How It Works: Humidifier

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Humidifier not getting enough water or overflowing? This video provides information on how a humidifier works and offers troubleshooting tips to assist you in diagnosing and repair.

Here is a list of the most commonly replaced parts associated with each humidifier symptom:

Humidifier water supply problems: float, water inlet valve, humidistat
Humidifier drum won’t turn: drive motor, wheel and belt kit, drive belt
Humidifier fan doesn’t work: blower motor, humidistat
Humidifier overflowing: float, water inlet valve
Humidifier doesn’t drain properly: water evaporator pad, water line, water panel distribution tray

All of the information provided in this humidifier troubleshooting video is applicable to the following brands: Aprilaire, Autoflo, Bemis, Emerson, General, Kenmore, Lobb, Skuttle
1Maintenance tips for your humidifier
Maintenance tips for your humidifier
Humidifiers efficiently maintain the proper humidity level in your home by adding moisture to the air. Reservoir and flow-through are the two most common types of whole-house humidifiers. They are mounted either to the furnace or the air handler. Free-standing portable or console-style humidifiers are designed to serve one or more rooms, depending on their size.
2Furnace or air handler-mounted humidifiers
Furnace or air handler-mounted humidifiers
Safety first: Before performing any kind of maintenance or repair to your humidifier, turn off the water to the humidifier and turn off power to the furnace or air handler.
3Always have a clean filter/pad in place.
Always have a clean filter/pad in place.
Annually, replace the humidifier pad, filter or element. Once scale and mineral deposits build up, it’s usually impossible to clean them properly. It’s best to replace. Enter your humidifier’s model number to find the pad, filter or element for your model.
4Clean it at least once annually.
Clean it at least once annually.
Scale, rust and hard water deposits will accumulate inside of your humidifier and diminish the amount of moisture the humidifier can put into the air. Follow your humidifier owner’s manual for disassembly and cleaning instructions.
5Periodically check for leaks.
If your humidifier is leaking water on the ground, turn off the water supply until the reason for the leak is discovered and corrected.
6Additional cleaning tips
For furnace-mounted reservoir-style humidifiers • Over time, calcium and mineral deposits will encrust the water reservoir (a.k.a. water container or water bucket) and the water wheel on reservoir-type humidifiers. This may also lead to the growth and harboring of bacteria. Thoroughly clean out the reservoir before and after the heating season and throughout the heating season, add an anti-bacterial solution monthly. • At the end of each heating season, remove the float assembly and water wheel, inspect them for damage and thoroughly clean them using anti-bacterial treatment designed for humidifiers. Alternatively, use white vinegar for the job. For Portable or console-style humidifiers • A few times per season, clean out the water reservoir to remove mineral deposits. Add an anti-bacterial solution to curb the growth of bacteria.

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