Unless the architect or builder are prepared to guarantee the concrete and tile baptistry will not leak (and not need regrouting!) in under 10 (or 25) years, don’t bother!
Our fibreglass baptistries mean less fuss and cost at installation as the unit comes as a whole. Insulation is built in, the walls need no additional support, and the reinforced lids can take the whole choir! And our fibreglass baptistries need no maintenance for years to come. The baptistry is guaranteed for 10 years, though it will probably last well over 25 years.
Concrete pools are poorly insulated, if at all. Ours come with 50mm of insulation built in as standard. Heating the water in concrete and tile pools is expensive and wasteful as you end up heating the concrete as well as the water. The fibreglass lids can be put over the tank whilst filling and heating to keep in the heat and, unlike wood, will not swell and warp. Even treated timber starts to swell once the varnish wears.
GRP pools do not need maintenance (other than an occasional wipe down). The grouting between tiles soon attracts mould and we have phone calls from churches with leaky tiled baptistries at the rate of one a month. It isn’t just a false economy, it’s no saving at all to have a concrete and tile baptistry.
Get in touch because there is a fibreglass pool for your budget.
We are redesigning the baptistry water heater, so in the New Year, this will only apply to 4.8kW heaters shown here.
With the 4.8kW heater, one element is the master and the other the slave. Both are independently earthed but the earth on the ‘slave’ flex will not work unless the master is plugged in and switched on. So, unless you have two PAT testing kits, it is important to get the correct plug.
To get an earth, the usual thing to do would be to touch the heating elements with the earth probe. The coil manufacturer advises that a contact should be sought at the base of the coil (see the photograph).
The 4.8kW water heater has two plugs and we mark the flex for the master element with a piece of black tape so you get the correct plug. Then one needs to make a test on both elements (at the base of the element). Even then, scale on the elements can give a false fail, and I have found that the ‘pencil-like’ earthing probe doesn’t get enough contact. Most kits come with an alternative ‘dog-tooth’ clamp fitting to go on the end of the earth probe.
To get at the coils, unscrew the 4 corner screws and lift out the top plate (picture 1). The coils are attached to this and should lift up with it. Use the clamp to scrape away at the scale and get a better contact.
Summary – Use the plug with black tape on flex, and get a good contact on the coil.
Our portable immersion water heaters will need testing periodically and many churches either have their own kit or bring in an electrician.
There are two things that need to be understood as they may lead to false fails.
When seeking for an earth, the usual thing to do would be to touch the heating elements with the earth probe. We are advised by the coil manufacturers (in the UK) that a contact should be sought at the base of the coil (see the photograph).
When it comes to plugging in the appliance for its Portable Appliance Test, the 2.4kW heaters are straight-forward as they only have one plug. The 4.8kW water heater has two plugs and it is important to get the right one. With the 4.8kW heater, one element is the master and the other the slave. The latter will not work unless the master is plugged in and switched on. On our 4.8kW heater we mark the flex for the master element with a piece of black tape so you get the correct plug. Then one needs to make a test on both elements (at the base of the element).
As a final point, any scale on the elements can give a false fail, I know a trained spark will know this but it does get forgotten. There is an article on cleaning away scale, other than just scraping and chipping a bit off.
It may seem a bit odd to be advertizing another company but bear with us! Wooden Baptistery Co make portable wooden baptistries such as the ‘Ben’s Boat‘ and we put together a kit box for each of their pools, hence us advertizing their baptistries. All their pools are handmade in the UK and a particular favourite is the wooden hexagonal because of the way it fits together without any tools. At 5′ across it is quick to fill as well making it an excellent baptistry where a church needs to set up and take down quickly.
We provide a kit for each of their pools which contains a pump, lay-flat hose pipe, base pads, insulating cover and, if ordered, a heater and a step.
If you are in a hard water area of the country you will find that your heater elements will become coated with limescale during use. As the limescale gets thicker it will take more time and electricity to heat your baptistery. There are 3 ways of tackling this but they differ a little depending on which heater you have.
Remove 4 corner screws on the lid and carefully chip away the lime scale from the elements. In most cases this will come away quite easily.
Off-the-shelf products such as Killrock (or any other product used for de-scaling kettles). Again remove the 4 corner screws from the heater lid. For the 2.4 heater, slide the lid up the cable out of the way, mix de-scaler using manufacturer’s instructions. Put mixture in a bowl just deep enough to cover the element when heater is stood on its end. Make sure only the element is in the mixture. It will not hurt the plastic box, which will have to be partly immersed too.
For the 4.8 you will need a shallow container with at least one straight side as once you have removed the lower part of the box containing the elements, the elements will have to be immersed without touching any other components. The descaler is mixed as above.
When the limescale touches the mixture it will usually fizz for a while it’s doing its business.
Other remdies use household items such as vinegar. Whilst you could use an equal part solution of water and household vinegar, you will need a lot of it, as you’ll see. Mix 1 part vinegar with 1 part water and stand the elements in it for an hour. Then heat the solution with the heater. The heater needs to be covered by 10cm of liquid to ensure it is not damaged, so you will have to mix up large amount of vinegar and water.
Only attempt the descaling if you feel confident. If not go to option 3
You could combine service and de-scale as it does not cost a lot and extends the life of the heater.
The new range of our baptistries have insulation as standard – this saves £400 on the price and a lot in heating costs in the long run. Insulation is difficult to do with concrete and tile baptismals.
Elim style simply means the steps are an integral part of the baptistry and not a separate unit fixed in place afterward, so a whole range of dimensions, depths and configurations are possible. And, as we make timber moulds for each job, you can have bespoke at the price of ‘off-the-peg’.