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Author Topic: Beware of electrolysis  (Read 930 times)

rhavrane

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Beware of electrolysis
« on: March 06, 2017, 06:10:13 PM »

Bonjour,
I would like to share with you this bad experience (sorry, in French) to tell that the best way to avoid it is to use neutral metals between them.
The couple aluminum - brass gives this result : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXN0w-s_tz8&t=2s
I bought this (very expensive) gas regulator/expansor  a long time ago and the manufacturer has taken his retirement, so I can not tell him.
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RaphaŽl
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Baldrick

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2017, 07:43:42 PM »




  Was the boat run in salt water or only fresh  ?
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rhavrane

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2017, 08:10:22 PM »

Bonjour Baldrick,
My boats navigate only in fresh water, but the problem comes from the water I use in the boilers, which is demineralized and in fact able to generate this elecrolysis effect.
It seems that the "best" water to be used is the rain, but I confess I have no basin to recover it.
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RaphaŽl
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Baldrick

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2017, 08:46:47 PM »

Bonjour Baldrick,
My boats navigate only in fresh water, but the problem comes from the water I use in the boilers, which is demineralized and in fact able to generate this elecrolysis effect.
It seems that the "best" water to be used is the rain, but I confess I have no basin to recover it.


Hi Raphael.
  Yes demineralised has that effect , or rather it has the ability to dissolve certain base metals and take them into suspension . In our house in the kitchen we have a water filter and demineralisation set, a while ago I started using water from this to make tea to drink. It seemed to make the tea brew stronger and taste better . However after a short while I noticed the  water had not only removed the lime scale from the bottom of the kettle but had stripped the nickel plating from the heating element and was eating away at the copper core.
 We quickly went back to using straight tap water.
 
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Jerry C

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2017, 10:23:45 PM »

Are you guys talking about de-mineralised, de-ionised or distilled water? I have read many times on here that de-ionised water is very bad for steam use. Not sure about the other two, if they are the same or not. I mostly take water straight from the lake. No problems, so far.
Jerry.

rhavrane

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2017, 07:46:12 AM »

Bonjour Jerry,
I use demineralized water for iron sold in 5 liter cans.
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RaphaŽl
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JimG

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2017, 11:55:02 AM »

De-mineralised and de-ionised water are basically the same. They are made by passing the water through an ion-exchange resin which replaces the Calcium and magnesium ions (which would form the scale) with hydrogen ions. This will leave the water more acidic which makes it more conductive and will increase the corrosion with dissimilar metals.
Distilled water is better as it is produced by distillation which should give pure water. It is still slightly acidic as carbon dioxide from the air will dissolve in it producing weak carbonic acid.
Rain water is free of the minerals which will cause scaling in the boiler but is normally acidic due to air pollution.

(The corrosion first described is not in fact due to electrolysis but sacrificial corrosion, the more reactive metal corrodes protecting the other. This is why zinc anodes are fitted to steel hulls.)

Jim
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KBIO

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2017, 01:10:07 PM »

Hello!
100% agree with JimG! :-))
To have electrolyse, you need electricity passing by.
Demineralized  & de-ionised water has a PH close to 5.5 and thus will help corroding.
What I can see from this video, is an Assy corroded by long stay in a "demineralized" water. (or with low Ph) due to C02 & Oxygen dissolution.
It will be interesting to know where and how is connected this Assy, prior to incriminate the manufacturing, the type of water, or other trolley.
Distilled water or rain water will have the same effect (if the diamonds are in the sky! %) ) on our installation= NONE!
I have this type of Assy for 15 years in a boat , and it works perfectly. But it is located above the water level of the boiler (for obvious reasons of quick maintenance in case of leaks) and isolated with a syphon (goose neck). I admit that I did not dismantle it as I do not need so far.
Such an assy which is 2" away from the boiler will not suffer any temp (diaphragm) and no condensation should be able to enter in. The cooling of the boiler sucking back the condensation  (leading to other problem, as deformation of the diaphragm, though)!
I see here & there, some gas attenuator connected directly on the boiler in an horizontal position. This is non sens.
Let's remember that our classic Steam Installations are not exposed to such harsh & rough conditions as in the industry. Industry can be a guide line and opportunity to learn but we are in a different scale.
This type of Attenuator/regulator is used in the industry to regulate air and soft gas. And it is fitted with water traps and other filters.
I use rain water in my boilers since I'm born and I do not have any problem or scales,...!
I even have some shrimps in it sometime. O0  The are boiled and lubricate the machine when passing by.  %% Have a good day. :-)

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frazer heslop

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2017, 03:01:03 PM »

Used to come across this problem on commercial boilers fitted with Britta filters often and have salvaged some very nice copper for my boilers from Cimbali machines under four years old much to the customers disgust at least I can show my boiler inspector the CE markings  {-)
One reason to stay away from brass and use bronze
cheers
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Stavros

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Re: Beware of electrolysis
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2017, 09:34:06 PM »

Steam Boat Phil check your messages  O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0 O0


Dave
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rhavrane

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Re: Beware of electrolysis - corrosion
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2017, 10:10:37 PM »

Bonjour,
As you can see it on this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uojPHlGGB5I the gas reulator is plugged to the boiler with a pipe which is more than 20 cm long (starting in the middle of the boiler, close to the oil separator, and the pipe makes a long  syphon.
If I read my messages, I do not think I incriminate the manufacturer, who has retired besides this, I share an experience.
The possible issue is that I always keep my unused boilers empty and opened ==> there is no suction effect  to remove the remaining condensaton in the pipe.
And here is a very bad installation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utYZJDJPBVg , a non sense which operates quite well at this moment  ;)
I changed the title of my post because, as a neophyte, I may be confusing between electrolysis and corrosion.
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RaphaŽl
RaphaŽlopoulos Steam Lines UnLimited
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