Three Signs it’s Time to Replace a Humidifier

Humidifiers are a critical part of a building’s HVAC system. They keep the relative humidity level at the proper percentage and work to keep indoor environments healthier, ensure that processes run smoothly, and protect against damage to sensitive materials.

Depending on the frequency of maintenance and quality of water, a humidifier will have a life expectancy of 10-15 years. How do you know when it makes more sense to replace a humidifier than to spend the money on repairs? Here are three main factors to take into consideration:

1. The humidifier has been in service 10 years or more.

  • As a humidifier ages, the tank tends to work-harden which can lead to cracks and leaks.

2. No service has been done.

  • Units that have not received regular cleaning and maintenance may be too far gone to fix economically, especially when both parts and labor costs are factored in.

3. Building operation parameters have changed.

  • Sometimes operational set-points or the area served changes, and that results in a load that is higher than the unit can meet.

In addition, if the humidifier has a very old controller that has failed, it can be tempting to just purchase a new panel and controller. But this can be a bad move if the tank has had a decade or more of service and will only last another one to three years.

Humidifiers are expensive and should be part of any facility’s long term capital spending plan just like other HVAC equipment in the building including chillers, boilers, air handling units (AHU), and roof top units (RTU). Your local DriSteem representative can help assess the current system, provide help with system design based on the application, and recommend the appropriate size and type of humidification equipment.



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