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Do you have a humidifier? Many homeowners are under the impression that if their home has a humidifier, the home should always be humid. There are several factors that limit the operation of the humidifier and the amount of moisture that will be placed in your home.
1. Most humidifiers have a humidistat that senses the current humidity and turns the humidifier on and off depending on the humidistat setting. The humidistat must be set to a position where the humidifier is running.
2. A humidifier can only put moisture into the air when the furnace fan is running. Most thermostats have a fan switch that can be set to either “Auto” or “Manual” (sometimes labeled “ON”). The “Auto” setting will only run the fan when the furnace is on and heating the house whereas the “Manual” or “ON” setting will keep the fan running constantly. Therefore, to place the most moisture into the air, the thermostat fan switch should be set to “Manual” or “ON.” Unfortunately some newer furnaces will only humidify when the furnace is heating.
3. The outdoor temperature has the greatest effect on how much moisture the air will hold. Warm air will hold much more water than cold air. The amount of moisture the air in the home can hold is determined by the coldest surface in the home, typically the windows. Because the surface of a glass window is much colder than the surrounding air in the home, you can only humidify to the “Dew Point” temperature, or the temperature at which the moisture in the air condenses on the window surfaces.
While doing the fall/winter preventative maintenance on your furnace we will check to make sure the humidifier is operating properly and that all the settings are in the correct position! Give us a call to sign up for our Preventative Maintenance Agreement and become a Priority Customer!
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