How Much Does a Whole House Humidifier Cost?

Ben Kissam
Written by Ben Kissam
Updated January 11, 2022
A modern, stylish and bright living room
Photo: Oscar Wong / Moment / Getty Images

A whole house humidifier typically costs between $100 and $300

Get quotes from up to 3 pros!
Enter a zip below and get matched to top-rated pros near you.

Installing a whole house humidifier in your home is a great investment for your family's health, especially if you or a loved one suffers from any sort of respiratory issues. Moisture in the air helps line the nasal passages with moisture and reduces airborne bacteria and viruses.

Whole house humidifier costs start at just $100, but could easily be more if you select a higher-end model that attaches to your furnace, or if you have a large home. This cost guide breaks it all down for you.

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Whole House Humidifier?

When installed by a local humidifier specialist, you should expect to pay between $395 and $734 for installation on average. In certain instances, it could cost as much as $1,000.

The average cost of a whole house humidifier is between $100 and $300, although high-end models could exceed $1,000. The price you'll pay depends largely on the type of humidifier you want and the model you select. Dyson, Greenhouse, Aprilaire, and Vornado are four of the popular brands you'll find in the U.S. 

HVAC companies usually charge between $50 and $70 per hour for installation. In most cases, your device will take between three and five hours to install.

What Whole House Humidifier Can I Get on My Budget?

House humidifier on a return duct
Photo: oasisamuel / Adobe Stock

Below are some pricing tier guidelines you can use to find the right whole house humidifier for your budget.

<$200

The most affordable type of whole house humidifiers are drum humidifiers. These humidifiers work perfectly fine and install easily but require quite a bit of maintenance, so make sure you know how to check your home's humidifier

You'll have plenty of options when choosing a basement dehumidifier in this price range, though, if you decide you don't need one for your whole home.

$200—$400

Higher-end or larger-sized drum units are available in this price range, as well as flow-through humidifiers, which attach to your furnace and require less maintenance. For under $400, you may have to install it yourself, though, so keep that in mind when shopping.

$400—$1,000

Beyond $400, your options open up greatly. At this point, many steam-powered whole house humidifier models will fit your budget. These models attach to your home's HVAC system and disperse steam through your home's ductwork, making them the most efficient type of model.

$1,000+

The most expensive whole-house humidifiers are steam-powered, and some high-end models with long warranties could exceed $1,000. These also attach directly to your home's ductwork. Many high-end models guarantee that no (or at least very little) mold will grow in your ductwork, which is a cause for concern for some lower-end models.

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Whole House Humidifier Yourself?

Since HVAC professionals charge a flat rate of up to $70 an hour (along with a service fee) and installing a whole house humidifier can take up to five hours to complete, you might save as much as $400 by installing it yourself.

However, installing a whole house humidifier isn't a project to be taken lightly. Experience with plumbing, HVAC, and electrical are all necessary. Because your humidifier attaches to your home's HVAC system, an error could lead to costly repairs or injuries. For many, asking a local HVAC company for price quotes is the best idea.

Whole House Humidifier Cost Breakdown

Here's where you'll spend (or save) your money when shopping for a whole-house humidifier.

Type of Humidifier

The whole house humidifier you choose could cost between $150 and $1,100. It mainly depends on if you're choosing a drum, flow-through, or steam-powered unit.

Size of Unit

Larger homes may need a bigger or more powerful unit to successfully (and efficiently) keep your home's moisture levels down. A well-sealed, 1,500 square foot home requires about 3.2 gallons of water per day. Larger homes may need as much as twice this amount.

Installation Costs

Spending $50 to $70 an hour for installation could add a couple hundred dollars to your project. You can save by getting multiple quotes or tackling the project by yourself (just be sure to do lots of research).

Service Fee

Some HVAC professionals charge a service fee on top of installation costs. This could actually be well worth it if a consultation is included. This way, a professional can tell you which model and size you should install in your home to save money on energy costs.

How Much Does a Whole House Humidifier Cost by Type?

There are three main models of whole house humidifiers you can choose from.

Costs for 3 types of whole house humidifiers, with drum models costing the least

Drum Model

Drum models range between $150 and $250. This model comes with a rotating drum attached to an absorbent pad. The pad passes through and soaks up water, then evaporates into the air through the bypass tube.

This model is inexpensive but does come with the inherent risk of bacteria and mold growth if not properly maintained. Filter replacements are needed about once a month, which cost between $10 and $20.

Flow-Through

Flow-through humidifiers cost between $200 and $300. This type of humidifier sends moisture into the air directly from the hot air your furnace creates, making it a low-maintenance device once installed. Filters need to be changed periodically, but a good model doesn't need as much servicing as a drum humidifier.

Steam

Steam-powered whole house humidifiers range greatly in price and usually cost between $300 and $1,100. This model monitors your home's moisture levels and adds moisture to the air when necessary (as opposed to running constantly). The water is heated in a reservoir and then released in your furnace.

FAQs About Whole House Humidifiers

Should I install a whole house humidifier DIY or hire a professional?

Unless you're very savvy with electrical, plumbing, and HVAC work, hiring a pro to do this job is worth the extra investment. Improper installation could damage your home's furnace or HVAC system, which will cost you a lot (potentially thousands of dollars) to get fixed. 

Systems that aren't installed properly could force your humidifier and furnace to work harder, which will drive up your energy bill, too.

Should I buy a drum or flow-through whole house humidifier?

It depends on what your tolerance for maintenance is. Flow-through humidifiers rely on your furnace and only need to be serviced every couple of months. You'll save money by opting for a drum humidifier, but will have to replace filters and service it more regularly.

In fact, if you can find a lower-end steam whole house humidifier, it might be worth paying a little extra to save on operating costs long-term.

How much does it cost to repair a whole house humidifier?

The national average to repair a whole house humidifier is $234. Some units, especially those that run through your ductwork and add moisture to your whole home, could cost as much as $500 to repair.

Need professional help with your project?
Get quotes from top-rated pros.