A humidifier and a dehumidifier both help enhance air quality. The difference is how they operate.

Humidifiers vs. Dehumidifiers

If the air in your house is too humid, a dehumidifier removes excess moisture. On the other hand, if the air in your house is dry, a humidifier adds moisture to the atmosphere by discharging water vapor in the room to raise the humidity level. 

Dehumidifiers and humidifiers can help eradicate respiratory illnesses such as chest congestion and asthma. A humidifier could be used to moisten airways and nasal passages when you have sinus and chest congestion because of a cold.

You could use a dehumidifier to get rid of moisture in the air and could be useful in treating asthma which could be triggered by humidity. Chest congestion happens when your bronchial tubes or lungs become inflamed and makes more mucus than usual.

The reasons for chest congestion are pneumonia, asthma, sinus infection, and bronchitis. Without a diagnosis, it is hard to know what has triggered your chest congestion to get a recommendation about whether you need a dehumidifier or a humidifier.

It’s a good idea to visit your doctor to have your chest congestion assessed to know the precise cause. Chest congestion accompanied by shortness of breath or chest pains could be an indication of a severe medical condition that needs prompt medical care.

Rochester NY HVAC Humidifier

A baby enjoys the humidifier.

How do you determine which one you need?

A good humidity level for the average residence is between 35% and 45%. Keeping the humidity level in your home within this range guarantees a healthy, comfortable setting. Also, it protects your home from harm brought on by excessive humidity or dryness. To find out what your residence needs, you can test the humidity with a humidity reader (hygrometer).

Humidifier vs. Dehumidifier: The Differences

Dehumidifiers and humidifiers are used during specific times of the year to help stop nasal congestion and the development of mold. If your dehumidifier or humidifier is not working correctly, take it to an HVAC repair shop to get it fixed. Here’s are some truths about the various uses of these critical indoor comfort systems and how they function:


  • Raises moisture level
  • Used during the wintertime when the air is dry
  • Stops skin from drying out and helps to control nasal congestion and allergies



  • Reduces moisture in the air
  • Used during the summer when the air is humid and warm
  • Keeps headaches and allergies at bay by eliminating mildew and mold build up