Thread Number: 41183  /  Tag: Small Appliances
water distiller
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Post# 437018   1/2/2021 at 11:00 (993 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        

Since I use distilled water in my humidifiers I figured I would try a home water distiller, has anyone tried these? I'll include a link to the one I purchased. Buying distilled water is not that expensive but if I can make it myself that would be nice. I'm making my second batch now, this unit seems to work really well. Of course the real way to tell how well it works is to use the water in my humidifiers and see if there is any of that white dust on anything, there isn't with store bought distilled water.


Post# 437036 , Reply# 1   1/2/2021 at 19:52 (992 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        

lesinutah's profile picture
I have a water distiller the filter went bad and I have not bought a new filter yet.
I'm guessing I got 500 gallons of distilled water from it. It was about .20 a gallon.
I do notice mineral build up from non distilled water in humidifiers and other things.
I didn't compare it to store bought distilled water. It was a very nice luxury to have.
I watched a show where a guy helps homesteaders better things so they could survive off the grid. There was a family that had a well that was salt water. He used a solar panel to evaporate the salt water. The vapors rose and separated from the salt. The salt stayed below and vapors rose and went from vapors back to water. It's similar to how water is distilled.
Enjoy the distiller they are very nice to have.

Post# 437048 , Reply# 2   1/2/2021 at 22:49 (992 days old) by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

madman's profile picture
"Water" distiller

Make your own mash and distill for moonshine.

Post# 437052 , Reply# 3   1/2/2021 at 23:24 (992 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        

lesinutah's profile picture
I'm not sure if it's tongue in cheek.
The link says water distiller. It's not used for back country moonshine.

Post# 437075 , Reply# 4   1/3/2021 at 23:55 (991 days old) by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

madman's profile picture
That's a fancy water distiller, admittedly. There are much cheaper ones on ebay. Big Clive made a youtube video of using one as an alcohol still, and he basically suggested that it was all sort of tongue in cheek.

I mean, it's functionally the same thing, at the end of the day. With the alcohol, you just have to separate the heads, hearts, and tails.


Post# 437080 , Reply# 5   1/4/2021 at 05:41 (991 days old) by huskyvacs (Gnaw Bone, Indiana)        

huskyvacs's profile picture
Distilled water here is 86 cents for a gallon of it, not really sure that spending $200 on a machine that can only make 1 gallon every 5 hours has any purpose. Can buy 30 one gallon jugs for $25 and have a month's supply assuming even the most archaic humidifier that drinks a gallon a day.

You can also buy de-scaler tablets or coffeepot descaler solution to treat the water if you have hard tap water, and will have the same effect.

Post# 437265 , Reply# 6   1/10/2021 at 17:28 (984 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
got another distiller

I know many vacuum collectors collect other appliances as well, I also have several humidifiers and I decided to get another water distiller. This one is designed a bit differently than my first one. The one I mentioned in the previous post looks similar to a humidifier, you fill a tank and a valve on the tank fills the boiling tray, the power unit that has the heating element and fan fits on top. The distiller I received today has the main unit that contains the condenser coils and fan and the kettle is removable. So you remove the kettle to fill it, then you insert it back in to the unit. There is an electrical connector on the kettle so I'm assuming the heating element is in the kettle itself rather than being under it. It will be interesting to see how easy this one is to clean, the first one I got is very easy. Since the heating element is submerged in the water not too much scale sticks to it, also the unit turns off before the boiling tray is totally empty so most of the scale deposits can be rinsed out easily. From what I've read, if a distiller runs until the water is totally empty the deposits will be much more difficult to clean out because they will basically get burned in to the bottom of the boiler. In those cases, it's suggested to manually unplug it a few minutes before the end of the cycle once you know how long the cycle lasts to prevent this from happening. I'm going to let this new unit go through the entire cycle to see what happens but if it's completely empty then I will stop it manually moving forward.


Post# 437572 , Reply# 7   1/21/2021 at 22:47 (973 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
one more distiller, and using distilled water in humidifiers

A lot of us collect other appliances besides vacuums, my other interest is humidifiers, I posted my collection of those in a previous thread, but it appears that water distillers have become another big interest. I currently have two of them and I plan to get one more once this one is back in stock. I have also come to the conclusion that it's best to always use distilled water in any humidifier, other than the ones that connect directly to the furnace. For ultrasonic humidifiers, using distilled water prevents everything around the humidifier from being covered in mineral dust. For steam humidifiers, using distilled water prevents any scale deposits from building up on the heating element. Since I made the decision to not use any tap water in my humidifiers again, I gave them all a really good cleaning. For my two steam humidifiers, I put some vinegar in the base and scrubbed the heating elements with a paper towel soaked in the vinegar. They are now as good as new and since I will not be using tap water in them again, I should not have to repeat that process. For my ultrasonic units, I gave the inside of them the same treatment, in particular the transducer which is what actually turns the water in to a mist. I also have one evaporative model that uses a filter, although I don't use that one as much since it does not humidify the room as fast as the other types. Anyway, here is the third distiller I want to get.


Post# 437677 , Reply# 8   1/23/2021 at 23:05 (971 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        

lesinutah's profile picture
I work at walgreens as a front end manager for 9 years. The photo department developed 35 mm film in store. The film processor had a distilled water unit. We set up a humidifier and used distilled water and they ran clean and sold like hot cakes.
The film developing went away. They were throwing away the distiller. I took it home. I got I believe 500 gallons out of the unit. The filters are $120-$140 to replace it.
Using distilled water with bissell mop vacuum type machines it works great.
My wife uses tap water on the floors and says it takes forever to dry and doesn't shine as well.
I may get the filter and start making my own distilled water.

Post# 437699 , Reply# 9   1/24/2021 at 16:40 (970 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        

I'm guessing that's a commercial unit. Both of my distillers do have a filter that the water goes through before it goes in to the collection container. Using the filter is optional, it's not required. Apparently it removes some organic compounds that may have a boiling point at the same temperature as water. The filters are around $30 for a pack of them and they last for a couple of months. It might sound extreme but I clean my distillers with vinegar after each batch, I want to make sure the scale deposits don't have a chance to build up. I'm hoping that the third distiller that I want to get will be back in stock soon, it also sounds like a really nice one.

Post# 437720 , Reply# 10   1/25/2021 at 02:07 (970 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        

lesinutah's profile picture
I guess it was commercial but its origins are 20-30 years old as it was made by Fuji just for film processing.
I'd consider it ancient and effective but not really commercial.

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Post# 438635 , Reply# 11   2/13/2021 at 09:50 (951 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
cleaning my distillers

So I did end up getting the third distiller I wanted once it was in stock, I think my distiller collection is complete for now, I have 3 of them and each one is designed a bit differently. I prefer to clean them after every use rather than letting any scale crud build up in them. I was using vinegar which works although I still would have to scrub the bottom of the boiler tanks with a paper towel, I don't want to use anything hard or sharp since that could damage them so I would pour in some vinegar, let it set for a while and then use a paper towel which would get soaked in the vinegar at the same time. This works but I would have to use some elbow grease to completely remove all of the scale.
I ordered some cleaners designed for cleaning distillers, apparently these are also used for things like coffee machines, they are made from citric acid and sulfamic acid and they are supposed to work better than vinegar, guess I will find out.

Post# 438992 , Reply# 12   2/21/2021 at 14:55 (943 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
distiller cleaners

I'm definitely enjoying my 3 water distillers, one important requirement is keeping them clean. I clean each distiller after every cycle to make sure the scale deposits never build up. Just rinsing the boiling pot does not remove the deposits, at first I was using vinegar, this works but it still requires scrubbing the bottom of the boiler to remove the deposits after leaving the vinegar in the boiler for 30 minutes or longer. I started looking for some better cleaners and have found several, these are mainly made from citric acid and sulfamic acid, I'm not sure if one works better than the other, I think sulfamic acid might be stronger than citric acid but not sure. I now have 3 different cleaners, so far I have not seen a big difference between them but still testing them. They all definitely work better than vinegar, I just fill the boiler partially with hot water, dump in some of the crystals and wait for a while to let them dissolve and work their magic. I still wipe out the bottom of the boilers with a paper towel but it's so much easier than using vinegar.
This first one is made from citric acid, I bought a pound of it so hopefully it will last for a while.


The next one is made from sulfamic acid.


And this one is made from both citric and sulfamic acid, I think these are also used to descale coffee machines.

I bought two jars of that one so I should be set for a while. The other advantage of these cleaners is that they don't have a strong smell the way vinegar does.

Post# 439301 , Reply# 13   2/28/2021 at 19:50 (935 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
one more distiller

I keep thinking my distiller collection is complete, then I find another one that sounds interesting. This one is also made by waterwise but it's a different design.


Post# 442399 , Reply# 14   5/30/2021 at 14:03 (845 days old) by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
got another distiller

This distiller was just recently introduced in the United States so I decided to get it, it's really cool, I think this one may actually have a microprocessor in it, that's a bit concerning since it's something that could go out, but it's a really nice distiller, I now have 5 of them. I've been drinking distilled water for a few months now and it is so much better than drinking tap water. It doesn't have that chlorinated taste that tap water does, and I'm still amazed at the crud that is left in my distillers when they complete a cycle.


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