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Are there any nice looking humidifiers?

Posted By: ryannah05

Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 02:48 PM

My question has more to do with aesthetics than anything. I know I need to add a humidifier, so you don't need to sell me on that. I need something that will work for the whole room and not just create a microclimate for the piano itself. I'm trying to find a good one that will accentuate my music room instead of making it look cheap.

I live in southeast Washington State, an area that is extremely dry pretty much year round. Our outside air humidity goes up a little in the winter, but it's still pretty dry compared to most everywhere else. Last week we averaged 15% RH outside, and 25% in the house. I've just sold our old gray market Kawai (Model 600 from 1961), which had slightly slipping pins from age plus years in dry conditions. My new Boston Performance is coming next week, and I'm finally getting on top of the RH in my music room. Currently we've got a warm mist room humidifier running in there to get the RH up where it ought to be, but I want that unit back in my bedroom (we run two of them every night). I'm looking for a good room humidifier to permanently sit in my music room - my new 6'4" Boston will be joining a concert grand harp, a cello, and a couple of acoustic guitars. They all need the improved RH, so I'm not interested in a Dampp-Chaser that only affects the piano. The issue I'm running into is that most of the recommended humidifiers are kind of ugly. From the website photos, the Venta looks industrial and cheaply plastic. Would it still be effective if it's hidden behind some plants in a corner? That's really the only place in the room where it wouldn't be visible. The newest Boneco looks nicer, but it's more modern than I want in a room full of classy acoustic instruments. I've seen a few pretty ultrasonic humidifiers online (like the Objecto W4 - http://www.objecto.com/shop/w4-hybrid-humidifier), but I'm not sure how effective they would be in a really dry environment, and I'd rather not dust twice a day to avoid the white powder issue. Am I the only pianist who cares about the aesthetics of my humidifier, or can anyone recommend something that will work well AND look nice?
Posted By: iLaw

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:02 PM

Is a whole house system, tied into heating/AC, out of the question?

Larry.
Posted By: newer player

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:10 PM

We use Sharp air purifiers & humidifiers in our house. They are everywhere in Japan, including some hotel rooms.

We purchased them because they are the quietest we found at low setting.

The industrial engineering and production quality is excellent. One of our units gets noisier when the air filter is clogged and needs replacement (this is a complaint on some review sites).

We like the design also, as it is slimline and disappears into the room.

With all humidifiers you need to be hyper vigilant to keep the water clean for health and safety.

This is a good summary of the Sharp units:

http://www.air-purifier-power.com/sharp-air-purifier.html

That site also has instructions for cheap DIY filter replacements. That is a bit of a hack, does not filter so well, and is not so much cheaper over the long run as the OEM filters provide a massive amount of filter material in a small space. Still a good option if you find the replacement air filters too expensive.
Posted By: newer player

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:12 PM

If your water has high calcium, for example, you can try filtered water to reduce the amount of residue distributed around the room by a humidifier.
Posted By: ryannah05

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:17 PM

Originally Posted by iLaw
Is a whole house system, tied into heating/AC, out of the question?

Larry.



Would a whole house system work with the AC? I thought they only tie into the furnace. Our climate is even dryer in the summer than in the winter.
Posted By: wouter79

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:28 PM

Quote

My question has more to do with aesthetics than anything. I know I need to add a humidifier, so you don't need to sell me on that. I need something that will work for the whole room and not just create a microclimate for the piano itself. I'm trying to find a good one that will accentuate my music room instead of making it look cheap.


Are you aware of the different types of humidifiers? And the different effects of them? Particularly that some types spray the minerals from the water all over your room9s)?
Posted By: ryannah05

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:40 PM

Originally Posted by wouter79
[quote]
Are you aware of the different types of humidifiers? And the different effects of them? Particularly that some types spray the minerals from the water all over your room9s)?


That's the white dust I'm trying to avoid with ultrasonic humidifiers.
Posted By: Dave in Denver

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 03:47 PM

I haven't used one, but was thinking of trying one of these next winter:
Pedestal Humidifier
Posted By: Learux

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 04:38 PM

As far as I know whole house humidifiers only work with heating and not with AC.

I have an aircare MA1201, it works very well but is fairly ugly.


How about this one from the same brand?

AIRCARE EP9 800 Digital Whole-House Pedestal-Style Evaporative Humidifier, Espresso

$139 on Amazon with great reviews


[img]https://binged.it/2YqKWOE[/img]Humidifer
Posted By: tend to rush

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 04:45 PM

My Aprilaire whole house ties into an A/C duct and uses the A/C return. FYI, in my northern NJ home in the winter I still get down to 22 percent. I have a grand damp chaser as well, though.
Posted By: Retsacnal

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 05:15 PM

You can't beat a whole house system when it comes to concealing it. And if you're already running them in multiple rooms, and have all those instruments, then it might be the logical path forward for you.
Posted By: BruceD

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 05:47 PM

Have you looked into Venta Airwasher humidifiers:

Venta Airwasher

[Linked Image]

They come in black or white. I use three of them in a single-storey, 1600 sq. ft. townhouse, and they work very well at humidifying during the winter months.

Regards,
Posted By: LarryK

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 05:52 PM

Originally Posted by BruceD
Have you looked into Venta Airwasher humidifiers:

Venta Airwasher

[Linked Image]

They come in black or white. I use three of them in a single-storey, 1600 sq. ft. townhouse, and they work very well at humidifying during the winter months.

Regards,


I read mixed reviews of this model, with some people saying that it did not humidify well. I'm trying to figure out if I should upgrade my current Venta, which has a canister filter, for this one, that has rotating plastic wheels and no filter. Mine is an ultrasonic and I don't know what you call this one. What level of humidity can you maintain with this model? Where are you located? I'm in New York and try to keep the humidity at around 45% during the winter months.
Posted By: iLaw

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 06:03 PM

Originally Posted by ryannah05

Would a whole house system work with the AC? I thought they only tie into the furnace. Our climate is even dryer in the summer than in the winter.



My whole house system works year round. In the Midwest it obviously spends most of the summer dehumidifying, but if the indoor thermostat/hygrometer says the indoor air needs additional moisture, the humidifier kicks it in automatically.

Larry.
Posted By: MarkL

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 06:26 PM

We have a central humidifier on our HVAC system, but I also have to use a small ultrasonic humidifier in my piano room because when it's really cold here in the winter I can't keep the whole house at a high enough humidity or all the windows condense water. I bought this ultrasonic unit to keep in my piano room and it's pretty decent looking. I have to use distilled water in it to avoid the dust problem. Whatever you decide to buy, make sure it has an automatic humidity control, some don't have that feature. One thing I don't like about mine is I have to take the tank off to fill it up, which is a pain. I'll probably buy something to replace it that's more user friendly and will probably switch to a cool mist humidifier to avoid the dust problem. The problem with the mist style is that they are louder, mine is so quiet I really can't hear it at all.
Posted By: Beemer

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 06:33 PM

This one looks nice smile

https://tinyurl.com/yybyzzcc

Ian
Posted By: LarryK

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 07:14 PM

Originally Posted by Beemer
This one looks nice smile

https://tinyurl.com/yybyzzcc

Ian


LOL. As an aside, I hate cigars. My hatred stems from working on a tobacco farm when I was fourteen years old. I once tried smoking a cigar that we put together from scraps and that turned me off from smoking for the rest of my life, so it was a good thing to do. Tobacco is an evil weed.
Posted By: GC13

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/13/19 07:35 PM

We use this model> I think it looks pretty good.
AirCare Pedestal Humidifer @ Lowes
Posted By: KurtZ

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 12:06 AM

I've been dinging around with humidifiers in my small room for my recorders, cello and piano for about 15 years. I've started with a small airwasher. It was expensive, it had to be good right? It's neither a good air cleaner nor a a good humidifier. This room is about 150 sq. ft. A bedroom sized studio. The Airwasher couldn't keep up with the furnace. If the furnace was on, the RH would just keep dropping, albeit a little slower when the Airwasher was on. Unless it's changed, the airwasher is passive and manual. There is no control to tell it to go up to 40 r.h. and stop. If it doesn't want to take the room above 30%, you can't make it. If it wants to take the room to 50% you can't stop it without turning it off.

I had a cool mist for a few years with the fan and the donut wick with a built in controller. Too loud and those wicks are just GROSS. It cost about $90 a year ($15 about every two months) to keep a sort of clean one in it.

I had 3 ultrasonics. The first, a Homedics lasted less than two years. Then I spent $240 on a Air-O-Swiss (Actually Venta) branded ultrasonic. After about a year I began to feel like the room was swampy feeling even when set to 40 perecent. I bought 2 hygrometers to check the room. It was at 70%! I talked to Venta. They sent a new unit under warranty. It did the same thing out of the box. Venta told me it was something I was doing or the water or something and they had nothing more to offer me.

I did some reading* and decided on a cheap Vicks Steamer $15.00, and a stand-alone controller about $35.00 from Amazon. It's quiet (ish) not silent but there's no whirring fan. If I'm playing I can't hear it turn on and off. There's no bacteria because the water has been boiled before the vapor goes into the room. There are NO cartridges, filters or stick doohickeys to buy on a regular basis. There's a small amount of mineral fallout right under the steamer. It takes weeks to become noticeable and wipes off with a dry rag. It does not permeate and spread through the whole room like the ultrasonic dust.

If the steamer fails, a replacement is available at any pharmacy, Sam's, Target etc for $20 dollars. If the controller fails, you still have humidity that you can watch with a small hygrometer until a new controller comes.

My total outlay was about $60. That's a per year cost of about 20 dollars and I expect to get more years out of it. I was spending $20 on the scale cartridges for the Venta 4x a year. The only thing I've done to it besides wipe away the very little amount of mineral precipitate, is to clean it once internally with vinegar to quiet down the gurgling and restore the steam output.


Does it look cool? No, it looks like a white and blue mushroom. In my room, I don't care.

I think given your requirement, you should do a whole house system. Failing that, for the music room, my advice is keep it simple, reliable and cheap.

Kurt

*Most of the reading you can do are webpages that sell humidifiers and they ain't no moneys in recommending or trying to compete with Target on a $20 Vicks Steamer. I found my advice on a violin luthier's site.
Posted By: MarkL

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 02:50 AM

Originally Posted by KurtZ
...
My total outlay was about $60. That's a per year cost of about 20 dollars and I expect to get more years out of it.

I could only find power consumption for generic steamers, and they were listed as 250W. So if it ran 24 hours a day and power cost is $0.12/kwh, it will cost $0.72 per day or $263/year in power. Depending on your climate it probably only runs a third or half the year, but that's still quite expensive. There's no cheap way to boil water. For comparison, ultrasonics use about 25W and cool mist about 50W.
Posted By: malkin

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 03:21 AM

Originally Posted by BruceD
Have you looked into Venta Airwasher humidifiers:

They come in black or white...


If you get 2 you can switch them up, so one is black and white and the other is white and black.
Posted By: BDB

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 03:53 AM

Maybe you should get 52 white ones and 36 black ones!
Posted By: BruceD

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 05:23 AM

Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by BruceD
Have you looked into Venta Airwasher humidifiers:

Venta Airwasher

[Linked Image]

They come in black or white. I use three of them in a single-storey, 1600 sq. ft. townhouse, and they work very well at humidifying during the winter months.

Regards,


I read mixed reviews of this model, with some people saying that it did not humidify well. I'm trying to figure out if I should upgrade my current Venta, which has a canister filter, for this one, that has rotating plastic wheels and no filter. Mine is an ultrasonic and I don't know what you call this one. What level of humidity can you maintain with this model? Where are you located? I'm in New York and try to keep the humidity at around 45% during the winter months.


I'm located in Victoria, BC where the temperature rarely goes below freezing in the winter time. While heating is necessary, of course, it is not the non-stop, drying-out heating that one would experience in an eastern US winter. In the winter months, the three Ventas I have (two in the 15' x 28' living room and one in the adjacent hallway) keep the RH at around 42%. Without them, the RH can drop to the low- to mid-30s. The efficiency of air-cleaning may be more hype than fact, although when I do empty them to clean them once a month the remaining water is coloured a rusty brown, so some particulates are drawn from the air.

What I like most about them - since they do seem to satisfactorily humidify - is the fact that there are no filters to clean or - as in my experience with other humidifiers with wicks - no smelly wicks to try to treat with vinegar or to have to dispose of and replace. One of my Ventas has been running during the winter months for over 20 years, and the other two, slightly newer, are still going strong.

While our summers are very dry here, I don't use them in the summer time because I need to open doors and windows for fresh air, and doing so would negate any humidifying effect of the humidifiers.

Regards,
Posted By: Beemer

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 12:37 PM

Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by Beemer
This one looks nice smile

https://tinyurl.com/yybyzzcc

Ian


LOL. As an aside, I hate cigars. My hatred stems from working on a tobacco farm when I was fourteen years old. I once tried smoking a cigar that we put together from scraps and that turned me off from smoking for the rest of my life, so it was a good thing to do. Tobacco is an evil weed.

Larry, I agree with you about tobacco, and yes it was a joke.
Ian
Posted By: RayR3004

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 01:18 PM

I purchased the Airecare EP9 on Amazon $139. It holds a large amount of water and keeps the room at 42% all winter. It looks like an end table. It even has a small piece of granite ontop. It works well and I recommend it.
https://www.amazon.com/EP9-800-Whole-House-Pedestal-Style-Evaporative/dp/B00I9YFXSS/ref=sr_1_48?crid=188QN27RQTQ2L&keywords=humidifiers&qid=1557839702&s=home-garden&sprefix=humid%2Caps%2C140&sr=1-48
Posted By: JasonInTN

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 08:46 PM

I like my Vicks V750 humidifiers, $30 at Walmart. I have half a dozen of them, but usually only run two or three at a time in my 2000 square foot upstairs. If I was concerned about aesthetics I would consider buying some nice brass planters, or other attractive open top containers to park them in. They are small enough to hide behind a chair or other furniture. Winter before last I ran Honeywell HCM-890 units. They worked fine but I did not like the fan noise. I would also now not run any unit that uses filters or wicks like the Honeywells. The wicks can get expensive, and if not changed out very frequently will grow red or black mold and will blow the spores wherever. I passed on a new in the box Aircare EP9 for $35 I saw at a Goodwill store last week for the previous reasons. I tried an ultrasonic cool mist unit, but returned it within a day as the mist landed on the floor leaving a puddle.

Like any unit the V750 requires maintenance but it is very easy to disassemble. It has a small cup that boils the water that you fill with vinegar to remove the calcium buildup. With my hard water that's about every three weeks. Running distilled water would about eliminate any maintenance. I really like the fact that the water is boiled and sanitized before being disbursed in the room. They run nearly silently without a fan, and can be replaced easily with a trip to Walgreens or other store in town.
Posted By: Chrispy

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 10:33 PM

How about this gigantic pepper grinder?

If that isn't your thing, how about "genie in a bottle"

"2001 monolith fell over and is now moistening the air in my house"

"the aliens have landed"

"nothing says humid like a cactus"

"bowl of ice cream"

"I could have been a lava lamp"
Posted By: pianoloverus

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/14/19 11:54 PM

HAHAHA
Posted By: asia

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/16/19 10:55 PM

My first post, I hope it is OK. I am using a Venta Kuube humidifier and a Frigidaire dehumidifier in my piano room. Both units work well and seem well built. Outside air humidity varies from 10% to 100%. I set the units to keep room humidity in the 40 to 55% range. Frigidaire runs at 550W, Venta runs at 10 to 50W depending on fan speed.

One issue with noise: Fans run periodically to sense room humidity, which means noise. Frigidaire is noisy, Venta is quiet at low fan speeds.

[Linked Image]
Posted By: Lady Bird

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/16/19 11:18 PM

Well I hung soaking wet towels in my piano room when
we went through a few weeks of freezing weather in Vancouver
The humidity was about 40% .In the summer the humidity in the room varies between 54 to to 58% So one just tries
to control the range without wearing out the dehumidifier.
While the wet towels raised the humidity ,it is surely
the ugliest "humidifier " one may have.
Posted By: David-G

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/17/19 12:12 AM

Originally Posted by asia
My first post, I hope it is OK. I am using a Venta Kuube humidifier and a Frigidaire dehumidifier in my piano room. Both units work well and seem well built. Outside air humidity varies from 10% to 100%. I set the units to keep room humidity in the 40 to 55% range. Frigidaire runs at 550W, Venta runs at 10 to 50W depending on fan speed.

Asia, welcome to the Forum! Your post is very ok. Two questions:
* Do you know what sort of range of humidity in your room there would be if your units were not running? (As opposed to the outdoors values.)
* Presumably the humidifier and the dehumidifier each have their own individual control units - or do you have some sort of separate common control unit which switches on the one or the other? Hopefully you never find that the two are running simultaneously?
Posted By: asia

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/17/19 01:12 AM

Originally Posted by David-G
Asia, welcome to the Forum! Your post is very ok. Two questions:
* Do you know what sort of range of humidity in your room there would be if your units were not running? (As opposed to the outdoors values.)
* Presumably the humidifier and the dehumidifier each have their own individual control units - or do you have some sort of separate common control unit which switches on the one or the other? Hopefully you never find that the two are running simultaneously?


Thank you.
* Without the units running I've seen 25 to 70% (accurate metering). Major variables are open windows, kitchen cooking, and bathroom showers. My piano room has an open entryway.
* No common control. Humidifier set to turn on at 45%, dehumidifier at 55%. The fans do run simultaneously at times for sensing purposes, but their actual operations (disc evaporator and condensation compressor) don't run simultaneously.
Posted By: gwing

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/17/19 10:04 AM

Nice looking humidifiers?

Yep ... some potted plants.
Posted By: martin snow

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/17/19 02:59 PM

You had mentioned in the original post that you were not interested in a Piano Life Saver System because of multiple instruments in the room and I understand that however it would still be my recommendation to install a DC on the Boston grand one of their attributes is that the DC 'forgets'' about the room and just does its job with the humidistat correctly placed between the beams to maintain year round 42% RH, with this taken care of a less substantial room unit can be installed to monitor the other instruments, I also have a grand and acoustic guitars and a family of wooden recorders for which I use various size 'dampit' units successfully.
Posted By: Lady Bird

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/17/19 09:49 PM

Originally Posted by gwing
Nice looking humidifiers?

Yep ... some potted plants.

You perhaps need quite a few in the room.I had one large one
which I nearly drowned ,tubs of water., But the reading on
the hygrometers never moved.With the wet towels (horrible )
the reading went up to the most about 5degrees.That was fine
for me but.......?

.
Posted By: gwing

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/21/19 02:44 PM

Originally Posted by Lady Bird
Originally Posted by gwing
Nice looking humidifiers?

Yep ... some potted plants.

You perhaps need quite a few in the room.I had one large one
which I nearly drowned ,tubs of water., But the reading on
the hygrometers never moved.With the wet towels (horrible )
the reading went up to the most about 5degrees.That was fine
for me but.......?

.


My reply was a bit of a joke, but ...

Yes, you might need a few, but most rooms have space for quite a few plants if you get creative. House plants love humidity but are usually subjected to the opposite so try something like orchids in small pots inside a really large outer container filled with sphagnum moss kept constantly wet. You'll love it, the orchids will love it, and so will the piano :-)
Posted By: Lady Bird

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/21/19 10:28 PM

Originally Posted by gwing
Originally Posted by Lady Bird
Originally Posted by gwing
Nice looking humidifiers?

Yep ... some potted plants.

You perhaps need quite a few in the room.I had one large one
which I nearly drowned ,tubs of water., But the reading on
the hygrometers never moved.With the wet towels (horrible )
the reading went up to the most about 5degrees.That was fine
for me but.......?

.


My reply was a bit of a joke, but ...

Yes, you might need a few, but most rooms have space for quite a few plants if you get creative. House plants love humidity but are usually subjected to the opposite so try something like orchids in small pots inside a really large outer container filled with sphagnum moss kept constantly wet. You'll love it, the orchids will love it, and so will the piano :-)

Thank you gwing I have an anniversary coming up, so am
just thinking about throwing hints to my husband about another
orchid(I have one already )I do not suppose a humidifier will work
as an anniversary gift ? I am not really sure I need one in Vancouver BC ?
Posted By: One Ohm

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/21/19 10:36 PM

Best investment I ever made for humidity control is the https://www.aprilaire.com/whole-house-products/humidifier/model-800. I had this installed when I moved into my current house about two years ago. The old existing evaporative system could not keep up with the house. The house is fairly large (~6000sqft), so I was impressed when a single unit tied into the AC for the main floor can keep the house (in Colorado) between 30-40% during the extremely dry winters. I highly recommend it.
Posted By: ryannah05

Re: Are there any nice looking humidifiers? - 05/24/19 06:38 PM

Originally Posted by KurtZ
I did some reading* and decided on a cheap Vicks Steamer $15.00, and a stand-alone controller about $35.00 from Amazon.


What controller are you using?
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