- 1 What is a Whole House Humidifier?
- 2 Differences Between a Room Humidifier and a Whole House Humidifier
- 3 Why You Should Buy a Whole House Humidifier (Benefits & Drawbacks)
- 4 Best Whole House Humidifiers Comparison Chart
- 5 Best Whole House Humidifier Reviews – (Updated List)
- 5.1 1. Aprilaire 700 Whole House Fan Powered Humidifier
- 5.2 2. AIRCARE MA1201 Whole-House Evaporative Humidifier
- 5.3 3. Aprilaire 865 Whole House Steam Humidifier
- 5.4 4. Honeywell HE360A1075 HE360A Whole House Humidifier
- 5.5 5. GeneralAire 1000A Humidifier
- 5.6 6. LEVOIT LV600HH Humidifier for Large Room
- 5.7 7. Emerson HSP2000 Whole House Steam Humidifier
- 5.8 8. AIRCARE EP9 800 Whole-House Pedestal Evaporative Humidifier
- 6 Whole House Humidifier Buying Guide
- 7 How Does a Whole House Humidifier Work?
- 8 Installing a Whole House Humidifier in 5 Steps
- 9 How to Control Your Whole House Humidifier
- 10 Mold – Your House’s Greatest Enemy and Its Relationship with the Humidifier
- 11 Whole House Humidifier Maintenance
- 12 Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
- 13 Wrap Up
Did you know that the dry air that accumulates in your household is a threat to many well-being factors: from health to furniture durability? Naturally, where humidity levels are lower, more nasal diseases will emerge, and the wood will crack. Therefore, the money spent on the best whole house humidifier will be a long-term investment to improve your living standard.
What you need to know, however, is how to make this investment pay off evidently by purchasing the right humidifier for your needs. We offer you a list of whole house humidifier reviews to help you learn the differences and features of each type of product. Our extensive buying guide will inform you of the ABC’s of house humidifiers. Stay with us, and we can guarantee you that, by the end, you will have a clear choice and a promising future for your home!
What is a Whole House Humidifier?
A humidifier is the opposite of a dehumidifier, but that still does not say much, does it? In this extensive buying guide, you will find anything you need to know to be familiar with this highly useful product.
Firstly, we must say what a humidifier is before defining the “whole house” part. A humidifier is a device that increases the levels of humidity in a room or a building. Humidity is another factor, besides temperature, that defines whether a place will be warm or cold. Especially in the winter, when the weather is cold, the air in your house might be so dry that it causes many health problems.
For you to feel comfortable, the air needs to be moist to a certain degree. A humidifier will do this job for you, and it will provide the overall well-being of the members of your family. Moreover, it will maintain the excellent condition of your furniture. You will learn more about the benefits of using a humidifier in the next section.
Differences Between a Room Humidifier and a Whole House Humidifier
For now, it is important to note the difference between a room humidifier and a whole-house humidifier, which is also the subject of this article. A room humidifier is less powerful and smaller because of its purpose. It is designed to humidify the air in a single room. Often, people find it essential to have a high-quality bedroom humidifier so that their sinuses and throat can be relieved during nighttime.
A whole-house humidifier is not constructed to be moved from one room to another and to be plugged in for several hours. It is installed directly in your heating system’s ductwork, near your furnace. The heated air is thus humidified and distributed throughout the whole house by using a single unit.
Why You Should Buy a Whole House Humidifier (Benefits & Drawbacks)
Just think about it – no more sore throat, no more bleeding nose, no more clogged sinuses. These are all health issues that come with dry air, and that can be obliterated with the installation of a humidifier. It sounds like a great deal! There is even more magic the humidifier can offer.
In this part of the guide, we will introduce you to the many benefits of using a humidifier for the whole house. You will love the idea of having this product even more! Let’s see whether humidifiers are helpful or harmful;
First of all, humidifiers will help alleviate health and body issues people experience, such as:
Dry skin and hair
Naturally, during the winter, the cold air absorbs all the hydration from your skin and hair. This makes your skin itchy while your hair becomes more fragile. Of course, there are many cosmetic products you can use, but why not try natural air moisture as an initial step towards improvement?
Your eyes are one of the most important organs you have; they work the whole day and get tired quickly because of many factors, one of them being dry air. A humidifier will help with dry eye syndrome treatment and will take some weight off of them.
The humidifier helps your nose forget about any blood eruptions that happen when the weather is dry.
The dry air prevents the lubrication of your throat, which causes a very irritable cough. Moisture will make your cough more productive by helping you get rid of the sticky phlegm.
People who are exposed to too low or too high levels of humidity can develop allergies more than people who live in an ambiance of stable humidity. Moreover, proper amounts of humidity can improve the condition of people with asthma. Also, see our list of top-notch humidifiers for allergies.
Fall asleep quickly and wake up ready for the day without any trace of a headache caused by dry sinuses.
You don’t need to run for your lip balm every half an hour when you are at home; the humidifier will make sure that your lips remain smooth.
The seriousness of these problems should not be undermined at any cost because they could aggravate with time. If anything, nobody wants to feel uncomfortable at home. These “minor” issues could interfere with your working ability and efficiency. A humidifier will improve the state of your well-being.
- Your pet will also benefit significantly from a whole-house humidifier. Dry air causes irritation of the skin, and this will make your pet scratch his/her body a lot more often. You can also prefer a top-quality air purifier for pets.
- A whole-house humidifier will keep your furniture in a good state by reducing wood cracks and fabric fading.
- It will reduce your electricity bills. You have most certainly heard that humidity makes the summer weather even hotter. This means that if the humidity in your house is enough over the winter, your heating system will need to work less. The whole house humidifier will maintain proper amounts of humidity and will keep your home warm and cozy.
- In contrast to room humidifiers, whole-house humidifiers do not function exclusively with expensive distilled water. The whole house humidifier is plumbed into the household water system, and it is counted towards the overall water bill.
After all these advantages, it seems unlikely that a whole-house humidifier can have any negative impact on your life. However, just like anything in this world, there are certain things, call them warnings or concerns, that you need to take into consideration before quickly purchasing the humidifier. Here are some of those things:
- Whole-house humidifiers might reduce your electricity bill, but they could also increase your water bill as some of them need significant amounts of water to function efficiently.
- The wrong installation could cause water leakage so make sure you either know really well how to tighten everything or call a professional for help.
- The humidifier could be used to mask more significant problems. Great lack of humidity might mean that you have a problem with air leakage which cannot be fixed by a whole-house humidifier. It is better to have a professional check your house before you purchase a product.
- If the humidifier is not top-notch, it might cause mold to grow in your house. If it is automatically adjusted to how much moisture your home needs, it might release excessive amounts of humidity.
- Do not confuse too much humidity for too little humidity. If you live in a place where humidity is usually at higher levels, then you might actually need a highest-quality dehumidifier to suit your needs.
Best Whole House Humidifiers Comparison Chart
Aprilaire 700 Automatic Humidifier
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AIRCARE MA1201 Whole-House Evaporative Humidifier
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Aprilaire 865 Whole House Steam Humidifier
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Honeywell HE360A1075 HE360A Whole House Humidifier
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GeneralAire 1000A Humidifier
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LEVOIT LV600HH Humidifier for Large Room
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Best Whole House Humidifier Reviews – (Updated List)
This is where we open the gates of diversity to present you with our top 7 house humidifier picks. Each one of them comes with its own set of features in addition to the standard characteristics of your average house humidifier. Their advantages are what makes us consider them as some of the best on the market. For this reason, we cannot place them in any particular order. We will leave the decision to you.
1. Aprilaire 700 Whole House Fan Powered Humidifier
Our first product on the list is Aprilaire whole-house humidifier to satisfy your needs for health and protection at home. It covers less space (up to 4,200 square feet), but it can also fit in smaller spaces. This makes it a good pick if you are wondering how to install it. With a capacity of 18 gallons per day, this humidifier pulls heated air directly from the furnace through a built-in fan. This will provide quick and efficient humidification of the air and a rise in temperature levels.
A significant advantage of this humidifier is that it is automatic. It comes with dual sensors capable of registering both outdoor temperature and indoor relative humidity. This feature will allow it to accommodate its functions to the requirements of the atmosphere and the weather. You will thus be free from any responsibility.
However, you need to consider the installation process. You might require professional help as the wiring instructions are not very clear. Bear in mind that the product would waste quite a bit of water if it is run under full pressure. Therefore, purchasing a flow-control valve would be appropriate. We must warn you that the filter retainer is also flaky. Apart from this element, the construction is solid, and it will serve you well over several seasons.
- Takes up little space
- Dual sensors for outdoor temperatures and indoor humidity
- Built-in fan
- 5-year warranty
- Professional installation
- Poor wiring instructions
- Will waste a lot of water if ran under full pressure.
- Flaky filter retainer
2. AIRCARE MA1201 Whole-House Evaporative Humidifier
The Aircare MA1201 Evaporative Humidifier can efficiently cover the space of up 3600 square feet. It comes with a digital humidistat that will make sure your house is humidified evenly and continuously until the desired humidity level is reached. The device will then automatically shut off to save you more energy and water. It can run at 4 speeds, which is just enough for your household.
However, the fan will make more noise when it is set to run at levels 3 and 4. The humidifier is easy to clean and moved around. There are four casters you can install at the bottom to move it instead of carrying it. The main disadvantage of this humidifier comes with the tank. The tank is too small for the size of the product. This means that you need to refill it throughout the day.
Moreover, the refilling process can be quite bizarre and challenging without a funnel. However, there is an indicator that will notify you when you need to refill the tank or change the filter. Overall, this is an efficient humidifier for the price, and it will help alleviate your allergies and sore throats.
- Digital humidistat
- Automatic shut-off
- 4 speeds
- Good price
- The tank is small – needs to be refilled frequently
- Refilling process requires a funnel
3. Aprilaire 865 Whole House Steam Humidifier
Our next product on the list already grabs the attention with the brand name. Aprilaire has been known for inventing the home evaporative humidifier in 1954. It stands at the front of this industry, and this product proves its function at home. It comes with a mounted fan to be able to push the humidified air in homes without an HVAC duct system. The unit is versatile as it can cover up to 6,200 square feet of space. You can also adjust the amount of moisture that will be absorbed in the air.
The product is designed according to the standard levels of humidity, which are between 35%-45%. This will reduce the possibility of skin and respiratory infections that developed in a dry ambiance. Bear in mind that this humidifier draws a lot of power, which makes the price seem even more substantial. However, the investment will pay off. You don’t need to clean or scrub it. Instead, all you need to do is replace the canister at the end of the humidifier season. The unit is easy to install and operate manually. The humidifier makes a loud sound when working, and this sound is not insulated. Apart from that, this product will efficiently keep you warm and protect you from mold and bacteria.
- Renowned brand
- Maintains optimal levels of humidity
- No need to clean or scrub the canister
- Easy to install and operate
- Draws a lot of power
- Produces noise when working
4. Honeywell HE360A1075 HE360A Whole House Humidifier
The next product impressed us with its low requirements for maintenance. The flow-through design will do almost the whole work for you. You will only need to clean it once a year and change the pad in just about 5 minutes. The installation requires a low to moderate amount of ability. It will not take it a lot of time. You have two options for mounting: on a warm air supply or on a return air duct of a furnace. However, you might struggle with is the wiring.
The manufacturer’s instructions are not clear enough. You will need to purchase an installation kit separately. This humidifier can function at variable speed in houses of up to 4,200 square feet. Unfortunately, this product is not the most powerful. It might be challenging to keep the humidity in the standard range between 35%-55% for too long. Nevertheless, it will still improve the state of the air in your household.
Think of the place where you want to mount it. You will need a drain or condensation pump to get rid of excessive water. As long as the temperature does not go under the freezing level, you can install it in the attic or the basement. Keep in mind that the humidistat is very sensitive to the touch. It will produce too big jumps in humidity with just a slight movement. A great advantage is the distribution tray which will save you money on electricity bills.
- Low maintenance
- Variable speed
- Easy mounting
- The distribution tray will reduce electricity bills.
- Poor wiring instructions
- Not very powerful
- Sensitive humidistat
5. GeneralAire 1000A Humidifier
The last product on our list does not come as the least qualified to serve your needs. The GeneralAire 1000A Humidifier stands out because it comes with a 10-year warranty. However, keep in mind that the warranty can be used only on the basis that you call a contractor to install the unit. Overall, the product requires a medium level of skills. Nevertheless, what is most confusing is the wiring.
Moreover, the collar on the outlet of the solenoid does not come tightened, which causes water to leak through. This is why professional help might be convenient. The fan functions by pulling warm air through the unit and the vapor pad. Then, it distributes moisture evenly in houses of up to 3,000 square feet. The digital humidistat will maintain the level of humidity you need at all times.
A great advantage is a sensor that registers outdoor temperatures. This is especially important in places where the weather often changes. The unit is relatively large, so make sure you have enough space to fit it in. Bear in mind that it also uses quite solid amounts of water to produce humidity. This will pay off though as it will efficiently improve the quality of the air in your household.
- Digital thermostat
- Outdoor sensor
- 10-year warranty if installed by a contractor
- Mounting requires professional assistance.
- Uses big amounts of water.
- The fan produces moderate amounts of noise.
6. LEVOIT LV600HH Humidifier for Large Room
This product is ideal for large rooms and offices. It has coverage of 753sq. feet. The LV600HH is a money-saving option for households and offices on a budget. There are no filters to buy and replace on a regular basis.
It uses water, and when it runs out of the water, it conveniently shuts off protecting your home and itself. The timer function is a huge advantage because you get to program your unit when it should turn on and off.
We liked this product because it covers a lot of space, but more importantly because it was incredibly easy to clean and refill with water. Cleaning is also simple as you can get your whole hand inside the water tank when you want to sanitize it.
What is impressive and a great advantage for this humidifier is that it can be used as an aroma diffuser and works with the beneficial essential oils.
- This air purifier has a one-year warranty and the possibility to extend it with one more.
- It can work without any lights on. The LED screen can be completely turned off.
- It has two settings for warm and cold mist, great for different seasons.
- You can‘t turn off the beeping sound it makes when changing the settings.
- The power consumption can get pretty high. Most humidifiers work at 30W but this one is at 280W.
7. Emerson HSP2000 Whole House Steam Humidifier
The next product on our list can be easily distinguished because it is a steam humidifier and not an evaporative one like the previous two. The advantage of a steam-powered humidifier is that it does not need to wait for the furnace to run and heat the air. It comes with a set of additional components, one of which is a humidistat. The purpose of the humidistat is to examine the air. If it finds the need for humidity, it will switch the steam humidifier on. This product, in particular, works most efficiently with a minimum of 1400 square feet of space. If the house is smaller, the humidity might appear too heavy for the occupiers.
The humidifier comes with a flushing timer that will help the system operate accordingly. Keep in mind that, although the installation is easy, the wiring instructions are not as clear. Another disadvantage of this product is that you might find it hard to remove and clean. A good thing is that you won’t have any noise complaints in the house. The steam humidifier makes a sound only at a close distance when it is being switched on. We would like to advise you to check the quality of your water to prevent corrosion of the heating element.
- Steam humidifier
- Humidistat – detects when the humidifier needs to be turned on
- Does not disturb the quietness of the house
- Flushing timer
- Unclear wiring instructions
- Difficult to remove for a clean
8. AIRCARE EP9 800 Whole-House Pedestal Evaporative Humidifier
This Aircare digital humidifier stands out for the performance it does without your help. You only need to set it to your desired humidity level, and the digital humidistat will do its best in maintaining it. On the readout display, you can find the current humidity level, your desired humidity level, and the fan speed. This humidifier can run at 9 speeds for the varying atmosphere in different city locations. The higher the rate, the more noise the humidifier produces.
However, this noise will be barely heard. This product is quite bigger than previous humidifiers. You will need to consider whether it will suit you. However, its design makes it work like a table, and it helps it blend with the furniture. Low maintenance is required, and you can change the filter in no time.
Bear in mind that there is no indicator on the outside to show if the tank is full or almost empty. You will need to look inside it through the fill door. It is essential also to know that it uses a lot of water and needs to be refilled every 24 hours. The humidifier will also shut off automatically when the desired humidity level is reached. This saves you yet another thing to think about.
- Digital humidistat
- Readout display
- 9 speeds
- Can be used as a furniture
- Automatically switches off
- Quite big
- No water amount indicator on the outside
- Uses a lot of water
Whole House Humidifier Buying Guide
When we purchase a product, we want it to come with everything it needs to function properly and with nothing unnecessary. The whole house humidifier is a tempting and highly useful unit thanks to the useful features it is designed with. These are the things you need to be looking for when you decide which humidifier will be your right pick.
Features to Consider for Whole House Humidifiers
In this section, we will present to you an average whole house humidifier’s main features and characteristics which make it such an attractive addition to your house.
The supply indicator is a necessary element of whole house humidifiers in which the water needs to be regularly refilled. The indicator will notify you when there is not enough water in the tank or when the limit has been reached.
The humidistat will examine the air in your house, and it will detect whether there is enough humidity. It is a crucial part of the humidifier as it will not allow the system to be switched on if it is not necessary for it to do so. If the humidity drops below the level you have set it to be the humidistat will notify the solenoid and the humidifying process will begin.
The outdoor sensor has the responsibility of registering the temperature outside your house. Depending on the changing weather, sometimes the humidifier might not be needed. The sensor will tell if the weather is cold and, hence, the air is too dry.
With some humidifiers, you can choose whether you want it to function automatically or manually. The automatic operation is possible once you set the humidifier to your desired levels of humidity.
Once the desired level of humidity throughout your house has been reached, the humidifier will switch off by itself saving you money for electricity.
Before the humidifier stops working new water will continuously refill the evaporator pad to produce fresh moistened air. The protection valve will stop the water from overflowing the evaporation pad.
This is not a feature in every whole house humidifier. In spite of this, it should not be undermined as the use of corrosion-resistant materials will prolong the lifespan of your unit.
Different sizes, different advantages – Some whole-house humidifiers are compact enough to be easily installed even in the smallest of spaces. On the other hand, the benefit of a big humidifier is that it can be used as a table and it will blend with the surrounding furniture.
Types of Whole House Humidifiers
In the family of high-class home air products, there are different types of whole-house humidifiers. They can be distinguished if you know the differences in the way they function and in their features. Here are the entire house humidifier varieties you can come across on the market these days:
They are called bypass because they use the air that passes through the heat ducts. They then feed it to the water panels where the air absorbs moisture. The air returns to your house through the tube under the form of steam.
Bypass humidifiers use a furnace to heat and moisten the air. They cannot function if no air is circulating in the furnace. They are installed at the return or the supply end of your ductwork. This type of humidifier doesn’t make as much noise because it is not equipped with a blower motor. Bear in mind that they require more space for the installation of the bypass duct.
The essential difference between bypass humidifiers and fan-powered humidifiers is that the latter works with its own blower motor. Thus, they do not need the assistance of a running furnace to humidify your house. Whenever there is a need for humidity, this product will moisten the air.
Fan-powered humidifiers do not require a bypass duct. Hence, they can be installed in smaller spaces. They need to be connected to the air system at your home. This type is perfect for you if your HVAC system is installed in a tight closet.
This type of humidifier contrasts the other two the most because it does not pass air through water panels to add moisture to it. Instead of sucking dry air and then returning it humidified, this whole house humidifier produces steam that is dispersed throughout your house and that mixes with the air that is in the rooms.
Just like fan-powered humidifiers, steam ones don’t need the furnace to be running. Whenever the humidistat detects a lack of humidity in your house, the humidifier will boil water that will turn into steam, and that will be distributed through the ductwork.
The advantage of a steam humidifier is that it works quickly and the moisture that you breathe is very pure because it is steam directly produced by the water.
Now that you are equipped with knowledge in different types of humidifiers, you can decide which one would suit your space, preferences, and needs the most.
How Does a Whole House Humidifier Work?
Maybe you are not one of those people who want to know everything there is to know in this world. However, when it comes to products that improve your quality of living, it is essential to be informed of the ins and outs of the way it functions.
We shall now begin with the ins, in particular, of the whole house humidifier. We will explain to you how this unit works, and you will learn that not everything happens by magic.
Here is the process;
- A whole-house humidifier is installed in your ductwork, near your furnace. This can be either at the supply or the return end.
- There is an evaporator pad inside the framework of the humidifier.
- A waterline is directly connected to the humidifier. The waterline can be either hot or cold, and it should have a shut-off valve.
- The valve feeds into an electrically controlled valve that is connected to the humidistat called a solenoid. This is because the humidistat detects whether the humidity levels have dropped to the set-point and then notifies the solenoid.
- NB: note that the humidistat could be installed nearby the humidifier on the ductwork, it could also be combined with the thermostat, or it could be controlled separately from the thermostat.
- When the solenoid opens, it allows water to flow through a tube onto the tray that holds the evaporator pad. The tray is designed to disperse the water evenly through separate holes.
- The water goes down the pad and is held there thanks to the coating of the evaporator.
- Any excessive amounts of water go to the lowest level of the evaporator and are then led through a drain pipe.
- For humidity to be produced, the air needs to enter into contact with the water. This happens through the ductwork.
- The water evaporates into the air, which increases the moisture in the air that exits the humidifier.
- The furnace blows the humidified air throughout the house through the ductwork.
- The last step of the process is the most important one – you enjoy a good, undisturbed sleep without worrying about your allergies or breathing problems.
Installing a Whole House Humidifier in 5 Steps
If you don’t feel confident when it comes to installing a whole-house humidifier, it is always a reasonable choice to call a contractor to do it professionally for you. Some products even offer a long-lasting warranty only in the case when a contractor has installed the humidifier.
However, we trust that you know what is right for you. If you think that you are capable of mounting the unit all by yourself, we are here to help you along the way. Always follow the manufacturer instructions, but we will also offer you the steps of a standard whole house humidifier installation.
- Mark a hole where the humidifier needs to be mounted. Drill a hole at one end of the outline and carefully cut the rest with aviation snips. Position the mounting plate, drill screw holes, and attach the mounting plate with sheet metal screws.
- Read the instructions to find out where precisely the humidistat needs to be. Outline the location and proceed to cut it out.
- The next thing you need to do is mount and connect the humidistat plate. Based on what you learned from the instructions, attach the plate to the furnace. If the unit requires a step-down transformer and you haven’t yet run the wiring, shut the power off and install the transformer. Then, you can install the humidistat.
- Using the correct-size wire nuts, connect the leads from the humidistat to the solenoid valve on the humidifier. Insert the wire ends into the nuts (do not twist the ends of the wires) and turn the nuts until they’re tight.
- If local codes allow tapping water lines directly, install a saddle valve on a water line—preferably a hot water line—and run a line to the humidifier, fastening it with the compression fitting. If saddle valves are not allowed, turn the water off, cut the waterline, and install a T-fitting.
How to Control Your Whole House Humidifier
Even an automatic whole-house humidifier cannot do everything by itself. For example, when you first purchase it, you will need to set it properly for it to start working. Moreover, the humidifier wouldn’t know when to switch off completely. In this part of our buying guide, we will make sure that you know when to turn your unit on and off.
Based on the observations of the air that both your humidistat and your outdoor sensor make, you will know whether your whole house humidifier needs to work or not. In the winter, when it is cold outside, and the air is dry, it will be challenging to maintain the right levels of humidity in your house. The appropriate range of humidity is somewhere between 30-50%. You also need to be careful that the air is not too moist as well as this could cause mold growth.
- If you have a manual humidistat, you will have to adjust it yourself based on indoor humidity and outdoor temperature for the system to start working.
- If you have an automatic humidistat, it will examine the outdoor conditions thanks to the sensor it is equipped with. Then, your humidifier will start functioning to compensate for the dry air outside.
- In the case that you have a thermostat combined with a humidistat, this option will also give you peace of mind by automatically adjusting to the outdoor conditions.
The manual option is not any less efficient. However, purchasing a humidifier that would turn on and function automatically saves you space in your memory for other things instead of occupying it with the responsibility of remembering when to switch the humidifier on.
Turning your whole house humidifier off after the heating season is particularly important. From the spring months onwards, humidity levels will gradually begin to increase. As already mentioned, too high levels of humidity could cause the development of mold.
If you forget to turn your humidifier off and close the damper in the spring, your air conditioner will have to work harder and longer to remove the excess moisture. As a result, your air conditioner will not be able to cool and dehumidify your home, which will increase the cost to operate your cooling system.
Here are the steps of switching your humidifier off:
- Turn the switch of the humidistat to the lowest point possible or to the “off” position if there is one.
- If you have a bypass humidifier, close the bypass duct damper so that no air can flow through it.
- Securely close the water valve for it to stop supplying the panels/evaporation pad with water.
- Open the humidifier, take the panels out and clean them. Let them dry and let the humidifier, in general, dry until the heating season starts again.
Enjoy your summer, and we’ll see you again once cold autumn comes around the corner (or at least that’s what your whole house humidifier says)!
Mold – Your House’s Greatest Enemy and Its Relationship with the Humidifier
This section’s purpose is most certainly not to discourage you from purchasing a whole-house humidifier. Our idea is to familiarize you with the dangers that might come with such a system in your house. This way, you can be prepared, and you will not be surprised when an issue occurs. What is more important, you will now be able to prevent any problems from spreading and aggravating.
As unpleasant as it is, mold is a bacteria that quite often develop naturally when the levels of humidity in the air are too high. This type of bacteria is hazardous for the health as it can cause or aggravate respiratory ailments because it enters into contact with the air that we breathe. The chances of developing allergies, severe coughing, and eye irritation are also higher in rooms where mold grows.
As you may guess, the mold and your whole-house humidifier are not best friends, but they are interconnected. The humidifier increases the possibility of mold emergence. You need to make sure that your air is dry and that there really is a lack of humidity where you live before purchasing a whole house humidifier. It would be a good idea to call a professional to check the house.
Where does mold grow?
As moist is being distributed around the house, it can condense on the walls and windows. It is precisely where excessive moisture is held where mold development will take place. The damaging process also usually occurs in the ductwork, which is the source of humidity. Through the ductwork, mold infiltrates into the HVAC system and gets further circulated in the air when that system is on.
Be careful with the levels of humidity because once mold starts growing, it is tough to get rid of it. The bacteria are very stubborn, and it would be a reasonable decision to call professional duct cleaners. They have unique products and know exactly when the whole amount of mold has been eradicated. More importantly, if you try cleaning it yourself, you risk a very unhealthy contact with the substance.
Therefore, the decision to purchase a whole-house humidifier needs to be taken into careful consideration. As an alternative, you can check out our reviews of top-rated air purifiers for mold.
Whole House Humidifier Maintenance
You wash your car regularly, you clean your fridge when you stop seeing the bottom or when you sense an odd, unfamiliar smell. You use products to maintain the state of your washing machine’s drum. One does all these things because the investment you have put towards a particular product can pay off only if maintenance is top-notch.
The fact that your whole house humidifiers hide in a closet or in the darkness of your attic/basement does not mean that you can hide the imperfections that dirt and time lead to. This is why we will help you learn the simple but efficient steps of cleaning your humidifier to enjoy its long-lasting effect.
7 Steps to Clean your Whole House Humidifier
- Switch the power off! This is very important because, as you know, electricity can cause electric shocks. It is also crucial that you unplug the device.
- Disassemble the humidifier to access the insides.
- Drain any leftover water from the reservoir and then fill 2/3 of it with clean water. Make a solution with bleach and leave for a few minutes to properly dissolve any microbes and impurities. Swirl the solution around to make sure that you have reached all corners of the reservoir. Make sure any scale build-up is removed as well.
- Follow the instructions offered by the manufacturer to know how often you need to change the water panel/evaporation pad. Usually, you should do this at least once a year if not more often. Drain the water and fill it again. Rinse or wipe any traces of dust and grain.
- Wipe the outer body of the humidifier with a piece of cloth dipped in warm water or vinegar solution (50/50 water/vinegar). Everything that has been in contact with water and mineral deposits needs to be cleaned. Soak all heavily contaminated components in the solution for 15-30 minutes.
- Make sure that there’s no water dripping from the whole house humidifier itself, and any of its components (water supply line, drain line, shut-off valve, enclosure, area underneath the unit, or furnace itself).
- Put the construction up again and adequately tighten all elements to prevent water leakage once the heating season starts again.
Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
Maybe some thoughts still linger in your mind as you think whether and what type of an entire house humidifier you should get. We don’t want you to leave with any insecurities, hesitations, and fears. That is why here you can find the most frequent questions customers have asked. Moreover, you will find the answers that, we hope, will satisfy your curiosity.
1. Do I actually need a whole-house humidifier?
This is an important question as the whole house humidifier has a design for a particular purpose and for specific air conditions. If you live in a place of drastic summer/winter changes or if the air is dessert-like, then chances are you experience excessive dryness. In this case, yes – you can benefit greatly from a whole-house humidifier.
2. What level of humidity should I aspire to at home?
The optimal humidity level in your house should be no less than 30% and no more than 50%. In dry weather, aim for the higher end.
3. Why is my humidifier leaking and how can I fix this?
Your humidifier might leak for several reasons: your safety valve has not been secured, your drain line does not lead the water downwards like a slope, your humidifier filter is clogged, or the water pressure is too high.
- If the problem is in the valve, shut the water off at the saddle valve and disconnect any power going to the unit, remove the solenoid and backwash with water under light pressure. This should fix the problem unless the valve has been significantly damaged. In that case, it will be necessary to replace the valve. Be sure the water flow through the solenoid valve is going in the correct direction. There should be an arrow designating the water flow direction on the valve body.
- If you are experiencing clogging of the filter, mineral deposits, scale, and other debris have been accumulating over time in your drain blocking the opening. This can cause a leak. In order to remove this problem and prevent it from happening again, you need to clean your scale control insert and replace the humidifier filter with a new one.
- In case water is backing up the drain, you will need to remove any dips and hills from the drain line. Flush the unit with water. This process should be able to eliminate the problem. Replace the drain line every year or as necessary to avoid this problem.
- It might be that the leakage is caused by too high water pressure. Make sure that the pressure is below or just about 125 psi.
4. Can I use a whole-house system in conjunction with an individual room air humidifier?
You can use both a whole house system in collaboration with a single-room humidifier if you want to improve the state of a particular room even more. Your house might be subjected to different levels of moisture depending on the windows and the direction of the room. For example, if the air in your bedroom is arid, you might want to add a portable humidifier to sleep well.
5. Can’t I just open the window when the air is dry?
This will not only be insufficient, but it will also be counter-productive. Whole house humidifiers are used mostly over the winter when the air both outside and inside is dry. Therefore, by opening the window, you will, first, let cold air enter your house when the idea is to keep it warm, and then you will only allow even more dryness in. The humidifier will provide enough healthy moisture as there are many advantages of humidity for health, and it will keep the warmth in.
6. Why choose a whole-house humidifier over a portable room humidifier?
A portable humidifier is excellent if one or two rooms in your house that have low levels of humidity. However, if you live in a house with high ceilings and ample living spaces, then you might enjoy better results with a system that can cover the whole house. Moreover, if your family has more than one member with asthma or allergies, it would be difficult to distribute the moisten air over two or three rooms with a room humidifier.
7. How much noise does a humidifier produce?
Here lies another advantage of the whole house humidifier. Portable humidifiers are located in the room where you are sleeping, working, or spending your free time. Naturally, you will hear it more than you will do a whole house system which is most commonly located in the basement. The noise is efficiently contained within the closet or the box of the humidifier.
8. How much space will my unit cover?
This depends on the different brands of whole house humidifiers. While portable humidifiers are designed to cover the space of a single room, the whole house system will take care of the air in your whole house. The exact space that it can cover should be in the description of the product. Calculate the area of your home and then check the features provided by the manufacturer before making a decision.
How does it feel to know that you can now provide the best whole house humidifier for the well-being of the whole family? We knew that you would be relieved to have all the information needed to make the right choice for your necessities. By this time, you have read our list of reviews on 7 whole-house humidifiers, you have gained knowledge on a humidifier’s functions, and you have learned how to use one properly.
We hope that our article will help you confidently find what you are looking for. Whatever you choose, know that a humidifier will improve the quality of breathing air in your home, and what is more important than that?
Please, share this article with anybody who might also find it useful! Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any additional questions or comments – we appreciate any feedback our readers send to us. Thanks so much for reading, and as always – stay put!