BRITA AquaGusto

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

#1: Post by Mystified » Nov 04, 2019, 12:55 pm

Hi, im new here and firstly i would like to thank everyone at home-barista for all the helpful information about this "permitted" vice called coffee.

anyway after a search i noticed that theres no topic about this water tank (softeners/enhancer pills) im interested in getting a BRITA AquaGusto so anyone have tried it? whats your opinion about it?

Thxs

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yakster
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#2: Post by yakster » Nov 04, 2019, 5:26 pm

Searched for the AquaGusto on the Brita.com site and found no results. Tried the Brita.co.uk site and I see results.

Looks like this product is not marketed to the US. I couldn't find much about how it works but it looks like it's a water softener not a water filter since you just pop it in the water tank. The instructions mention decarbonised water which leads me to believe that this is an ion exchange water softener.
When choosing the material for parts that come into contact with water after the BRITA filter system, it is important to remember that, due to the process, decarbonised water contains free carbon dioxide. For this reason, only materials that are compatible with free carbon dioxide must be used.
I don't have any experience with this product.
-Chris

LMWDP # 272

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homeburrero
Team HB

#3: Post by homeburrero » Nov 04, 2019, 7:12 pm

I also have no experience, hopefully someone will weigh in from somewhere outside the US where this filter is available.

It is very poorly documented in the spec sheet, but there are clues in the instruction manual as yakster pointed out.

They do say that it is a decarbonising filter, and they specify the capacity in terms of carbonate hardness, so that tells you that most of the ion exchange will be via WAC resins, which exchange H+ ions for hardness ions, reducing the alkalinity (carbonate hardness) and acidifying the water. This is typical of Brita products. The instructions also say that it may increase potassium, which implies that it also uses some conventional ion exchange resins, exchanging potassium for hardness ions. This is often done to help prevent the water from going too low in alkalinity and becoming too acidic (The SCA water handbook calls this method a 'buffered decarbonizer'). And of course has the usual Brita charcoal for chlorine, taste, and odor.

Hard to say if it's effective enough to truly prevent limescale. If you go for it and have somewhat hard water you could give it a test and report back. Test your tap water with a GH & KH drop titration kit. Then test your reservoir water after sitting overnight with a new filter in the tank, then repeat that test after the filter has been in use for 6 months.

As with any of these in-tank pouch filters, they require contact time to be effective, so it's a good practice to routinely fill your reservoir at the end of the day so that the water for the next day of coffee brewing has had plenty of contact with the filter.

Also, in general, decarbonising (WAC) resin filters are inadvisable if your water is low in alkalinity and high in chloride ion. (see Warning: Chloride & sulfate levels with weak acid cation softeners (e.g., Everpure Claris) )

P.S.
Just for a little optional fun with chemistry, here's how a decarbonizing (WAC) resin filter works:

The resin contains pairs of H⁺ ions that gladly give up their seats for any Ca²⁺ or Mg²⁺ ion. So calcium and magnesium are removed from the water and protons (H⁺ ions) are released into the water, making it more acidic. If you have good alkalinity the H⁺ ions are mostly associated with bicarbonate ions (HCO₃⁻) to form carbonic acid (H₂CO₃).

Carbonic acid is in equilibrium with dissolved carbon dioxide and water:

H₂CO₃ ⇋ CO₂ + H₂O

So you get a net decrease in hardness cations along with a decrease in bicarbonate alkalinity and an increase in dissolved CO₂. In an open reservoir the CO₂ will gradually drop back to equilibrium with atmospheric CO₂ and the pH will come back up a little.
Pat
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

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NelisB

#4: Post by NelisB » Nov 04, 2019, 8:18 pm

How much decrease of TDS can you expect?

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homeburrero
Team HB

#5: Post by homeburrero » replying to NelisB » Nov 05, 2019, 12:34 pm

With a WAC resin you expect to see a decrease in TDS commensurate with the drop in carbonate hardness. With a conventional resin (exchanging sodium or potassium for hardness ions) you don't expect a drop in TDS. This filter is, I think, primarily WAC so I'd expect a drop in TDS and a drop in conductivity that would be measured by a TDS meter. With a typical inexpensive (NaCl calibrated) TDS meter I think the drop in TDS reading would be in the ballpark of the drop in carbonate hardness measured in CaCO3 equivalent ppm.
Pat
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h