Sediment inside base of humidifier? Anything to worry about?
November 12, 2017 5:28 PM   Subscribe

Some kind of sediment or growth has occurred in our humidifier after a period of nonuse . . . it's white on a portion of the internal workings of the humidifier that's black. Here are two pics . . . Normally I'd just use it but this was to be used in our twin toddlers bedroom.
posted by eggman to Home & Garden (7 answers total)
That happened to mine as well. I think it was just minerals or lime scale from using tap water. Try cleaning it with vinegar.
posted by raccoon409 at 5:30 PM on November 12, 2017 [3 favorites]

I should also add that we did try cleaning with vinegar and had no results or change.

Don't really care about the cosmetics of it--just want to ensure it's not going to potentially cause a problem with my kids.
posted by eggman at 5:32 PM on November 12, 2017

You can buy products that will prevent scale and bacteria. Cleaning scale is a drag.
posted by jgirl at 5:55 PM on November 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

Yeah, my humidifier gets the exact same thing, due to the hard mineral content of our local water. We also get stalactites of it around the splash zone of the fishtank, and on the bottom of the kettle. Harmless but unsightly. I never had much luck with vinegar either.
posted by The otter lady at 6:58 PM on November 12, 2017 [2 favorites]

I get it too, our water is crusty as hell - it's on the dog dishes, around the aquarium filters. I use CLR on paper towels and a bit of green scrubby to get it out of those recessed areas.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:43 PM on November 12, 2017 [4 favorites]

A descaler like CLR or a mild solution of citric acid does the trick. My recipe is a couple tablespoons of citric acid in a litre of hot water and soak for a few minutes. Citric is food safe and doesn't leave odours and residues the way vinegar can. Works like a charm for me.
posted by bonehead at 6:21 AM on November 13, 2017

nthing that this is just mineral scale, and that CLR or other preparations should be able to remove it.

That said, if you do have hard water or if you're worried about broadcasting mold and/or bacteria all over your home, I recommend ditching it and picking up a cheap vaporizer humidifier. These boil the water, which has the happy effect of killing any molds or bacteria and leaving all the minerals in the tank rather than deposited as white powder all over your furnishings.
posted by slkinsey at 8:17 AM on November 13, 2017

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