Humidifiers are very good in enhancing the air quality and in improving the comfort of your home. However, they have some disadvantages and one of them is that they can develop mold. This is why you need to check out for mold in humidifier symptoms.
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If you make a habit of maintaining your humidifier as often as possible, it is easy to notice when something is amiss. If you take too long between cleaning sessions, you can have a problem of mold without being aware of it.
Or perhaps this is your first humidifier ever. Thus, you do not know the symptoms of mold in a humidifier to check out for. After reading this short post, you should know the symptoms, so that you can learn how to prevent the occurrence of mold in your humidifier.
Why should I worry about mold in my humidifier?
It is unlikely that mold in your humidifier will make you sick, but all the same, you have to be very keen. For example, if you see signs of mold in your humidifier, it means you have not been giving it the proper care and maintenance. Thus, chances are there are more bacteria in the humidifier. These could make you sick!
Mold is one of the many indoor allergens that we really would not want to have at home. It can be especially bad for people that are asthmatic or generally, people who are always affected by allergies. Where there is moisture, there is likely to be mold. Since a humidifier is always in contact with water, mold is going to grow unless you take deliberate steps to prevent it.
Mold could affect the performance of your humidifier. It is something, an alien that should not be in your humidifier in the first place, so be sure to keep it away.
Mold in the humidifier is not going to manifest like the gray or back mold that you usually get on the walls. Thus, it can be hard to know the mold in humidifier symptoms, but not impossible.
Just know that if you have water constantly in the humidifier, mold can happen. However, there are ways to prevent that and one of the ways is to change the water frequently and keep the mold as clean as possible.
What are some of the mold in humidifier symptoms?
They are not all that many, but there are obvious tell-tale signs that should you warn that you have mold. Here, we will look at just a couple of them.
Look for pink or gray layer on the water
This is without doubt an indication of mold. If the water has been in the humidifier for some time, you may start to see a pale pink layer on the water. This is an indication of mold. If you see that, empty the water immediately and clean the humidifier.
An indication of mold could also be an indication of other bacteria that your family will inhale with the mist. You see, whatever microorganism is in the water is going to be dispensed together with the mist, so you will breathe it in. However, if you use a warm mist humidifier, it is going to kill all the bacteria so it will dispense a healthy mist.
Since this small pink layer can be hard to see in humidifiers that are colored blue or other color, you should actively look for it. Just disconnect the humidifier tank and check whether you can see any sign of mold on the water. If it has been a week or more since you changed the water, there is likely to be mold.
Mold in humidifier symptoms – when you have a hard time breathing
Hard of breathing could be an indication of ailment and other conditions, but it could also be one of the mold in humidifier symptoms. If you have been running a humidifier fulltime and someone is diagnosed with a lung related ailment, check the humidifier.
In fact, you should let the doctor know that you use a humidifier at home. Mold is known to cause breathing problems. They do not have to be severe, they can be mild and easy to treat. However, continued use of a humidifier with mold could cause chronic lung and breathing issues.
Please note that wheezing and other breathing problems are severe and are caused by serious mold growth inside your home. Thus, this is not likely to happen as a direct result of mold from the humidifier.
Throat irritation, stuffy nasal passages and other ailments
If you start experiencing many cold-related symptoms, then it is time to check the humidifier for mold if you have been running it. Some of the symptoms of mold include irritation in the throat, coughing, eye irritation and stuffiness in the nasal passages. If you start noticing such problems, it is time to look for signs of mold in the humidifier.
Please note that if you are not sensitive to mold, you are not going to experience these symptoms. If you are allergic to mold, the symptoms will be more severe. If you have mold allergy, you may even experience skin irritation. Let us just say that if you start experiencing some symptoms that you have not been used to, you could check the humidifier if you have one.
If you experience these symptoms, just get away briefly from the humidifier, you know, go to a room that does not have a humidifier and check whether your body is going to react. If you do not experience these symptoms, you can conclude that the humidifier has developed mold.
How to prevent mold formation in a humidifier
Now that you know about the symptoms of mold in a humidifier, well, it is time to find out how to prevent the occurrence of this indoor allergen. If the mold is developing inside the house, on the walls, you have to reduce the humidity. It is recommended that you always keep it under 45 percent. You can use a hygrometer to find out the humidity inside your home.
As for preventing mold in a humidifier, here are a few things to do:
Clean the humidifier regularly
If you run your humidifier everyday, clean it daily. Mold is actually a fungus or a yeast that thrives in moist conditions. Thus, when you clean the humidifier tank daily, you reduce chances of mold developing. If you do not operate the tank daily, clean it before using it and a couple or three times a week.
Use vinegar in the humidifier
Add a teaspoonful or two of white vinegar in the water. That way, you make it hard for mold to develop. Please note that adding vinegar is only important if you are using tap water in the humidifier. If you are using distilled water, there is no need to add vinegar.
Check the humidifier regularly
Only run the humidifier when necessary. Just use a hygrometer to check the level of humidity indoors. Even if you have a whole house humidifier, ensure to have it checked regularly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the questions that most people ask frequently. They might help you understand how to detect mold in a humidifier easily.
Mold is a sinister indoor allergen, especially for people who are allergic to it. It can give you many breathless nights of wheezing, coughing, sneezing and throat irritation. Unknown to many people, humidifiers cause mold. Thus, you should stay on the alert and keep checking for mold in humidifier symptoms.