OT?: Teapot "steel wool" de-scaler, how to use? - Home Brew Forums
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:34 PM   #1
Mar 2012
Washington, District of Columbia (DC)
Posts: 8

I was able to purchase some descalers from a tea boutique that was sold and bought to another tea company so they were really on sale. The staff didn't know how it use them, though. They came loose without packaging so no instructions included.

Though this post seems to suggest one just drops the descaler in the tea kettle and lets it float around (all the time??), I'm just wondering if that's all there is to it ...:

Does anyone know? I have a metal, vs. plastic, tea kettle and it's starting to have a bit of residue from the water. I know vinegar will take care of that but hoping that the descaler will help, too.

If anyone knows, would appreciate any tips. Nothing came up googling.

Here's what the descalers look like:


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Old 09-21-2012, 02:42 PM   #2
Jan 2012
Fargo, ND
Posts: 36

I think they are used as scrubbers to remove scale during cleaning, not left in the water during heating. I think leaving it in there would invite contamination and more buildup of scale on the descaler itself.

That said, I stand corrected... It does appear there are products intended to be kept in the pot as you boil.

Personally, I use baking soda to scrub periodically and never use soap on my pots. I don't think I'd like the idea of leaving it in there all the time. But, that is from a microbiologist's perspective.

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Old 10-10-2012, 04:51 PM   #3
Senior Member
HopSong's Avatar
Sep 2011
Santa Rosa, CA
Posts: 1,945
Liked 101 Times on 89 Posts

scale is probably lime or similar. For my coffee maker, I add some distilled vinegar and run it thru the coffee pot several times. That seems to do the trick. Don't know why heating vinegar in a teapot wouldn't do the same thing. Also, I'd guess Lime Away would do the same thing. You would have to rinse well or probably add a bunch of water and heat it well a couple of times to remove all traces.
Cheers, Bill
Hop Song Brewing

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Old 10-10-2012, 10:59 PM   #4
Aug 2012
Fort Meade
Posts: 813
Liked 47 Times on 43 Posts

I don't know, I just don't worry about it. I get quite a bit of scale in my 'cordless' hot water kettles. I just put some water in and shake it and dump between refills so that any chunks fall out. I use these regularly to heat my water to make my tea for kombucha and it seems to work well. I have four roughly 1300-1500W kettles.

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Old 11-07-2012, 11:23 PM   #5
Nov 2010
Philly, PA
Posts: 730
Liked 61 Times on 43 Posts

Yes you leave them in the kettle, and clean periodically with vinegar or something.
The theory being that scale will settle on every surface. By providing something with a massive amount of surface area, there should be less available to precipitate out on the kettle surface. The total amount of scale does not change, it just gets spread across more area.
Personally, not worth trading for quick boil with dilute vinegar, which you'll still have to do, only less frequently.

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