Tackling Winter Dryness with a Whole House Humidifier

Falling temperatures usher in dry air and for those prone to sinus issues, there may be a yearning for tropic-like conditions in the home.

Not long after we moved into our home we discovered that the whole house humidifier hooked up to the HVAC wasn’t actually working (an older Aprilaire unit). After failed attempts to repair it, we were faced with either replacing it, or going with a portable unit. We chose the latter for cost and maintenance savings and so far, it was a good choice. The Essick Air MA1201 Whole House Humidifier we went with cranks out moisture and runs almost silently on the lowest fan setting.

However, when our Essick Air MA1201 arrived, it didn’t work properly and would shut off after about an hour. After calling Essick customer service, it was clear they were aware of the problem and sent a new unit to us in about 2 weeks – no questions asked, or inconvenient return necessary. The new one works great and we still use the malfunctioning unit – it’s a bit more manual (power on/off is needed to restart throughout the day), but provides an extra boost to the humidity in the house when needed.

The price of the unit is low and the level of customer service at Essick was high. If our humidifier ever breaks in the future, it’s likely we’ll buy a similar model from Essick.


  • Quiet at low fan speed
  • Great customer service
  • Wicking filter lasts a long time


  • May have an engineering flaw in the circuit board of this model
  • Jet-like noise at high fan speeds / auto mode
  • Humidity readings may not be accurate

The humidity readings on the unit may not be perfect, so keep an eye on your indoor humidity with an inndoor humidity monitor like the
AcuRite 00613A1 Indoor Humidity Monitor.

Also, if you keep your bedroom doors closed at night, you may need a smaller room humidifier or two. I’ve purchased two of the Crane Drop Shape Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifiers and they are exactly what they say they are – no filters, easy clean (vinegar and water) and silent.

Here’s to a healthy winter for you and yours!

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