humidifier location

I had posted the following message in alt.hvac and it was recommended that I check with the folks here.
I hired a contractor to replace my heat pump and forced air blower. To make life a little sweeter I requested that an in-duct humidifier be added. The HVAC ducting on the supply side of my blower has two branches. One branch serves the basement and the kitchen area that makes up about half of the first floor living area. The second branch serves the other half of the first floor and the entire second floor living area. The contractor elected to install the humidifier in the duct serving the basement and kitchen. Since this installation I noticed that I now have mold growing in the basement and that the relative humidity in the second floor living areas could only reach about 23%. It looked to me that they installed the humidifier in the wrong branch. I wouldn't think anyone would want to have humid air in a basement and I don't think a kitchen area needs humidification. Essentially about 75% of the living areas were not being serviced by the humidifier. Following my complaint, the contractor told me that the installation they performed was correct. The rationale given to me was that since hot air rises, it would have been improper to have the humidifier installed in the duct branch serving the second floor.
I'd really appreciate hearing back from someone with some expertise on the subject. Am I just an unreasonable customer or did the contractor just give an excuse for a bad installation.
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How do you monitor humidity, what % level is it, what are outdoor temps. Does condensation occur anywhere. How does your humidifier set and adjust humidity. To have mold it is set to high. How do you know your humidistat is accurate, analog units must be calibrated by you. There may be others but April Air has a unit that tracks outdoor temps, you set it to where no condensation develops and it tracks the proper setting. Most units you must constantly adjust. You have not shown you need a humidifier, this late in the season most areas dont need added humidity. Start by turning it off and get a good digital humidistat. Condensation anywhere on walls or windows leads to mold and is your first sign you are over humidifying. Unless I get static shocks I ignore humidity issues, and I never get static shocks with a tight house and alot of houseplants. I stopped running my April air several years ago, soon I will be running a Dehunidifier since it it warmer and rained recently. The humidity should travel through the home and distribute, but without checking different areas with a good humidistat you cant know the instal was wrong , leading to high humidity areas. But my Bypass goes back into my return.
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peter kasper wrote:

Yes hot air rises, but I don't see how that means any more in this case than saying the moon rises.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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Hot air rises, but water from the humidifier is cold. Take into account that the humidifier only comes on when the blower comes on, and what do you get? Water being blown to the basement and to the kitchen. Hot air rises but not water, especially when its being blown in the wrong direction. Ed
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wrote:

You have to tell them everything. This is true of not just contractors but everyone. You had to learn this lesson eventually, and hopefully you've learned it now. (How old are you? No insult implied. Just curious if you learned before or after I did.)

Most people will always defend what they did. Example, I fell and loosened a front middle tooth when I was little and it settled in crooked. Solely because of this tooth my mother took me to an orthodontist. And she told him that. He talked about "bite" and things and the treatment took about 2 years iirc, and cost real money. When it was over, my front tooth was still crooked, not as much as before, but it clearly wasn't straight.
He had a final appointement where he showed me off to her, and my mother said, "His tooth is crooked" and the guy offered to file it off to make the bottom horizontal. (Of course then I'd have a crooked tooth that was trapezoidal or triangular.) My mother didn't like that, and instead of saying he'd work on me more, or apologizing, he held a wire from appproximately the middle of my forehead to approximately the middle of my chin and said "No one is perfect. See, his nose isn't in the middle either." Then he held a wire from somewhere on my left ear to somewhere on my right and said "See his ears aren't the same height either." He was willing to destroy my whole self-image just to not get blamed for something he didn't do right.
I'm lucky I didn't believe him, and you;re lucky he didn't insult the rest or your house, or even the rest of you.
Thank goodness my ears are at the same height as far as anyone can tell, and my nose IS in the middle as far as anyone can tell, and at 15 years old, I knew the guy was lying to try to get himself out of trouble, or I would have spent decades pining for plastic surgery until I could raise the money. (and then if they moved my nose or an ear, I really would be crooked.) And the tooth seems to have straigtened out a little more and never looked that bad. People don't notice it.
At the time the whole thing didn't bother me, but now I realize what a terrible thing the orthodontist almost did to me, and I wish I had called him and told him what a jerk he was. By now he's probably about 80 years old, and retired to Arizona, and I don't know his first name. I wish I had done this when I was still in highschool, so he didn't insult others.

It doesn't sound right to me, but I don't know much. Of course the others do;n't like it either.

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I agree that they installed the humidifier in the wrong place. Usually they are installed in the main plenum, before any splits. But if I were installing it and had to pick between the two branchs, I would never put it in the branch serving the basement/kitchen. Basements are where you typically want to remove moisture, not add it.
I don't know that there is much you can do at this point, except move it, which I would do pronto. If you're reasonably handy, you can do it yourself. You just need some sheet metal to cover up the existing duct hole, then relocate it.
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