All about HVAC Humidifiers

HVAC systems come in many varieties with potential upgrades and added benefits. One of these upgrades is a humidifier. When the cold dry winters come, a humidifier in the HVAC system could prevent nosebleeds, dry skin, dry cough, and other irritating symptoms. It also helps prevent the effects of suddenly dry air on wallpaper and paint.

Instead of room-based humidifiers which have no self-control and quickly run out of water, HVAC humidifiers are able to maintain a steady balance of moisture in the air and are self-sustaining when installed properly. A water supply pipe keeps the humidifier’s pad moist and a fan blows air at the pad, releasing cool moist air into the HVAC ventilation system.

Selecting one that is filter-based offers tremendous savings in energy efficiency, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The drawback is that the homeowner must continually change the water to prevent mold. And the filter also has to be changed fairly regularly. Mold is a serious health concern and should be taken seriously, so these precautions are necessary for safety.

A greater risk is ultrasonic humidifiers as the Environmental Protection Agency warns that the ultrasonic sound waves that break up the water into tiny particles for disbursement also send mold and bacteria, even minerals, flying into the air with them. But if this is the type of humidifier desired, just know that consistent maintenance is vital for health and safety.

Steam vaporizers require more energy than any other humidifying system, but they are the safest. As they boil the water before sending it into the air, they kill germs. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends steam vaporizing humidifiers for HVAC systems as the healthiest. They also require less maintenance due to the prevention of mold and bacteria growth. Many people would say that the reduced maintenance and especially the health benefits outweigh the cost of added energy use.

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