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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    1
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    Central Humidifier, looking for guidance on type

    Hi folks, great forum you have here. Thanks in advance for your assistance.

    We have a 4050 sq 2 story home and would like more control over humidity levels. Tired of running back and forth with room humidifiers.

    Zone 1: basement + first floor (furnace in basement)
    Zone 2: second floor (furnace in attic)

    We currently have a Honeywell HE225A bypass unit installed in zone 1. No other units (zone 2 does not currently have humidification). The Honeywell is likely overworked and simply not able to handle the space.

    We've had two HVAC contractors give us 2 distinct recommendations, which we are trying to decide between.

    HVAC 1: Install steam unit. Aprilaire 800.

    HVAC 2: Has told us to not even think about a steam unit because of the risk of rusting the ducts. He says he sees it all the time, even 2 years post new construction homes. Not necessarily units that he has installed, so I wonder how much of it is related to poor installation. At the same time, if he is steering us away from steam, at the very least he is not comfortable with this and I don't want to force direction on a contractor.
    He is recommending 2 identical units, one in each zone: Aprilaire 600 (automatic versions will cost me additional). He also doesn't recommend the 700 because it requires installation on the plenum.
    My concern with this is that while these units are an upgrade in capacity over the HE225A, they still use the same bypass approach which seems inefficient to me. Since we have the opportunity to install anew, I would have thought it more prudent to go with a more advanced system. The two 600s are not cheap. I know price talk isn't allowed so I won't post the quote.

    HVAC 2 has done a lot of work for us and others in family in the past and we've never had issues.

    Let me have it! Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Southold, NY
    Posts
    26,292
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    Have a blower door test done and find all the air leaks in the structure. Correcting those may make the existing humidifier properly sized.

    Rusting from steam humidifiers is generally due to other issues.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    Posts
    40,594
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    What he said. Low humidify is a function of infiltration. Stop the air from leaking in, humidity goes up.

    The 800 is nice but for full capacity you need 240V and that can spin the old electric meter.

    Generalaire makes a bypass humidifier with a lot higher capacity than the Honeywell and Aprilaire models. The HE225 is around 12 gallons per day vs 23 for the General 1099LHS.

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