How Much Does A Whole House Humidifier Cost?

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A whole-house humidifier is a type of humidifier attached directly to your house’s HVAC or heating system. This humidifier disperses moisture throughout the house with a distribution tray.

Humidifiers can reduce the incidence of postoperative sore throat after thyroid surgery and increase the respiratory system’s gas exchange. If your room has not had enough moisture, you will be suffering from nosebleeding and respiratory and skin irritation.

On top of that, dry air increases the chances of flu and cold infection. Dry air also raises utility bills and damages furniture and wood floors.

So, you need to have a whole-house humidifier. But, you do not know how much does a whole-house humidifier costs?

A typical whole-house humidifier costs between $100 to $300. However, the cost depends on the type, size, accessibility, installation, etc. The larger the HVAC unit is, the more the price is. On average, a high-end humidifier costs around $1300. Besides, you have to pay around $50 to $70 per hour to install a humidifier with a professional.

Well, in this article, I will be breaking down how much a whole-house humidifier costs by brand and type. You do not need to go anywhere for further information. It would be the complete guide from installation cost to labor cost.

How Much Does A Whole House Humidifier Cost To Install?

An HVAC technician charges $60 to $115 per hour for installing a whole-house humidifier. As the entire installation process takes 5 to 6 hours, the installation cost, in sum, would be $300 to $690. However, the local market’s average installation price is $395 to $734, which might extend to 1 grand.

How Much Does A Whole House Humidifier Cost

However, if you install your humidifier by a handyperson, the cost would be $15 to $50 per hour.

Installer Wages Min. (Dollars Per Hour) Wages Max. (Dollars Per Hour) Time Required (Hours)
HVAC Technician 60 115 5 to 6
Handyperson 15 50 5 to 7

Factors Affecting Whole-house Humidifier Costs

How much does a whole-house humidifier cost to replace depending on the following factors –

Factors Affecting Whole-house Humidifier Costs

Types Of Humidifier

There are different types of humidifiers like – flow-through, drum, steam-powered, etc. Among them, steam-powered humidifiers are pricier than others, but they are cost-effective.

Size Of The Unit

The size of a unit depends on the size of your room. Generally, the smallest whole-house humidifier coverage area is 1000 sq. feet. It costs less than the humidifier that covers 5000 sq. feet.

Moreover, the price of any unit that has the same coverage area can vary depending on the type, brand, size, etc.

Pre-installation Costs

This cost is predominant if you attach a humidifier to a complicated furnace. You need extra labor costs to prepare the furnace for setting it up.

Installation Costs

It means the installer cost. You can save a tiny amount of money by installing it by a handyperson rather than an HVAC technician. Handyperson charges $15 to $50 per hour, whereas an HVAC technician charges a maximum of $115 per hour. Here is one factor that affects installation cost –

  • Permits – It is necessary for a steam humidifier, whereas drum and flow-through do not. It is a dedicated electrical circuit.

Geographical Location

If you live in a dry area, you need a higher capacity unit to moisten your room.

Hygrometer Cost

Typically, a whole-house humidifier hygrometer or gauge costs around 10 to 70 dollars. Besides, you can purchase a high-end hygrometer for up to $200.

The hygrometer measures the humidity level or water percentage in your room. You should maintain a humidity level between 30% to 50%.

Electricity Costs

The energy consumption depends on the type and size of the whole-house humidifier. For instance – steam-powered humidifier costs between 150 to 480 dollars per year. Here is a table showing the types of humidifiers and annual utility costs.

Type Cost Per Year
Steam-Powered $150 – $480
Fan-Powered $9 – $28
Bypass $1 – $3

Maintenance Cost

There are a few maintenance costs you must have down the line. Here you go –

  • You need to invest around $10 to $20 a year for replacing the drum or flow-through unit’s filter.
  • For cleaning the duct system, you have to pay $300 to $700.
  • You might have a question like how much it costs to repair a whole house humidifier, right? You need $70 to $800 on average.
  • For mold inspection and cleaning, you have to pay $195 to $350 based on professionals’ demand.

Who Installs A Whole-house Humidifier?

HVAC technicians install, maintain, and repair a whole-house humidifier primarily. They charge more. Whereas a handyperson who can install a whole-house humidifier, no doubt. A handyperson demands less hourly rate than an HVAC technician. Besides, you may need an electrician and plumber to improve the connection.

Whole-house Humidifier Installation Procedure

Here is a quick and easy way to install a whole-house humidifier. I can not wait to share it with you. Here you go

  • First of all, turn off the HVAC system.

Whole-house Humidifier Installation Procedure

  • Cut a hole in the return duct with aviation snips matching your humidifier size.
  • Position the humidifier on the hole.
  • Seal it with an airtight seal.

Whole-house Humidifier Installation Procedure

  • Place a humidistat over 6 to 12 inches above the humidifier.

Place a humidistat over 6 to 12 inches above the humidifier

  • Humidistat and furnace control or transformer should be connected wire.
  • Connect humidistat and solenoid valve with wire.

Whole-house Humidifier Installation Procedure

  • The water line and humidifier should be connected.
  • Install drain piping.

Install drain piping

  • You can install a bypass duct, but this is optional.

The whole project seems tedious, but it will be easier if you follow the manual. Above all, hiring an HVAC technician is highly recommended.

Whole-house Humidifier Cost By Room Size

Here in this table, you will see the unit price and installation fee.

Home Size (sq. feet) Unit Price Only Installation cost only
1000 -2000 $100 – $290 $150 – $440
2500 – 3000 $199 – $499 $100 – $900
3000 – 6000 $299 – $1,099 $150 – $1,000

Whole-house Humidifier Cost By Types

You may want to have a drum or steam-powered humidifier. Whatever you want, in the following section, you will get how much one need to install a humidifier. Here you go –

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Drum Model?

A drum-type humidifier installation costs around $100 to $450 alone. The installation and unit itself cost around $200 to $750. The unit price is about $100 – $300. You must need maintenance costs once a year because mildew growth frequently occurs inside it.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Spray Humidifier?

A spray humidifier costs around $100 to $150. This humidifier and drum humidifier is the best for tiny houses. You can install it on your own.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Steam Humidifier?

A steam humidifier installation costs about $200 to $900. The unit costs around $300 to $1,300 for home use. However, an industrial steam humidifier costs more than $4000. As this humidifier produces a hot mist, it kills microorganisms. It is the best choice for homeowners for its efficacy and germ-killing features.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Fan-powered Humidifier?

The installation and equipment of a fan-powered humidifier cost around $800 to $1500. This humidifier is best for the larger room but produces a larger sound. You can run it when the HVAC system is off.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Bypass Humidifier?

The installation and equipment of a bypass humidifier cost around $600 to $1500. This humidifier depends entirely on the HVAC system since it uses its airflow. As it has fewer movable parts, it breaks down lesser than other types of humidifiers.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Flow-through Humidifier?

The installation cost of a flow-through humidifier is around $200 – $900. The unit price is around $100 – $500. You will save on maintenance costs, which you must do in the drum humidifier. It remains clean for longer. When air from the HVAC system passes through a moist panel and spreads throughout the room, you will feel the humidity.

How Much Does It Cost To Install A Central Humidifier By Brands?

Brand Unit Price Installation Cost
Aprilaire $130 – $1,000 $100 – $900
Bryant $230 – $630 $100 – $870
Honeywell $150 – $400 $100 – $900
Trane $200 – $900 $100 – $900
American Standard $130 – $1,000 $100 – $900
Emerson $160 – $750 $100 – $850
Goodman $170 – $700 $100 – $900
Rheem $220 – $400 $100 – $900
Hamilton $160 – $200 $100 – $900

**P.S. The different brands have different models; you will see some ups and downs in prices from the table I mentioned.

Let’s say Aprilaire 700 Fan-Powered Evaporative costs $250 – $375. It covers 5300 sq. feet. Aprilaire has different models, and their price varies based on capacity, type, etc.

How Much Does A Small Humidifier Cost?

I see the small humidifier from Amazon and Walmart listed small humidifier costs ranging between $25 to $90. They are not whole-house humidifiers, though. They are ultrasonic, evaporative humidifiers. However, you can moisten your room with these humidifiers.

Whole-house Humidifier And Your Budget

Budget ($) What You Will Get
Below 200 Drum type humidifiers.
200-400 High-end drum-type humidifiers. (you have to install it on your own)
400-1000 Steam-powered humidifiers with a lower warranty.
1000+ Steam-powered and other high-end humidifiers with higher warranty.

How Much Does It Cost To Fix A Whole-house Humidifier?

It costs around 270 dollars on national average to fix a whole-house humidifier. The typical range is $70 to $400. Initially, you may have to pay $70, but sometimes it may increase up to $700. The technician charges $100 to $200 per hour.

Whole-house Humidifier Pros And Cons

Pros Of Whole-house Humidifier

  • It moistens the entire house air. So, you are safe from flu and cold. Besides, it helps with the improvement of asthma.
  • Prevents your skin and the nasal passage from irritation and improves respiratory function.
  • As it adds moisture to the house, the temperature will be low, and you will feel warmer. So, you can save on your heating expenses.
  • Dry air causes static, whereas a whole-house humidifier decreases static by adding moisture to the air.
  • It keeps your furniture and house painting safe from cracking.
  • Quiet operation.
  • No need to add water daily.
  • Lower maintenance than a single-room humidifier.

Cons Of Whole-house Humidifier

  • It is expensive.
  • Mold will grow inside it if you do not clean it properly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Lifespan Of A Whole-house Humidifier?

A whole-house humidifier lasts for around 10 to 15 years based on maintenance and the type of water used. Drum-type humidifiers need to clean once a year.

What To Ask A Whole-house Humidifier Installer Or Hvac Technician?

You must ask a few questions before hiring them –

  • Is he licensed?
  • Is he experienced in installing it?
  • How long does it take to install a whole-house humidifier? (it takes around 5 to 6 hours)
  • How much does he charge for annual maintenance?
  • What is included in the estimated expenses and what not?
  • How does a whole-house humidifier work? (if he does not know this core basic, he is a scam)
  • How often does he suggest you replace the filter for your drum-type humidifier?

Apart from the above questions, you have to cross-questions him.

Where To Install The Whole-house Humidifier?

  • You have to install a bypass model on the return duct or supply duct.
  • You have to install a flow-through model on the supply duct.

Is The Furnace Humidifier Worth It?

As a furnace humidifier adds moisture to the whole house, it keeps your skin, nasal passage, and trachea from drying. However, in some cities, the humidity level is naturally optimum. You do not require any humidifier, but you may need a dehumidifier in severe humidity.

Should I Buy A Manual Or Automatic Whole-house Humidifier?

Though an automatic whole-house humidifier is pricier than a manual, I suggest buying it. Why? Because it helps with preventing over moisture damage.

For instance, in the case of a manual humidifier, you run it and forget to stop it after reaching the optimum humidity level. You will see your basement become damp. Mold will grow in your room’s wall and window.


Have you gotten the answer to “How much does a whole house humidifier cost?”. Now, you are good to buy your first whole-house humidifier. Be sincere while you are hiring an HVAC technician or handyperson.

Hopefully, you will pass a healthy, moisturized environment in your house. If you have a child, he is now almost safe from flu and cold.

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