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Old 02-22-2009, 06:23 PM   #1
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


I have a 4 year old Skuttle 2000 model whole house humidifier. It was installed by the company that we use to check our heater/ac twice a year. They check the humidifier and replace the pad once a year.

The past several years, we've been able to keep about 38% humidity in the house, and that works well. This year however, unless it's raining out, we can't get the humidity above 25% which is causing us problems such as static electricity. I checked the gauge to make sure it was set properly for the temperature outside, but there has been no change no matter what it's set on.

I called the service company back, paid them $75 to say "found humidifier operating normally". They claim to have "checked humidistat, solenoid, water feed, air by-pass, and water panel. Ran humidifer. Found normal operation." They said we probably aren't running the heat often enough. Being that last winter was a lot warmer than this winter and we now installed a thermostat that automatically turns up the heat to 70 (from 65) 30 minutes before we get up in the morning and 30 minutes before we get home from work (as opposed to us doing it manually) the heater is running at least an hour more each day than last winter. We even asked about replacing it with a different brand of humidifier and they told us it wouldn't change a thing.

Something isn't working properly as far as I'm concerned. Do you have any advice on what else we can perhaps do to get the humidity up in this house? I really don't want to have to go back to refilling the table-top models.

Thanks!

Linda
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:30 PM   #2
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


You either have too big a house for the unit installed, very drafty house, or the heat is not running long enough to humidify the house. Look into a steam type unit that does not require the furnace to be actually running to produce humidity.
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Old 02-22-2009, 08:24 PM   #3
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


The house is less than 1500 square feet, and it's relatively new so luckily no drafts. I would understand the third option, not running long enough, if the unit hadn't done so well the past few years under the same amount of use.

I can try running longer, keeping it at 70 all day long for a week (though I won't like the heating bill on that). If this is actually the issue, I should see some improvement, correct?

Linda
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Old 02-22-2009, 08:42 PM   #4
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


A. Make sure the bypass damper isn't closed.
B. Your orfice may be restricted, and not letting enough water through(techs often don't check this, clean it, or replace it, when they should).
C. The water line tap valve, may be getting dirty and restricting water flow also.
D. The water line tap valve may have been inadvertently closed part way, causing too little water flow.

When they say they checked water flow. I doubt they used a graduated cyclinder to check its water flow.
It only puts 6 gallons an hour into the humidifier. hard to see if its flowing the correct amount of water by eyeball only.
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Old 02-22-2009, 08:58 PM   #5
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


When I'm in one certain room I can hear the humidifier turn on, then the water flow from the hot water heater through the pipes, then I hear the heater click on. After that I can also hear water dripping from the overflow (which flows into a pipe in my laundry room and is quite loud) so I hope that means it's getting enough water.

I read this today:

On wick-type humidifiers, mineral deposits can eventually block the grill. When this happens, the fan will blow moisture against a solidly caked panel, and the air coming from the furnace will take up only a little, if any moisture. In order to resolve this problem, you should clean mineral deposits from the grill annually, preferably before each heating season.

I'm guessing they didn't check something like this so is this something that could be eyed? How would I know if it was blocked?

Linda
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Old 02-23-2009, 05:04 AM   #6
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


the water panel is supposed to be replaced sometimes yearly if you have hard water,you could running the fan in the on position at the tstat if the humid is wired to operate this way. if its not it can be changed to operate whenever the fan is running. but youll need to make sure it gets turned off in summer or else it will run with the a/c
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Old 02-23-2009, 06:48 AM   #7
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Whole House Humidifier Problems


You don't have a wick type humidifier.

You have a water panel, but it is not wick type.

You also said they replaced the panel.

You hear water. But, you don't know if its as much water as it should be flowing.
You can't hear the difference between 4 gallons an hour, and 6 gallons an hour.

6 gallons an hour, is less the 1 pint a minute.
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