What Type of Water Do I Use in a Humidifier?

What Type of Water Do I Use in a Humidifier?

Did you know that the type of water you put in a humidifier can influence how well the device adds moisture to your home? 

It’s true. In fact, if you read the instructions for your humidifier, there’s a good chance that they indicate a specific type of water to use for the best results. Many humidifiers call for distilled water, while others direct users to add filtered water. Depending on your humidifier brand and model, using the wrong type of water could mean putting unwanted contaminants in the air or risking damage to the humidifier. 

Is it ever okay to put tap water in a humidifier? When you have a Canopy Humidifier, yes. But it’s important to understand the differences between the types of water so you make the best decision for your home.

Hard Water, Soft Water, and You

The water that comes from your tap is most likely either hard or soft based on its mineral content, specifically the levels of calcium and magnesium.

Hard water has a higher mineral content, so you might find it more difficult to get a good lather when bathing or still feel a layer of soapy residue on your skin after rinsing. Hard water can also leave spots on your glasses, make your laundry feel stiff, and leave your skin itchy. It can even create mineral buildup on plumbing fixtures. 

Woman operating Canopy Humidifier

As you might expect, soft water contains lower mineral levels. Soft water’s higher sodium content means that it doesn't have the same effects as hard water—it rinses away easily and doesn’t leave mineral stains behind. 

The potential for hard water to cause mineral buildup is one reason many humidifier manufacturers recommend using filtered or distilled water in their devices. Removing the excess minerals from the water protects the machine and prevents malfunctions. 

What Is Distilled Water?

Distilled water is a type of purified water that has been boiled to separate the vapor from any solids. The resulting steam cooled and collected, leaving you with water. The process eliminates impurities, such as minerals, bacteria, and viruses. Scientists and hospitals use distilled water because it's the purest form. 

Purified water is also free of contaminants, but the process is different. Rather than being steam distilled, the water goes through a physical filtration process, like reverse osmosis, to eliminate minerals and bacteria. It’s typically safe to use purified water in place of distilled water. 

However, it’s important to note that some filtered water, like bottled drinking water, isn’t always suitable for humidifiers. Many bottlers add minerals to the water for taste, which can clog humidifiers. In some cases, bottled water isn’t any different than using tap water. 

What Kind of Water Do You Put in a Humidifier?

When you invest in a Canopy Humidifier, you don’t have to worry about the type of water you add to the reservoir. Canopy is one of the only brands that allows users to use tap water for a humidifier without any effect on the machine’s function. 

This is because our powerful paper filter removes all the bad stuff from the water before creating optimal indoor humidity in your home. The filter removes minerals, bacteria, viruses, and other irritants to ensure only the purest, cleanest moisture.  

Most Canopy users only need to change the filter every 5 to 7 weeks, but if you have hard water, you may need more frequent changes. The humidifier makes it easy to know when it’s time for a replacement—the indicator light will turn on when it’s time for a switch. It's also easy to see when your filter needs replacing because it changes color as it collects contaminants. 

Of course, if you prefer to use purified or distilled water, you can. You’ll have extra purified moisture and may need to change the filter less frequently. Choose our original humidifier for spaces up to 500 square feet, like a bedroom, or the Humidifier Plus to add moisture to up to 1,000 square feet.