Hard water

One of the things that I miss from Australia is how good the water tastes. Over here in Copenhagen, water is incredibly hard, as it has a very high minerals content. As a result, there is a serious problem with limescale deposits. At work, there is an electric kettle that is so covered with limescale that my tea tastes (and looks) horrible. I couldn’t have more than one sip! So today I went in to Uni with one purpose: to decalcify the kettle while no-one’s around.

This is what it looks like before I began. Look at how horrible the kettle looks.

The inside of the kettle before I decalcified it.
The inside of the kettle before I decalcified it.

I boiled some water and then poured some vinegar (da:eddike) in. For science geeks, vinegar will react with limescale to produce calcium acetate, water, and carbon dioxide. The last component is the reason why it bubbles up.

Adding vinegar to boiling water.
Adding vinegar to boiling water.

After mixing vinegar to boiling water several times, the kettle is now perfectly clean!

Clean kettle!
Clean kettle!

However, as a testament to the extremely high mineral content of Copenhagen water, check out the new limescale deposit after only two boils! I think my quest to get nice tasting tea will be doomed. On the other hand, if the group wants to get some chalk sample, we can just scrape off the bottom of the kettle.

New deposit after two boils!
New deposit after two boils!