Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > HVAC

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-20-2011, 06:34 PM   #1
Wire Chewer
 
Red Squirrel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,200
Share |
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I'm thinking of adding a humidifier to my furnace, as my house is very dry. Just wondering, is there any pros/cons to having one? It would be turned off in summer obviously.

Red Squirrel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 06:48 PM   #2
AKA HVACTECHFW
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: NE Indiana
Posts: 2,317
Blog Entries: 1
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


pro.... you house is not so dry!
con it uses some water.

__________________
IT IS WHAT IT IS
hvactech126 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 06:50 PM   #3
Hvac Pro
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Posts: 9,008
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Pro's: Your cat and it's hair won't be stuck to you as much
Cons : None

Buy a GOOD quality one like a GeneralAire 1042. The cheapos last a yr or 2 and the heat warps them and they have cheap solenoid valves etc. You get what you pay for. I have this one and have not touched it for 6 yrs other than to look at the water cartridge which is still clean and new looking.
http://www.generalaire.com/catalog/c..._LH_Humidifier
__________________
"Cut it twice and it is still too short".

Last edited by yuri; 01-20-2011 at 07:01 PM.
yuri is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 07:06 PM   #4
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 2,362
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Mine's a Aprilaire. Change the water panel once a year and it's been trouble free for 15 years. Being comfortable with the thermostat set a couple degrees cooler more then pays for the water usage.
Marty S. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 07:16 PM   #5
Hvac Pro
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Posts: 9,008
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I found that with some of the cheaper Generals and others the cheap plastic water distribution tube clogs easy with water mineral, gets warped and one of them has a restrictor orifice in the tube below the solenoid valve which plugs easily. The 1042 has a large stainless supply tube and is built like a tank. Doubt if anyone sells them retail. Would have to get a contractor to install it or mail order it. Not impressed by the consumer grade units at the big box stores.
__________________
"Cut it twice and it is still too short".

Last edited by yuri; 01-20-2011 at 07:24 PM.
yuri is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 07:28 PM   #6
Wire Chewer
 
Red Squirrel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,200
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I had one when I bought the house, but it was totally finished. The plates were all dissolved and such, pretty sure it had never been maintained. I'm probably going to see what home depot and Canadian tire have. Any brands I should avoid?
Red Squirrel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2011, 07:37 PM   #7
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 23
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Aprilaire is the brand I use to sell back a long time ago, still a great unit.
klrz28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2011, 08:39 AM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 44
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Take a look at Desert-Spring, Can-Tire sometimes drops the price by $100.

Nice unit, easy to fit,obtainable with self flushing unit (Extra ) Yearly maintenance only, I got $70 rebate from my water company.
Local office (Mississauga) OK to deal with.
jankencanada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2011, 10:33 AM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 449
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I have an older drum style, bypass type that has bronze wheels that turn on a shaft. Only way to adjust humidity level is a damper in bypass duct. Experts on this site will explain how they are somewhat a health hazard and can breed Legionaire's disease. To avoid that, I dump the water every week into a large bucket and clean unit with vinegar every season, along with a degree of scraping inside walls.

The reason I keep it limping along is that I don't have a basement floor drain. The condensate from furnace goes to a pump unit and pumps that water into a waste pipe that's flushed often by washer discharge.

I looked at replacing unit and here's what I found.

Drum units have a float that prevents water overflow and always top themselves up. Hot water feed (when lots of humidity is desired) won't work because it cools in reservoir. This type has to be drained for health reasons, easy to do, but devotion is required.

Panel media type units have a washboard type media that water trickles down and places demand on basement drain unless you also throttle/limit water feed via a useful ball valve. Hot water can be used for more humidity. These come in economical bypass style that requires a ducting feed from return plenum. That forced air pushes moisture through media and into furnace. Upgrade next to one with a built in fan and no duct feed.
These normally use a lot of water. They come with no humidistat (use damper to adjust), a manual humidistat you set according to outdoor temperature or an automatic humidistat that has a bulb outdoors to collect temp and adjust indoor humidity automagically.

Steam units are the most expensive and don't require a basement floor drain, duct feed or fan. Not too familiar if they clog a lot but I would think so where water supply has a lot of minerals. Probably works best with fully automatic humidistat.

Some more ideas for you and unit posters seem to like:

http://www.appliancefactoryparts.com...al/1042lh.html

http://www.appliancefactoryparts.com...omparison.html

http://media.xspond.com/media/5/36/8/1042_web_12210.pdf

For sure, use a good valve for water supply so seasonal shutoff is a breeze. Don't use cheap piercing valve often included in kits.
diyorpay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2011, 08:17 PM   #10
Wire Chewer
 
Red Squirrel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3,200
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I'm thinking of going with the desert spring unit given I will most likely be able to find it in town at CT and it seems to have good reviews.

Anything else I am expected to buy when installing one of these? Do I need to buy any water pipe, pvc pipe for drainage, ducting etc? Or does that stuff normally come with it? Also is the auto flush system worth having, or can I just shut the valve near end of season to let the remainder evaporate and be good to go? I could also clean it with vinegar at that point.
Red Squirrel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2011, 08:38 PM   #11
Hvac Pro
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Winnipeg, Canada
Posts: 9,008
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


It comes with everything. If you need extra water line you can buy it at CT or the theDepot. I have seen the autoflusher and it is expensive and can have issues with mineral scale jamming its drain valve. I would just drain and clean it myself at the end of the season and save your $$. If your water is dirty you can always add it later.
__________________
"Cut it twice and it is still too short".
yuri is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2011, 07:05 PM   #12
Newbie
 
westgateblvd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Duluth, Minnesota
Posts: 13
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Was is a good name brand, and how hard is it for the Home Owner to install himself??
westgateblvd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2011, 07:19 PM   #13
Member
 
raylo32's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Maryland (DC 'burbs)
Posts: 1,044
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Never get a drum style unless you intend to clean several times a season. Otherwise you will have quite the biology experiment in there. You might start with good intentions to keep up with it but most people don't.

I like the panel flow through type (Aprilaire, Honeywell, Sears... may all be made by the same folks these days). With these you have the choice of bypass models that use some of your air handler air to move the humidity... and thereby reduces the flow of air in your ducts by that amount.

Or, there are fan powered units that pull the air out of the supply plenum, blow it across the water panel, then back into the supply plenum. These use 110v AC to run the fan but don't detract from your overall blower output to your house... In a way they are easier to install than the bypass units because you need only do one major cut, that being to mount the unit in the supply plenum. No need to cut into the return duct except to mount the humidistat.

The most challenging thing about these for the average DIYer is the connection to the furnace to signal the thing to turn on. If not comfortable with opening the furnace and fooling with the circuit board that you probably should have the pros do it. Also need to cut sheet metal, and tap into water pipes and condensate drain. It all depends on your experience and mech abilities.

Oh, one bad thing about the flow through panel types... if you plumb the drain into your A/C condensate drain all that water (~ 5 gallons per hour) freezes and makes quite a skating rink wherever it dumps out to. So I took mine and plumbed it directly into one of my waste pipes by tapping a fitting into a cleanout plug. If you do this be sure to put a trap loop in the tubing.

Last edited by raylo32; 08-20-2011 at 07:33 PM.
raylo32 is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to raylo32 For This Useful Post:
westgateblvd (08-20-2011)
Old 08-21-2011, 02:56 PM   #14
Newbie
 
westgateblvd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Duluth, Minnesota
Posts: 13
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


I guess it does help that a member of the family has his own plumbing, and heating business.. i just hate to bother him.. He is always busy..
westgateblvd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2011, 04:26 PM   #15
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: PENNSYLVANIA
Posts: 2,219
Default

pros/cons of humidifier?


Buy a portable one like a piece of furniture that will do the whole house.

I have seen humidifiers ruin good HVAC systems, seem them clogged solid with mineral and dirt, seen them not operate at all, nothing but trouble.
I have been in the HVAC business over 40 years and seen more humidifiers doing nothing but costing money.

If you do buy one and install it make sure you service it according to the instructions and some.

COLDIRON is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Armstrong Furnace and Aprilaire humidifier wont shut off! HELP! scott0949 HVAC 8 12-09-2010 06:30 PM
Goodman GMP100-3 Humidifier Issue olds2000 HVAC 1 11-20-2010 10:18 PM
Aprilaire Humidifier, no water? z33tec HVAC 5 11-18-2009 07:42 PM
Wiring a Humidifier tallcoopscoach Electrical 5 12-02-2008 01:00 PM
Humidifier & Thermostat BigD HVAC 1 12-19-2007 08:04 PM




Top of Page | View New Posts

Copyright © 2003-2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.