What You Need To Know About Humidifiers
Nothing is worse than waking up with a scratchy throat, dry skin, and irritated nasal passages. Unfortunately, when the winter months cause your heating system to work constantly, this is exactly what can happen if you don’t have an air humidifier. A whole-home HVAC humidifier can provide the added moisture you need in your home to make the air more comfortable and reduce irritation from dry air.
Luckily for homeowners, Superior Home Supplies carries some of the best whole-house humidifiers on the market, such as Goodman humidifiers. Goodman humidifiers come with a solid warranty and efficient operation so that you can enjoy a more comfortable home at an affordable price. Read more about how a whole-house humidifier can help your home, or contact Superior Home Supplies to check out the available options.
What is a whole house humidifier?
A whole house humidifier is an appliance that connects to your home’s HVAC system to increase the humidity in the air that is lessened in the winter due to the forced air from your HVAC system. Increasing humidity will make your home more comfortable, and you won’t suffer from issues such as dry skin and a dry throat.
What are the different types of whole house humidifiers?
There are three primary types of whole home humidifiers you can choose from. Choosing the best type for your home will likely depend on your current HVAC system and how you want the humidity to be produced.
Bypass: Bypass humidifiers add humidity to the home by adding warm air into your home’s furnace. The warm air in the ducts will pass through a water tray, where it will pick up moisture before being delivered through the vents. These appliances are most often affixed to your air conditioning system and require draining of the water supply unless you choose a drainless option.
Fan-powered: A fan-powered humidifier works the same way as a bypass humidifier but also has a fan that pushes the air through the water tray. The added force can increase the water evaporation and produce up to a gallon or water or more daily.
Steam: Steam humidifiers will create humidity from electrically boiled water. This type of humidifier will attach to your HVAC system and deliver the steam through the ventilation system. They are one of the most efficient ways to increase your home's humidity levels and work well with any heating/cooling system.
When should I get a whole house humidifier?
A whole-house humidifier can be beneficial in any home, especially in areas where you see longer winters and run your heater often. Most homes will have a low relative humidity during the winter months, and homeowners often use single-room humidifiers to help solve the problem. Unfortunately, these are designed only to provide humidity for a small space and will repeatedly need refilling, cleaning, and filter changes.
If you have been using room humidifiers to provide greater comfort during sleep in the winter or you or members of your household suffer from dry skin, bloody noses, or a scratchy throat, then a whole-house humidifier is the solution to your problems.
Do whole house humidifiers cause mold?
A common concern with humidifiers in the home is the possibility of mold, which can lead to problems with your indoor air quality. Without proper cleaning, you may notice the buildup of mold and mildew in small portable humidifiers and may be concerned about this occurring with a whole-house humidifier attached to your HVAC system. To avoid mold growth, you must ensure that your temperature settings are adjusted with the outdoor humidity levels. You also should have your ducts checked during your regularly scheduled HVAC maintenance so they can be checked for moisture buildup.
Where is the best place to put a whole-home humidifier in a house?
The best place to install your humidifier might depend on the number of sq. ft. in your home and the home’s configuration. To get the most out of your whole-home humidifier, having it installed in the most central area of your house is the best option. It is also advisable to put it close to a cold air return so the distribution will be more thorough. For homes with fewer square feet and one floor, putting it in the most convenient place will suffice.
Do heat pump systems need humidifiers?
While heat pumps are designed to act as a dehumidifier in the summer, they do not add humidity to the air in the winter. So if you have a heat pump system, adding a whole-house humidifier can help you reach the proper humidity levels to improve the comfort of your home. Whole-house humidifiers can easily be added to a ducted heat pump, steam humidifiers tend to be the best option when installed on an air-source heat pump.
What is the difference between a portable humidifier and a furnace humidifier?
Portable humidifiers can be either warm mist or cool mist humidifiers and are popular DIY options when poor humidity levels are causing discomfort in your home. These systems are smaller and designed to provide humidity for a room or small space. They often consist of a water tank, heater, and mister. Some newer models even feature digital controls and automatic shutoff timers.
Furnace humidifiers are installed directly into your primary heating system, and the ductwork helps to distribute the humidity to the air. Warm air is pushed through the humidifier, where moisture is picked up and sent out through the vents in your home. With a furnace humidifier, your whole house can maintain appropriate humidity levels, providing a comfortable environment in each room.
What are the benefits of a whole-house humidifier?
There are plenty of homeowner benefits from choosing a whole-home humidifier. Some of the top benefits of whole-house humidifiers are:
Improved comfort: Whole-house humidifiers are equipped with humidistats that allow you to set the relative humidity you would like to achieve in your home. Once you achieve the appropriate indoor humidity levels, you will reduce the dry air in your home, which can lead to dry, cracked skin, increased allergies, bloody noses, and dry nasal passages.
Less maintenance: if you choose a whole-house humidifier attached to your system instead of a portable option, you will enjoy less maintenance. With a built-in system, you will only need to change an evaporator filter once a year during your service visit. With a portable option, you must change the filter at least once a month, clean the tank, and wipe down the appliance to prevent mildew growth.
Improved indoor air quality: Having proper humidity levels is as important as lowering VOCs in the air in your home. Both will improve the IAQ in your home. Poor IAQ can lead to respiratory and other health concerns, such as a scratchy throat, congestion, and increased asthma symptoms.
Lower energy bills: Having the appropriate humidity levels in your home can improve your overall health and lead to a healthier wallet. Low humidity levels can lead to a decrease in the efficiency of your heating system. This can translate into higher energy bills. You also will likely feel warmer at a lower thermostat temperature when the humidity levels are right, which means your system will run less often and save you money.
Reduced static: Cool, dry air can lead to a lot of static in your home. This can lead to shocks when moving around carpeted areas and problems with sticking fabrics. This additional static can be incredibly uncomfortable for pets with long fur. A humidifier can reduce the overall static in your home.
Protection for your furniture: The dry air in winter doesn’t only affect your skin, but it can also affect the materials around your home, such as wood, fabric, and paper. When the air is too dry, wood can warp, crack, or shrink, damaging flooring and furniture. Paper products and thin fabrics can also be affected, some becoming brittle. Having a humidifier to maintain proper humidity levels can protect these items from damage and improve their longevity.
What are the drawbacks of a whole-home humidifier?
While there are many benefits to an HVAC-installed humidifier, there are a few cons to be aware of.
Potential model growth: Whole-home humidifiers must be properly maintained to avoid mold growth from excessive moisture. If your system is not checked annually and you don’t perform the required maintenance, such as filter changes, you could get mold along your ductwork which could lead to health concerns.
Missed air leaks: A drop in humidity in your home could signify possible leaks with your ductwork. When you have a whole-home humidifier installed, it could adjust the humidity levels, and the leak could go undetected. To prevent this from happening, ask your HVAC technician to check your ductwork during your annual maintenance visit.
Avoid dry skin this winter with a whole-house humidifier from Superior Home Supplies
Find the perfect whole-house humidifier to make the air in your home more comfortable throughout the winter season. Superior Home Supplies is a trusted source for all your home improvement needs, from air conditioners to air purifiers. We have what you need to make your home the perfect place to hang your hat. Contact us today to find out more.