Honeywell HCM 350 Humidifier Review 2020 – Is the Popularity of This Humidifier Justified?

honeywell hcm 350 humidifier review - cover photo

The reason behind this Honeywell HCM 350 humidifier review? I wanted to check out what all the rave is about.

 

I mean, I saw how people are talking about how reliable, efficient, easy to operate, and overall great this humidifier is.

 

So, I had to get my hand on it.

 

And, since it's not even that expensive (quite affordable actually), I've decided to buy one for myself.

 

It was a more appealing idea at the time than finding someone who would lend it to me for testing.

 

First of all, I want to give you a short insight into what to expect of this humidifier.

 

The Honeywell HCM-350 comes as an evaporative humidifier that is capable of humidifying areas of up to 500 square feet.

 

Furthermore, this humidifier can turn up to 3.5 liters of water into mist, per day.

 

And, this amount of invisible moisture provides quick relief for various health issues.

 

For example, it can help you with dry skin (super effective in this area), allergy symptoms, and non-productive cough.

 

Also, with the germ-fighting technology that is used in this model, you can rest assured that the moisture is germ and dust-free.

 

Now, let's take a look at all the details and features that make this humidifier great.

 

HONEYWELL HCM 350 HUMIDIFIER REVIEW - ALL THE BELLS AND WHISTLES

honeywell hcm 350 humidifier review - best evaporative humidifier- cover photo

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​I will start off this Honeywell HCM 350 humidifier review with the basics.

                  THE BASICS

The entire humidifying process of the HCM-350 Honeywell humidifier is based on the special sponge-type filter.


And, this is where the water goes from the tank and then gets released as moisture into the air.

 

Of course, to speed up the process, there's a built-in fan that pushes fresh air over the filter/sponge.

 

Now, even though the humidifier doesn't have a built-in humidistat and evaporates to the max, you don't have to worry about over humidifying your room.

 

Why?


Well, it actually uses the natural process of humidification.


And, as soon as the air in the room is moisturized to optimum levels, the water from the sponge stops evaporating.

 

When it comes to the fan noise, I will just tell you that it is much quieter than I expected.


In fact, I do believe that this is the quietest evaporative humidifier I have ever dealt with.

 

But, it isn't completely silent and I will talk about the noise levels more a bit later.

 

Now, let's take a look at a breakdown of each feature.

 


SAFE AND HEALTHY HUMIDIFICATION

Humidifier CLose Up

Humidifier close up

The reason why the HCM 350 humidifier delivers clean moisture constantly is that it combines two types of technologies that are highly efficient.

 

The first tech includes the use of ultraviolet light, which kills all the germs and bacteria that can be found in the water.

 

And, the second secret is that the sponge/filter is made of antiseptic materials. Thus, fungus development is impossible.

 

However, this doesn't mean that you can just leave it running without cleaning it from time to time.

 

Sure, it will probably produce healthy moisture longer than most other models on the market even if you don't clean it that often.

 

But, the lifespan and effectiveness of the humidifier would be significantly shorter than with proper and regular maintenance.

 

I will also talk about how to properly clean and maintain this humidifier a bit later.

 

Next, in my Honeywell HCM 350 Humidifier review is the actual size of the unit.


SIZE

The HCM 350 humidifier is not a small unit that I can tell you! It's actually 18 inches long. So, it is definitely larger than similar models you can find in my buying guides.

 

But, don't let the size scare you because this unit is still very ergonomic. And, you can easily carry it around if you want to change the room.

 

Also, the plastic used for the body of the humidifier is dishwasher safe and shatterproof.

 

Now, even though the unit doesn't come with an auto shut-off feature, there is actually a transparent strip on the side of the body.

 

And, this strip serves as a checker for when the water level in the tank is too low.

 

TIP: Once you notice the water level is minimal, you should turn off the humidifier so that it doesn't overheat.

 

IS IT USER-FRIENDLY?

When it comes to how user-friendly this humidifier is... Well, with its simple design and controls, I can safely say that is is one of the most user-friendly models on the market.

 

In fact, to set the fan speeds, all you have to do is use the well-designed knob and follow the fan-speed icons around it.  And that is all!

 

As for the ease of filling the water tank, it is likewise a straightforward and easy process.

 

And, it's all made possible by an ergonomic design that allows you to have a good grip and easily place it in every standard kitchen sink.

 

Also, thanks to a huge 5-inch opening on the tank, you don't have to worry about spills and leaving a mess.

 

However, I didn't like the process of returning the water tank on the base. I had some problems with nicely pulling it over the filter when it was wet.

 

And, if you squish the filter while positioning the tank, it won't work properly.

 

But, I found a solution to that issue. Just make sure you dry up the filter before returning the water tank and the entire process will go much easier.


OPERATING COST

As I said at the beginning of this Honeywell HCM 350 humidifier review, this is a very budget friendly model.

 

Now, that is the price just for the unit and one filter that comes with it.

 

And, knowing that the filter should be replaced twice a year, you can expect additional costs for new filters.

 

But, with a price of under $15 for 2 filters, that isn't a deal breaker at all.

 

As for energy efficiency, I can't say that it uses less power than ultrasonic models.

 

However, the whole fan system is more powerful, thus more efficient when it comes to humidification.

 

It definitely raises the humidity levels in your room faster than ultrasonic humidifiers.

 

All in all, the full cost of this humidifier and for some let's say 5 to 7 years of use, you won't spend more than $200.

 

Which in my book is quite budget-saving.


PERFORMANCE AND MOISTURE OUTPUT

When it comes to performance, all I can say that in my 200 square feet nursery room, after no more than half an hour, the humidity level reached 50%!

 

I mean, that is a pretty good performance if you ask me.

 

Also, if we are to trust the manufacturer, for a complete germ and bacteria-free water, you just need to turn the humidifier without turning on the fan.

 

And, just leave it for around 15 minutes before turning on the fan.

 

This "stand-by" process allows the UV light to kill everything in the water and let you enjoy the healthy moisture.

 

When you turn on the fan, the germ-free water is released into the filter chamber and the evaporation process begins.

 

As for how powerful this model is, well, it is quite suitable for medium to small-sized rooms.

 

Even though the manufacturer claims that it can comfortably humidify rooms of up to 500 square feet, I would say that it's closer to 350 to 400 square feet.

 

Which, you have to agree, is enough for all but the really big living room, right?


SMALL ISSUES REGARDING PERFORMANCE?

With such a high moisture output, the size of the water tank (1 gallon) might be small to keep up with the output.


So, they humidifier actually over performs.

 

This means that if you set the fan speed on max, you will have to refill it after some 10 hours of continuous use.

 

But, as I already mentioned, the tank is easy to fill and fits the sink perfectly.

 

So, this is not a complicated and time-consuming process.


NOISE

honeywell hcm 350 humidifier review - noise level

By default, evaporative humidifiers are noisier than ultrasonic. That is due to the powerful fans.

 

So, I really can't say that this humidifier is silent.

 

But, it's not that noisy actually and it did surprise me.

 

Okay, it surprised me when the fan speed was on minimal and medium. But, the high-speed fan setting is a bit louder than my ears can tolerate.

 

On the other hand, if you like having the white noise in the background while getting ready to sleep, you will be quite happy.

 

Also, this white noise is quite useful for putting babies to sleep easier and faster.

 

The trick is that this noise reminds the babies of the time they spent in the mother's womb.

 

Thus, they feel safer and more relaxed and fall asleep much easier.


MAINTENANCE

As for the whole maintenance process, this is where this humidifier shines and leaves the competition far behind.

 

First of all, when it comes to cleaning the tank, the large opening on the tank itself makes the cleaning effortless.

 

Also, you don't have to wash the internal parts and the body by hand because they are made of dishwasher-friendly materials.

 

And, you have to clean and disinfect the whole humidifier just once a month thanks to its anti-bacterial materials.

 

As for the filter maintenance, you should clean it once a week, and replace it with a new one every 6 months.

 

NOTE: Using distilled water significantly prolongs the lifespan of the filter.

 

Finally, you also get a 3-year warranty, which is, in my opinion, a great deal considering that most other manufacturers offer less.

HONEYWELL HCM 350 HUMIDIFIER REVIEW - TIPS FOR MAINTENANCE

Now that you've got much more familiar with all the bells and whistles of the Honeywell HCM 350 humidifier, let's see what you need to know to keep it in excellent working shape.

 

Let's start with the cleaning.

 

HOW TO CLEAN THIS HUMIDIFIER?  

When you are regularly using a humidifier, whether we are talking about ultrasonic or evaporative models, refilling every or every other day is a must.

 

This also includes frequent water tank cleaning.

 

However, the fact that this humidifier is extremely user-friendly, the frequent cleaning comes much easier and takes less time than with other models on the market.

 

As you will immediately notice when you get the humidifier, taking it apart and putting it back together is really easy.

 

The entire process is rather simple and all you have to do is follow these steps:

 

  • 1
    Remove the water tank - Wash it in the kitchen sink and let it dry
  • 2
    Lift the top enclosure
  • 3
    Remove the filter - Wash it gently and let it dry off completely for easier installation (more detailed instructions below)
  • 4
    Scrub the base and dry it off with a clean and dry cloth
  • 5
    Put everything back (with the full water tank) in its place and you are ready


 

The bonus feature of this humidifier is that if you use it every day, the tank and base cleaning will become a routine thing to do and your humidifier will work efficiently for a long time.


HOW TO CLEAN THE FILTER?

Over time, the filter in your humidifier will become brown. But don't worry, that is just the mineral buildup that was stopped from entering the air you breathe.

 

In order to clean the filter, you just have to rinse it in water, let it dry naturally, and put it back in the humidifier.

 

Also, it's a good idea to turn it inside out after each washing.

 

No matter what you do, just don't squeeze dry or wring the filter because it will deform and not lay properly in the base.

 

And, if this happens, you cannot be sure that the water is properly purified.


HOW TO KNOW WHEN TO REPLACE THE FILTER?

honeywell hcm 350 humidifier review - honeywell filter

Honeywell filters

It's actually quite easy to spot when the humidifier needs replacement.

 

After a while (depending on the hardness of the water you use), the filter will become yellow or brown.

 

This means that the mineral buildup is getting the best of the filter and that it needs cleaning.

 

However, even though you can wash the filter, after some 4 to 6 months, it will lose its softness and become stiff.

 

Also, it will start having an unpleasant smell.

 

This is the time when you need to replace it with the new one.

 

They are quite affordable, but if you are ordering online, you need to make sure you get the compatible one.

 

One more tip: Using distilled water will significantly expand the life-span of the filter.

 


HOW TO CLEAN THE FAN BLADES?

honeywell hcm 350 humidifier review - fan blade cleaning

Not many people will ask themselves this question when buying this humidifier - How to clean the fan blades.

 

All I can say is that the manufacturer doesn't provide instructions for this process. And, that you have to figure it out on your own.

 

You will definitely notice that over time, the fan blades will collect a layer of dust.

 

And, that is when you will realize that reaching them and cleaning them is not easy.

 

But, I discovered a "hack" that helps.

 

I remembered how my husband used a compressor to clean the coolers on his PC.

 

And, the same process can be applied for cleaning the blades of the humidifier fan as well.

 

If you don't have a compressor, then I suggest using a vacuum cleaner and an attachable brush.

 

There's also the option of detaching the blade cover, but I am pretty sure that you will lose the warranty if you do that.

 

HONEYWELL HCM 350 HUMIDIFIER REVIEW - PROS AND CONS

  • pros
  • cons

Cons

  • No auto switch-off feature
  • No humidistat and timer

SIMILAR MODEL - VORNADO EVAP40 EVAPORATIVE HUMIDIFIER

vornado evap40 humidifier - HONEYWELL HCM 350 HUMIDIFIER REVIEW

The Vornado Evap40 Evaporat​​​​ive Humidifier, like the Honeywell HCM 350, is a quite effective humidifier.


But, unlike the Honeywell model, the Vornado uses the unique air circulation dubbed Vortex, which ensures even coverage of the entire room and quick humidity level improvement.


The HCM 350 uses that classic circulative method, which is also effective, but not as effective as the Vortex technology.


Also, this is a much bigger model and is capable of covering up to 1000 square feet, and really cover every single foot, even the corners.


Furthermore, when set on highest moisture output, the humidifier can work continuously up to 24 hours (on one tank filling).


And, this is double the time the Honeywell model offers.


Likewise, another area where the Vornado leads is the size of the tank. In fact, you will be quite surprised when you find out that it can store up to 15 liters of water!


EASE OF USE?

Just like the Honeywell humidifier, the Vornado is also missing a fancy LED display.


However, the dials it comes with are extremely easy to use and reliable.


In fact, when it comes to operating the humidifier (humidity levels and fan speed) it's pretty straightforward and you couldn't make a mistake even if you wanted to.


And, once the desired humidity level is reached, the humidifier will switch to a standby mode, something the Honeywell model lacks.


So, in the end, this is a more high-end model with more advanced features and stronger performance, but it also comes with a 3 times higher price...


This model is actually meant for high-end condos that are massive in size and might even be too effective for smaller apartments.

THE HONEYWELL HCM 350 HUMIDIFIER REVIEW - FINAL THOUGHTS

So, with the similar model section, you have reached the end of my Honeywell HCM 350 Humidifier Review.


By now, you've realized that this model is very effective for rooms of up to 400 square feet.


Next, it is really easy to use and even the maintenance is not a hassle. And, it will easily become an everyday routine.


Though it might not be suitable for everyone's ears (gets a bit noisy when on max fan speed) many will find that background white noise to be a real sleep helper.


I know my kids loved falling asleep with it from the first night it was placed in their room.


Furthermore, this model is very wallet-friendly and even the additional maintenance cost (buying new filters) is unnoticeable.


It is not as energy saving as the ultrasonic models, though, but it does the job faster so it's a tie at the end when it comes to energy efficiency.


Finally, with much less wiring and electronic parts than ultrasonic humidifiers, this evaporative humidifier is very reliable and rarely breaks down.


So, another plus when it comes to repairing cost.


All in all, a great model for medium-sized rooms and for people who don't like to get too technical.


And, for people that don't like having complicated parts that need cleaning.


Also, the parts that you do need to clean are easily accessible and really well made.


Likewise, they allow you to reach every single area for a better cleaning experience.


On the other hand, if you need something more powerful, something that can cover much wider areas, I recommend checking out the Vornado model. But, forget about the budget-friendly part...


FINAL, FINAL THOUGHTS!

Okay, this is the end of the review.


I just wanted to thank you for sticking with me till the very end.


If you have some questions regarding the Honeywell humidifier, feel free to leave them in the comments section.


In fact, you can also leave your experiences with this model if you already own it.