Drum humidifier maintenance.

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Old 02-02-18, 07:13 AM
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Drum humidifier maintenance.

Hi All, The product in question here will be a Honeywell drum humidifier that mounts to the "hot side" of the furnace but circulates the air from the hot side to the cold air (in) side for circulation. I installed this unit about 3 months ago and the install went fine and all seems to be working as expected and designed. The problem we are having is that the water tray that the drum circulates through gets really knarley and dirty in a very short time. Lots of calcium build up and other things growing in the water that can't be good for us. I realize that these things need to be cleaned regularly depending on water quality, but I am wondering is there anything we can do to help prolong the time between cleaning? We had a similar unit in our old home with the same problem and we eventually found some type of tablets that you could put in the water tray that seemed to help quite a bit. But we can't find the tablets anymore. I tried putting about a tablespoon of bleach in the tray but low and behold it makes the water tray foam up and then that foam builds up in spots and causes drips on the floor. So the bottom line and question is....does anyone have a good suggestion for handling this problem ? Does anyone know where any additives may be purchased whether they be liquid or tablet form, just as long as they work. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks
 
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Old 02-03-18, 10:45 AM
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Most people have opted to retire their drum type humidifier in exchange for the flow thru type. These use a media element where the water runs over it...... saturating it and washing away the excessive minerals. There is no standing water chamber to be cleaned.

You need to manually clean the water chamber by soaking it with white vinegar first and the using a small bit of bleach as a final rinse.

I remember those tablets well. They seem to be pretty much gone as the drum type humidifiers fade away. The Hamilton ones are the only ones I know of....
Hamilton-Water-Treatment-Tablets-for-Drum-Humidifiers
 
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Old 02-04-18, 01:08 PM
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Yes I am familiar with the flow through units you mention. I can see the "pros" of that kind of unit, but there also seems to be a few "cons" that go with them. They need a floor drain close by, and they also supposedly use a heck of a lot of water and it also appears that calcium build up is still a problem with those also. And for absolute premium performance it appears that they need to be hooked up to the furnace electrical so as they only run when the furnace is actually on. I had looked at these also but decided I didn't like the idea of a constant water flow while the unit was active even if only when the furnace comes on. I appreciate your opinions and info. Looks like the worse case scenario with our drun unit is that I just need to get my lazy butt down there more often and clean it...LOL. Thanks again
 
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Old 02-04-18, 02:43 PM
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I exchanged a drum type Sears unit for an Aprilaire pass thru. Yes.... they do use what I consider an excessive amount of water. I change my media once a season. It seems to stay pretty clean during the season. Anything you use will turn white as that is a byproduct of evaporating water and calcium.

I used to clean the drum unit once a month. I changed the drum media at the beginning and the middle of the heating season.
 
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