Whole House Humifdifier

I would like to install a whole-house humidifier on my forced air furnace. From what I understand, the steam humidifiers seem to work pretty well, anyone have experiences or suggest a model for a 2800SF Home?
Thanks in Advance, -a12vman
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a12vman wrote:

fs your water is hard, flow thru type may be better choice. Like Aprilaire. My house is about same size as yours. I installed one in the fall and been working very well. Our water is VERY hard and it is easy to clean the water panel. I have two panels, while one is being used one is cleaned.
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Oops I should have mentioned that the water would come from a Reverse Osmosis Unit.

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a12vman wrote:

better performance.
Lou
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LouB wrote:

Out of curiosity I checked the heat of vaporization of water:
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/phase.html
Using hot water to feed the humidifier only adds maybe 5% of the energy needed to evaporate the water. Considering heat loss to the piping, it's hardly worth it.
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Frank wrote:

valve and the damn thing clogged twice in 12 years.
Lou
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On Tue, 23 Dec 2008 17:45:32 -0500, Frank

Since humidifiers are generally only used in the heating season and since the heat loss generally ends up in a heated part of the home, you really have zero net heat loss.
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It's not about the amount of energy required. The water has to be heated either way. It's about which gets more water released into the air. Starting with hot water, the water will evaporate faster because more of the water is at a higher temp across the media pad. Using hot water, it's at 130 from the start of the pad. Using cold water, it's at 45 degrees.
Try an experiment. Take a glass 3/4 full of cold water and place a saucer over the top. Do the same with hot tap water. Wait 3 mins and remove the saucers. The bottom of the saucer from the hot glass will be covered with condensation, while the cold one will not. Also note that the glass of hot water never reached 212 degrees. That's the effect you have using hot water in a humidifier vs cold and in this simple experiment, it's obviously a very significant difference.
At some point as water travels down the media pad, it probably reachs the same temp in the humidifier using either hot or cold. But until it reaches that steady state point, significantly more water will evaporate using hot.
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a12vman wrote:

house, I put in a unit from Sears that had a dip tank with a rotating sponge using city water and every few months had to remove deposits with vinegar. Now have an Aprilaire unit in new (now old) house with well and unit has worked fine for many years on water that is borderline hard. I change drip element annually, if I remember, but it can probably last much longer. My French drain handles the overflow.
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RO is an unessary waste of money, the april air pad has excess water flowing to flush minerals, you wont get white dust, the pad is easily cleaned in lime away. RO is expensive to operate.
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Steam as in you boil water, just get an April Air that automaticly adjusts humidity, they work.
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Whatever you do dont dont let the bastard installer use a saddle clamp to make the water tap, make him install a soft copper compression fitting with a quality ball valve plumbed in-line. My saddle clamp valve looks like it is about to burst any day now (I wasn't home the day this horseshit was installed).
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If you're going to feed it with RO water, you cannot use copper water lines. They must be plastic. RO water deteriorates copper and you end up with pinhole leaks.
The steam units are supposed to be great. But they consume more power and you still have to clean them. They cost a lot more upfront and I haven't been able to figure out where the cost benefit is.
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I would suggest against a whole house unit. During the coldest part of the time, generally at night, many houses nowadays have temperature setback. So the system wouldn't be running much, unless the fan was running all the time. Far better, IMO, to have an ultrasonic unit over the bed. And use rainwater, or clean its transducer with vinegar every so often.
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Why does it have to run at night? The humidity generated during the rest of the day will still be there. If you stop putting moisture into the air, it takes days for it to drop back down, unless you have the windows open. In fact, with the temp dropping during setback, the relative humidity is more likely to RISE than fall due to the drop in temp, with roughly the same amount of water still in the air.

Last thing I'd want is cold damp air blowing over my bed with the heat turned down. Plus the ultrasonics can generate white dust from the water, depending on it's hardness.
For the OP, I've had an Aprilaire 760 for 12 years and am very happy with it.
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    I will also suggest the April air based on my experience and most of what the others have said. Other brands seem to have a much higher failure rate and the steam type have been related to health and hardware problems. I doubt if RO will change that.
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