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Probably everyone knows about the dangers of dry air in a home on the respiratory system and the general condition of the human body. Dry air, drying the mucous membranes of the nose and throat, «opens the way» for infections in our body. In particular, this problem is very noticeable in the cold season, when windows and vents are tightly sealed and heating devices are working. Do not forget that our body is 70% water, and for normal functioning it needs an environment with humidity in the range of 40-60%.
But the harm of dry air extends not only to the human body, but also to furniture and household items. Ambient air tends to absorb moisture, with its lack, from surrounding objects. The result is cracked doors and pieces of furniture. In the same way, air, when it is not sufficiently humid, draws moisture from human skin, making it dry and rough.
There are several ways to increase the humidity in the room:
- Hang wet towels around the house. The problem is that you need to wet large areas so that evaporation from them can at least somehow increase the humidity of the air.
- Arrange basins of water around the room. The evaporating surface is too small for a significant rise in the level of air humidity.
- Buy a humidifier. This is the only reasonable way to raise the moisture content in the room to the required limits in the shortest possible time.
There are several types of humidifiers that perform the same function but in very different ways.
- Traditional humidifier. A special cartridge is impregnated with water, which evaporates from its surface under the action of air currents created by the fan.
- Ultrasonic is the most popular humidifier, the cold vapor of which is created by knocking out the smallest particles in the surface of the water and turning them into a fairly large amount of fine water «fog» that effectively raises the humidity in the room.
- Spray humidifier. Water under high pressure is passed through the nozzle and «splashed» in the room. Today, such devices are almost out of use.
- Steam humidifiers. It is to these devices that you need to take a closer look.
Hot steam humidifier
This household appliance works on the principle of liquid evaporation, turning water into steam. Humidifiers of this type are characterized by simplicity, efficiency and high performance. Some models have a water flow rate of more than 700 ml. in hour.
The traditional hot steam humidifier consists of a water tank and a heating element. A small portion of water closes the electrical circuit of the two contacts of the heating element, through which an electric current flows, instantly heating up, it turns into steam, which exits the device case.
Many, looking at the device, can say that such a humidifier is very similar to an electric kettle that does not turn off during boiling. Quite right, and the kettle can be an evaporative type humidifier, but with a few caveats. In an electric kettle, the entire volume of water boils at once, and in a humidifier, water is supplied to the heating element in small portions through a special valve. This is done for two reasons: to save energy and for safety reasons. Such equipment does not waste energy on boiling the entire volume of water.
Modern models are least of all similar to an electric kettle. They are equipped with an automation system and a built-in hygrostat, thanks to which the automatic operation of these devices occurs.
Pay attention to the advantages and disadvantages
The main advantage of humidifiers is their simplicity of design and low cost. A cold steam humidifier costs half the price of a steam appliance of the same capacity. Evaporative type equipment is very easy to operate, maintainable and durable. In addition, in the process of evaporating the liquid in a “hot way”, the majority of pathogenic microbes and bacteria in the water are destroyed.
In addition, such a device is safe. Since the water is heated in portions, the entire supply of water in the tank is not heated. Even turning the device upside down, it is impossible to get burned by water.
A traditional air humidifier without replaceable filters produces a rather large amount of mineral salts, and the main advantage of steam devices is the absence of salt deposits on furniture, household items and in the human nasopharynx during vaporization, as happens with most other types of humidifiers.
But, along with the advantages, evaporative-type devices also have many disadvantages:
- Heating the air in the room. In winter, this can be considered an advantage, but the use of steam climate equipment is supposed to be year-round, therefore, few people like the rise in temperature in the home during the summer heat.
- Noise level. Such a device makes noise louder than an ultrasonic one, but users say that you can sleep under it.
- Since the device emits hot steam, in families with small children it should be in a place inaccessible to them.
- «Not weak» consumption of water and electricity. Devices of this type are quite «gluttonous» and their use is not a cheap pleasure.
- Do not forget that this climatic equipment is, first of all, an electrical appliance, and therefore a device of increased danger.
Scope of evaporation equipment
The evaporative type device is used to increase the level of humidity in residential and industrial premises. But, in addition, steam humidifiers are widely used in medicine, as inhalers. The medicine is added to the tank with water and it evaporates, filling the entire volume of the room.
Such devices are widely used in aromatherapy. By adding aromatic oils to a container of water, the room is filled with unique aromas.
This type of device has found its application among summer residents. By installing this device in a greenhouse, both the temperature and humidity increase in it, which favorably affects the plants.
Do not use the device in children’s rooms if children are from 2 to 5 years old. Children at this age are the most inquisitive, and hot steam can injure the child.
Despite some drawbacks, steam humidifiers are excellent and useful air conditioning equipment that will always help to increase the level of humidity in your home.