21 Oct

Humidifier Maintenance – How Often to Change the Water Panel


It’s that time of year again when we shut the windows and turn on the heating system. While the furnace can make the temperature in your home cozy, it may also make the air feel dry. Luckily, a whole-home humidifier can a great way to maintain proper humidity and ensure complete comfort in your home. 

Pros and Cons of Different Types of Humidifiers

Just like the other components of your heating and cooling system, the humidifier calls for regular maintenance to make sure it is clean, effective, and efficient. One of the most important tasks is replacing the water panel. 

What is the water panel and how does it work?

Also known as an evaporator pad, the water panel is a key part of the humidifier system. The absorbent panel, which looks like a square or rectangle with a honeycomb pattern, holds water that is then picked up by the airflow of the furnace. The moisture is added to the warm at that is distributed to different rooms. This process raises or controls the relative humidity (RH) level. In the winter, the ideal indoor RH level is 40-50%. 

Why does the water panel need to be replaced, and how often?

Most humidifier manufacturers recommend that the water panel be replaced at least once a heating season or year. The panel should be replaced for a few different reasons.

  • First, the air that is being blown through may carry small particles such as dust that can collect in and clog the openings of the water panel.
  • Second, depending on the hardness of your water, mineral deposits or scale may develop on the surface of the panel.
  • Last, but not least, replacing the panel is important for preventing bacteria, virus, or fungus growth that may occur in wet, dark areas.

How to replace the water panel

Here’s the good news – replacing the water panel of the humidifier is usually quick and easy to do yourself. In fact, it’s not much more difficult than replacing the air filter of your furnace, which you should do periodically as well.

Every unit is different, but it can be as simple as removing the cover humidifier, removing the old water panel, placing the new panel in the enclosure, inserting the new panel, and securing everything back up. Be sure to read the instructions that came with your humidifier system, or look them up online on the manufacturer’s website.

Making sure the water panel of your humidifier is fresh and clean is an important step for keeping your home comfortable and healthy all winter long. 

If you think that it may be time to add a humidifier to your home or you need service with an existing unit, call on the experts at Robert B. Payne, Inc. Serving the Fredricksburg area, we are here for all your heating and cooling needs. To schedule an appointment, call us today at 540-373-5876