Can You Put Vinegar in a Humidifier?

Humidifiers are a popular and effective way to add moisture to the air. But they can also become breeding grounds for mold and bacteria if not cleaned regularly.

One way to keep your humidifier in top condition is by using vinegar. But, can you put vinegar in a humidifier? And if so, how do you do it safely and effectively?

In this article, we will explore the benefits of using vinegar in a humidifier, as well as how to use it safely and effectively to keep your humidifier running smoothly and your air clean.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases made through links in this post at no extra cost to you.

Why Would You Want to Put Vinegar in the Humidifier?

There are two reasons why people consider adding vinegar and water solution to the humidifier water tank.


You can use vinegar as a cleaning agent in your humidifier, as vinegar is highly acidic. Because it is basically water mixed with acid, it has cleaning agents.

It is a weak acid that can easily kill germs and bacteria. It is also very effective for cleaning dirt and grease and removing mold.

Sinus Relief

Apple cider vinegar, a solution made with fermented, crushed apples, is beneficial for health. It has not only acetic acid but also citric acid. It makes it anti-inflammatory, which reduces sinus headaches and helps treat sinusitis.

Because of all these beneficial factors towards health, you would want to put vinegar in your humidifier.

Can You Put White Vinegar in a Humidifier?

Yes, you can put white vinegar in a humidifier. It, however, varies. If you want to use white vinegar only to clean your humidifier, you can use it. However, you should not put the vinegar in your humidifier and let it run.

If you put white vinegar in your humidifier and let it run, the mist will disperse vinegar particles which will then get all over the place. It can irritate your eyes, nose, and throat and cause lung issues.

Can I Put Apple Cider Vinegar in My Humidifier?

Yes, you can put apple cider vinegar in your humidifier. Apple cider vinegar helps soothe sinuses and headaches and significantly benefits your health. Since vinegar has high acid content, use a specific ratio—not too much or too little.

Even though apple cider vinegar is safe to inhale, it is still highly acidic. Because of its acidic content, too much inhalation of this agent can cause severe irritation in your lungs and esophagus.

Technically, you can put apple cider vinegar in your humidifier. You should stay clear and not put in your humidifier. You never know how small an amount will cause irritation and how much will help.

Can You Run Vinegar Through a Humidifier to Clean It?

Adding vinegar to your humidifier can help you clean the device. In this case, fill the base of your humidifier with 1 cup of water. Add 2-3 spoons of vinegar to the water.

Finally, run the humidifier with the solution in it. However, it’s not recommended that you keep the vinegar indoors or around people when you do so. It may lead to irritation and other medical complications.

If you must clean your humidifier with vinegar, it’d be better if you place the humidifier outdoors if you must clean it with vinegar. After some time, dump the remaining water and rinse the device thoroughly.

An even better alternative is using a cup of white vinegar mixed with 1 cup of water. Make sure the humidifier is turned off, and disassemble your humidifier with the guidelines provided by the manufacturers.

Then, pour the solution of vinegar and water into the humidifier’s base and leave it like that for an hour. After that, clean the water tank, which will help remove the grime and mold.

This is a more appropriate method as it will clean a humidifier but won’t harm anyone around it.

Can You Clean Your Humidifier with Vinegar?

Yes, you can clean your humidifier with vinegar, a natural cleanser. Vinegar is a mixture of water and acid, so it has acidic properties. One of the key characteristics of acid is that it can help you get rid of mineral buildup, bacteria, and mold. However, depending on the type of vinegar you’re using, you may get different results. You can also use cleaning vinegar as it’s the perfect type to clean with.

Does Vinegar Kill Bacteria in Humidifiers?

Yes, vinegar kills a range of bacteria and viruses in humidifiers due to its acidic properties. pH change has a huge impact on cellular wall membranes. The drop in pH caused by acetic acid alters the structures of the fatty acids and proteins that form the bacterial cell walls.

Despite its bacteria-killing properties, vinegar is not a certified disinfectant. According to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) rules, a certified disinfectant can kill about 99.9% of pathogens in five to ten minutes.

Is breathing in vinegar from a humidifier safe?

No, breathing in vinegar fumes from the humidifier will harm you. Vinegar exhibits highly acidic properties. Breathing in these fumes will cause different complications, such as headache, chest tightness, and cough; in extreme cases, it may even lead to fluid accumulation in the lungs.

Can I use vinegar in a humidifier for smoke removal?

Yes, you can use vinegar in a humidifier for smoke odor removal. Vinegar’s acidic properties help it clear the smoke odor from any space. However, it would be best if you didn’t use it when people or pets are in the room. When you open the room later on, vent the vinegar fumes first.

Also, try to use apple cider vinegar in this case. It isn’t only safe but also the type that smells the best.

Looking for a New Humidifier?

If you are shopping for a new humidifier, here are 3 popular models you should consider – ultrasonic cool mist humidifier from AquaOasis, classic warm mist humidifier from Vicks, and feature-rich warm and cool mist humidifier with smart features from Levoit.

AquaOasis™ Cool Mist Quiet Ultrasonic HumidifierAquaOasis™ Cool Mist Quiet Ultrasonic HumidifierCHECK PRICEVicks Warm Mist Humidifier for Small to Medium Size RoomVicks Warm Mist Humidifier for Small to Medium Size RoomCHECK PRICELEVOIT LV600S Large Warm and Cool Mist Ultrasonic HumidifierLEVOIT LV600S Large Warm and Cool Mist Ultrasonic HumidifierCHECK PRICE


In conclusion, using vinegar in a humidifier can be a safe and effective way to keep your humidifier running smoothly and your air clean. By cleaning the humidifier regularly and adding a small amount of vinegar to the water.

But you can prevent the buildup of mold and bacteria, which can cause health problems and damage the humidifier over time.

So, depending on how often you use it, it’s essential to clean it accordingly. Also, you can avoid cleaning as often by storing your humidifier correctly and by using distilled water instead of tap water. Because tap water contains minerals, it escalates the mineral buildup in a humidifier.

Also, running the humidifier with vinegar inside is OK, but you have to place it outdoors or in an isolated room so it doesn’t harm anyone nearby.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *