Water treatment versus descaling your espresso machine

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

#1: Post by karamba »

dslambo wrote:Hi All.
See the disgusting lack of care that is in my steam boiler...
-Dave
You may see it as a disgusting lack of care others can see it as a wise decision.
What is better:
  • Disassemble the machine and thoroughly descale the components individually or have it professionally descaled once in 11 years.
  • Run some acid through the system every two-three months.
  • Buy $15 per pop in tank water treatment.
  • Install RO system, replace filters every 6 months (and flood your kitchen at least once in those 11 years).

...split from On the fence about descaling your espresso machine? by moderator...

Jeff

#2: Post by Jeff »

Regrettably, your list is woefully incomplete. I don't mind if you make a decision that adversely impacts your machine, as long as you don't post here for resolution. I do mind if your incomplete list leads others into problems.

DI/distilled water is available here in the US for around $1 per gallon pre-bottled, and significantly less than that in bulk at grocery stores and the like. Simple additions of things as inexpensive and readily available as baking soda result in non-scaling water that is generally felt appropriate for espresso machines.

karamba

#3: Post by karamba »

OK, Let me add your two solutions to the list:
  • Include distilled water in your grocery shopping list if you do not mind to taste lackluster coffee and not working electronic sensor. You may also prematurely ruin your machine due to excessive metal parts deterioration. Unlike scale this damage is irreversible.
  • Every time you add water to your machine water tank make sure to add baking soda to the water so it feels sleeker ( but does not actually soften the water ). Drink it !

Jeff

#4: Post by Jeff »

For the interested reader, there are various "recipes" for water that are simple and use readily available, inexpensive (under $10 for a huge supply) ingredients. There are also pre-packaged options available.

I also did not, nor do I recommend DI/distilled water for direct use.

There are also some widely available bottled waters that are considered generally safe for use in espresso machines and are "non-scaling".

karamba

#5: Post by karamba »

I find it hard to believe that RO water would damage the heating element in just 6 months. Mine worked two year on regular rather hard water but infrequent use - one double every morning and gave up one day before the warranty expired.
I do think they produce crappy heating elements these days. The replacement I got from Chris Coffee has obvious signs of manufacturing defect two deep dents on the surface that I attribute to the manufacturing process. I will see how long it lasts.


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yakster
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#6: Post by yakster »

Hard water is usually more alkaline while RO water is acidic and corrosive.
-Chris

LMWDP # 272

Pablo Gutierrez

#7: Post by Pablo Gutierrez »

karamba wrote:I find it hard to believe my pizzeria toulouse oven would damage the heating element in just 6 months. Mine worked two year on regular rather hard water but infrequent use - one double every morning and gave up one day before the warranty expired.
I do think they produce crappy heating elements these days. The replacement I got from Chris Coffee has obvious signs of manufacturing defect two deep dents on the surface that I attribute to the manufacturing process. I will see how long it lasts.


...merged from Yes, pure RO water can damage your espresso machine by moderator...
You are really unlucky. Except one day, it's a shame.