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The Cause of Perpetual Illness: Our Humidifier

Ray and I found ourselves getting incredibly sick earlier this year.  It felt like a massive flu, both feeling achy and incredibly stuffy.  Ray and I rarely get sick, so this was random for both of us.  We figured it was part of the weather change and we got over it a couple of days later.

Once we got healthy,we were all good to go for a few weeks.  Until the same sickness randomly hit again last Monday.  Same terrible flu-like symptoms, even though we were feeling great the full weekend prior.  And then I figured out the only consistency leading us to get sick… meet, the old humidifier.

10 28 15_1Both Ray and I have been die-hard humidifier fans for years.  They’ve kept us from getting sick, kept our skin soft, and and kept our home much more comfortable in the colder months.  But our humidifier was literally the only consistency between the two evenings prior to us waking up sick.  And after doing some research, I found out that it’s completely true!

Old humidifiers, or humidifiers that you don’t clean “regularly” (they suggest every three days…what?) can trigger flu-like symptoms due to the bacteria and mold build up over time.  These can be even worse for people with asthma and allergies, which explains why Ray was out for a few days, and I was able to head out to lunch with girlfriends on day two.

If you find yourself in a similar situation this Winter, try these tried and true tricks that worked for us.

  • Change humidifier water often – This was our issue, as we didn’t use it enough over the Summer.  Leaving the water in the humidifier allows film deposits to form and release into the air.
  • Clean the humidifier with either a hydrogen peroxide or white vinegar solution – The manufacturer will have explicit instructions.
  • Replace old humidifiers – Over time, humidifiers build up too many deposits that they become impossible to clean.  At this point, it’s better to just replace the humidifier entirely.


Are you a fan of using humidifiers in your home?  Have you ever gotten sick from your humidifier?  Hope these tips help to keep you healthy in your home over the holidays!

Create a great life!

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