. 

This will ensure that the vapor you breathe will be clean, letting you reap the benefits fully. 

Where can you place Cool Mist Humidifiers?


Placing the humidifier in the bedroom is ideal if you need to alleviate your allergies to sleep better. They are also safe to be placed next to you on your bedside table since you won't risk scalding and burning if you're using cool mist humidifiers. 


The less dry the space is, the better your productivity will be. Humidifiers can reduce the occurrence of dry eyes, and they can alleviate sinus headaches which can make you feel more energized. 

Living Room

Air Humidifier increasing the humidity in a living room for better air

If your living room tends to feel dry, especially when it is directly facing the sun, you may want to place a humidifier in the area. However, small evaporators may not be enough if you're with other people. 

Consider the size of the humidifier first before deciding whether it will be productive to put it in your living room. It is best to get a bigger one to improve the indoor climate fully. 

Near houseplants

Houseplants benefit a lot from humidifiers. The mist will keep the leaves healthy, and it will keep the soil moist so the plants won't dry out.

Be sure not to humidify the plants for more than 5 hours every day so they won't rot due to excessive humidity. 

Read: Where To Place A Humidifier For Your Plants?

Can humidifiers stop snoring?

Humidifiers can relieve snoring, but they're not a permanent solution. You would still need to address the underlying issues that result in snoring, but humidifiers can help eliminate other factors that can cause someone to snore.

For instance, humidifiers can prevent allergens from reaching you at night, which is sometimes the cause of snoring. Dry air causes nasal congestion, which can irritate your nose and throat resulting in narrow air passageways.

Final Thoughts

Cool mist humidifiers can elevate your daily life if you know how to maintain them.

These humidifiers, especially evaporator humidifiers, are the easiest to operate so you won't have a problem using them daily. 


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