Bottled water - what's my best choice?

Want to talk espresso but not sure which forum? If so, this is the right one.
HBchris
Posts: 128
Joined: Nov 20, 2015, 7:39 pm

Postby HBchris » Sep 24, 2016, 9:40 pm

Ideally im looking for a bottled water that wont cause any scale or have corrosion issues, that will still make good espresso.

The machine would be for an upcoming slayer, so stainless steel boilers (left in powersave mode for about 22 hours a day at 100 degrees F and steam boiler i believe at 0.1 bar)


Here are my choices, which are very convenient to have delivered, with the water analysis specs:

Nestle Pure Life
http://www.nestle-watersna.com/asset-li ... pl_eng.pdf


Gerber Pure Water:
https://www.gerber.com/docs/default-sou ... f?sfvrsn=2


Poland Springs (page 17):
https://www.nestle-watersna.com/asset-l ... PS_ENG.pdf


I have been using Poland springs with my current breville dual boiler, but have found it to be a bit inconsistent ( i have gotten batches where sometimes it had TDS of 65, 47, and 27).


I do notice that the above waters are on the lower side of alkalinity, not sure if this should be a concern? Is there a recommended easy way to boost alkalinity by say 10ppm in a 1 gallon jug without having a negative affect of the taste of the water. (baking soda?, ph booster?)



appreciate any help

TheCastanza
Posts: 31
Joined: Mar 11, 2016, 12:50 pm

Postby TheCastanza » Sep 24, 2016, 10:09 pm

I use the pure life with good results in my vetrano

User avatar
homeburrero
Team HB
Posts: 1874
Joined: Jun 14, 2011, 10:54 pm

Postby homeburrero » Sep 24, 2016, 11:12 pm

HBchris wrote: Is there a recommended easy way to boost alkalinity by say 10ppm in a 1 gallon jug without having a negative affect of the taste of the water. (baking soda?, ph booster?)


You can make a concentrated sodium bicarb solution by adding 16 grams of baking soda to a gallon of water. Then add 1 tablespoon of this concentrate to 1 gallon of your bottled water and you will get a 10 mg/l (as CaCO3) alkalinity bump. Two tablespoons for a 20 mg/l bump, etc.

If you wanted to use potassium bicarbonate instead of baking soda, you would add 19 grams rather than 16 grams.


Showing the math:
for increase of 10 mg/l alkalinity (as CaCO3) :
divide by 50 ( conversion factor for CaCO3 to mmol for a univalent salt like bicarbonate)
= 0.2 mmol/l bicarbonate

For baking soda (NaHCO3) multiply by molar mass of 84 mg/mmol
= 16.8 mg/l of baking soda
x 3.78 liter/gallon
= 63.5 mg/gallon (baking soda per gallon of water)

It's hard to weigh out 63 mg, so you need a concentrate.

Assume you will add just 1 tablespoon of concentrate to a gallon.
There are 256 tablespoons in a US gallon, and 63.5 mg x 256 = 16256mg = 16.256 gram. So you can make your concentrate by adding 16 grams of baking soda to 1 gallon of water. Then add just 1 tablespoon of this per gallon of your soft water and you will get your 10 mg/l (as CaCO3) alkalinity bump.
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

HBchris
Posts: 128
Joined: Nov 20, 2015, 7:39 pm

Postby HBchris » Sep 24, 2016, 11:59 pm

homeburrero wrote:You can make a concentrated sodium bicarb solution by adding 16 grams of baking soda to a gallon of water. Then add 1 tablespoon of this concentrate to 1 gallon of your bottled water and you will get a 10 mg/l (as CaCO3) alkalinity bump. Two tablespoons for a 20 mg/l bump, etc.

If you wanted to use potassium bicarbonate instead of baking soda, you would add 19 grams rather than 16 grams.


this is great, thanks!

some quick follow up questions:

When making the concentrate, you use distilled water or probably doesnt matter to use the same type of water?

is there a preference of using sodium bicarbonate vs. potassium bicarbonate?

when i bump the alkalinity, does this also increase its PH? And would this increase hardness (caCo3)? I would assume TDS goes up by the same amount i bumped alkalinity?

User avatar
homeburrero
Team HB
Posts: 1874
Joined: Jun 14, 2011, 10:54 pm

Postby homeburrero » Sep 25, 2016, 2:34 am

HBchris wrote:When making the concentrate, you use distilled water or probably doesnt matter to use the same type of water?
Normally you use distilled to make water, but in this case It's so concentrated that you could use your softish bottled water and it won't make a difference.

HBchris wrote:is there a preference of using sodium bicarbonate vs. potassium bicarbonate?
Either will work. Sodium bicarb is readily available, but there are arguments that if you are adding much, potassium might be better. Professor Pavlis (rpavlis) often points out the fact that coffee beans are naturally very high in potassium but lower in sodium content, so by using potassium you are going with a cation that's already there in abundance. You can order it online or find it in a specialty baking or winemaking shop.

HBchris wrote:when i bump the alkalinity, does this also increase its PH? And would this increase hardness (caCo3)? I would assume TDS goes up by the same amount i bumped alkalinity?
pH goes up a little with the alkalinity bump, but hardness will stay the same since you aren't adding any calcium or magnesium. Your TDS meter measurement would increase by maybe 6 ppm for every 10 ppm bump in alkalinity. (Potassium and sodium bicarbonate solutions are less conductive than sodium chloride, and most TDS meters are calibrated against sodium chloride.)
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

HBchris
Posts: 128
Joined: Nov 20, 2015, 7:39 pm

Postby HBchris » Sep 25, 2016, 12:53 pm

thanks.

Do you have any preference in terms of the bottled water choices I listed. And would you recommend boosting the alkalinity and by how much.

appreciated

User avatar
homeburrero
Team HB
Posts: 1874
Joined: Jun 14, 2011, 10:54 pm

Postby homeburrero » Sep 25, 2016, 1:48 pm

HBchris wrote:Do you have any preference in terms of the bottled water choices I listed. And would you recommend boosting the alkalinity and by how much.

It's pretty much a tossup. The reformulated waters (Nestle, Gerber) are probably less variable than Poland, and between those two the Gerber has slightly better hardness (i.e. closer to SCAA/SCAE ideal.) But I'd probably favor the Nestle because of it having slightly less chloride. Neither are high, but the Nestle, at 8.9 - 18 ppm would put you within the Synesso advice (the most conservative out there - 15 ppm or less), while the Gerber at 17-25 ppm would be borderline above. Both are within the La Marzocco chloride recommendation of 30 ppm max, and since you will be bumping your alkalinity the chloride difference is not as big a concern as it might be in low alkalinity water.

I'd bump it up enough reach an alkalinity of about 50 ppm. That should settle down to a pH of 7.0 - 7.1 after a day or two of open exposure to air, and is nicely within most recommendations (see Good references on water treatment for coffee/espresso .)
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

Capitol
Posts: 39
Joined: Dec 10, 2013, 3:31 pm

Postby Capitol » Sep 25, 2016, 6:23 pm

La Marzocco Home had a blog post about water quality a while back and recommended Crystal Geyser, Poland Springs, and Acqua Panna.

http://home.lamarzoccousa.com/water-for-home-espresso/

I've been using exclusively Crystal Geyser bottled water that comes from the Weed, CA plant in my GS/3 since it was new 14 months ago. My tech and I just opened up the grouphead last week to replace the o-rings and it was completely clean and scale free. He even commented on how clean it was, and he is MUCH more experienced in scale and water quality issues than I. The level prove in the steam boiler was also completely clean and scale free. I typically leave my machine on 24/7, so I'd say that speaks to the quality of Crystal Geyser water from the Weed, CA source. They also have an annual water quality report on their website (links to individual sources are under the 2nd FAQ question.)

http://www.crystalgeyserasw.com/faq.html

If it's feasible for you to use Crystal Geyser water, it might be worth a look.

Good luck!

boldstep
Posts: 18
Joined: Aug 01, 2016, 8:22 am

Postby boldstep » Sep 25, 2016, 7:40 pm

I went through tasting the impact of a number of commercial waters on shot taste. Acqua Panna is the best I've found by far.

HBchris
Posts: 128
Joined: Nov 20, 2015, 7:39 pm

Postby HBchris » Sep 28, 2016, 7:26 pm

thanks for all the replies.

I got in some nestle pure life water, will also get in some gerber pure to test. I also will test a a few times over the coming weeks to see which remains consistent.

I just ordered some Potassium Bicarbonate:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BP ... UTF8&psc=1

I want to confirm this is correct:
I will be making my concentrate (by adding 19 grams to 1 gallon water as suggested).
Then adding 15 grams (1 tablespoon) of concentrate to 1 gallon of water, for a 10ppm alkalinity bump.

?


my first testing of the nestle was (without adding alkalinity):

TDS: 59

using API test kit:
GH: 3 drops (instructions says 0-3 drops = 50ppm)
KH: 1-2 drops (instructions says 0-3 drops = 50ppm) (says drops to turn from blue to yellow, but it starts off a faint green after 1 drop, so might be barely over 1 drop, but it does take 2 drops to fully turn yellow)

using hach hardness kit:
3 drops = 3 gpg


based on this I am not sure how much to bump alkalinity. As it could be the alkalinity could be anywhere from 17-34. Would you think to bump alkalinity by 25 ppm?

would alkalinity at 50 ppm and hardness at 50, be any issue in terms of scale accumulation in the brew or steam boiler. Also if the alkalinity was slightly above 50 would this pose an issue for scale or otherwise. Or because the alkalinity i am adding is by way of potassium bicarbonate this wouldnt have any scale impact?

Does having additional alkalinity improve extraction at all. For example if you compared two waters with 50ppm hardness and one had 15 alkalinity and one had 50?