84 Transcript

084 Pinks and Blues: pH


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welcome to Scaling UP! the podcast for
water traders by water treaters where

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we’re Scaling UP! on knowledge so we
don’t Scaling UP! our systems

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hello Scaling UP! nation Trace Blackmore
here your host for Scaling UP! h2o and

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folks once again another episode from
questions from the Scaling UP! nation

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thank you so much nation for riding in
or letting me know directly what

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questions you had and that way I know
what shows to bring you without that

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information you would be listening to
silence right now maybe you would prefer

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that but I’m betting you probably would
not so keep those questions coming you

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might be wondering how do I get those
questions to you trace well I’m so glad

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you asked it’s very easy
you’re gonna go to http://scalinguph2o.com

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and you have two ways to get your
questions to me one is you can go to the

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show ideas page and write in your
question or two you can record your

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voice asking me the question and I will
get your question answered on the air

1:23.2

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and if I use your voice on the air I
will send you the most amazing Scaling

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UP! t-shirt you will be the envy of all
your friends and you can get that by

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1:40.0

sending me your questions via voice mail
we’re not too long ago I did a show on

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1:46.6

calibration of meters and the questions
I had were either around how the meters

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work or what pH actually was and folks I
don’t know what it is but more often

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than not people like myself that teach
water treatment make water treatment

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needlessly overcomplicated so the people
that are trying to get the information

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don’t truly understand the why behind
the question that they are asking I

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don’t know why that is and not everybody
does that but more often than not when a

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water Treaty Act a water treaty
question the water treater that’s

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answering answers with the intent of the
other person to know how smart they are

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well folks out there in the Scaling UP!
nation you know I’m a dumb guy and I

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don’t mind that people know that I’ve
said it on the air I’ve got 10,000

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listeners there it is it’s out there so
with that being off the table I just

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want you to understand the information
that you need to know in order to be a

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2:57.1

better water trigger and I receive
several questions as I alluded to

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earlier around the pH meter itself but
then also pH so what I’m going to do in

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today’s episode is explain pH in a way
that will make sense so if you were to

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look at pH what the heck is it and I was
in a class once when somebody asked what

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is pH and the answer was the anti log of
the hydrogen ion concentration and that

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was it that was the answer and by the
way the person that was asking that

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question had been in the water treatment
industry for about two weeks so again we

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don’t have to overcomplicate things we
need to make sure we understand the

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information that we need to know now
truth be known that was a perfect way to

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answer that question but it wasn’t what
that person needed to hear now I bet if

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you told him that now based on him being
in the water treatment industry for

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seven plus years I’m sure he would say
hey that makes a lot of sense but at

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that moment in time that’s not what he
needed to hear

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here is how I like to explain pH now I
need you in your mind’s eye to visualize

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the pH scale and we have a line starting
from zero going all the way up to 14

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with seven being in the middle now most
of you out there on the Scaling UP!

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nation know that seven is
neutral when it comes to pH a lot of us

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don’t know what that means as neutral so
I’m going to explain that for you so

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again you have to have this visual in
your head where you’re going from zero

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all the way up to 14 with seven in the
middle now water is h2o two parts of

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hydrogen one part of oxygen we’re now
going to rewrite this and if you’ve had

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organic chemistry you always write water
as H o H it’s the exact same molecule

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we’re just writing that a little bit
differently so here’s what I want you to

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visualize that long line that has zero
on one end and 14 on the other end with

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seven in the middle and then right above
seven you’ve got H o H now this is what

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that means and this is what we mean when
we say neutral when you have a pH of

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seven it means you have equal parts of
hydrogen ions and hydroxyl ions now

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hydrogen’s the H hydroxyls are the OHA
ends are the positively charged o eights

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are the negatively charged and we have
equal parts of them at seven now we

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might have 20 billion H’s at seven but
that means we have 20 billion o H’s at

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seven so that’s what we mean when we say
that it’s neutral and of course water is

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neutral because it’s just hydrogen and
hydroxyls and we have equal parts of

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them now let’s explain pH based on that
now we’re going to start moving further

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and further away from seven down to the
one and we all say well hey the lower

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the number is in pH the more acidic it
is well here’s why that is the further

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you move closer to one or away from
seven the more hydrogen’s you have

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in the sample hydrogen sometimes called
the proton that is what acid is derived

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from and the more you have of hydrogen
the more acidic it is now so much when

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you get all the way to the end of the pH
scale all you have is hydrogen and that

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gets into some of the super assets that
we have in chemistry now let’s look at

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the other side of that the further we
move up the pH scale so away from seven

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but moving towards fourteen the more
basic or the more caustic those are

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similar terms the sample gets the more
Oh H concentration we have in the sample

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if you start looking at your bases you
will see that they are all made out of O

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HS so if you get all the way up to the
14 range again those are super caustics

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in chemistry and all you have are OHS at
that range so that is what pH is

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measuring it’s measuring how much or how
little hydrogen is in the sample so the

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lower we go the more hydrogen we have in
the sample the higher we go the less

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hydrogen or more hydroxyl we have in the
sample and then that’s where we get pH

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from that being said I heard someone
answered the anti log of the hydrogen

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ion concentration again a perfectly
acceptable answer but not until we got

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some more information so it said the log
of the hydrogen ion concentration well

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log is just a big fancy way for us to
say times 10 its times 10 of the

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hydrogen ion concentration so at 7
remember I have equal parts of

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hydrogen’s and equal parts of hydroxyls
well now if I go from 7 to 6 I have 10

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times more hydrogen’s at 6
then I did at 7:00 if I move down to

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five I have 100 times more hydrogen’s at
five than I did at seven and I keep

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multiplying that number by ten until I
get all the way down to a million which

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means there’s just all hydrogen’s in
that sample well let’s start at seven

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and go the other way so if I start at
seven and go to eight I have 10 times

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less hydrogen ions than I did at seven
if I went up to nine I have a hundred

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times less hydrogen ions that I did at
seven remember pH is a measure of the

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hydrogen in the sample but we can also
look at it because we know what pH is

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telling us now that when I go from seven
to eight even though there’s 10 less

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hydrogen’s or in the sample I have 10
more hydroxyls in the sample remember

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that’s the OHS and then if I move to
eight I have a hundred times more

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hydroxyls in the sample all the way up
when I get to 14 it’s a million hits all

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hydroxyls so I hope you can visualize
that because if you can understand that

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that is what is going on with pH and so
many people will look at a sample and

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maybe they’re cleaning the system with
acid and it’s supposed to be at four and

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they see it at two and they say oh well
that’s no big deal it’s only three

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numbers off well that’s a huge deal
that’s a thousand numbers off there’s so

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much free hydrogen in that sample
whatever you’re doing you’ve got a

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thousand times more than what you were
told that you need and sometimes that

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cannot be a good thing so that’s what pH
is now when you press pH on your meter

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what your meter is doing it’s measuring
how much hydrogen’s in that sample and

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then this is where we get the seven from
if we were to look at the decimal points

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of all of the graduations of pH zero all
the way up to 14 when we’re at the zero

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it’s a 1 everything in there is hydrogen
when we get to 1 it’s going to be zero

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point one two is zero point zero one
notice one decimal point four one two

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decimal points 4 2 all the way up to 14
decimal points at the very end of the

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scale so that’s where we get that pH
range of 0 to 14 and what’s in the

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middle of that will that’s 7 and now you
know that a pH of 7 is equal parts of

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hydrogen and equal parts of hydroxyl
folks I hope that helps you understand a

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lot more than when I take a pH reading
I’m simply jotting down a number you now

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know what that means now all of the
products that we use are based on that

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range of pH in which they work the best
end and then that’s why it’s so

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important that we are staying within
whatever ranges your company says that

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that particular product has to stay in
that range if you have ever taken my

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course at aw T’s technical training you
know that I talked about one of the five

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ingredients of scale is pH if you’re
wondering it’s calcium hardness its

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alkalinity its pH its temperature and
then all the dissolved solids in the

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water well as we increase pH the more
susceptible to scaling we become as we

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reduce pH the more susceptible to
dissolving scale the water becomes so

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again I hope that this helps you
understand pH and I want to thank

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everybody out there that ask me
questions around pH and I sincerely hope

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that this hell
folks if you have a question and you

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want me to answer it on Scaling UP! h2o
go to my website http://scalinguph2o.com go

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13:33.9

to my show ideas page and leave me that
question or you can record your voice on

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13:38.5

the voicemail button right there on the
home page and if I use your voice on the

13:38.5

13:43.7

show I will send you the most amazing
Scaling UP! h2o t-shirt folks thank you

13:43.7

13:47.8

so much for being part of the Scaling UP!
nation and I’ll talk to you next week on

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13:54.2

Scaling UP! h2o

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13:56.2

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