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Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
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JerDGold
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 8:56am
Subject: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

My water is horrible.  Not only does it taste terrible, but is super hard.  What do people use for water filters to keep their equipment clean and their coffee delicious?
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emradguy
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 10:02am
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

I use the filter that's in my refrigerator.  It's made by Pur.  I've tasted water from the ZeroWater filter, and it's very clean. You fill it from your tap and then store it in your refrigerator.  periodically, you test the water with their special device and change the filter when indicated.

What you choose to do depends a lot on how much work you want to do and how much money you want to spend. A couple hundred bucks will get you a nice undercounter setup. The Zerowater pitcher is something like $50 (iirc).  Short of filtering the water for your entire house, you could go as elaborate as installing an in series filter system under your sink (check out Chris' Coffee Service or Espressoparts for starters) along with a tap coming out of the counter (you can get a whole kit at Lowe's or Home Depot), or as simple as the ZeroWater pitcher mentioned above. I don't think the Brita pitcher does much to change water hardness/mineral content.  Given my test results with the Pur refrigerator cartridge, I suspect their pitcher might work, but I don't really know if they use the same technology in it or if it does anything more than the Brita one.

In any case, I highly recommend buying a water test kit that reads by GH and KH from an aquarium supply shop. I got mine online from a site called Aquacave for less than $10, and there's enough reagent in there to run 100 tests. Of course, there are many other sources, perhaps even down the street from your house. You simply fill the small test tube with source water then add drops of reagent until the water changes color, then read the hardness on the chart provided.  You should use this to periodically test the water you end up drinking/using in your coffee.

oh and read Jim Schulman's insanely long water FAQ.  It's easy to find via google.

 
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JerDGold
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 10:39am
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

emradguy Said:

oh and read Jim Schulman's insanely long water FAQ.  It's easy to find via google.

Posted December 16, 2013 link

That IS insanely long...bookmarked.
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frcn
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 10:46am
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

We would need more information to offer the best method. Like, do you own the home or are you a renter? How do you make coffee and what other needs are there for treated water? What budget do you have? Brita filters soften, others use the Zerowater, there are under-sink softening systems, counter-top systems, all the way to whole house reverse osmosis and softening systems.

 
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JerDGold
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 12:20pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

I wouldnt want to spend...at the most...$100 but If I could keep it around 50-75 thatd be awesome.  BB&B would be ideal because I have all those 20% off coupons.  Something I can fill for my fridge...I'm just not sure if the Brita, Pur, ZeroWater or what else works the best is I guess my question.  I'm a renter...
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frcn
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 12:42pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

s I have read, Pur does not soften, Brita does (or at least use to). Thrift stores have Brita pitchers and the filters are available at Costco. Shouldn't cost much to give it a try.

 
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Burner0000
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 1:43pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

I use a Brita at home and they don't soften. Well it does a but by removing carbon from the water but even with a new filter I still get scale build up.  I just went ahead and installed a large softener to stop scale all around the house.  Because your a renter your only 2 options would be to install a small softener under the sink or get a Zero water tank.  23 cup model last I saw only cost $40 and will reduce your ppm (hardness) down to almost nothing.
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JerDGold
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 4:04pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

Ok, went with the 23 cups ZeroWater.  I can taste a VERY clear difference between my filtered and tap water.  I was actually quite surprised. 39.99 -20% at BB&B.
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dana_leighton
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 5:08pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

JerDGold Said:

Ok, went with the 23 cups ZeroWater.  I can taste a VERY clear difference between my filtered and tap water.  I was actually quite surprised. 39.99 -20% at BB&B.

Posted December 16, 2013 link

Remember to add tap water to bring your TDS up to the recommended range (around 50 PPM IIRC).
http://coffeegeek.com/forums/espresso/questions/435208

 
Dana Leighton - Espresso hack and CoffeeGeek moderator
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JerDGold
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Joined: 11 Dec 2013
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Location: Chicago, IL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia
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Posted Mon Dec 16, 2013, 11:27pm
Subject: Re: Espresso/Pour Over Hard Water Solution?
 

That is very interesting. I'm going to have to do some testing with this...it seems to contrary to logic.  I find the ZeroWater water to be quite delicious. Bookmarked for further study.
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