1
$\begingroup$

I ran across this company at their booth at a Tradeshow (2018). They claim to have a chemical free (and as far as I can tell - a power free) treatment method for hard water to minimize scale and corrosion effects downstream. My intuition tells me that this can't be for real, partly because it's "power free", but I also don't understand their explanation for how it works:

"When water is subjected to temperature change (delta T), pressure change (delta P), friction, turbulence and/or evaporation, dissolved minerals, primarily calcium carbonate (CaCO3) and magnesium carbonate (MgCO3), will precipitate out of solution and deposit on the heat transfer surfaces of plumbing systems and equipment in the form of a rock-like build-up, commonly called lime/scale. At the molecular level, the negatively and positively charged ions of these minerals are attracted to, and bond tightly together with, one another, thus forming the lime/scale deposit known as calcite. These mineral deposits are a great insulator and require much more energy to heat or cool water in many different types of residential, commercial, institutional and industrial applications."

They've been around for since 1964, so they are either:

  • very good salesmen, with a critical threshold of gullible people, or
  • they've discovered some niche effect (unlikely)...

Thoughts?

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ From my experience, I guessed that calcium deposit will form when water temperature drops (cold water cannot dissolve many calcium). From this guess, I always recommend water heater stays at around set temp. Do not let water cools down to ambient many times. BTW, can I know what the salesman said about their method? $\endgroup$ – RainerJ Apr 13 at 3:15
  • $\begingroup$ It's been several months now, but I seem to recall that the he said that the water was forced through many alternating magnetic fields, and somehow this caused the minerals to precipitate out (with the precipitate captured and expunged somehow). So basically the claim was that the water could be softened to some extent by forcing it to run through 'strong' magnetic fields. $\endgroup$ – Felix Lu Apr 14 at 3:54
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for sharing. $\endgroup$ – RainerJ Apr 14 at 23:41
2
$\begingroup$

There's very little data available to evaluate these claims. The manufacturers tend to rely on anecdotal information and testimonials rather than hard data, and no-one else really has any incentive to spend money to test these devices. I did find an article from Penn State University that cites several studies which reported no effect from the devices, and recommends that consumers use caution and have water independently tested both upstream and downstream of the device if they choose that route.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.