Coffee Straight From The Tap

Do you love coffee? Of course you do. Do you sometimes wish you could drink coffee instead of water? Do you want to void the warranty on your hot water heater? Yes? Well, then we have the hack for you!

A Norweigan science show called Ikke gjør dette hjemme (Do Not Try This at Home) decided it would be fun to see what would happen if you turned your hot water heater into a giant coffee machine. They didn’t put much effort into the conversion, in fact, they just opened up the tank and poured copious amounts of instant coffee into the tank. But they did it, and that saves us from wondering if it’s possible. Spoiler: It is.

Stick around after the break to see the water run brown — in a good way.

EDIT: Unfortunately we can’t seem to embed this particular video, so you’ll have to head over here in order to watch it.

Perhaps it would be simpler to just have an automatic alarm that notifies you when the actual coffee pot is ready. Not quite as convenient drinking straight from the tap… but at least your hot water heater will still have its warranty.

[via Wimp]

43 thoughts on “Coffee Straight From The Tap

  1. Did they modify the boiler in some way?

    Having a ton of water in a tall boiler will stratify with hot on top and cold at the bottom, and grow bacteria in the middle where it’s nice and lukewarm, and drinking the water can make you sick.

    That’s why hot water boilers typically use a copper tube heat exchanger inside, so they take in cold water and pass it through the hot bit at the top. The water inside the actual tank doesn’t come out, which is a good thing because then the whole thing can be a sealed unit (save for a pressure relief) and no oxygen or minerals can get in, so it doesn’t rust and doesn’t collect silt.

    1. I believe you are incorrect. Traditional hot water heaters are just big tanks. The cold water gets pumped into the bottom, the heating element heats the whole tank, and the hot water outlet is at the top so the hottest water exits first. High efficiency hot water heaters have coils of pipe that are heated directly, but that’s not what they used here.

        1. excepting instantaneous models, water heaters are tanks, allowing for some degree of stratification between tap temperature and set temperature.

          the UK has two taps for legacy reasons that no longer exist.

      1. These are quite common:

        http://www.akvaterm.fi/images/akvageo_lampop_kaavio_460.jpg

        Gas is almost never used around here, so the boilers get their heat from night-rate electricity, oil, wood, pellet, solar collectors… and they’re used as storage boilers for the heating systems, which means they need to be large, and they need to be isolated because otherwise the oxygen coming in through the water mains would corrode the heating system.

        But even if you had just electric heating, it’s still considered more hygienic to have a heat exchanger in the tank because it isn’t really any more expensive and such boilers last longer in use.

      1. Having two heaters doesn’t really help the issue. They may churn the water a bit when the power is on, but since the hot water naturally rises to the top the bottom of the tank still remains cooler.

        When you heat a large volume of water with a relatively small heater over a long period of time, it will actually start boiling from the top down even though the heater is at the bottom. The bacteria cling on to the walls of the tank at the bottom where it’s nice and warm, and make a biofilm there.

        And whenever the tank goes cold enough at the top, the bacteria can pass through alive to your tap, especially if you try to save on the heating bill and turn the thermostat down. If you have a case of legionella growing in your water tank, don’t let it drop below 55 C, or don’t drink the water.

        1. Just speaking from personal experience, my own nat gas water heater has both the heater and the thermostat at the bottom of the tank. So regardless of any stratification, as long as the thermostat is set high enough, bacterial should not be a problem.

          It’s good to know though, my first thought when acquiring my house was to set the heater as low as possible, but later reading led me to ‘Legionaries Disease’ and prompted me to turn the temp back up.

  2. The coffee in the tank would not be fresh. How about a Keurig-like device that is semi-auto so when you hit the fire button, and a new round of ammo gets loaded for the next cup? The present Keurig is like a breech loader artillery piece. You load the round, close the breech, fire, remove the shell casing, and repeat for the next cup. With the semi-auto, you have a connection to the water instead of having to fill it every so often. Also, with the semi-auto Keurig, the spent shell casing is ejected into a convient garbage can. A severe coffee addict would want a drum clip on this semi-auto Keurig.

    1. Why not full-auto?

      A rack of Keurig K-Cups, some servos, an instant water heater and a K-Cup shaped chamber.

      Insert your mug, select a flavor, an arm takes a K-Cup from the rack and places in the chamber, the chamber seals and hot water is pumped through it into your mug, After your mug is full, the chamber opens and an arm removes the used K-Cup and drops it in the trash.

      All that’s missing is a robot to put your mug in the machine and deliver it to you when its ready.

    2. Now you are very close to a coffee vending machine :-) But it is already batch operation. So I would use a full auto espresso machine which grinds the coffee. In fact I would never buy such a capsule machine like Keurig or Nespresso. The coffee is ridiculously expensive and its inconvenient: You have to manually reload it for every cup. I want to have to just press the button.

    1. I could make a fortune on a hot water heater. insert water at 90°F and receive water at 90°F. Maybe insert a couple of clog prone filters so the consumer needs to constantly be buying new parts. :-)

    2. A water heater doesn’t necessarily make the water hot, such as if its a central heating water heater, because the water going around in the pipes doesn’t usually need to be more than couple degrees above room temperature. It can get hot inside if it’s a storage boiler, though, but the output is basically lukewarm water.

      Whereas water heaters for taps do need to get hot because the water and the pipes need to be above a certain temperature to kill bacteria, therefore they’re hot water heaters.

      1. I like the episode where they filled a waterbed with something like three tons of water to see how much it would take, and the other episode where they crushed a mobile home with a vacuum cleaner.

  3. The German show “Nicht nachmachen” also…. oh, we already have it 2 times :P

    Fun Fact: “Nicht nachmachen” is actually an adaption of the norwegian “Ikke gjør dette hjemme”.
    So they copied their own copy

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