San Francisco water options / Larq pitcher - Page 2

Water analysis, treatment, and mineral recipes for optimum taste and equipment health.
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Paris92 (original poster)
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#11: Post by Paris92 (original poster) »

homeburrero wrote:I would not recommend the BWT Bestsave for SFPUC water mostly because the alkalinity is already on the low side and the WAC resins in that filter will tend to reduce that even lower. If you wanted some double insurance against limescale you could use a conventional softener pouch like the Bilt/Oscar/Rocket pouch filter. It's just a conventional softening resin that would reduce hardness minerals, and would not reduce the pH nor the alkalinity. It would do no harm, and reduce limescale risk if your utility does periodically switch over from Hetch Hetchy to harder water sources. Of course you'd still want to charcoal or carbon filter the water to remove chlorine and chloramine before adding it to the reservoir. A refrigerator filter will do that, as would your Larq pitcher filter.

That would work also. You can't specifically order or purchase CG from Mt. Shasta (aka Weed CA) - - you have to check the fine print on the bottle to verify that it's from that source.
Very helpful, and appreciated. So it looks like, my LARQ pitcher water and the BILT/Oscar/Rocket pouch filter in the reservoir would do the trick.

Will the proprietary ion exchange resins in the LARQ (mentioned above that I "don't need") cause any detrimental issues with the machine over time?

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homeburrero
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#12: Post by homeburrero »

Paris92 wrote:Will the proprietary ion exchange resins in the LARQ (mentioned above that I "don't need") cause any detrimental issues with the machine over time?
They say very little, other than that it's 'plant based'. Their FAQ does make this claim: " ... the LARQ Filter does not change the pH of the water." which is a good indication that it does NOT have the problematic decarbonizing (WAC) resin that you find in many pitcher filters. Given that, I think you'll be fine sticking with the Larq. They do have an online performance data sheet, but it has nothing useful about calcium, magnesium, or bicarbonate.

For the pouch softener, it will be most effective in removing hardness ions if you make a habit of filling the reservoir at the end of the day. That gives you longer contact time with the freshly added water. It will replace calcium and magnesium ions with an equivalent amount of sodium ions.
Pat
nínádiishʼnahgo gohwééh náshdlį́į́h

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Paris92 (original poster)
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#13: Post by Paris92 (original poster) »

homeburrero wrote:For the pouch softener, it will be most effective in removing hardness ions if you make a habit of filling the reservoir at the end of the day. That gives you longer contact time with the freshly added water. It will replace calcium and magnesium ions with an equivalent amount of sodium ions.
This was going to be my plan. Fill at night. So that should work. Thanks again. Extremely helpful.

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Paris92 (original poster)
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#14: Post by Paris92 (original poster) »

OK, so I am two months in now. Using an Oscar pouch in the reservoir, refilling with filtered water from a Larq pitcher. As the water level drops, I am noticing a slight white residue on the sides of the plastic reservoir. Is this normal?

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homeburrero
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#15: Post by homeburrero »

Paris92 wrote:As the water level drops, I am noticing a slight white residue on the sides of the plastic reservoir. Is this normal?
Not normal, and if it's slimy it might be some sort of water mold or biofilm growing on the sides of the reservoir. If so the solution is to regularly clean the reservoir with detergent and perhaps a little diluted bleach, then rinse well.
Pat
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Paris92 (original poster)
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#16: Post by Paris92 (original poster) replying to homeburrero »

It is kind of a dry powder...

bonjing
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#17: Post by bonjing »

Did you happen to rinse the pouch well?

I'm using Brita and oscar, I leave my oscar in for the 6 months and have not seen any film build up. The bwt I tried did cause a mold growth on the pouch.

Edit:

I didn't see that you had the pouch in the reservoir. But I'm on Bay Area water too, I have/had a pouch in both my brita and reservoir (1 pouch in each at the same time) and no film or powdered residue. If you have a powder residue I might be worried about it going into the system.

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Paris92 (original poster)
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#18: Post by Paris92 (original poster) replying to bonjing »

For some reason, it only was evident that one time. Very strange. Have not seen it since.

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#19: Post by Paris92 (original poster) »

So, I can not seem to shake producing bitter espresso, no matter what I try. 90% of the time my shots are bitter. I thought the only variable that I have not tinkered with over time is the water.

I use a LARQ filter pitcher with San Francisco tap water. Today, my Oscar pouch is four months old (changed it out for a new pouch today after I did the water testing.)

Using a new TDS meter, this is what I found out today, taking four (4) readings each over a ten minute time period.

Water from kitchen sink faucet: 101 ppm (consistent all four times)

Water poured from LARQ pitcher: 89-96 ppm during different readings

Water taken from ECM water tank reservoir (with Oscar pouch): 89 ppm (consistent)

Water from brew boiler (out of the brew group): 179 ppm down to 89 ppm as water cooled off

Water from steam boiler (out of the hot water wand)*: 350 ppm down to 249 ppm as the water cooled off

* I purge a cup of water out of the steam boiler via the hot water wand once a week, but held off doing that this week for this test.

I also checked the hardness of the water using paper test strips.

- From kitchen faucet: Soft. Between 0-50 ppm (between green and brown on the strip)

- From the LARQ pitcher: Soft. Between 0-50 ppm (between green and brown on the strip)


Is the fact that the ppm changed as the water cooled a sign of anything? Normal? Or is it the sign of a bad TDS meter?

Best way to interpret these findings?

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yakster
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#20: Post by yakster »

My understanding is that even with temperature compensated TDS meters you should measure the TDS at room temperature. I don't think the temperature compensation helps over a wide range of temperatures.
-Chris

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