The Comfort Zone CZHD81 humidifier.

It’s not often that a product at the bottom of Consumer Reports ratings rises to the top. But that’s what happened with the Comfort Zone CZHD81 humidifier when we retested a model that we had judged a “Do Not Buy: Performance Problem."

The new samples passed our tests and we have now removed the Don’t Buy designation.

The problem we discovered in 2016 was that four of the eight samples we originally tested did not work properly right out of the box.

It’s not uncommon for Consumer Reports to revisit a product when we judge it a Don’t Buy for either safety or performance issues. So we recently purchased four more samples of the Comfort Zone CZHD81.

Our engineers ran two models through our full battery of humidifier tests and spot checked the other two. They all work very well. In fact, they perform so well that the Comfort Zone now earns an Excellent rating overall and is named a CR Best Buy because at $45, it’s a good value.

The Comfort Zone CZHD81 is a cool mist ultrasonic model designed to humidify a medium-sized room of up to 400 square feet. It’s one of the best humidifiers of its size in our tests. Its mist output is top-notch and we also find that it runs quietly and efficiently.

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Comfort Zone CZHD81 Humidifiers

Price: $45

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It isn’t as convenient to use and clean as some other humidifiers in our tests but it has some nifty features such as a nightlight, a 12-hour timer, an empty tank indicator, and a remote control.

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All of the Comfort Zone CZHD81 humidifiers in our recent tests worked right out of the box. That’s a big improvement over the older models in which four of the eight samples failed to emit mist from the output port at the top, even when the fan was on high.

“Because of this inconsistency we did not complete our full battery of tests at that time,” says John Galeotafiore, Consumer Reports’ associate director of product testing.

During our earlier testing, a Comfort Zone spokesman told us that the faulty samples were from a batch of 3,800 models that were all made on the same day.

“The recent models are from two different batch numbers and they are fine,” says Galeotafiore.

When we called out the Comfort Zone humidifier for performance issues, we did note that the company’s customer service was very responsive and that it replaced the non-working models at no cost to the consumer.

3 CR Best Buy Humidifiers

Consumer Reports gives its products a CR Best Buy when they perform well and offer good value. There are well over 10 CR Best Buy models in our humidifier ratings. Here are three, one of each size we test—small, medium, and large.

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CVS Health GUL540V1 Humidifiers

Price: $30

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Vicks V5100NS Humidifiers

Price: $50

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Noise
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SPT SU-4010 Humidifiers

Price: $75

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Noise
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