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Thread: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

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    electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    So the master of all things inside the house just told me of a new purchase on the way to make household cleaning easier...

    Once I saw what it was I thought it sounded like a miniature SWCG - and thought it must be just making super diluted bleach with a little vinegar. It seems like a little bleach and vinegar added to a spray bottle would produce the same thing? Or, maybe a scoop of our pool water ???

    Since there are better chemistry minds on this site I thought I would run it by everyone here to get some comments.

    Here is a quote about how it works:

    "When {insert device name here} passes an electrical charge through the salt (NaCl) solution, the sodium ion separates from the chloride ion. Chloride is negatively charged and is attracted to the positive side of the electrical charge where it bonds with an oxygen and a hydrogen ion from the water. It gets converted from Cl- to HOCl or hypochlorous acid. The sodium is positive and is thus attracted to the negative charge, where it also bonds with an oxygen and a hydrogen ion and is electrochemically converted to sodium hydroxide or NaOH. The level of sodium hydroxide is a very low and thus safe level (0.0000003%) vs typical cleaners which have 1-5%. The vinegar’s job is to produce just the right pH in order to create the right & stable level of hypochlorous acid. "

    I see these types of products and think scam, scam, scam. But I am willing to be persuaded otherwise...any thoughts?
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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    I think you're right- adding a little bleach/vinegar to a spray bottle at home would produce the exact same cleaning power. And save money for sure.

    How much did that device cost, I have to ask???

    Maddie
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    First of all, never add vinegar or anything acidic to any chlorine solution. If the ph goes too low, you will get chlorine gas.

    The device sounds like the basic principle behind the SWG. It just makes some chlorine from the chloride.

    There's no reason to get such a device. You can buy bleach anywhere on demand. Dilute as needed.

    The other chemical never to add to bleach is ammonia, which creates nitrogen trichloride, which is a chlorinated gas that's just as dangerous as chlorine gas.
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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Yikes, good safety reminder to never mix bleach and vinegar!

    Both plain bleach and vinegar are cheap, so why go to the bother of the device ??

    Maddie
    Maddie :) 12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Chlorine gas begins to form below a ph of about 4.0.

    Vinegar has a pH of around 2.2 to 2.4.

    Bleach has a pH of about 12 depending on the concentration of sodium hypochlorite.

    So, adding a little vinegar to bleach might not bring the pH below 4.0. However it's just not a good idea to take a risk.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Quote Originally Posted by YippeeSkippy View Post
    I think you're right- adding a little bleach/vinegar to a spray bottle at home would produce the exact same cleaning power. And save money for sure.

    How much did that device cost, I have to ask???

    Maddie
    The device is $59.99 - which isn't the whole story, you also have to buy the little "capsules" of salt water and vinegar for $19.99/25count - at least it is less than $1 per 12oz bottle.

    -- my favorite quote "A Non Toxic Cleaner AS EFFECTIVE AS BLEACH"
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Why use vinegar? Dilute hcl, we do keep some around
    Casey
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    You definitely don't want to add hydrochloric acid to bleach.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    So wait... This company sells you capsules of cleaning solution, but these capsules of cleaning solution are useless without being run through their other product they sell? To create a cleaning solution that is nothing but extremely diluted bleach?

    Sounds like someone saw the Juicero and got inspired.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Yea but your home made fresh squeezed bleach is fresher and more better than any of that junk they sell in the stores.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Pretty crazy... I know.

    I had an old boss as a young kid who wanted me to work some extra time, but I took the weekend off to go fishing. He laughed and told me I should have stayed in town and caught him some suckers...
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Alright, my wife is far down this rabbit hole and loves this stuff...she is using the stuff like water

    Now I tend to not rock the boat, happy Wife, happy life.

    With that in mind we were talking about how much she likes using this cleaner tonight (think of Windex in My Big Fat Greek Wedding) and I suggested that IF I could re-create the little packs of salt water and vinegar and put it in a big bottle for her to use instead of buying these little capsules. She told me she would be totally OK with it

    Alright, so now I need to figure out how much vinegar and salt are in these capsules - so I need some help. Does anyone have some ideas on how I can test this? I was thinking I could test the PH of the capsules to get the correct amount of vinegar - but then I will need to figure out how much salt is also in the capsule...any ideas??? Thanks!
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    How much different could the tiny amount of chlorine in this magic potion (0.0000003%) be from city tap water? Why don't you just pour a little vinegar and some tap water into a spray bottle and hand it to your wife and tell her you got it all ready for her, gee, ain't I a helpful hubby?

    Isn't that an old homemade cleaning recipe anyway?

    Either way, seems like a lot of trouble to go through instead of just telling your wife the truth about this product. But then again, I'm single, so what do I know about it!?!
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    I need to test the chlorine amount...I will report back.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    In my opinion, it's a huge waste of time. The production of chlorine is minimal and adding acid to chlorine products is a bad idea. Chlorine can react with vinegar to create Chloroacetic acid. The process is just a gimmick to make money. It doesn't do anything useful.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Absolutely agree JamesW!

    If one wanted to add a little vinegar or bleach (never both) to a bottle of water you'd save a ton. The problem I've seen with bleach and water mixtures is the bleach leaves a haze.

    So that leaves vinegar and water. Which is what all these "cleaner free" products seem to be that I've seen? So why not do it yourself and skip the machine altogether?

    Maddie
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW View Post
    In my opinion, it's a huge waste of time. The production of chlorine is minimal and adding acid to chlorine products is a bad idea. Chlorine can react with vinegar to create Chloroacetic acid. The process is just a gimmick to make money. It doesn't do anything useful.
    Totally agree. Worse still, if your wife at some point figures out that one can use chlorine and vinegar to replicate the magic potion, and then, upon encountering a tough clean up job, takes it upon herself to try the mixing of a "super strength" batch herself, without understanding the science, or the danger, then you will have allowed her to create her very own noxious gas generator. Come on, man, at this point it's less about why she believes in the product and more about why you're messing around with two chemicals that are known to be dangerous together (and keeping it from her)...
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    Part of me posting this was to discuss this device, as well as to learn more about what it really is making. I am certainly not planning on haphazardly mixing bleach and vinegar directly together ! That would certainly be dangerous. And my wife already knows I think it is a stupid device. I would like to try to find out what the final solution this contraption produces really is. Science questions are always a good thing to try to answer...

    My tests show the solution made 2 days ago to be around 360-400 ppm Free Chlorine.

    It looks like this would be the equivalent of 4.3-4.9 ml of 8.5%, of bleach added to 1 liter of water...so a 1 liter bottle of water with a teaspoon of 8.5% household bleach in it will be about the same...

    Doing some web research I have read some articles showing that "acidified diluted bleach" is a much more effective disinfectant compared with a plain plain bleach solution due to the lower PH. I think this could be analogous to lowering the PH to 7.2 during a SLAM to improve the algae fighting effect that chlorine has...


    So in an attempt to try to re-create the solution this device creates I could make a similar solution by adding 1 tsp of 8.5% bleach to 1 liter of water and then add 1 tsp of vinegar to lower the PH of the solution slightly and thus possibly improve the germ fighting ability of the solution.

    Out of even further curiosity there are some further tests of the little packets I could do to see what the PH is and how much salt is in the packets. I could also test the PH of the finished solution. To more effectively test the PH it looks like I will need to break out my electronic PH meter. I am not sure when I will get the chance to do that as I will probably need to get some new testing buffers to properly calibrate my meter.
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    I think she uses it because she knows you think it’s junk and it drives you nuts and makes you go off and do science experiments to tinker with it. That gets you out if her hair complaining how stupid the device is and lets her get back to cleaning things the way she wants to......women! they’re always playing 11-dimensional chess while we men are playing checkers...

    Honestly, buy the silly powder packets, put then next to the generator in a cute floral bowl that says “Hugs & Kisses” on it and make a nice spot on the counter top for the electrolyser to plug into....happy wife = happy life, dude....
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    Re: electrolyzed water - looks like a counter top SWG - useful or junk science?

    $100 or so to buy your wife a little happiness, even if it's just way over priced bleach already... Just take the win that she's happy about it, lol.
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