Vicks Filter Free Review
Pros: Inexpensive, smaller, filterless, stands to fill
Cons: Less effective, louder, few features
Compare to Similar Products
Vicks Filter Free
$43.17 at Amazon
|$60 List||$55 List|
$42.99 at Amazon
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|Pros||Inexpensive, smaller, filterless, stands to fill||Budget-friendly, effective, easy to use, cleaning brush included||Quiet, filterless, effective, compact, multiple color options||Baby-centric, budget-friendly, quiet, easy to clean||Price, easy to clean, compact, filterless|
|Cons||Less effective, louder, few features||Somewhat louder than average, requires long handle bottle brush, filter||Potential issues with motor performance and durability, light always on||Not as effective, average ease of use||Louder, not as effective, small capacity, frequent refills|
|Bottom Line||Less expensive compact humidifier that is also less effective and pretty loud compared to the competition||An impressively effective budget-friendly humidifier that makes a little more noise than the average unit||Sleek design, basic features, quiet operation with effective humidity creation||Adorable baby-centric humidifier that is quiet and easy to maintain, but it isn't very effective compared to the competition and may not meet your humidity goals||Compact and easy to clean but not as effective and louder than most|
|Rating Categories||Vicks Filter Free||TaoTronics TT-AH001||Crane Drop||TaoTronics TT-AH038||Honeywell HUL520|
|Ease of Cleaning (35%)|
|Ease of Use (10%)|
|Specs||Vicks Filter Free||TaoTronics TT-AH001||Crane Drop||TaoTronics TT-AH038||Honeywell HUL520|
|Tank Capacity||1.2 gal||1.1 gal||1 gal||0.66 gal||0.5 gal|
|Visible Water Reservoir||Yes||Yes||No||No||Yes|
|Room Humidification Area (Sq Ft)||Medium||322 sq ft||500 sq ft||269 sq ft||Small Room|
|Max Run Time||Up to 33 hrs||Up to 30 hrs||Up to 24 hrs||Up to 30 hrs||Up to 20 hrs|
|Humidity Output Control||Variable Mist Control||Variable Mist Control
|Variable Mist Control||Variable Mist Control||Variable Mist Control|
|Demineralization Cartridge/Filter||No||No||Available for Purchase||No||No|
|Empty Tank Auto-Shut Off||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Dimensions (BGL)||9.4"W x 12"H x 8.3"L||6"W x 9"H x 11.4"L||8.7"W x 13"H x 8.7"L||8.3"W x 12.2"H x 5.5"L||8.1"W x 8.8"H x 8.1"L|
|Empty Weight (BGL)||3.31 lbs||1.83 lbs||2.24 lbs||3.71 lbs||2.6 lbs|
|Max Operation Noise Level in dB (BGL)||46 db||41.7 db||<40 db||<40 db||45.2 db|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Most people are familiar with the traditional Vick's Vapor Rub that came on the scene about 30 years after the company started in 1890. Vick's continued this trend with other health and wellness products, including throat drops, cough medicine, and the ever-popular NyQuil. Vick's also makes thermometers, vaporizers, humidifiers, and steam inhalers. Helen of Troy Limited, a consumer products group that includes OXO®, Hydro Flask®, Vicks®, Braun®, Honeywell®, PUR®, and Hot Tools®, owns Vicks.
Ease of Cleaning
The Vick's regular cleaning and maintenance are relatively involved. According to manufacturer instructions, you'll need to clean the tank and components with vinegar regularly with routine bleach soaking to remove trace mold or bacteria not removed during the vinegar process. While not difficult, the tank and base do have some small spaces that are challenging to reach and clean thoroughly.
The opening of the tank is more substantial than some of the competition, and smaller hands will fit inside. It is still easiest to clean using a bottle brush, and you'll need the brush to reach the bottom of the mist tube.
While the Vick's has a slightly higher capacity than some of the competition, it has less ability to provide adequate or prompt humidification for the room. Our tests indicate that from the get-go, it doesn't generate as much humidity as the competition, and this trend only gets worse over time, with the disparity between products growing exponentially over time. At the end of 60 minutes, this unit had created a less humid room than the majority of the competition. This lack of humidity means it may not meet your needs, whether they are related to the crib area or the entire room.
Also, this unit creates a significant amount of white dust, and while it is nice not to worry about a filter to replace, you'll want to use distilled water in this unit to avoid excessive white dust.
This unit generates the highest level of noise in the group with decibel readings over 46. there is a lot of dripping sounds and it doesn't sound like a white noise maker like some of the competition. If constant or random noises might keep you or your baby awake, then this is likely a poor choice for your family. We aren't sure why the sound is so high in comparison to the competition or previous test models from Vick's but repeated testing showed the same results.
Ease of Use
The Vick's has a simple single-dial operation, but the lack of adjustable features could be a bummer depending on your goals. The variable output dial is easy to use and can be adjusted to increase or decrease its output as desired. However, the lack of humidity control or programmability means you'll need to keep a watchful eye on the unit to keep your humidity levels under control.
This unit is easy enough to fill, and the tank stands on its own in the sink, which is a plus and not common in this group. The tank has a carry handle and is relatively lightweight. The opening is large enough for filling, but you can't refill the reservoir without removing it, which isn't as user-friendly as filling it in place while your baby continues to sleep peacefully.
— Wendy Schmitz and the BabyGearLab Review Team
Honest, objective reviews. Led by a Pediatrician.
BabyGearLab was founded by a Pediatrician Mom with a mission to provide a reliable, independent, source of information to new parents. Our experts have tested thousands of baby and kids products to share key performance, health, and safety findings. We spend tens of thousands of dollars crash testing car seats to inform our ratings. And, we combine our review work with gobs of expert parenting advice. To assure complete independence, we buy all the products we test ourselves. No sponsored content. No ads. Just real, honest, side-by-side testing by people who care.Learn More