Boiling to Reduce Water Hardness?

Water analysis, treatment, and mineral recipes for optimum taste and equipment health.
MSV

#1: Post by MSV »

Might someone advise what i am doing incorrectly. I live in an area with consistent high hardness, approx 177 as measured by Hach 5B. I tried boiling and pouring off to retest but didn't get any reduction hardness. Did i need to boil for an extended period of time? My understanding is that if there is at least even modest alkalinity, i would get some reduction in hardness, no ?

Thanks for setting me straight :-)

Nunas
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#2: Post by Nunas »

Boiling won't reduce hardness. Heating to a boil then immediately filtering will reduce some hardness, called temporary hardness. I'm not a chemist, so I can't explain why this works...something to do with changing the solubility when heated. IMO, you're better off starting with distilled or RO water and adding in hardness (baking soda) to suit your taste buds.

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homeburrero
Team HB

#3: Post by homeburrero »

Boil it for 15 - 20 minutes, then filter it to remove precipitate, and let it finish cooling to room temp before titrating. The max expected drop in hardness would be the lesser of the measures for calcium hardness and for alkalinity, both quantified in the same units of chemical equivalence (e.g., CaCO3 equivalents).
Pat
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

MSV (original poster)

#4: Post by MSV (original poster) »

Mahalo for the help. I had a rolling boil going for at least 10 minutes but did not filter the pour-off. If I may follow-up...

1) Would filtering hot with a paper coffee filter suffice for the suspended scale ?

2) I've been using RPavlis water with my new setup at .4g KHCO3 / gallon distilled to avoid corrosion but find it unsatisfactory for my espresso tastes. I thought to mix in some charcoal filtered tap and assume that the 177 mg/l hardness i measure from the hach test kit is at least 150 mg/l permanent. If i increase to .8g KHCO3 / gallon distilled and add 1 gallon of my tap, would i come close to Jim Schulman's 90/50 ? I realize that w/o a water analysis, i have no idea of the breakdown of the other dissolved solids like Na, Cl, and SO4 but thought to try for taste either way.

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homeburrero
Team HB

#5: Post by homeburrero »

MSV wrote:1) Would filtering hot with a paper coffee filter suffice for the suspended scale ?
I can't say if I know. They are less uniform and have a much larger pore size than the filters that a lab would use to separate suspended from dissolved solids.

MSV wrote:If i increase to .8g KHCO3 / gallon distilled and add 1 gallon of my tap, would i come close to Jim Schulman's 90/50 ? I realize that w/o a water analysis, i have no idea of the breakdown of the other dissolved solids like Na, Cl, and SO4 but thought to try for taste either way.
Your tap water, with 177 mg/L GH, likely contains over 100 mg/L alkalinity, so to get to 90:50 your best bet is probably to just dilute the charcoal filtered tap with distilled with no added KHCO3 at all. You could check that with a Hach AL-AP or even an inexpensive API fishcare KH drop titration kit to see if you're coming out in the 50 mg/L ballpark.

P.S.
If you do drop test measurements for both GH and for alkalinity (KH), your 'temporary hardness' is the lesser of the two measures, which in natural unsoftened water is almost always the alkalinity. 'Permanent hardness' would be the difference between the two if your GH is the highest.
Pat
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MSV (original poster)

#6: Post by MSV (original poster) »

Thank you Pat. Ordered the alkalinity test kit.