How to Clean Your Essential Oil Diffuser

By Jessica Fuller / April 10, 2016
How to Clean Your Essential Oil Diffuser

Keeping your diffuser clean will not only help your oils smell better and cleaner, it will extend the life of your device. This articles takes you through some simple steps how to clean your essential oil diffuser.

Aromatherapy relies on good quality and pure particles in the air. Which means your diffuser needs to be clean and clear of debris. If you let deposits from other oils build up in your diffuser it’s going to compromise your experience.

It’s one of the more common reasons that people end up complaining about the smell or last of mist being produced. I ask them to give their diffuser a good clean and run it again. No surprise, it runs a lot lot better after a clean.

You should clean out your diffuser every time you use a different oil. Or once a week regardless if you have not changed oils. This will ensure you’re getting the most from each session of diffusing oils, and you will extend the life of the diffuser.

There are some simple steps to follow to clean a typical diffuser, these are as follows:

How to Clean Your Essential Oil Diffuser with Vinegar

  1. Always start off by unplugging the diffuser and making sure it’s completely turned off.
  2. Your unit should be empty to start with. Fill it around halfway with clean water.
  3. Add around 10 drops of vinegar, pure white vinegar will do best.
  4. Plug your diffuser back in and turn it on.
  5. You want to run all of the vinegar solution through the unit, so run it for a few minutes to do this.
  6. After the solution has run through the device turn it back off and unplug it.
  7. Pour any water left in the device out.
  8. Use a cotton swab to clean all the crevices and hard to reach places inside the unit.
  9. Wash the unit out with warm water to remove any reside of the vinegar.
  10. Dry off the unit the best you can and leave it somewhere to air out.

This is all it takes to give your diffuser a really thorough clean. Like most cleaning, the more often you do it the easier and quicker it will be each time.

Cleaning a Diffuser with Citric Acid

Cleaning a Diffuser with Citric AcidCitric acid is a strong water soluble solution that is a lemon juice replacement. Always check your manufacturer’s guidelines before using it on your model of diffuser. It’s fine in most instances, and is a strong and effective solution to clean out a diffuser.

Here are some steps to follow to use citric acid to clean your diffuser:

  1. Make sure your unit it turned off and unplugged.
  2. Make a solution with one tablespoon of citric acid and 100ml of warm water. Let this sit in the water bin inside the diffuser for around 10 minutes.
  3. Drain the solution through the device.
  4. Rinse some warm water though the unit, do this a couple of times.
  5. Dry the unit with a cloth and leave it somewhere to air out naturally before using.

How Do Diffusers Work?

When a diffuser is clean and operating properly it breaks down the essential oils you’ve put into the water bin into micro molecules. It then diffuses them by projecting the molecules into the air for people to breathe in and smell.

The oils break down and release the benefits associated with the chosen oils. Improving the air quality, and giving the space a lovely fresh smell. Good quality diffusers and oils can last for hours and they are a discreet and easy way to achieve this.

There are a few different types of diffuser. They all operate in similar ways and give the same results. The four main types of diffusers are:

Ultrasonic – This type of diffuser uses electronic frequencies to diffuse. The use vibrations as opposed to heat to break up the oils and diffuse them.

Heat – This type obviously uses heat to warm up the oil and diffuse them. This is possibly the least popular type as it’s known to degrade the oils and reduce the effects of their properties.

Evaporative – This type uses a fan to blow air through a filter and break up and diffuse the oils. They can be inconsistent in the strength compared to other types, and a lot of this depends on the quality of the oil.

Cold Air – This type of diffuser has seen its day in my opinion. They are noisy and just blows air into a nebulizer to break up and diffuse the oils.

All of these types of diffuser can be cleaned with the two methods outlined above. Always check your instruction manual and manufacturer’s guidelines before using any cleaning products. For further information on these and more types of diffusers check out my post – diffusers for essential oils.

Keeping on top of the maintenance and cleaning of your diffuser is part of process of owning and using one. You always want to get the maximum benefit of your oils, so follow the cleaning guidelines here and you will be.

If you’re looking for a new diffuser that offers the best value, performance and results. Check my reviews of some of the best diffusers on the market and how well they perform:

ZAQ Bamboo Lite Diffuser

Radha Beauty Aromatherapy Diffuser – Amazon best seller.

ZAQ Mirage Litemist Diffuser

Innogear Aromatherapy Diffuser

About the author

Jessica Fuller

I started studying and experimenting with alternative medicine, different massage techniques, and alternative therapies after graduating. I also love travelling and writing, so I found a way to combine all my loves - blogging!