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Thread: Hydrocare HC38 Thoughts???

  1. #181
    DIY Junior Member James Percarpio's Avatar
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    Default Hc44

    I decided to give the HC44 unit a try and I just installed it today (10/31/09). I'll keep you all posted on my results.

  2. #182
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    I can already predict the results.

  3. #183
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    Hello from England. Blimey! I did a search on google re: HS38 and came across this, didn't realise it could be such an emotive subject! The reason I'm contributing was to let you know that as far as British gas go, they must genuinely think it works. I have a combination boiler and I am in a very hard water area my heating system as of late has been making very loud knocking noises. I am a British Gas customer and they have a scheme EnergyExtra 50 whereby you pay £2 a month on top of your normal bill, if you then have a problem with your boiler, electrics, plumbing or drains you pay a £99 flat fee which includes callout, parts, labour and taxes. This is unlimited per job. So if they have to visit 3 times and fit 3 parts to fix a problem you only make the one £99 payment even if the cost of the parts is £500 (they also give you for free a standby saver multi-socket plug and a remote electricity monitor which displays how much electricity your appliances are using as part of the scheme). As I said my heating has been knocking, so I called out my usual plumber who said it was probably scale and it might be worth a try putting descaler into the system which he did and as it only cost me 30 quid was worth a shot. However it didn't work, he said it could be the heat exchanger, which would cost at least £200 for the job. So I obviously invoked my British Gas deal which will cost me £99 tops. The Engineer called a couple of hours ago, he thinks it could be the pump or the heat exchanger. He is going to change the pump first, if this doesn't work he will change the heat exchanger. There is however a caveat, the heat exchanger gets changed the first time under the deal with no extra charge, if however in say two years time because of scale the heat exchanger needed changing again, if in the meantime I haven't taken any scale prevention action I would get charged the full price, if I do take some sort of scale prevention measure it would still come under the £99 flat fee scheme. The engineer did tell me about about the HS38 which British Gas will fit for £117, and he did recommend it (well he would wouldn't he?). To be fair this chap fixed my boiler before and for my £99 I had 3 visits including a system flush, a new pressure relief valve, new auto air vent and a new Control Board , which as my regular plumber quoted me £132 just for the Control Board parts only, wasn't bad! I definitely think British Gas believe the HS38 will reduce their costs. They are not a charity and they obviously think the risk of boiler damage from scale will significantly increase if the HS38 is not fitted, they don't force you to have it done they are just amending the terms of the Service Contract if you don't. Anecdotally the engineer told me he has one fitted and he barely has to clean his glass shower cubicle anymore. I am as tight as a gnat's arse, but when he turns up on tuesday to do the pump I think I may go ahead a get the HS38 even if the heat exchanger isn't the problem. If I do take the plunge I will report back the results at a later date.

  4. #184
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    Super. Now lets debunk the whole thing. Your boiler is filled with water or glycol or a mix of each. This water fills the system and the pressure is maintained between 12 and 15 lbs/psi. As long as the system is tight (no leaks) the water in the system will have had all its scale causing minerals precipitated out within the first day or use. Therefore, you will never have a problem with scale build up on a residential boiler. Your knocking sound is something else all together, most probably the temperature is set too high and you are boiling the water. Call a good technician. I've been in the heating business for a very long time indeed and have never ever seen a residential boiler scale up unless there were very extenuating circumstances.

  5. #185
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    Errrrrrrrrr.........Not quite. We moved into the house 8 years ago boiler was about 2 years old. Since then we have had extra rads fitted, rads moved, garage converted to dining room so boiler moved from garage to loft. System has been drained down numerous times, and, putting my hand up rather weakly has been filled back up with good old mains water, with no exotic mixes of glycol, liquid platinum, or kryptonite, can you tell I'm not a plumber but just Joe Public. I have bled radiators and topped up again quite merrily with mains water. The British Gas engineer suspects it's the pump, he hasn't discounted the heat exchanger, but like yourself he doubts it as he's never had to change my models heat exchanger for scale in the 15 years he's been doing the job. However if it was that, that is the British Gas policy with regard to anti scale measures. I'll let you know how I get on. Can I just say it to save you a job I'm a complete numbnut when it comes to DIY, so I know I haven't looked after the boiler as I should have done. I have slapped my wrists very hard.

  6. #186
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    As was said, a typical residential boiler system is a closed system...once filled, doesn't need refilling. If you have leaks, fix them. If you fix them, you won't get air into the system, and scale won't be a problem. How many times to you fill your teakettle before you have to clean it out from scale? Lots of 'turnover' of contents. Your boiler system should have nowhere near that amount of turnover.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  7. #187
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    Zactly. British Gas is using commercial steam process boilers that go through perhaps a hundred or more gallons of water every day. Most large process boilers use a chemical feed system to remove minerals and adjust PH. Their supposed results from the use of hydrocare are not scientific results by any means and are more likely the result of adjustments made to the incoming water, the chemical feed or the flow rate through the system. What Hydrocare claims and BG is reporting are against the laws of physics.

    When will this nonsense ever end? I suspect never, as long as there are gullible folks around.

  8. #188
    DIY Junior Member James Percarpio's Avatar
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    Default HC44 - Results after one week

    As I posted earlier I purchased the HC44 unit and installed it about a week ago. My analysis is focusing on a few key areas: shower head, dishwasher, water temperature, any hard water stains, and humidifier. Their claims as I understand them are that the unit is going to prevent future scale build up and over time break down existing scale.

    Thus far the results I have obtained are inconclusive. Hard to make any definitive conclusions about the glassware in the dishwasher, shower head is still clogged up, have not used the humidifier yet, the one possible improvement is that when I took a shower this morning I did not have to set the dial as high as I normally do for water temperature, although we were away for a couple of days.

    I'll report back again after week two.

  9. #189
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    We are eagerly awaiting the results.

  10. #190
    In the Trades Wally Hays's Avatar
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    I'd be willing to bet that the results will be nothing short of amazing

  11. #191
    DIY Junior Member James Percarpio's Avatar
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    Default HC44 - Results for week two

    Just wanted to provide an update on my results with HC44, before I do I thought I should provide some background info on my house and water hardness. My house is over 50 years old, although most of the plumbing has been updated. Also, about two years ago we put an addition on the house and moved the kitchen and one of the bathrooms into the new addition. Along with that we had to install a new hotwater heater about a 18 months ago. The hot water heater is 80 gallons and electric. The water in my town is pretty hard: 20.41 grains per gallon.

    Regarding the results for week two, they are as follows:
    - The most noticeable improvement has been on the bottom of the glasses in the dishwasher. We would normally get an opaque white film on the bottom (outside) of the clear glasses; that has improved and is not as bad.
    - As far as the appearance of the glasses overall, there might be a slight improvement, but I not much better.
    - With regard to the hotwater; it seems like we don't have to turn it up as high as we used to.
    - My wife seemed to think that we are getting more suds than before.
    - Shower head is still clogged up pretty bad, so I would still hold that as inconclusive.

    I'll provide another update after week three.

  12. #192
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    Ahh Yes, steady improvement, I am beginning to see the pattern, but week 4 there will be nothing short of a miracle

  13. #193
    DIY Junior Member James Percarpio's Avatar
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    Default HC44 Week Four

    Regarding the results for week two, they are as follows:
    - The most noticeable improvement has been on the bottom of the glasses in the dishwasher. We would normally get an opaque white film on the bottom (outside) of the clear glasses; that has improved and is not as bad.
    - As far as the appearance of the glasses overall, there might be a slight improvement, but not much better.
    - With regard to the hotwater; it seems like we don't have to turn it up as high as we used to.
    - My wife seemed to think that we are getting more suds than before.
    - Shower head is still clogged up pretty bad, so I would still hold that as inconclusive.

    Basically my results for week three and four are about the same as week two. The most noticeable improvement has been with the scale build up on the bottom of the glasses in the dishwasher. Other than that it is very difficult to quantify. My intent over the next few weeks (time permitting) will be to try and develop some quantifiable tests utilizing the equipment/chemicals I have in my lab. I will continue to update you as I obtain more quantifible data.

  14. #194
    DIY Junior Member jnyost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James Percarpio View Post
    Regarding the results for week two, they are as follows:
    - The most noticeable improvement has been on the bottom of the glasses in the dishwasher. We would normally get an opaque white film on the bottom (outside) of the clear glasses; that has improved and is not as bad.
    - As far as the appearance of the glasses overall, there might be a slight improvement, but not much better.
    - With regard to the hotwater; it seems like we don't have to turn it up as high as we used to.
    - My wife seemed to think that we are getting more suds than before.
    - Shower head is still clogged up pretty bad, so I would still hold that as inconclusive.

    Basically my results for week three and four are about the same as week two. The most noticeable improvement has been with the scale build up on the bottom of the glasses in the dishwasher. Other than that it is very difficult to quantify. My intent over the next few weeks (time permitting) will be to try and develop some quantifiable tests utilizing the equipment/chemicals I have in my lab. I will continue to update you as I obtain more quantifible data.
    Interesting. Thanks for the continued feedback. I have a respected local plumber who has mentioned a similar unit to me. I didn't give it much thought until I saw this thread here. It's not this brand, but a different one that I don't care to mention. I'll just get slammed as being a plant for them.

    I came to the site mainly to do research on water heaters but will continue to read this entire thread. I've only read the first few pages and then skipped to the last few. It amazes me how many people slam a product they know nothing about. Kinda makes you wonder if you should believe anything they post.

  15. #195
    DIY Junior Member James Percarpio's Avatar
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    Default Seed Crystals

    Peter, I was hoping you could clear something up for me based on a comment you made in July, Post #70, you said:

    “Oppositely-charged ions tend to form neutral ion-pairs anyway, but they are so loosely-bound that they are continually dissociating and re-reforming, and are not believed able to grow large enough to serve as precipitation nuclei.”

    Now my focus is going to be on the Pelican Water "softener" technology (which as far as I can tell is the same as the Watts product), which claims the following:

    How does the Pelican NaturSoft System soften my water?
    The NaturSoft media acts as a catalyst reducing the degree of super saturation required to form solid calcium carbonate crystals. By forming these submicron crystals, NaturSoft removes the excess calcium from solution that would otherwise be the cause for an elevated scale potential. These newly formed calcium carbonate crystals then are introduced to the water as suspended particles where they perform the same role as the media itself, i.e. acting as seed crystals further buffering the effects of any changes in the scale potential of the water downstream by adsorbing excess mineral into their structure and themselves spawning the creation of additional micro crystals.

    That following statement comes from the Pelican website. Are you claiming that the formation of "seed crystals" is not possible, and that the Pelican product would not be effective either.

    Look forward to your response.

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