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Daren

Descaling frequency with water plumbed filter/softener

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Sorry xiuxiuejar don't know answer but would be interested in what type of meter required to test for hardness

 

 

Isn't it just a strip of PH tasting paper?

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There are TDS metres but I have an EC metre which measures conductivity in water. I think I will order a cheap TDS meter though which should cost less than 10 euros.

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There are TDS metres but I have an EC metre which measures conductivity in water. I think I will order a cheap TDS meter though which should cost less than 10 euros.

 

Aren't they all just EC meters? The one I bought turned out to be anyway...

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I'm looking for the easiest solution to run a pipe from under my sink, under my kitchen cupboards behind the kick board and then back up behind by gas oven where it will eventually end up coming out the side of a kitchen unit cupboard.

 

The route it's not the easiest or most accessible. It's about 5 metre from the sink to machine.

 

I think some sort of flexible hose would be my easiest option. I'm not familiar with John Guest stuff. I assume they do something like this as I think rigid pipework would be quite difficult for me in my setup.

You can buy 15mm plastic pipe in rigid lengths OR in flexible coils, the fittings can be tightened by hand.You will need a "T" to come off your water main (under sink) and a shut off valve (for servicing/isolating Cof /Mch and filter.You will also need a 15mm to 3/8 reducer at machine end.You can come off the filter with smaller bore pipe if you wish.

You MUST cut the pipe dead square and insert a ferrule into the pipe before you put the fittings on other wise the joints blow appart !!!!

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Aren't they all just EC meters? The one I bought turned out to be anyway...

 

Can you explain the measurements to me? I get a mS measurement which is not ppm.

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You can buy 15mm plastic pipe in rigid lengths OR in flexible coils, the fittings can be tightened by hand.You will need a "T" to come off your water main (under sink) and a shut off valve (for servicing/isolating Cof /Mch and filter.You will also need a 15mm to 3/8 reducer at machine end.You can come off the filter with smaller bore pipe if you wish.

 

Perfect! That's exactly the information I was after! Thanks El carajillo. The flexible coil is the way forward for me I think.

 

Any suggestions on how I can neatly come through my cupboard and finish with an external fitting to screw my braided flexible hose on to (the hose that goes to my Rocket)? The fitting must meet the wife's cosmetic approval!


Rocket Giotto Evo, Mythos, Torr x 2, Rapha Chris King Tamper (coz they are cool), VST's, Hausgrind, Airgrind, Hario Slim, Chemex, Aeropress, Oomph, Puck Puck, Bialetti, Black Acaia scales, Acia Lunas,fresh beans

Blah Blah Blah - it makes coffee

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Look on I/net at female wall elbow. This is what is used for external taps.you would need a 1/2" male to3/8 male or female depending on coffee M/ch hose.

If you need more info PM me for Tel No

You could clip the pipe to the unit /wall and come straight off the end.

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One other thing to think about, cookers get HOT plastic pipe might not be suitable in close proximity, check around where you intend to run pipe !!!

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Can you explain the measurements to me? I get a mS measurement which is not ppm.

 

I don't know but a quick glance on Google gives me the following:

 

(TDS)ppm = Conductivity µS/cm x 0.64

The final multiplier I think is a conversion for different regions:

0.7 conversion, Australia

0.64 conversion, Europe

0.5 conversion, USA

 

Give that a try and see if the results make any sense, your local water company probably has a rough water hardness measurement for you to compare against.

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EC is the capacity to transmit current. TDS is ions in solution TDS (mg/l =0.5xEC

 

The difficult arrises because the ratio is not consistent as TDS increases the EC varies up to 0.9.

This is why Simon B"s ratios vary in different areas Ie more TDS in water, presumably they take their local average

Hope this helps a little.

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Thanks to you both but unfortunately I'm useless at understanding any of this. I'll just buy one that measures ppm!!! What is an acceptable TDS in ppm? I am also using the Maxtra filters which seem to work fairly well - we only use them for tea and coffee and the Expobar has another filter inside but the typical bottled water here is not very good for the machine's health!

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Thanks to you both but unfortunately I'm useless at understanding any of this. I'll just buy one that measures ppm!!! What is an acceptable TDS in ppm? I am also using the Maxtra filters which seem to work fairly well - we only use them for tea and coffee and the Expobar has another filter inside but the typical bottled water here is not very good for the machine's health!

 

There's some pretty in depth articles on this subject but all that happens if you use hard water is you need to descale more frequently.

 

You could try and go as soft as possible and if you're happy with the taste then you'll rarely have to descale. The water I'm using (Volic with some Brita jug water) comes out about 150 PPM so I'm guessing a descale every 3 months is fine.

 

I do wonder if the TDS measurement can be a little misleading as isn't it only certain minerals we need to be concerned about for the equipment's health and if that's the case potentially you could have slightly harder water that's better than slightly softer depending on its contents (within reason)?

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Daren - For your current set up i.e. tank fed – a water softener is available which fits onto the inlet tube for about £10. It’s the same filter which is found on S24. Once a week or so you will need to pour salt water through it and flush it with fresh water but it works very well.

Test strips are available from places like RS which come with a small chart to check water hardness. The end of the strip changes colour depending on hardness.

Regarding plumbing your machine in, I think the safest thing is for you to run 15mm copper behind your cooker area. Taps are available which go from 15mm copper to 3/8” male which could be fitted at the end of the pipe run. Braded s/steel hoses are also available in different lengths to go from the tap to your machine inlet which I’m assuming is also 3/8”?? These may also be handy when you put a break in the pipework to run the filter inline.

I’m not familiar with the Rocket machine. What sort of pump does it have to allow it to go from tank fed to plumbed in??

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What is considered desirable levels for both hardness and for tds?

 

(Random figures I came across while browsing: Total Hardness of 68 mg/L and Total Dissolved Solids of 150 mg/L)


Mazzer Super Jolly

Aeropress

Gene Cafe Currently Roasting : Costa Rica Tarrazu

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Picked up a cheap tds meter off fleabay and was surprised for £6ish delivered how well the unit performed.

 

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]4328[/ATTACH]

 

0-1 ppm in halfords distilled water found in garage (should read 0)

 

131 ppm local bottled water used in machine (typical claimed 157)

 

255 ppm buxton spring - peak district! (typical claim 280 dry residue)

 

373 ppm tap water (expected as i'm in a very hard water area)

 

I'm going to get a small bottle of volvic and see how this compares to the above. I also want to take a reading from group head once I have re-generated the inline expobar reservoir filter with salt.

 

Appreciate tds does not give specific combined hardness level for calcium/magnesium which I am particularly interested in reducing to a desirable level, but gives a good general comparison between different types of water for my needs.

 

Also gears me up for a potential move to a filtered tap water solution


Mazzer Super Jolly

Aeropress

Gene Cafe Currently Roasting : Costa Rica Tarrazu

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GS11 - can I pop a sample of my Brita filtered round just for interest?

 

I've also got a Rocket filter in my reservoir so I'd be interested to see how it comes out of my grouphead.


Rocket Giotto Evo, Mythos, Torr x 2, Rapha Chris King Tamper (coz they are cool), VST's, Hausgrind, Airgrind, Hario Slim, Chemex, Aeropress, Oomph, Puck Puck, Bialetti, Black Acaia scales, Acia Lunas,fresh beans

Blah Blah Blah - it makes coffee

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GS11 - can I pop a sample of my Brita filtered round just for interest?

 

I've also got a Rocket filter in my reservoir so I'd be interested to see how it comes out of my grouphead.

 

It's a bit late tonight daren, how about tomorrow?


Mazzer Super Jolly

Aeropress

Gene Cafe Currently Roasting : Costa Rica Tarrazu

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Sorry mate... I should have said when (but not tonight).

 

I'll PM you.


Rocket Giotto Evo, Mythos, Torr x 2, Rapha Chris King Tamper (coz they are cool), VST's, Hausgrind, Airgrind, Hario Slim, Chemex, Aeropress, Oomph, Puck Puck, Bialetti, Black Acaia scales, Acia Lunas,fresh beans

Blah Blah Blah - it makes coffee

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Daren, I assume that when you say "Brita" you means the jug with Maxtra filters.

If this is so, in my experience they are quite effective in reducing hardness only for the first week of usage. Effectiveness decreasing during the second week and thereafter it is completely useless. I came to this conclusion by observing the scale buildup in the kettle and, more recently, by checking with a TDS meter. Changing the maxtra filter every two weeks costs approx £60 for a year supply. As far as I can see this is less than the running cost of a larger, in-line filtering system, though still perhaps not as effective. Basically, what I do at the moment is testing the water every time I refill the Rancilio reservoir and if the TDS is above 190 I just put it through the jug again. This only happen towards the end of the second week of cartridge life. By the way, the TDS of my unfiltered tap water is 310 (+/-). I am aiming to descale every quarter as opposed to monthly as I do now.

 

I too use the Brita Maxtra filters and generally keep an eye on the kettle for any signs of scaling (and I do mean the minutest amount) as my signal for a new filter. I get around 4 weeks from a filter but that is only from evening and weekend usage as both me and SWMBO work during the day so usage is lighter. I descale my Silvia every 6-8 weeks and have suffered no ill effects that I can detect.


Rocket Giotto Evo 2, Zenith 65e

 

I know what the problem is now.... it's me !

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I had a shocking eye opener the other day… I popped over to see GS11 to play with his water hardness testing device. I brought some water samples from home and got these horrible results;

 

Water from my tap - 332ppm

Water from my tap Maxtra Brita* filtered - 273ppm

Water from my machines brew head that is Maxtra Brita filtered PLUS Rocket softener/filtered tank sachet - 321ppm

 

What's going on!!

 

*The Brita Maxtra cartridge was new from the day before.

 

I went straight from GS11s and stocked up on Volvic. My machine is now Volvic fed until I plumb in my feed with filter cartridge.

 

 

Thanks Graham for the use of your tester.


Rocket Giotto Evo, Mythos, Torr x 2, Rapha Chris King Tamper (coz they are cool), VST's, Hausgrind, Airgrind, Hario Slim, Chemex, Aeropress, Oomph, Puck Puck, Bialetti, Black Acaia scales, Acia Lunas,fresh beans

Blah Blah Blah - it makes coffee

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In an earlier post Glenn says he doesn't need to descale cos he uses Volvic.

Can we safely assume we never need to descale if we only exclusively use Volvic?


Coffee enema anyone?

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Daren, until you do so, try and use Volvic water. It significantly increases the time between descaling

 

I have not descaled yet (no need to) and have had the machine since May, exclusively using Volvic

 

Taste wise there is an improvement to Brita

 

In an earlier post Glenn says he doesn't need to descale cos he uses Volvic.

Can we safely assume we never need to descale if we only exclusively use Volvic?

 

I think you'll still need to descale using Brita - but just less frequently.... Hence Glenn's use of the word "yet".

 

What is certain is its going to be a MASSIVE improvement on my tap water!


Rocket Giotto Evo, Mythos, Torr x 2, Rapha Chris King Tamper (coz they are cool), VST's, Hausgrind, Airgrind, Hario Slim, Chemex, Aeropress, Oomph, Puck Puck, Bialetti, Black Acaia scales, Acia Lunas,fresh beans

Blah Blah Blah - it makes coffee

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Gotcha. So what kind of frequency would we be looking at with Volvic would you say?

May to November is 6 months, so a year??


Coffee enema anyone?

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I had a shocking eye opener the other day… I popped over to see GS11 to play with his water hardness testing device. I brought some water samples from home and got these horrible results;

 

Water from my tap - 332ppm

Water from my tap Maxtra Brita* filtered - 273ppm

Water from my machines brew head that is Maxtra Brita filtered PLUS Rocket softener/filtered tank sachet - 321ppm

 

What's going on!!

 

Just ran a test for you:

 

Volvic 90

Tap water 280

Tap water in Brita jug 193

Tank 128

Group head 147

Group head at temp 250

 

These numbers might not be quite correct as the TDS meter changes depending on the temperature of the water but I tried to get them down to room temperature with the exception of the water from the group head with the machine heated up.

 

It seems unlikely that the Rocket softener is increasing the hardness (as far as I understand it, it's the same as the Brita filter) so I'd guess either you had a dirty group head or there's something else inside your machine causing that increase. Double check your numbers if you can and if they remain that high perhaps it's time for a descale?

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Just ran a test for you:

 

Volvic 90

Tap water 280

Tap water in Brita jug 193

Tank 128

Group head 147

Group head at temp 250

 

These numbers might not be quite correct as the TDS meter changes depending on the temperature of the water but I tried to get them down to room temperature with the exception of the water from the group head with the machine heated up.

 

It seems unlikely that the Rocket softener is increasing the hardness (as far as I understand it, it's the same as the Brita filter) so I'd guess either you had a dirty group head or there's something else inside your machine causing that increase. Double check your numbers if you can and if they remain that high perhaps it's time for a descale?

 

Cheers simonb for posting your results.

 

I was interested in running a tds test on volvic in comparison to the other waters tested, and 90 tds is a very good result.

 

Volvic's tds also gives a good benchmark to aim for if using a filtered tap water system, particularly with adjustable manual bypass, i.e. some of the purity / claris systems

 

Agree group head results are likely to include additional solids:)


Mazzer Super Jolly

Aeropress

Gene Cafe Currently Roasting : Costa Rica Tarrazu

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