Bleach is one of the more common products found in the home.
While it is most associated with cleaning clothes, bleach can also be used to clean many other things.
However, bleach can also be quite harmful when it touches the skin or, worse, the eyes. This is why its use should be limited and only when needed.
While there is the concern of the bleach becoming mixed into the water, which produces the steam that enters the lungs of those near the humidifier, the concern should be non-existent if the bleach is used correctly.
And for this reason, I think bleach should not be ignored when it comes to cleaning your humidifier.
In fact, it’s completely safe to clean your humidifier tank when appropriately used with care!
How To Use Bleach for Disinfecting the Unit?
Bleach is a chemical product that works by releasing oxygen molecules in a process called oxidation.
These oxygen molecules break up the chemical bonds of chromophores that makes the surface look colorless.
Although used to remove stains, bleach is many times also used to disinfect surfaces in the kitchen and bathroom.
When it comes to disinfecting the humidifier, bleach is one of the favorites for many.
If you want to use it for your unit, you should disinfect your humidifier with a mixture of ½ cup of bleach per gallon of water every 10 to 2 weeks.
Pour the solution into the humidifier unit and turn it on until it starts misting. Then turn it off and let it sit for a few minutes.
Empty the water when you can no longer smell the bleach, rinse, and fill it with clean water.
Your humidifier should be thoroughly disinfected, and the rinsing will remove all traces of the bleach.
Safety Tips You Need To Follow When Using Bleach in Humidifier
While most humidifiers can accept bleach as a cleaning agent, some do not.
So, before pouring bleach into the humidifier water, read the instructions and make sure that it is appropriate for the device.
Remember that bleach can be dangerous for your skin when not used carefully.
It is, therefore, reasonable to wear gloves when using bleach to prevent any accidents from occurring. You might want to use eye protection as well.
Since inhaling the bleach mixture can irritate your airways and can also damage your lungs, it is good to clean the humidifier with bleach outdoors.
If indoor, choose a well-ventilated area for working. Since bleach may also harm the upholstery or carpet, clean the unit in the sink or area with a tile floor.
In any event, be careful when using bleach to clean a humidifier. And you will see that it can do an amazing job for you.
Few Bleach Alternatives You Can Use in your Humidifier Device
If you do not want to clean your humidifier every few days or a couple of weeks, then you might consider adding eucalyptus or tea tree oil which is a great essential oil.
Both have properties that can disinfect while imbuing the mist with a pleasing scent. Since such essential oils are strong, you should only add a drop or two.
Plus, you should check to see if the essential oil will damage your humidifier by putting a drop on a plastic area that is not in use.
If you do not see any damage after several hours, then it should be safe to use.
If not, you can also substitute a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide with water as an alternative.
Remember that hydrogen peroxide is not nearly as effective in killing germs, bacteria, and mold as bleach, but it does work reasonably well.
Using hydrogen peroxide means cleaning your humidifier more often, so be prepared to clean it every three or four days if you want it free of microorganisms.
The bottom line
Bleach may be one of the most effective disinfectants you can use for disinfecting your humidifier tank at home.
It can destroy virtually all types of mold, bacteria, and viruses on contact.
This makes it perfect for cleaning your humidifier regularly. So why not try this out in your humidifier tank and make your air hygienically safe?
Meen Smith is a nurse by profession who loves writing online, spending time with her family and caring for the elderly. She has already worked as an associate editor on various moms, babies, home appliances, kitchen, and healthy living blogs. In her spare time, she also enjoys drawing, reading/writing kindle eBooks and improving her skills a bit.