I was wondering what style of humidifier to purchase which will attach
to my furnace. I was worried about standing water with the drum type.
I have read the reviews of the WATT brand at home depot and there have
been complaints. Does anyone recommend a model for me. I have a two
story 2500 square foot house.
An Aprilaire Model 550 was installed in our new house 5 years ago. It has
worked well with no problems and little maintenance except for one
evaporator media replacement (yes, I know that should be done annually). A
trickle of water runs through it continuously while operating so it stays
clean. Control is via the furnace blower and a humidistat. The installer
connected the humidifier to a hot water pipe and I questioned that; but he
said that the humidifier runs less if uses hot water.
Seems like it was a good choice; but I don't know how large a house it will
handle. Ours is about 2000 sq.ft. The house is very tight and the humidifer
seems to run less than half the time in cold weather.
My recommendation will be independent humidifiers not attached to the
furnace. The sponge drum types are easy to clean but harbor bacterial
and fungal growth in the water tray. Ultrasonic humidifiers tend to
leave an apron of mineral dust around the humidifier. I don't have a
humidifier (see below).
I took out my furnace humidifier and blanked off the opening. The old
humidifier was always hung up on too much scale buildup on the sponge
drum. It is tedious if not impossible to recondition the sponge and
they are quite expensive to replace. The extra weight wore out the
drum motor drive or the motor itself. The scale also formed on the
water float valve shutoff, the water pan and the overflow drip lines.
But what finally made me get rid of the furnace humidifier was the
slimy build up of bacterial and fungal organisms. The warm furnace
air creates an ideal environment for their growth. Fresh spores and
nutrition (pollen, vegetation fragments) are always drawn in through
the fresh air intake. They of course fruit their own spores that get
circulated through the house. That results in respiratory problems.
Since removing the furnace humidifier the house humidity feels very
comfortable with moisture from cooking, the bath and from my household
plants. The plants thrive very well and I no longer have condensation
on the glass windows.
As usual Mr PingPong,
You are talking about what you know nothing of.
That piece of crap humidifier you were talking about was the worst
thing ever made. That technology went out 20 yrs ago.
Aprilaire is the way to go. General makes a nice one too but it doesnt
have the nice easy open service that Aprilaire does.
The pad gets replaced yearly.......no ifs ands or buts. You DONT clean
them with CLR or any other silly crap. They were made to be replaced
once a year so do it. Its very cheap.
Other than that, you're still and idiot.
Not having a humidifier worked well enough for me. Had been so for
respiratory distress or 'winter flus', no condensation, very healthy
house plants. Quite a few of my kin and friends have shut off their
humidifiers too. We have pretty dry air in Alberta. My
recommendation is to skip the whole house humidifier. By the way
those old drum humidifiers are still sold at HD and other hardware
stores. I agree they are crap.
I suspect you are going to get two kinds of comments. Many people how
have humidifiers have bad experiences. Each system has its bad points. The
second kind of comments will be from AprilAir owners, like me, who will
likely give you the same recommendation I will, and that is to buy AprilAir.
I have had mine for several years and the only issue I have had was a
clogged supply line and that had nothing to do with the system.
I installed it myself and while it did cost more than most of the
others, I have never questioned the wisdom of spending a little more. The
design they use seems to eliminate most of not all the usual problems. The
additional moisture in the air is also much appreciated.
I've had the Aprilaire 760 here for about 8-10 years. It's been
trouble free. Only things I've replaced have been the media element
and the small screen filter on the solenoid valve. It has the outside
temp sensor, which backs off the humdidity as the temp drops. And it
works. After the initial setting, I have not had to adjust it. It
uses a small drain that takes away the excess water that doesn't
evaporate, which eliminates the pooling of stagnant water.
The 760 is a direct fan powered model. The bypass models shunt blower
capacity, which I guess, if you have plenty of capacity, isn't an
issue. All the bypass models I've seen have a flap that has to be
manually closed when you go to AC season to eliminate the bypass. I
didn't want to have to remember to do that.
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