humidifier question

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    It’s about that time of year to crank up the humidifier . . . After a while, I get a lot of hard water build up and usually buy a new wick each month, which is really no big deal. Just wondering though, if there is a solution (home made or store bought) that will cut down on this. I’ve been checking out the net and have seen a few suggestions, one of which included bleach as well as putting essential oils in the water as well. Have any of you done this?

    I am curious as well, if the oil would get on the harp. I found out a couple years ago that putting a scented plug- in air freshener in the room was NOT a good thing to do, as they seem to leave a slight oily film on the harp.

    Also, I got very sick last winter and had pneumonia twice and now I’m wondering if the humidifier and build up might have had anything to do with it. I never really “Cleaned” the humidifier, just changed the filter/wick.

    Thanks for your input!

    Sherri Matthew

    Hi Kay,

    What model humidifier do you have? I have a Honeywell Quietcare model which is quite large and.needs a new filter for the season, along with one of those tank cleaning inserts. Never noticed any hard water buildups inside the humidifier, but there’s quite a rim inside the cast iron humidifier pot on top of our woodstove.

    Good idea to thoroughly clean it before using your humidifier for the season! When I opened up ours a week ago the filter was in seriously bad shape, probably from sitting all summer. Looked like some kind of mold, so I tossed it and scoured out the entire unit with soap and hot water. Can’t recommend much except to make sure everything is clean before you start it up for the season.

    Sid Humphreys

    A good way to get lime and mineral deposit out of the tank is to soak it with vinegar and water. Perhaps once a month clean out the tank with bleach and water then allow it to dry before using it. Hope this helps!


    Hi Kay,

    I have one of those small models that sit on the floor made by Hunter (the evaoporative type) and it has what they call a “perma-wick filter” its in a plastic frame and when it gets deposits or dirty I soak it in hot water and vinegar then rinse it clean. It saves $ too not having the type that you have to buy all those expensive filter wicks.. as for the water I add some antibacterial humidifier liquid they sell at the big box stores and haven’t had any residue or odors. Just clean the tank with fresh water and a little bleach swished around every other week just to make sure.

    If your water is hard/full of minerals you can try distilled water from the grocery store in jugs, my piano has a special humidification sysytem inside and I need to use that or I get white mineral dust inside it with the local hard water.

    Hope this helps…


    This is not going to be a helpful post in any sense but I just wanted to say that I find it incredible that there are people out there that need a HUMIDIFIER for their harp! I live in the chilly, damp UK and we have neither a tumble drier nor an airing cupboard, so all the washing has to be dried inside on the radiators during the winter. Don’t have the money or space for a dehumidifier, so have settled with a humidity sensor which I obsessively move from room to room with my harp when the washing comes out in a mildly vain attempt to leave the harp in the warmest, driest room…
    Kay, if I could I would totally package up our chilly damp humid air and post it to you each week in return for your nice warm dry air. Wouldn’t that be great…!

    Sherri Matthew

    Hi Mae,
    Please send some! I’ll give you my mailing address. 🙂 This time of year is rough on my hair and skin, as well as my harp. I go through bottles of conditioner and hand cream just to get through the winter. Btw, what’s an airing cupboard?


    An airing cupboard is basically where the house’s central heating system lives: Many people don’t have tumble driers in their houses as they are expensive to run as well as buy and take up a lot of room. But something that quite a few houses DO have (except ours…) is a very very small room which is essentially a large cupboard set in the wall where the boiler is kept and/or all the hot water/heating pipes run through/out of. The cupboard has a rail set in it which means that you can hang up washing in there, and the spare heat coming off the hot water pipes and boiler and such dries the clothes and keeps things warm. It works very well and doesn’t cost anything extra since the heating is already running, and it contains all the moisture in the cupboard and then out through a vent in the wall or similar so it doesn’t get into the rest of the house.



    Well, I’ll take some of your humidity NOW, but have PLENTY of my own in the summer months. Kind of feels like someone hits you with a hot, wet sponge during that time of year. Right now though, my fingers are splitting open because it’s SO dry here. We definately go from one extreme to the next on Marylands eastern shore.

    Kay 😉

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