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Electronic Water Descalers

Water Descaler Technical

Water descaler benefits
  • - Substantially reduce "scum" marks on sinks, baths & kettles.
  • - Chemical free solution to water descaling and softening.
  • - No moving parts, fit and forget.  
  • - No need for regular refilling or maintenance.
  • - Self-monitoring, will indicate any system fault, internally or externally.
  • - Avoid using more of environmentally damaging cleaning materials that become less effective in hard water.
  • - Does not effect the chemical composition of the water, is healthy to drink.
  • - Relatively low cost solution.
  • - All the benefits attributed to softer water, kinder to skin etc.
  • - Less Detergent Required
  • - Reduce Heating Costs. Avoid using increasingly more fuel to drive the system as scale reduces flow.
  • - No tricky installation, easy to attach, & plug into standard power outlet.
  • - Avoid having to prematurely replace pipe-work, boilers, storage tanks, radiators, showers, washing machines, etc. due to scale build-up.

Water descaler technical
The problems with hard water
Hard water is rich in calcium and magnesium minerals. Hard water itself may not be considered a problem. However, the minerals in the water can lead to many other problems, including water systems. Limescale building up is the biggest problem caused by hard water.

Limescale is a form of crystalline calcium carbonate that is deposited out of hard water. Limescale is an all too familiar problem of hard water. It can lead to various problems in your home and skin health.

  • - Scale build-up in bathrooms and kitchens, particularly around water outlets.
  • - Colours in washing can seem faded.
  • - Appliances and heating systems can become clogged with mineral deposits.
  • - The efficiency and lifespan of appliances can be reduced as a result.
  • - Hair and skin can become dry, brittle, and chapped.
  • - Soaps and detergents react badly, causing soap scum that is difficult to wash.
  • - Lingering stains on glass and surfaces.
  • - Worsening of eczema conditions, such as redness and itching.

The mineral ions solidify when heated and bond to the nearest hard surface. When it is in contact with the inner surface of a pipe, it bonds with the existing scale build-up. This forms an ever-thickening hard residue.

Think limescale insulating the inside of a pipe

Over time, this residue can build up, blocking pipes and impeding water flow. The efficiency of heating systems can also decrease over time as the mineral buildup act as an insulator. Hard water can also lead to skin and hair problems too.
Find out the effects of hard water on skin and hair.

Limescale also forms when water evaporates, leaving a scale residue that bonds to the surface. These scale deposits are most seen around water outlets or stains on glass and can be difficult to remove.

Do electronic water descalers work?

An electronic water descaler showing the coils of wire wrapped around a water pipe

electronic water descaler (sometimes called a water conditioner) is one method to prevent hard water-associated problems. These are small devices that are connected next to the main water pipe. The device is connected to your main water pipe using wire coils wrapped around the pipe.

A water descaler does not alter or change the chemical composition of the water in your home. Unlike traditional water softener systems, nothing is removed from the water, and no chemicals are added. Using a water descaler does not soften water. Instead, it seeks to eliminate the associated scale build-up problems.

Using a water descaler can be more effective that other water treatment methods, such as template assisted crystallization, for removing the problems associated with hard water. A water descaler is a much more cost-effective solution that prevents scale build-up while retaining the health-beneficial minerals by charging the minerals.

Electronic descalers are available for both domestic and commercial premises. Easy, economical solutions are available for both small and large homes. Heavy-duty water conditioning units are also available for larger commercial premises with more complex plumbing systems.

An electronic water descaler desgined for more complex water systems

How do water descalers work?

This section provides water descaler technical information, including the process used to alleviate hard water problems. The purpose of 
water descaling is to affect the form of the calcium carbonate, not to change it chemically. This causes the calcium carbonate to remain as tiny particles suspended in the water instead of forming solid limescale deposits without spoiling the water quality.

This reforming is effected using a time-variant magnetic field that is harmless to humans. The field is sufficiently concentrated within the antenna wound around the pipe to reform the calcium carbonate crystals. Unlike the static effect of a magnet, this field is tailored to optimise descaling.

The field uses computer-generated waveforms of varying frequencies to work effectively. Compared to electronic water softeners, this technique adds no additional chemicals to the water. It also does not affect its natural pH and retains all beneficial minerals. The result is still suitable for drinking water and cooking without a salty or metallic taste.

A diagram showing how the electromagnetic field from a water descaler works

The scientific effectiveness has been demonstrated by independent practical testing at The University of Bath. Compared with an unconditioned control, 10mg less scale was deposited per 300mm length of 25mm pipe after 30 days.

The inside of a pipe insulated with limescale before descalingThe inside of a pipe without limescale after descalingThe inside of a water pipe blocked by limescale

A close up of limescale

Check out these electronic water descaler FAQs

Water descalers vs water softeners

Compared to water softeners, water descalers provide several benefits. Firstly, a water descaler is easy to install and set up. Once running, the descaler can be left to its own devices. The device will indicate a fault on the LED display if a fault occurs.

Salt-based water softeners also require regular salt replenishment to flush the resin beads. The ion exchange process replaces the hard water minerals with less problematic minerals. Water conditioning using this method is much more expensive and, most of the time, unnecessary.

Over time, the resin beads in water softeners become less effective at attracting minerals hindering the ion exchange. Regular regeneration is required using salt to flush the resin beads to solve this. Replenishing salt supplies can cost £8 to £25 per bag.

The water used during this regeneration process also becomes wastewater, leading to higher water bill costs. With a water condition unit, there is no increase in water bills. Power consumption is also much lower compared to reverse osmosis systems. Depending on the model, a conditioning unit uses between 2 and 9 watts of power.

Another great benefit of using water descalers is that all the health-beneficial minerals remain in the water. While you don’t get soft water, tap water is safe to drink without a salty or metallic taste. The beneficial calcium and magnesium remain in the water.

Most people can drink hard water without any side effects. Drinking hard water can contribute towards your recommended daily mineral intake. A common misconception about drinking hard water is that it can cause kidney stones. The majority of research has proved no such relationship.

Common water descaler questions
How is the problem of hard water addressed?
For those who want to eliminate the problems associated with hard water, there are 2 long-term methods. Both water softeners and water descalers can address the problems of hard water. Both have their benefits and drawbacks.

What should you do if you have hard water in your home?
If you experience problems associated with hard water, it is recommended to install an electronic water descaler or water softener. An electronic water descaler alters the behaviour of mineral ions to prevent limescale build. A water softener removes the mineral completely.

Depending on your needs and level of water hardness will determine whether a descaler or softener would be best. Excessive hard water areas would benefit from a softener, while most areas would benefit most from a water descaler.

Do electronic water descalers work? If so, how?
Yes, electronic water descalers do work to eliminate the problems associated with hard water. A small and convenient device is installed next to your main water supply. Using a small coil of wire wrapped around the pipe, a small electromagnetic charge is passed through the pipe.

This charge affects the behaviour of the mineral ions as they pass through the field. Ions that have passed through the charge no longer stick and solidify, causing limescale.

What are the pros and cons of having a water descaler?
Water descaler
  • - Easy to install and requires little to no maintenance.
  • - Prevents associated hard water problems.
  • - Health-beneficial minerals remain.
  • - Not suited for those who want to remove the minerals.
  • - Water does not feel softer.
  • - Does not remove any existing scale build-up in pipes and appliances
Water softener
  • - Removes the minerals from the water.
  • - Treated water feels softer and slick.
  • - Suited for areas with very hard water supplies.
  • - Can leave a salty or sour taste to treated water.
  • - Not easy or convenient to install, requiring professional help.
  • - Much more expensive to buy and operate than a descaler.
What is the best way to remove calcium from hard water?
Calcium is a mineral present in hard water that can lead to a multitude of problems both in your home and in your skin. For those wanting to eliminate such problems, both an electronic water descaler and a water softener can help.

An electronic water descaler is a small device connected to your main water inlet. Small coils of wire are wrapped around the water pipe to emit an electromagnetic pulse that alters the behaviour of mineral ions. Minerals remain in the water but do not cause the associated problems.

Water softeners use a process called ion exchange by replacing calcium ions with sodium. However, most water softeners will use salt as a source of sodium. A water softener removes the minerals making the water soft, but it can leave water salty and unsuitable for cooking.

Do water descalers increase the water bill?
No, water descalers do not increase the water bill. No additional water is used in the process of descaling water. Only a very slight increase in your energy bills, but this is very little (around an extra 18p a month depending on the make).

Returns & money back guarantee

This is a performance guarantee. If you are unsatisfied with the scale removal and prevention results after 90 days of installation, please contact your authorised supplier. If the performance cannot be improved, you may return your unit.

In this instance, we will fully refund the purchase price. See our
return policy for more details. Please note that this is in addition to our product guarantee against manufacturing defects (labour or material) for five years from the date of purchase.

This offer only applies to products purchased through Electrostore Online by phone or our website.