Maintaining Your Humidifier - February 25th 2011
Q) We have a 4 year old home with a mid-efficiency furnace and air conditioning. The humidifier is a "drum" and we have been told it is better to remove the existing humidifier, eliminate the cleaning of all the scales and sludge and have an in-line humidifier installed for about $350. We have hard water, and while we have a water softener, the line to the humidifier is before the water softener. Do you recommend the change-out? Should we expect fewer problems and easier maintenance?
A) First of all your humidifier is sufficient, there's no need to replace it. You should clean it once a year, using white vinegar, allowing the vinegar to remove the minerals that have accumulated over time. After cleaning it, hook it up to the hot water line after the water softener. This way the water entering the humidifier will have been processed by the water softener, therefore will have less minerals in it.
Also your furnace fan should be running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The new model furnaces are designed to do this in an energy efficient manner. This will help improve the quality of the air inside your home since the furnace filter will remove particles in the air, and the humidifier will maintain the proper humidity level.
It's Just That Easy!