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Icelander53
05-13-2015, 05:30 AM
Yes the other thread got me thinking and looking on Amazon at single room humidifiers. Not 1 of the dozens I see there gets (by my standards) a favorable rating. Noisy, too bright (lights), leaking (lots of leaking, most of them in fact have leaking problems for many), quitting after hours to days, using lead in the components, etc. you get the picture. These products seem to be a long ways from reliable.

So... I hear that they get used a lot here so I'd like to know what you use and how reliable it's been for you? I love the idea of lots of moisture in the air for me and instruments. But I'd like one that works.

spookelele
05-13-2015, 05:42 AM
The ultrasonic ones are quiet.. unless you can hear ultrasonic....
As far as lights go... you can always drop a bit of paint on any LED's you don't want to see.
My dog freaks out at lightning so blinking lights make him think a storm is coming. I have a bottle of black nail polish that I use to cover blinkies I don't need to see.

RichM
05-13-2015, 06:03 AM
There are three basic types of room humidifiers, each with their pluses and minuses:

1. Cool Mist--Wicking: Perhaps the simplest type of humidifier, it uses a honeycomb wick that absorbs moisture from a tank and then uses a fan the blow moisture from the top of the wick into the room.

Pros: Usually cheap, hard to break as the only moving part is the fan, reasonably quiet, low power consumption, safe
Cons: Hard to regulate moisture, wicks wear out quickly and can be expensive to replace, if your wick is allowed to dry completely it will need to be replace, can be a pain to clean (but they all are)

2. Cool Mist--Ultrasonic-- uses a rapidly vibrating element to turn water into mist and then blow it into the room

Pros: Usually pricier, no wicks to replace, fairly quiet, easier to regulate moisture into room, safe
Cons: Slightly higher energy consumption, more moving parts (but not many more), probably hardest to keep clean

3. Warm Mist-- heats water to produce mist

Pros: Same pros as ultrasonic, warm mist may be better for people (but no better for instruments), easier than most to clean
Cons: Highest energy consumption, most moving parts, some risk as it's hot, often pricier

I've used room humidifiers for nearly 30 years now and have never had one that leaks. I don't think I've ever gotten more than 3-4 years out of a room humidifier before it needed to be replace. I used to use wick humidifiers because they were cheap, easy, and quiet; however, I eventually go tired of replacing wicks and started using ultrasonics. The model I've been using (I've had two now) works well, has a good-sized reservoir, is quiet, and has done a great job of keeping my music room at the proper humidity. It does need regular cleaning, however-- it vaporizes the water, but leaves whatever random gook was in the water inside the humidifier.

If you go super-cheap, you may get poorly made product. There is nothing about a humidifier that should make it noisy or should make it leak, unless it's just poorly made. I would expect to pay around $60-100 for a reliable ultrasonic, perhaps $40-60 for a wick humidifier.

wayfarer75
05-13-2015, 06:38 AM
I have two Pure Guardian room humidifiers of different sizes. We have not had problems with leaking, and they are very quiet. Lights are easily covered up.

Ukulele Eddie
05-13-2015, 06:42 AM
I use this Vornado model and have had zero issues:

http://www.amazon.com/Vornado-Evap3-Whole-Evaporative-Humidifier/dp/B00826ORV2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1431535338&sr=8-2&keywords=vornado+humidifier

E

Icelander53
05-13-2015, 07:14 AM
I use this Vornado model and have had zero issues:

http://www.amazon.com/Vornado-Evap3-Whole-Evaporative-Humidifier/dp/B00826ORV2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1431535338&sr=8-2&keywords=vornado+humidifier

E

This got 40 one star reviews on Amazon for all the issues I mentioned. Maybe you got a lemon. ;)

Icelander53
05-13-2015, 07:21 AM
I have two Pure Guardian room humidifiers of different sizes. We have not had problems with leaking, and they are very quiet. Lights are easily covered up.

Some of the worse ratings on Amazon. The ratio to what works and what does not is not good. Be glad you are in position to write one of the 5 star reviews.

I buy a lot on Amazon. Maybe 10 grand a year or more. So I know how the place works. The system I've developed is that a 10 to 1 star ratio is acceptable. In other words 10 great reviews to 1 terrible review means you have a very good shot at getting something you're going to like and not have a ton of issues with. It's worked very well for me. Anything less though is really risky. These humidifiers are mostly way way way worse than 1-10.

coolkayaker1
05-13-2015, 07:43 AM
I'm with RichM on the wicking humidifier.

I bought this one from Amazon (ships and sold by Amazon ;-) two years ago for this same price. I have used it continuously for 7 months of the year in a room that I have guitars and such (thus, 14 months of continuous use), no issues, still working like a charm (I did replace the filter once). Works well for one room; I do not believe that it will humidify 1900 sq feet as advertised. Makes noise? To some degree, yes. It's a fan. But, when I'm in the room I turn it off...can't hear it in next room *unless it's on High, and I never run it on High. Run at Low, I fill it once a day with two large (3 gallon) buckets of tapwater from our laundry room sink (I bring the water to the device, not the device to the water)--so, it's putting some humidity out, for sure. My gauges go from 18-22% without the humidifier to 32%-35% with the humidifier in a room with 9 foot ceilings, a big window shining in sunlight, and no closing door (just a large entrance opening); if it was a closed room, the humidity might be even higher.

I tried a smaller one, not ultrasonic, and the issue was white dust, but also capacity. There's just no great way to put enough water in the thing to change the humidity in a fair sized room to any appreciable degree (in my experience) and filling it is a recurring chore (unless on low and it's not putting humidified air into the room; then filling it is a breeze ;-P

http://www.amazon.com/821-000-Digital-Control-Evaporative-Humidifier/dp/B0000D8EJZ/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1431538709&sr=8-7&keywords=essick+humidifier

Unless you have a zillion ukuleles, though, I strongly suggest Sterilite and Car Wash sponges if uke humidification is the goal. I put all of my Martins and higher end ukes in Sterilite Stackable condominiums.
79502


(If avoiding cracked skin, dry nose, brittle hair are the goals, then obviously the humidifier beats the box).

Ukulele Eddie
05-13-2015, 07:54 AM
This got 40 one star reviews on Amazon for all the issues I mentioned. Maybe you got a lemon. ;)

Haha. Maybe. Of the 393 reviews, 279 were 3 or 4 stars. Which is almost 4x as many as were 1 or 2 stars (78). I've had other Vornado products and been quite happy. YMMV.

UkerDanno
05-13-2015, 08:16 AM
I use this Vornado model and have had zero issues:

http://www.amazon.com/Vornado-Evap3-Whole-Evaporative-Humidifier/dp/B00826ORV2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1431535338&sr=8-2&keywords=vornado+humidifier

E

I have a vornado, (not exactly like the one shown) I use in the winter, it's over 12 years old and still works great!

The ultrasonic ones are quiet, but leave a white dust over everything!

Icelander53
05-13-2015, 09:22 AM
It's not the 12 year old models we need to worry about. It's the ones made in china today.

RichM
05-13-2015, 09:34 AM
I have a vornado, (not exactly like the one shown) I use in the winter, it's over 12 years old and still works great!

The ultrasonic ones are quiet, but leave a white dust over everything!

If you have a lot of mineral content in your water, you are going to get white dust, regardless of the type of humidifier you use. The white dust is the minerals in your water, which can't evaporate, so they settle on things. Evaporative (wicking) models distribute slightly less white dust, as a lot of the mineral content gets trapped in the wick and never goes into the air-- but that usually also means shorter wick life, so it's a trade-off. In ultrasonics, all of the mineral content goes into the air, so yes, you will see dust. There are three ways of dealing with white dust:

1. If your water doesn't have a lot of mineral content, your dust problem will be minimal, and you can just clean normally (this is also true for high mineral content, but you'll do it more often!)
2. I have tried both drop-in cartridges and pour-in liquid to neutralize minerals. The cartridges made a slight improvement, but the liquid worked quite well. It didn't eliminate the dust, but it made it light enough that normal cleaning removed it (my local water has a VERY high mineral content)
3. Use distilled water. This is a very expensive option, but hey, it's guaranteed to work.

ALing
05-13-2015, 10:27 AM
As mentioned above, distilled water is the best and most expensive solution to avoiding white dust. Our supermarket used to sell distilled water in 18 litre containers. The cost was better than for the 4 litre jugs. Still, one would have to decide if the long term cost of humidifying a room with distilled water is worth it. For me, I just keep my ukes in their cases, and fill my little oasis humidifiers with distilled water from the 4 litre jugs (lasts a long time).

Icelander53
05-13-2015, 04:35 PM
The right indoor plants and simple aquariums make good room humidifiers as well.
The humidity in a space is determined by temperature and air pressure. Water naturally evaporoates or precipitates depending on these things, to reach an equalibrium in the space. It is hard to control air pressure, but not so hard to control temperature.
A aquarium with a few easy fish and a heater will show changes in humidity in water levels, and plants show changes in the colour of the leaves. There are some easy and tidy hydroponics set ups that produce food and flowers as well as keeping the air moist. Combine this with a dry bulb humidity measurer and you get a simple proven decorative method of humidifying a room as an alternative to Amazon. Of course each has its challenges as well.

What a timely post. I've been looking at aquariums lately. I used to be big into fish tanks back in the day. If you do it right the work on them is minimal.

Until I find a humidifier I can have some faith in I'm just going to put around lots of plastic containers with wet towels in them and see what happens. I have a humidified uke case that holds most of my ukes but like to leave one uke out most of the day and with high desert summer on the way I don't want to have issues with cracks and stuff. So... I'm going to work on wet. I think in summer if I can get my bedroom/music room to around 30% or more then I won't worry too much about leaving one out during the day.

Icelander53
05-14-2015, 09:17 AM
Here's what I'm thinking now. I'll buy an aquarium pump and a heater. Minimal cost. I'll use a five gallon bucket and just let that humidity the room. I think with all those bubbles and water motion along with it being warm should put a fair amount of moisture into the air. No issues with leaking and if the pump or heater fail I'm out less than $10 bucks. What you think?

coolkayaker1
05-14-2015, 10:25 AM
Go for it.

Icelander53
05-14-2015, 10:37 AM
I did, I ordered the parts and I'll see how it works and then report back. And actually I won't need a heater yet if ever so my cost outlay is around $8.

katysax
05-14-2015, 10:49 AM
In LA we have mineral laden, terribly hard water and a dry climate. I have used several humidifiers. They all break down after a few months. If I use distilled water I either have to buy it (expensive) or make it (wastes a lot of water and is expensive). If I use a humidifier with a filter I have to buy and change filters. The humidifier still breaks down, just not as fast but the filters are expensive.

I now like the Crane teardrop shaped room humidifier. It is easy to fill and clean because it fits under the kitchen faucet. It costs less than a few months of filters for my filter humidifier. It isn't noisy and the light is barely noticeable. One filling lasts an entire day. It is relatively cheap at approx $40. I clean it every day. When it breaks I'll get another one. I like having humidity for my comfort as well as the uses.

Icelander53
05-14-2015, 11:00 AM
Thanks, for confirming the hard luck with humidifiers that I was seeing on amazon and for the lead on the one you use now. If my bucket humidifier doesn't work I may spring for it. You say you clean it daily. How much hassle is that?

Just looked it up and it got lousy reviews. :( Back to the bucket and hope.

katysax
05-14-2015, 12:00 PM
One of the main things I like about this humidifier is that it is easy to clean and fill. Most of the ones that I've had that have a reservoir big enough to last a day don't fit easily under a sink faucet. I've also found that the more features and alternative modes of operation, the more things there are to break. This one I'm using is very simple. I figure I'll be lucky if it lasts more than a few months. It's still cheaper than buying filters for my more expensive humidifier. And it's not that pleasant changing filters.

I used to have Aquariums, but they were very noisy and required a lot of work.

Icelander53
05-14-2015, 12:23 PM
I'm skipping the fish part and only using an underwater pump that should be somewhat quiet. I have music going on in this room almost constantly and so a little noise won't be an issue.