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Do the motors feel warm-- maybe even HOT?-- Like they have electric current, but the bearings might be seizing up? You mentioned one stopped spinning awhile ago--- and the other one was OK-
It sounds like the bearings are dry and worn on the fans-- (How old is the humidifier?)
The bearings CAN be cleaned up and lubricated, if you are into tearing a motor apart, and servicing the bearings-- Are you ready for that? You will have to remove the motors from their mounting, remove the fans, split the end bells, and clean and lubricate the bearings deep inside.
you may try running your blower 100% of the time.this should allow the humidifier to stay on even when your not heating. once the humidity level gets to where you want it, you may be able to put the fan selector back to auto. also you mentioned you have a variable blower. this is great if it is set up to run at approx. 20% fan speed when it is not heating or cooling. at 20% you can circulate enough air through the house to humidify without being able to hear the noise of the blower. it will really increase the comfort level of the house if you tend to have hot and cool spots. if it was not set up this way, contact the installer and ask if they can do this for you.
On my water wheel several parameters must be met. 1. Power on, cord plugged in. 2. Water in tank, the float arm needs to move to indicate water present, the red light on the dash indicates no water. 3. Humidity controll set higher than the room atmosphere humidity, clockwise is higher on mine. 4. The fan speed selecter must be on either high or low, the fan won't run unless one position is selected. I hope this helps
There is a devise called a current sensing relay (a little black box that hangs on a blower motor wire that senses current from that wire) If you have such a devise it should hang from the white (common) wire. Loop the wire through twice.
I had this problem several years ago. In order for the water to flow, the outside temperature sending unit must indicate to the controller that it is less than 60F. If not, the unit will not operate outside of test mode. Check the temp outside where your sending unit is (could the sun be heating that side of the house?) and ensure that the circuit to the sending unit is working. I had a bad wire splice inside a wire nut stopping the circuit. Took me a long while to figure it out.
If the outside temp and your sending unit circuit is ok, I wish you luck on your troubleshooting.