Unhappy with Aprilair 600 humidifier

Need to measure water consumption and waste from Aprilaire 600 humidifier
It uses heated water and is dumping at least 10+ gallons down the drain, and not doing much to humidify house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Look for a damper, which might be closed. Normally, those things do a terrific job. Might also need a new media pad. Or, the water may be dropping through, without wetting the media. Or the media may be clogged with minerals. Turn the humidistat up a little?
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
Need to measure water consumption and waste from Aprilaire 600 humidifier
It uses heated water and is dumping at least 10+ gallons down the drain, and not doing much to humidify house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
You can also turn down the water. I cranked mine down so that when it was on a working for awhile there was only a very small trickle of water out the drain.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

With the water wide open the waste was in excess of 10 gallons a day Right now with only a trickle going though, it's still about 5 gallons a day.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 1/2/2013 5:51 PM, Cliff H wrote:

I never read the instructions for one, but I thought that is what you were supposed to do. You want to keep the plates wet. Flushing some water through will reduce mineral buildup.
RTFM?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What makes you imagine I didn't read the manual I'm one of those guys that get well paid because others don't read their manuals
I'm using more water in winter, than in the other 3 seasons when SWMBO is watering the garden at the drop of a hose.
I used far less water with portable humidifiers and humidity was more consistent Hence my unhappiness.
I am looking for a way to measure accurately what goes into the humidifier, and what comes out, at different settings. So I can figure how how much water is just plain flushed by this system
So now that we've discussed side issues Does ANYONE have any suggestions for a simple mechanical off-the-shelf flow meter to measure relatively low-level water going in and coming out of the humidifier ?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

I don't see why you need a way to measure the water flow since you posted yesterday that it was 10 gallons a day and now it's down to 5 gallons by partially closing the valve. So, apparently you've already measured the flow rate coming out the drain. If you want to figure out how much is being evaporated, just run the humidifier water for some measurement period without the furnace/blower running and record the volume as you did before. This number will be higher and the difference would be what's going into the house.
Also, I would not be worried about it being hot water that is going into the humidifier, that it's a waste of hot water. The water coming out of the humidifier will be down to about room temp due to evaporation. So, you're recovering most of the heat. And don't know your cost of water, but around here 5 or 10 gallons a day isn't enought to worry about.
How large is the house where you can't get enough humidity? Outside temps?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

# # I don't see why you need a way to measure the water # flow since you posted yesterday that it was 10 gallons # a day and now it's down to 5 gallons by partially closing # the valve. So, apparently you've already measured # the flow rate coming # out the drain. If you want to figure out how much is # being evaporated, just run the humidifier water for some # measurement period without the furnace/blower running # and record the volume as you did before. This number # will be higher and the difference would be what's going # into the house.
1) That was ONLY outflow 2) It was also a crude estimate by channeling the outflow into a bucket
# # Also, I would not be worried about it being hot water that # is going into the humidifier, that it's a waste of hot water. # The water coming out of the humidifier will be down to # about room temp due to evaporation. So, you're recovering # most of the heat. And don't know your cost of water, but # around here 5 or 10 gallons a day isn't enought to worry # about. # # How large is the house where you can't get enough # humidity? Outside temps?
So in effect, you don't have an answer
I think I have clearly stated my intent I have considered alternate choices I'm looking for a couple of simple flow meters For my own reasons, I would like to have a better idea of inflow and outflow over time mapped against outside temp and humidity levels, and inside temp and humidify levels I really don't want to work measuring buckets.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Yes, I know that, as was clear in my reply.

So, do it again and measure it accurately. You can't figure out how much water is in a bucket?


I gave you the answer. One more time. Measure the water flowing out of the humidifier into a bucket for 30 mins WITH THE FURNACE/BLOWER NOT RUNNING. Hence, virtually no water is being evaporated, it's all going into the bucket. You now know how much water if flowing INTO THE HUMIDIFIER.
Now, repeat the above with the furnace running for 30 mins. You will have less water, because now some of it is being evaporated. The difference between those two volumes of water is how much water went into the house in 30 mins of furnace operation.

You didn't state that you wanted to turn this into a full scale 24/7 humidifier monitoring project. From what you stated, it appeared you were concerned that the humidifier was not working correcty and not putting much mositure into the house:
"Need to measure water consumption and waste from Aprilaire 600 humidifier It uses heated water and is dumping at least 10+ gallons down the drain, and not doing much to humidify house. "
"The 30 min approach with a bucket is cheap, easy and will give you a good idea of what the humidifier is doing. You will know about how much water goes into the house and how much down the drain for every hour the humidifier operates. That would be more than sufficient for my needs and I would think the needs of almost anyone questioning if a new humidifier works correctly.
It sounds like what you now want is a full instrumentation of the system. A flow meter on the water line in, one on the line out, a monitor for inside and outside temp, inside and outside humidity, logging of the furnace run times, logging of the humidifier run times. Run it all to a dedicated PC to record the data. So, what exactly do you need from us in the way of an answer?
Sounds like a big waste of time and money to me, when a bucket and a watch will get to the essence of the situation. But then I've installed 2 Aprilaires and they both worked perfectly. I have one running in my house right now. It maintains the humidity perfectly. Any time humidifiers are discussed here, Aprilaire always gets very high marks as one of the best manufacturers out there. Sounds like either you have it installed incorrectly or are one of those people with unreasonable expectations.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
<snip useless crap>
My problem was clearly stated I am looking for a couple of flow meters
Not buckets, not anything else
Which part did you not understand ?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

This is your entire original post:
"Need to measure water consumption and waste from Aprilaire 600 humidifier It uses heated water and is dumping at least 10+ gallons down the drain, and not doing much to humidify house. "
Note that nothing in there says anything about wanting flow meters. It suggests the core of the problem is that you're concerned about the humidifier not putting enough water into the air and too much going down the drain.
THAT can be determined with a bucket and a watch. THAT approach costs nothing, takes very little effort to do. It's simple. It works. Most people would be looking for that.
Also noted is nothing about what the current climate is, the size of the house, how much the furnace is running, what the humidity level actually is.
Then you later refined it to this:
"I am looking for a way to measure accurately what goes into the humidifier, and what comes out, at different settings. So I can figure how how much water is just plain flushed by this system "
Which again is addressed by the solution using a bucket and timer that I offered. With the bucket and timer approach, you could determine if the max output of the humidifier meets the spec sheet rating.
"So now that we've discussed side issues Does ANYONE have any suggestions for a simple mechanical off-the-shelf flow meter to measure relatively low-level water going in and coming out of the humidifier ? "
Then you posted:
"For my own reasons, I would like to have a better idea of inflow and outflow over time mapped against outside temp and humidity levels, and inside temp and humidify levels I really don't want to work measuring buckets. "
Which now finally says what you really want are flow meters. Probablly compatible with some kind of grand system that is going to monitor the whole thing over time. We aren't mind readers.
I've tried to be helpful here. Others have too. If all you want are flow meters, how hard is that to find? Did you use Google? Look on Ebay? If all you want is a flow meter, why didn't you make a post just stating that, instead of one complaining about the performance of your humidifier? Even if someone here did give you a link to a flow meter, then you'd be bitching because they can't be interfaced to monitor over time or whatever. We're not mind readers. The group is pretty good though at coming up with what is wrong with a simple thing like a humidifier. But apparently that isn't what's important to you.
And again, I've owned two Aprilaire humidifiers and both did an excellent job of humidification. I've seen many reports, over the years here, all good here about Aprilaire. So, there must be something unique about your situation. And instead of exploring THAT,you insist on instrumenting up the house.
Good luck with that.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Pad is new as of (very late) October when furnace was inspected and started up for winter Damper is wide open Control has been slowly turned up to highest level Humidity level never went past 30% (42 was optimal last year)
The whole install is new as of summer of 2010.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 10:14:29 AM UTC-6, Attila Iskander wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I know this post is old but I would like to add to this. I agree 100% with Attila's conclusions. Aprilaire and any other plate type humidifiers are fo r the most part just running water down the drain. I have been in HVAC for 35 years and 1st learned of the humidifier scam when I installed a system f or a customer that was very concerned about her grand piano. Aprilaire stat es that if you want more humidity output you should run your fan on "on". T his is completely a waste of energy and water and I knew this going into th e project. Knowing that heated air was critical, I built a hot water coil t o run with the boiler. This allowed me to have 180° air enter the humi difier. I also had a ducted fan to allow my system to run 24 hours if neede d. Problem solve! So I thought. The humidity in the house was terrible. At the time the Aprilaire literature stated an output of somewhere in the area of 18 gallons a day so I was completely confused and believed I had a wiri ng issue that was shutting the system down when I left the job. I also came up with clocking the water and catching it in a bucket coming out of the d rain without any heat or airflow and comparing it with the system operating with heat and air. I could not believe that there was virtually no differe nce. I think the output was well under 1 gallon per day. I didn't waste tim e changing the pad but instead cut a hole in the front of the humidifier so I could watch the water. The humidifier was perfectly level but the pad wa s not getting wet because the water would only trickle in a few spots down the honeycomb before running down the drain. I messed with the top to try a nd get the water to flow evenly over the plate but no matter what I did the water would just trickle somewhere else. I waste many hours at my shop at night trying to understand why "My" install didn't work. The new ones have a material on top to help wick the water but it's basically the same. The p ads also have clay on them to help attract the water. I called Aprilaire ma ny times and they said they had never had any trouble.....until on one call to technical service I was lucky enough to get an old engineer who opened up and explained that in the "old days" they worked fine. Back then before water conservation, the humidifiers did not slow down the flow and the wate r splashed and swirled down the pad in a waterfall. The feel good/cheap sol ution to put a small restrictor orafice in the water line replaced the wate rfall with a trickle. Anyone who stood next to a waterfall and then a creek has felt the difference. With that knowledge, I solved my project by build ing a pump with a flush system to bring back the waterfall. That was 10 yea rs ago and I can still output 24 gallons a day! I imagine it's better than the old factory numbers because I'm recirculating the water which keeps wat er temperature up. I stopped installing those humidifiers but all the other companies are making a fortune installing the "water wasters". I did find a huimdifier from Canada that has a rotating drum. They solved the stagnant water issue by adding a flush system to the drain that pumps out the water every 12 or 24 hours. http://www.desertspringproducts.com/desertspring/ind ex.asp Their float system stinks but it works. As for the "old engineer". I tried calling him back after I got the system working to thank him but he was no longer there. I'm guessing he was retiring and heard my frustration. Thanks sir, where ever you are.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Sunday, March 12, 2017 at 10:30:43 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

h Attila's conclusions. Aprilaire and any other plate type humidifiers are for the most part just running water down the drain.
IDK what constituties a "plate type" humidifier, but Aprilaire like many others use a media that they call a panel. And sure they run water down the drain, to carry away the minerals that would otherwise build up, but they are also putting water into the air, humidifying the house, doing exactly what they are designed to do.
I have been in HVAC for 35 years and 1st learned of the humidifier scam whe n I installed a system for a customer that was very concerned about her gra nd piano. Aprilaire states that if you want more humidity output you should run your fan on "on". This is completely a waste of energy and water and I knew this going into the project. Knowing that heated air was critical, I built a hot water coil to run with the boiler.
Not clear at all what's going on here. April 600 and similar are designed to be used with hot air furnaces, not boilers.

Good idea, that's what they are designed to work with.

I've had humidifiers in several homes, never had a need for the humidifier to run more than when the furnace was on to do it's job.
Problem solve! So I thought. The humidity in the house was terrible. At the time the Aprilaire literature stated an output of somewhere in the area of 18 gallons a day so I was completely confused and believed I had a wiring issue that was shutting the system down when I left the job. I also came up with clocking the water and catching it in a bucket coming out of the drai n without any heat or airflow and comparing it with the system operating wi th heat and air. I could not believe that there was virtually no difference . I think the output was well under 1 gallon per day. I didn't waste time c hanging the pad but instead cut a hole in the front of the humidifier so I could watch the water. The humidifier was perfectly level but the pad was n ot getting wet because the water would only trickle in a few spots down the honeycomb before running down the drain. I messed with the top to try and get the water to flow evenly over the plate but no matter what I did the wa ter would just trickle somewhere else. I waste many hours at my shop at nig ht trying to understand why "My" install didn't work.
IDK what's wrong with yours, but I've had two Aprilaire's now on my furnaces and they work as designed. Also have seen many others post here saying they are very happy with theirs.

lly the same.
I thought you were talking about a new install for a customer?
The pads also have clay on them to help attract the water. I called Aprilai re many times and they said they had never had any trouble.....until on one call to technical service I was lucky enough to get an old engineer who op ened up and explained that in the "old days" they worked fine. Back then be fore water conservation, the humidifiers did not slow down the flow and the water splashed and swirled down the pad in a waterfall. The feel good/chea p solution to put a small restrictor orafice in the water line replaced the waterfall with a trickle. Anyone who stood next to a waterfall and then a creek has felt the difference.
But it does no good to send excess water down the drain, it just wastes water and energy. Mine has a pencil size flow of water going down the drain and it has more than enough capacity to keep humidity at 45%+ in a 3200 sq ft house. It only runs a small fraction of the furnace on time.
With that knowledge, I solved my project by building a pump with a flush sy stem to bring back the waterfall. That was 10 years ago and I can still out put 24 gallons a day!
I imagine it's better than the old factory numbers because I'm recirculati ng the water which keeps water temperature up. I stopped installing those h umidifiers but all the other companies are making a fortune installing the "water wasters". I did find a huimdifier from Canada that has a rotating dr um. They solved the stagnant water issue by adding a flush system to the dr ain that pumps out the water every 12 or 24 hours. http://www.desertspringp roducts.com/desertspring/index.asp Their float system stinks but it works. As for the "old engineer". I tried calling him back after I got the system working to thank him but he was no longer there. I'm guessing he was retiri ng and heard my frustration. Thanks sir, where ever you are.
IDK what your problems are, but mine works perfectly, installed per the directions.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

if the honeycomb does not "wet" then of course it won't work.
are you saying the water just beaded up and ran down the honeycomb without soaking into the honeycomb?
that would be the problem but why? i don't know.
you would think that might happen when the material is new, but eventually the water should soak into it.
m
mark
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Monday, March 13, 2017 at 4:17:10 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

It doesn't have to soak into the media and I don't think it does. The coating on it is some kind of rough material that doesn't appear designed to absorb water. The water just has to run over as much of the surface area as possible on it's way to the bottom. Like I said, I've had two Aprilaires and also experience with a Honeywell that uses the same media with a very similar design. Both worked fine to maintain humidity at up to 45% in a large house while never running anywhere near the full on time of the furnace.
Could some people have problems with maybe a defective distribution tray at the top, where the water winds up only going down part of the media? Sure. Or it could be installed where it's not level, so the water flows to one side. If you look at Amazon, they have 300+ reviews with the vast majority of people agreeing that it works and they like it. And of the few that don't like it, some are complaining about things that make no sense, like it doesn't work well with a tankless water heater (you can use it with cold water), or complaints about water going down the drain (it's a small expense to have it carry away the minerals, instead of have it gunk up)., etc.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.