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Thread: Water Filters

  1. #1
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    Water Filters

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Whats the best 2 stage water filter?

    I want to buy a water filter that uses easily obtainable non-propriety cartridges.

    Later on I plan to use the same filter system to plumb into a commercial type machine but for now it will supply a small tap on the sink.

    Any suggestions?

  2. #2
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    Re: Water Filters

    On water filters:
    Later in the week I will add some detailed info about filters.
    However, in the meantime, I saw crypto mentioned. Here is a small piece from a project I am working on about coffee, water and so on.
    "Cryptosporidium and Giardia (Parasites) Can be found in water supplies and will not necessarily be killed in the espresso machine boiler or heat exchange unit. These parasites vary in size between 3 and 15 microns. One micron is 1/1000 mm. They can be removed by mechanical filtration. Either a sediment filter or a carbon block style filter with a rating of 0.5 micron should remove these parasites".

    However, to be absolutely sure about removing these cysts, a 0.5 micron absolute cartridge is reccommended. Most cartridges sold in plumbing outlets etc have a nominal micron rating. There is a big difference between nominal and absolute. Also there is a big difference in the price.

    An espresso machine boiler, might not necessarily kill cysts. I believe that cysts can take 30 plus minutes of constant boiling to kill.

    HV-MAN what area are you in. I can reccommend filter experts in NSW and QLD.

    JD

  3. #3
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    Re: Water Filters

    Some general info on filters: This info is copryight and taken from a project I am working on. I have permission to reproduce this material. I will add some more over the coming days. JD

    Mechanical filters
    Used to trap sediment and particles such as dirt, rust and sand. Usually used in combination with other types of media, typically as a pre-filter in multi-stage systems. Mechanical filtration is an effective method of removing Cryptosporidium and Giardia Cysts.
    Activated carbon
    The most common method of treatment for the reduction of chlorine, tastes and odours.
    Water softeners
    For the removal of hardness from the water and used when there is a high level of calcium and magnesium compounds in the water. Hardness can be measured. Contact your water treatment specialist.
    Ultra violet (UV)
    Generally used as a disinfection method where there is a suspected bacteria problem. UV systems are generally used as part of a water treatment system. Can be used as part of a system to treat questionable tank water.
    Scale inhibitors
    Scale inhibitors are a slow-dissolving, tasteless and odourless food-grade phosphate. They can control corrosion and the accumulation of lime/scale in water systems. As they dissolve they form a thin protective layer on the metal surfaces they contact. The media will continue to dissolve regardless of the amount of water used. The protective coating is not permanent and will only protect the equipment against corrosion and scale build-up whilst present in the water. It is important to change these cartridges at six month intervals or as instructed. Of note, the scale inhibitor does not remove hardness; it helps to prevent the formation of scale in the water. It is not recommended to install this filter media near heat sources as its life will be reduced. A suggested flow rate for this type of cartridge is up to four litres per minute.

  4. #4
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    Re: Water Filters

    Why not go and just buy a big ol jug of distilled water instead?

    Phil

  5. #5
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    Re: Water Filters

    I found that the RO (reverse osmosis) filtered water changed the taste of the coffee. We use one of those teracota Stefani drip Filters. Not the best filters by all accounts but ther is certainly a taste is alot better than what comes out of the tap.

    Christchurchs tap water in New Zealand is filtered by 50 miles of shingle and makes great espresso ;D

    Cheers
    Rich

  6. #6
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    Re: Water Filters

    Jim Schulman on alt.coffee wrote up a huge water FAQ which can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/4xbwn well worth a read. From memory RO can produce water that is too soft for good tasting espresso.

  7. #7
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    Re: Water Filters

    RO Water is also not reccommended due to its low level of conductivity and might interfer with readings from water level probe.
    RO water is also agressive and can have an adverse effect on metalic parts eg copper boilers, copper tubing, heating elements etc.
    JD

  8. #8
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    Re: Water Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by GR8WineandCoffee link=1100413664/0#3 date=1100429986
    On water filters:
    HV-MAN what area are you in. I can reccommend filter experts in NSW and QLD.
    JD
    Thanks

    I live @ Forest Lake in Brisbane.

    Thanks for the info, please keep it coming etc.




  9. #9
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    Re: Water Filters

    Water Treatment Specialists
    Find below a contact for water treatment systems.
    They are long standing specialists in the industry and had involvement in the writing of Standards for Water Treatment Systems back in the early 90s.

    QLD: Aquacure Water Treatment. Ross Tilley or Alena Hall
    Tel: 07 3846 7440
    Email: ross@aquacure.com.au

    When contacting please mention CoffeeSnobs

    JD

  10. #10
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    Re: Water Filters

    A bit more general info on Water Treatment. I know some of it may be obvious. However, as it is a lift from a project I am working on I have left it as it is to be printed. The material is copyright and *is reproduced with permission.

    Water and Espresso

    The integrity and performance of your espresso coffee machine can be compromised by poor quality feed water. This can lead to undesirable tastes in the espresso coffee; an accumulation of scale, corrosion and unscheduled, unnecessary and costly service to your equipment. What type of things are we talking about? Sediment, chloramines, hardness, organic tastes and so on. Water is a universal solvent and picks up something from everything it touches.
    The feed water chemistry can vary significantly from area to area and can have a marked effect on the quality of the finished espresso. City water, town water, tank water, bore water and so on, will vary. They’ll have their own specific problems and may need different forms of treatment.

    Previously I mentioned, Some Common Types of Water Treatment. Following on:

    Typical water quality problems

    Taste and Odour
    Generally caused by chloramines and other dissolved organics in the feed water.

    Water Hardness
    Due to the level of dissolved calcium and magnesium compounds in the feed supply. When water is heated as in the espresso machine boiler, these minerals can form scale which may reduce the heating efficiency of the boiler element. Scale can also accumulate in pipes and on valve seats leading to unscheduled maintenance and also greatly reducing the efficiency of the espresso machine.

    Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)
    TDS in excess of 300mg/litre can cause scale build-up and will reduce the thermal efficiency of the espresso coffee machine.

    Cryptosporidium and Giardia (Parasites)
    Can be found in water supplies and will not necessarily be killed in the espresso machine boiler or heat exchange unit. These parasites vary in size between 3 and 15 microns. One micron is 1/1000 mm. They can be removed by mechanical filtration. Either a sediment filter or a carbon block style filter with a rating of 0.5 micron should remove these parasites. However, if you have any specific concerns, contact your water treatment specialist.

    Other Water Quality Concerns

    Unfiltered Water
    When using unfiltered water, apart from the poor taste of the water, other concerns for the espresso machine are as follows: premature maintenance, problems with the pump, boiler, heating element/s, thermostat/s, water level probe/s, hot water valves and seats, steam valves and seats, water metering devices, solenoids, group heads and so on.

    Water Hardness
    In areas where the water supply is very hard due to dissolved calcium and magnesium compounds, it would be advisable to install a water softener at the water supply point of entry of the establishment. This would give the added advantage of protecting all equipment and appliances connected to the water supply, for example, espresso machine, ice machine, post mix, hot water system and dishwasher. It may be necessary to also fit a sediment filter before the softener to protect it from contamination and from blocking the injectors. A carbon filter should then be installed before the espresso machine, post mix and ice maker to remove objectionable tastes and odours.
    A typical water softener uses ‘ion exchange’ to remove the hardness from the water. As the water passes through the bed of ion exchange resin, which is charged with sodium ions, the calcium and magnesium (hardness) are attracted to the resin and retained. At the same time an exchange takes place and an equivalent amount of sodium is released into the water. As the ion exchange resin becomes exhausted (no longer supplying softened water), then, the resin bed needs to be regenerated. Consult your water treatment specialist for specific requirements.

    Tank and Reverse Osmosis (RO) Water
    These types of water shouldn’t be used with espresso coffee machines due to their low level of conductivity. Tank and RO water may cause problems with the water level probe readings. If using tank water, it would be advisable to consult your water treatment specialist as it may be necessary to add calcite to raise the pH and conductivity levels. Due to the low TDS levels these types of water are corrosive and any copper or brass machine parts may corrode prematurely.

    JD

    PS

    Earlier on a mention was made to use Distilled Water. This water is not reccommended for use in espresso machines it could be more corrosive than RO water and could lead to premature maintenance problems with your "most cherished asset".

  11. #11
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    Re: Water Filters

    Hi GR8WineandCoffee,

    Thanks for your informative post. Do you have any references or reasons why distilled water would be more corrosive? I know that most clothes iron manufacturers recommend its use, as do lead-acid battery makers.

    Regards,
    Phil

  12. #12
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    Re: Water Filters

    Phil
    You can use it but there is the chance that it may cause corrosion to any copper or brass parts. How long will this take, I could not tell you.
    I do not profess to be an expert with distilled water (DI). From what I can recall, DI water is not normally reccomended to drink except on medical advice. I know that some persons with allergies drink it.
    From what I understand, the distillation process, produces a water that has low TDS. This type of water has its uses ie in irons, car batteries etc. It is considered to be agressive similar to de-mineralised (or RO) water.
    In irons it is used to prevent scale build up. Most irons have a plastic storage tank.
    It is needed in batteries to start and and maintain the cathodic reaction. The distilled water aids the corrosion process of the plates and produces the acid required to keep the battery charged. The resultant product is low in pH and aids electrical conductivity. If regular tap water is used, then the plates could become coated with the impurities from the water and the life of the battery could be reduced. (anyone correct me on this if I am not right).
    However when used in say an espresso machine it would have low conductivity and could interfer with water level probe readings, and as said previously, cause corrosion.
    JD


  13. #13
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    Re: Water Filters

    JD thanks for putting me onto Ross from aquacure here in Bris.
    I had a good chat with him this afternoon, he certainly knows his stuff.
    He said he would also give a discount for coffee snob members ;D.
    Im trying to get over to his store this week or earily next to pickup a system.
    He has suggested a twin filter system with a 5 micron polyspun filter + 0.5 micron carbon block filter. off to a tap on the sink.
    When I get around to plumbing in my future espresso machine he suggests installing an inline water softener to supply the machine as the water in Bris is reasonably hard.

  14. #14
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    Re: Water Filters OT

    Great to see forum members getting some good deals through the contacts they have made on CS. :D

    Rich

  15. #15
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    Re: Water Filters who needs one!

    the image below is what was lurking in the boiler of my Cimabli Junior. It should be noted water extracted from the boiler normally was crystal clear but this layer of mud was happily sitting on the bottom. Fortunately there was no scale present. The dead heating element forms the backdrop.

    this is a heat exchanger machine and the boiler supplies steam and hot water but not water for the group




  16. #16
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    Re: Water Filters

    Mauricem
    I think I can better that.
    One of my first purchases was a commercial espresso machines, a two group lever model (way back when ?). The water from the bolier was fairly ordinary and murky.
    I decided to clean out the boiler. Took the end plate off and found the best part of 3-4 inches of muck PLUS 3/4 of a house brick (Bob Car would have been happy) PLUS the remains of two old elements.
    I purchased this machine from a cafe in Bondi. This machine was actually in service.
    I remember taking some photos, must try and find them.
    Much of the muck you found can be eliminated by filtration.
    JD

  17. #17
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    Re: Water Filters

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    Hmmmmmmm sounds like you found your first brick to build your new house out of....., Clay is supposed to be very high in nutrients and seeming the bricks are made from clay, I would presume the Cafe was trying to give its customers a little something extra, free of course.

    In relation to filtering, I was told once that a few bugs in your diet aree actually good for you as it builds up the bodys imuinity to other bugs, but I do agree that there are some bugs we just do not want. But we cant all live in a plastic bubble. ;)
    I had a laugh ;D

    FB



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