What Does a Demineralization Cartridge for Humidifier Do?

What does a demineralization cartridge for humidifier do?

This is a small accessory used in humidifier to get rid of minerals from hard water. This way, there is less buildup of calcium and lime or ‘white dust’ where the humidifier is being used.

It is simple, easy to use. Just put it inside the humidifier tank. No installation required. Just drop it inside. However, after sometime, you will need to clean the demineralization cartridge.

Demineralization cartridge for humidifier

Demineralization cartridge for humidifier

A demineralization cartridge is just one of the many accessories that you can use with your humidifier. Others include essential oils for aromatherapy, colds, de-congesting and so on.

If your humidifier has a scent pad, you can also use VapoPads, usually made for Vicks Humidifiers. However, they are usable in any other unit that has a scent pad.

In this post though, we are looking at demineralization cartridges. They are very helpful for people who use tap water in humidifiers. They remove the minerals from the hard water and prevent humidifier white dust.

White dust from humidifier is nasty, as we saw when we looked at that in a separate article some time back. It is the one downside of ultrasonic humidifiers.

Thankfully, you can avoid it. Just buy a demineralization cartridge from Amazon.com, such as the one that you can see below:

Image of a demineralization cartridge

Normally, during winter, there is very little moisture in the air. Also, if you are heating your home artificially, you will experience low humidity levels.

Heat drives out the moisture. This is why when you crank up the heating in winter, you are going to have dry air in the house. Dry air can cause problems for your health and for your items.

What is the solution? You use a humidifier.

Demineralization cartridge helps with hard water

A demineralization cartridge can help with mineral-laden water
Demineralization cartridges for AIRCARE humidifiers


This is an appliance that adds moisture to the air in your home. There are different types of humidifiers depending on their functionality.

There are warm mist, ultrasonic and evaporative humidifiers. Remember, they come in all styles, shapes and sizes as you can see on Amazon.com.

In an ultrasonic humidifier, a diaphragm vibrating at high frequency produces tiny water droplets that are expelled into the air. The water is stored in the reservoir.

Since the unit does not use a filter, if you use hard water in the reservoir, the minerals can end up in your home, on the walls, furniture, paintings and floor as white dust.

To prevent this, you should use a demineralization cartridge.

What is a demineralization cartridge?

A demineralization cartridge is used to remove minerals from hard water. The cartridge is put into the tank of the humidifier where it gets rid of the minerals in the water.

The remaining water is purified, and it is just like distilled water. When you use the water in the humidifier, you do not get mineral deposits in your home. There is no white dust forming on your surfaces.

Are you using hard water for your ultrasonic humidifier? The hard water has a high mineral content of calcium and lime.

When the humidifier releases the mist into the surroundings, these minerals accumulate on the surrounding surfaces.

When the mist dries up, the mineral residue that remains behind is called ‘white dust’.

Water with high mineral content produces more white dust. It is a bad sight trying to humidify your home and you get white dust all over your furnishings.

To stop the white dust, you need to get rid of the minerals in the hard water.

This is where the demineralization cartridge comes in. When you put one of these in the tank of the humidifier, they get rid of the minerals.

The water droplets that will come out will not deposit white dust to the surroundings.

Also read: Why does my dehumidifier blow cold air?

What does a demineralizer cartridge do?

What does a demineralizer cartridge do

You may have seen most sellers of ultrasonic humidifiers including a demineralizing cartridge in the package.

Do you know what it does?

Chances are that most people who buy ultrasonic humidifiers use tap water. As you may know, tap water is hard and it contains minerals.

If you use the water in the humidifier the way it is, you will get white dust in the areas near the unit. The white dust comes from the mineral deposits.

The demineralizing cartridge removes the minerals in hard water contained in the humidifier. The cartridge traps the minerals from the water before they are released into the air. This helps to reduce the buildup of these minerals inside the tank.

If the water in your humidifier has minerals, the mist will leave a white dust residue in the house.

When you use a demineralization cartridge, there would be no hard water minerals inside the tank, and you won’t see the white dust on your furnishings.

Other than being a sore sight, white dust is also harmful. Once it enters your home, it can get into your lungs, and you can get a disease called humidifier lung.

You can experience symptoms such as fever, lung inflammation, coughing, body aches, malaise and shortness of breath.

In case you end up with white dust in your home, you can clean it just like you would any other dust.

How to use this cartridge

To use the demineralization cartridge:

  • Remove it from its packaging. You can find the cartridges in a set of four in a box or just one depending on the manufacturer
  • Next, remove the reservoir from the ultrasonic humidifier.
  • Empty all the water from the reservoir and then place the cartridge inside.
  • Fill the tank with water. Replace it in the humidifier and wait for approximately 10 minutes so that the cartridge can soak in water.
  • Restart the humidifier

Once in the water, the cartridge eliminates the minerals. The water is purified and is safe to use in the humidifier without causing mineral deposits once in the air.

How long does a demineralizer cartridge last?

You should replace the cartridge after 30 to 40 fillings. However, how long it lasts depends on the hardness of water and how often the humidifier is used. If the water is very hard, you will need to replace the cartridge more often.

Image of how a demineralization cartridge helps

A cue that can help you know when to replace the cartridge is if you notice more white dust on the area near the dehumidifier.

This shows that the cartridge has outlived its usefulness, and it is not removing the minerals from the water.

Once you notice its ineffectiveness, you should replace it with a new demineralizer cartridge for humidifier immediately.

If you replace the cartridge and the humidifier continues to produce white dust, start using distilled water. This could mean that the water has too many minerals.

Distilled water is in the purest form, and it has no minerals that can cause white dust. If you do not like cleaning up your surfaces after using a humidifier, use distilled water.

What is demineralization cartridge made of?

The first noticeable thing about the cartridge is the casing, which is usually made of plastic. If you get the HOMEDICS demineralization cartridge, you will notice the high quality plastic casing.

Inside the plastic casing is where the filter material is. This device captures the minerals from the water physically from the water before the mist can leave the humidifier.

To use the cartridge, you have to read the user manual. By design, some just need you to drop them into the humidifier tank. Others need to be screwed onto the tank if there is a provision for that.

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, if you use hard water with your appliance, then you will need a demineralizing cartridge.

Hard water contains calcium and lime minerals. If you use this water in the humidifier, you will get mineral deposits usually called white dust.

These can make your home a tad unsightly. The purpose of the humidifier is to add moisture to the air, not to generate mineral deposits.

To solve the problem, you should put a demineralizing cartridge in the humidifier tank. The cartridge gets rid of the minerals in the water.

Your unit can pump mist free from minerals. You will no longer find white dust on your furnishings.

If you have hard water, as you buy your Ultrasonic humidifier on Amazon.com, also consider getting a demineralization cartridge.

Here is a good humidifier you might consider buying: