I recently moved into a house that has an Aprilaire 700 humidifier. After turning it on this season I noticed excess water around the furnace. Further investigation showed that the humidifier will turn on when the furnace/blower is and is not running. I was going to just leave the blower on at all times, but the humidifier will not run when the furnace blower is switched to the ON position on the thermostat, instead of the Auto position. The humidistat R/C terminals are connected to the R/G terminals on the furnace board at the same place the thermostat is connected. Would this be an installation problem or a malfunctioning humidistat?
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Aprilaire, a manufacturer of indoor air quality products including thermostats, air cleaners and dehumidifiers, also offers a line of whole house humidifiers. Installed in your existing heating and cooling system, humidity is produced by a supplied water source that flows over a water panel before being distributed throughout your air through the heating and cooling system. Issues you may need to troubleshoot with your Aprilaire humidifier include error messages and the unit producing too little or too much humidity.
Things You'll Need:
Replacement water panel
Turn down the control dial by one setting if condensation appears on your windows or walls.
Turn up the control dial by one setting if there is a lack of humidity, often indicated by dry skin or peeling wallpaper or paint.
Turn the control dial to "Test/Reset" if the humidifier does not run. Verify the heating and air conditioning unit blower is operating. If the heating and air conditioning unit is not operating or you are unable to resolve the issue contact a heating contractor.
Contact a heating contractor if you turn the control dial to "Off" and the humidifier continues to run.
Contact your Aprilaire dealer (see Resources) if you notice an error code on the display and the "Call Dealer for Service" light flashes.
Turn the control dial to "Off" and turn off the water supply if the yellow "Change Water Panel" light flashes. Lift the front panel off of the humidifier. Slide out the water panel. Insert a new water panel. Replace the front cover. Turn the control dial to "Test/Reset" until the "Humidifier On" light flashes. If you feel uncomfortable changing the water panel, contact a heating contractor.
Tips & Warnings
Purchase replacement water panels through your Aprilaire dealer or a heating contractor.
It appears your Aprilaire model 700 is wired to only operate when your HVAC fan is operated by your thermostat. Your HVAC installer can wire the humidifier control to operate the humidifier during a heat call, fan call or to turn on the fan when there is a need for humidification. Please contact your HVAC installer to have them change the wiring.
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There is a small oriface that is installed next to the solenoid valve. It sounds like this oriface is missing. It reduces the water flow through the humidifier when it is working properly. You should be able to disassemble the solenoid fittings to check and see if the oriface is in the water line. For a "temporary" fix regulate the water pressure down by closing down on the saddle valve.
I'm no expert, but those who are seem to agree that the first thing to check is your evaporator panel. Aprilaire recommends replacing it annually--so if you haven't replaced it recently, that would be the first step to take. Next, check the power supply to your Aprilaire unit. Turn the humidistat to 0%, and then turn it slowly back toward 35% until you hear a click at the unit. If you don't hear a click, you'll want to check that the unit is in fact getting electric power (you may want to get an electrician or furnace tech to do this). If you do hear the click, the next thing to check is whether you have sufficient water flow to your Aprilaire unit. On mine, I had to adjust my water supply saddle valve, as well as the inline valve on the discharge side of the solenoid (see prior post from this morning)--and this seemed to clear the lines and restore water flow. Once you achieve proper water flow, you will probably want to set your humidistat at 35% for winter temps of around 20 degrees F--but be sure to adjust it downward for colder weather. Comments, anyone?