Maintenance Tips For A Steam Humidifier

A whole house humidifier supplements your furnace by moisturizing the air in your home, which can become dry due to the artificial heat running during winter. There are different types of humidifiers, and each requires some maintenance to keep the system running efficiently.

Steam humidifiers are one of the only types that don't require the furnace to be producing heat for the humidifier to work. Electrodes inside the humidifier generate their own heat and turn incoming water, taken from your home's water supply, into an air moistening steam. The fan of the furnace then blows that steam through your ducts to keep the existing air moist.

Here are a couple of maintenance tips to keep your steam humidifier operating at its full potential. Always call in an HVAC technician if you are uncomfortable performing maintenance on your own. Note that steam humidifiers pose a risk of burns so make sure the unit is fully off and cooled before performing any maintenance.

Change the Water Filter

Some steam humidifiers contain reverse osmosis water filters that remove as much sediment and mineral from the water as possible before the water enters the unit. The filtered sediment and minerals can start to clog up the filters over time, so it is important to clean the filters periodically.

Use your owner's manual to locate the water filter in your unit and for directions on how to access and remove the filter. Soak the filter in a demineralizing cleaner for the time indicated on the cleaner's instructions. Rinse the filter well with water before returning the filter to the unit and putting the unit back together.

If the buildup is too severe to remove, or your filter has suffered some structural damage, you might need to purchase a new filter for optimal performance.

Clean the Tank

The same minerals that can clog the filter can also get inside the tank and cause buildups along the walls. When you are cleaning the filter, check the inside of the tank for any dirt, debris or buildup and determine if you should also clean the tank at the same time.

Drain the tank by opening the manual drain button or lever. Then you can rinse out the inside of the tank using a sponge soaked in demineralizing cleaner. Rinse well with water before putting the filter back in, turning off the manual drain, and then allowing the unit to refill with water.

Check for Leaks

While you are performing routine maintenance, look around the outside of the tank for any water leaking out of the drain or input lines or from the tank itself. Cracks in the tank mean that you will likely need to replace the unit.

For more information, contact Spell's Mechanical Services or a similar company.