Top 4 Best Whole House Steam Humidifiers (*2020 Review*)

Is it time to buy a world-class humidifier for your home?

Are nosebleeds, dry skin, and chapped lips becoming a common concern in your household?

To help with these concerns; we have created an in-depth guide on the finest whole house steam humidifiers.

best whole house steam humidifiers

In this review, you will learn about…

  • How a whole house steam humidifier works
  • What’s required to buy the perfect humidifier
  • Where to find the best whole house steam humidifiers
  • Our verdict on the best rated humidifier

Let’s begin by analyzing whole house steam humidifiers!

Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

aprilaire 800 steam whole house humidifier
  • Fast humidity output
  • Customize steam quantity
  • Auto & manual modes
  • Minimize allergies
  • No cleaning needed

My overall top pick for whole house steam humidifiers is the Aprilaire 800. Aprilaire is the original inventor of whole house humidifiers and their steam humidifier is a very high quality product. It uses electrode technology that heats up the water to produce steam for your home. Filtering your water is not required and isn't even recommended. 

The Top 4 Best Whole House Steam Humidifiers

Short on time?  

If you want to skip the entire article and get the skinny on the best steam humidifiers, we have done the research for you.

Here is our list of the best whole house steam humidifiers...

What Are Whole House Steam Humidifiers?

When the chilly nights of winter arrive, it’s important to keep an eye on the humidity.

Dropping temperatures mean lower humidity and this is what causes health concerns such as chapped lips or nosebleeds. In fact, it can also cause your hardwood floors to crack and shrink as well!

To overcome these problems, homeowners use whole home steam humidifiers. 

A steam home humidifier is responsible for producing moisture-heavy air throughout the property. Whether it’s through the ductwork or not, this air is spread from room to room allowing for a more welcoming environment. 

A whole house steam humidifier works by picking up humidity levels. This is managed by the accompanying humidistat.

The humidistat allows homeowners to measure humidity levels in their property at any given point. If the humidity is too low, it immediately tells the humidifier to increase the amount of moisture. Besides whole home humidifiers, bathroom exhaust fans can also have humidity sensors. Check out our review on the top bathroom fans with humidity sensors here.

Steam humidifiers have a special reservoir, which allows the water to heat up before getting released. This allows the humidifier to have a greater impact while providing a more comfortable environment for everyone.

Most homeowners report an immediate drop in nosebleeds, scratchy throats, allergies, and chapped lips once the humidifier is set up. It also acts as a great way to prevent property damage (wooden floors, furniture).

If the humidity is low in your house, we recommend adding a high-quality whole house steam humidifier right away. It’s safe, efficient, and offers a long list of advantages when installed properly.

Read Also: My 6 Pros & Cons of Whole House Humidifiers (Worth It?)

What Are The Benefits Of A Whole Home Steam Humidifier?

Buying a brand-new whole home steam humidifier is a wonderful investment and it comes with a long list of advantages.

These advantages include:

  • Improved Indoor Air Circulation and Quality
  • Keeps the Hair and Skin Feeling Healthy
  • Ideal for Breathing Better
  • Prevents Allergies and the Flu
  • Better Distribution of Air
  • Increased Comfort

It’s smart to invest in a world-class furnace humidifier to improve living conditions inside your home. As the wintry months arrive and temperatures dip, the addition of a quality steam humidifier can become essential.

Read Also: Top 6 Best Rated Whole House Humidifiers

How To Install a Whole House Steam Humidifier?

The installation process will be unique to each humidifier and the home, and hiring a qualified plumber is recommended. Steam humidifiers are regarded as the most challenging humidifier to install. 

In general, the installation requires a 220V dedicated circuit and outlet where the humidifier is going to be located.

These components have to be synced together in addition to the property’s ductwork.

Our recommendation is to seek professional assistance when installing a central furnace humidifier.

whole house humidifiers can help prevent allergies

How to Pick the Best Central Home Steam Humidifier?

The most important question is, “How do I pick a great whole house steam humidifier?”

This is a brilliant question!

It’s best to have a checklist in mind before heading out and investing in a whole home steam humidifier.

Automated Features

Automation is never a bad thing.

Most homeowners want a “set it and forget it” solution, which is why automated features are important. Current steam humidifiers are made to be user-friendly and don’t require manual work.

You can set them up and watch as they kick into action.

To do this, the humidifiers include a built-in meter to see whether or not the moisture in your home is at a safe level. If not, the moisture-rich air enters your house and spreads until the levels are good again.

In this case, all you have to do is turn it on.

Water Reservoir Indicator

With a steam furnace humidifier, a water reservoir indicator is important.

This helps understand whether or not the humidifier is in good shape. If not, you may not have enough water in the tank to run your unit.

With a change indicator, it’s easier to react in advance and ensure the tank has enough water to last. Modern units will include these indicators.

Instead of guessing, it’s easier to look at the change indicator, determine what’s going on, and pour in the water.

No one likes having to go back and look at the water tank every day!

Overflow Protection

In a well-made steam humidifier, the water evaporates when it’s in the unit. However, this also means new water has to enter to keep things working as they’re supposed to.

Unfortunately, there are times when the water overflows. This happens when the unit doesn’t know when to stop accepting water as it’s entering. To make sure this doesn’t damage the humidifier, it’s important to have overflow protection in place.

Modern units include overflow protection by including a float valve. This valve ensures the right amount of water enters every single time.

Low Water Cut-Off

Research from the Armstrong Humidification Book suggests, the best humidifiers include built-in safety switches to keep people safe. 

With digital units, it’s become easier than ever before to have high-quality safety features in place.

Before buying, take a look at whether or not the unit shuts down when the reservoir is unfilled. A good system will always shut off to ensure running on empty doesn’t do damage.

Adjustable Side Panels

Personalization is always a great idea and the same applies to whole house steam humidifiers.

You should be on the lookout for adjustable side panels. This makes it easier to customize where a unit is placed in your home. Otherwise, it will have to be put to the left or right without allowing for choice.

Mounting Frame 

Mounting frames allow for an easier setup process. You can take the brand-new unit, connect it to the ductwork and have it ready to go quickly.

This saves time depending on the unit and it’s design.

Durable Design

While most homeowners look at the features, it’s also important to consider a unit’s build quality.

What materials is it made of? Will it last for as long as you want it to?

These are smart questions to ask before buying. You want to make sure the materials are corrosion-resistant and built to last. Anything short of this isn’t going to cut it!

Read Also: Steam Vs Evaporative Whole House Humidifier

How are Whole Home Steam Humidifiers Different Than Evaporative Humidifiers?

Evaporative humidifiers either submerse a drum inside of water which is an older style, or it drips water over a panel or filter and blows air over it.

With whole house steam humidifiers, water is quickly heated up and steam is released, which is then blown throughout the home raising humidity.

There are two main types of evaporative whole house humidifiers...

Bypass Whole Home Humidifiers

A bypass whole home furnace humidifier includes a separate water panel inside the ductwork. The air goes through this water panel before entering a room. This ensures the right amount of moisture is present.

Fan-Powered Whole Home Humidifier

The fan-powered humidifier is an extension on traditional bypass humidifiers.

The unit requires a separate internal fan to push air through the ductwork. Once air goes through the ductwork, it also passes the water panel before entering a room.

Where to Buy the Best Whole House Steam Humidifier?

We believe Amazon is the best way to buy a new whole house steam humidifier.

Amazon is wonderful because it’s a reputable online retailer, offers loads of reviews, and makes it easier to find a good deal.

Plus, if needed the return policy is rock solid!

Product Reviews

The Aprilaire 800 Whole House Steam Humidifier is a high quality humidifier with electrode technology and well-rounded safety features.

No cleaning is ever required and you just have to change the canister once a year.

It’s lightweight, durable, and easy to use.

Aprilaire was established in 1954 and remains a highly reputable company --- the original inventor of the whole house humidifier.

  • Quality build
  • Easy to use
  • Automatic and manual modes
  • No cleaning needed
  • Built to last
  • A little pricey
  • Air ducts required
  • Difficult install

The Honeywell HM750A1000 is an advanced electrode humidifier with a unique design and innovative features. This steam humidifier is made of top-quality materials and includes a patented duct mountable setup.

For comfort, quality, and craftsmanship, Honeywell is a worthy addition to any household.

  • Refined Settings
  • User-Friendly Setup
  • Exceptional Steam Production
  • Excessive Wiring
  • Requires Significant Amount of Electricity

Aprilaire continues to impress the home industry with it's quality products --- the original inventor of whole home humidifiers. The 865 can be installed WITHOUT air ducts and is fully customizable for the amount of steam output (and water usage).

This humidifier uses a fan to send steam throughout the home thereby raising humidity levels.

  • Air ducts not required
  • Well-built design
  • Customizable steam quantity
  • Expensive
  • Difficult install
  • May need more than one humidifier

The Emerson HSP2000 is a 120V whole house steam humidifier and includes a wonderful stainless steel assembly.

It’s filled with high-quality components such as a water filter, automatic humidistat, flushing timer, fan control relay, and even a beautiful mounting frame.

  • Quiet Operation
  • Excellent Steam Production
  • Quick-Acting Features

  • Difficult to Set Up
  • Can Heat Up Over Time

Our Top Pick: Aprilaire 800 Whole House Steam Humidifier

1. Quiet Operation 

The Aprilaire 800 runs quietly in the background once installed. It easily blends in with the rest of the components.

2. Full Coverage & Customizable Steam Output

University of Michigan’s study on humidifiers suggested an output of 11.5+ gallons to maintain healthy moisture at home. This unit provides full coverage with adjustable settings between 11.5-34.6 gallons of moisture each day. 

3. Fast Results

With built-in automation, this steam humidifier is able to regulate everything. This includes releasing the right amount of moisture within seconds.

4. Easy to Maintain

With the easy to manage design, homeowners can leave it on without worrying about maintenance issues --- no cleaning is ever required like with evaporative humidifiers. Simply replace the electrode canister once a year.

Other Home Guides

Looking to learn more about home maintenance? Check out our other informative home product reviews and guides!

Ask Me A Question!

Arie Van Tuijl

Arie Van Tuijl

Arie is the founder of Home Inspector Secrets, an online resource dedicated to helping people understand how homes work. He is a licensed home inspector in two U.S states and owns a residential and commercial inspection company. To ask Arie a question, please use the comment box at the bottom of the relevant article.

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About Home Inspector Secrets

Home Inspector Secrets is an online resource for owners, buyers, and sellers to understand all aspects of home ownership. We have detailed home guides, product reviews, inspection advice, buying tips, and much more.