Humidifiers are notoriously difficult to clean. And they have to be cleaned on a regular basis.
People who own humidifiers love their humidifiers. However, even the most perfect relationships need basic hygiene. That’s why easy-to-clean dishwasher-safe humidifiers are so popular.
Unsurprisingly, the #1 complaint about humidifiers is the whole cleaning part. It’s bothersome and you have to do it quite frequently. The best easy-to-clean humidifiers try to avoid the most tricky parts of humidifier cleaning, including:
- Very small 1-finger wide openings on the bottom of the water tank. Those are pretty much impossible to clean.
- Using a brush to clean the electronics (usually located below the water tank).
- Humidifiers not being dishwasher-safe.
Make no mistake. A dirty humidifier will eventually become contaminated with unsavory pathogens. Any humidifier – from the hardest to clean to the easiest to clean humidifier – has to be cleaned 2x or 3x per week.
For everybody who hates cleaning the humidifier, we have checked for the easiest to clean humidifiers. The easiest humidifier to clean should have 4 key properties, such as:
- Smooth surfaces; for the outside cleaning. No hard-to-reach corners.
- Little or no nooks and crannies are the hardest to clean; especially if you want to do it by hand. If there is a nook, your hand and a sponge should easily access it.
- Be dishwasher safe.
- Be actually a good, well-rounded, and reliable humidifier.
Based on these criteria, we have picked 4 humidifiers that are the easiest to clean. You can check them in the comparison table below and read the reviews further on.
However, we’ll start with the basic question that illustrates how to properly clean any humidifier – even the easiest one to clean humidifiers:
Best Way To Clean A Humidifier (7 Key Steps)
You have to clean both the outer side of the humidifier as well as the internal parts. Needless to say, cleaning the outer part is significantly easier than cleaning the interior parts of the humidifier.
Outer Shell Cleaning
The outer side should be cleaned with a wet cloth. Using a dishcloth or any dishrag is the proper way to do it. If you have spilled an essential oil on the other shell of the humidifier, you should also use soap.
The key to easy cleaning of the outer shell is to choose a humidifier with smooth surfaces; those ones are the easiest to clean. Stay away from humidifiers with a lot of nooks, crannies, and inaccessible corners visible of the outer shell.
Cleaning The Inside Parts Of A Humidifier
It doesn’t matter which humidifier you have. Cleaning the inside parts is the most demanding task even if you have a dishwasher-safe humidifier. We’ll elaborate on that.
Here is the best way how to clean a humidifier (do note that using vinegar is recommended; lower pH levels are essential for preventing algae and mold growth inside the humidifier as well as preventing scale buildup):
- Disassemble the humidifier. Before you start cleaning it, you need to isolate all the internal parts. That means you have to empty and take out the water tank, air filter, and all other removable components. Once you’ve done that, you can start properly cleaning all individual parts.
- Use vinegar to clean the water reservoir. This is essential and especially useful if you have hard water (it will prevent scale buildup). Pour the white vinegar into the water tank; it should cover at least the bottom (that’s the hardest part to clean). Leave the vinegar there for about half an hour. This will both work to breaking up the scale buildup and prevent algae and mold growth. After that, you pour the vinegar out of the humidifier’s water reservoir and wash it with warm water.
- Use vinegar to clean the smaller parts. You can’t really soak all the smaller parts with nooks and crannies in the vinegar. You, however, can use a vinegar-soaked cloth to wipe the smaller parts. Leave the vinegar-wiped parts to dry for about 30 minutes before cleaning them with warm water.
- Use a small brush for hard-to-reach areas. Those are especially difficult to clean; use a brush (an old toothbrush is fine) soaked in vinegar and brush all those hard-to-reach areas. Wait for 30 minutes before you clean them with water.
- (Optional) Disinfect the water reservoir. Vinegar primarily takes care of the scale buildup in the humidifier. Disinfectants are used to prevent mold and algae growth. Some people use bleach, for example. 1 spoon of bleach and 1 gallon of water is a popular recipe for cleaning a humidifier. Nonetheless, be aware that these dangerous chemicals must be thoroughly flushed out with water after about 10 minutes.
- Thoroughly rinse everything with water. This is a crucial step and the most underrated one. If you use vinegar, you will have a lasting smell of vinegar. If you use disinfectants, you will have some heavy-duty chemicals in the humidifier. It’s essential that you rinse everything several times in order to flush out the smell of vinegar and dangerous disinfecting agents.
- Dry and reassemble the humidifier. Before you start assembling the humidifier again, make sure that all the water you used to clean the humidifier is gone. You can use a cloth to wipe the humidifier or just leave it to dry. Only reassemble your humidifier part by part when all parts are dry.
Now that you know how to properly clean a humidifier, let’s look at which humidifiers are the easiest ones to clean:
4 Easiest To Clean Humidifiers (Comparison And Reviews)
1. Easiest Humidifier To Clean With Dishwasher Safe Parts: Honeywell HCM350
Honeywell HCM350 is the famed humidifier-safe humidifier. All the parts of Honeywell HCM350 that are in contact with water and need to be cleaned are safe to be cleaned by a dishwasher. This has been the best dishwasher-safe humidifier for years. The main caveat of this humidifier is that it is out of stock quite a lot due to its immense popularity.
All humidifiers are more prone to dirt accumulation. The key problem, as we know, is that parts that are in contact with water become ‘dirty’ or ‘stale’ quite a lot. That’s why Honeywell HCM350 is made to be as easy to clean as possible; you just detach the parts that need to be cleaned (like the 1.1-gallon water tank) and put them in a dishwasher.
You can easily disassemble it, clean the interior parts with vinegar, and possibly disinfecting agents, wash it out with water and you’re done.
In short, the Honeywell HCM350 was specifically designed to be a dishwasher-safe humidifier. It’s a small easy to clean humidifier that requires a minimal amount of maintenance:
2. Very Easy To Clean Humidifier: Canopy Humidifier (Dishwasher-Safe)
|Water Capacity:||2.5L / 0.66 Gallons|
|Room Coverage:||Up to 500 sq ft|
|Easiness To Clean:|
|Running Hours:||Up to 36 hours|
|Dimensions (HxWxD):||10 x 7 x 8.5 inches|
Canopy humidifier has a reputation for being the easiest humidifier to clean. It’s one of the best dishwasher-safe humidifiers on the market. Apart from the cleaning part, this is a very popular humidifier because it has good humidity output (with a 2.5L water reservoir), up to 500 sq ft coverage area, and a running time of up to 36 hours.
For a humidifier to be easy to clean it’s essential that it has as few components as possible. That makes disassembling and reassembling easier. Canopy has only a few parts that you have to take out, besides the 2.5L water tank. Disassembling it is the first part that makes the Canopy humidifier easy to clean.
The second is that is it dishwasher friendly. You can use the vinegar + optional disinfectant cleaning process we described. After that, you can just put the Canopy humidifier in a dishwasher and let the dishwasher do the rest.
The outer surfaces are pretty smooth. You can basically clean them with a wet cloth.
The reason why the Canopy humidifier accumulates less dirt than comparable units is the ‘no mist or steam’ principle. Canopy humidifier doesn’t blow out mist; its output is just filtrated and moist air. That doesn’t plug the air filters as much as other mist-blazing units. Hence the air filters – the part that is tricky to clean – are easier to clean.
All in all, Canopy humidifier is very easy to clean. On top of that, it’s a superb and reliable humidifier with up to 500 square feet of coverage. That makes it pretty much one of the best best easy-to-clean humidifier on the market:
3. Top-Rated Easy To Clean Cool Mist Humidifier: MIRO-NR08M
|Water Capacity:||3.8L / 1 Gallons|
|Room Coverage:||Up to 600 sq ft|
|Easiness To Clean:|
|Running Hours:||Up to 24 hours|
|Dimensions (HxWxD):||14.3 x 12.5 x 12.4 inches|
MIRO is one of the most beloved brands of humidifiers. They are great-looking humidifiers that produce quite a lot of cool mist and are not as hard to clean as standard humidifiers. MIRO-NR08M is the best and easiest to clean humidifier by MIRO.
It has a 3.8L water reservoir and a specified coverage area of 600 sq ft. That means that MIRO-NR08M is an easy to clean large room humidifier. You can put it in a master bedroom, living room, dining room, and so on. You can check a list of the best humidifiers for large rooms here.
While it may look complex on the outside, the inside is quite simply designed and has few moving parts (with little nooks and crannies). The best way to clean a MIRO humidifier is with vinegar (above the comparison table you have a 7 step process of how to clean a humidifier properly).
The key part is that the vinegar can enter every part of the MIRO-NR08M humidifier. That prevents limestone buildup and mold growth.
All in all, the MIRO-NR08M is by itself an exceptional humidifier (like all MIRO units). This is a large room humidifier that is remarkably easy to clean:
4. Large Easy To Clean Humidifier: Crane Cool
|Water Capacity:||4.5L / 1.2 Gallons|
|Room Coverage:||Up to 500 sq ft|
|Easiness To Clean:|
|Running Hours:||Up to 24 hours|
|Dimensions (HxWxD):||11 x 11 x 14 inches|
Crane Cool is another easy-to-clean large humidifier (but not the easiest to clean because it’s quite clumsy with nooks and crannies). Unlike MIRO, the Crane Cool is a dishwasher-safe humidifier. That’s especially useful with bigger (clumsier) humidifiers. It’s also very moderately priced, costing less than $70.
The great thing about Crane Cool is that it has a big 4.5L water reservoir. Yes, it has a 500 sq ft coverage area and long up to 24h running time because of that, but a big reservoir is also a lot easier to clean by hand. That’s because, obviously, you can actually put a whole hand inside the tank and wipe it without much hassle.
Being a dishwasher-safe humidifier automatically means it will be easier to clean. All the parts – from the lid, cap, and center mist chamber – can be easily dissembled (you just twist it off). You just put them on the top rack of your dishwasher and leave the dishwasher to do the cleaning work for you.
The outer shell is also very smooth. Even if you spill essential oil all over it, you will be able to clean it without much hassle.
All in all, the Crane Cool is one of the easiest large humidifiers to clean. It’s available for a very budget-friendly below $70 price:
That’s about it on which humidifiers are the easiest to clean. We do hope you will be able to pick a humidifier that will be as hassle-free as possible, at least cleaning-wise.