Commercial and Household Water Ionizers
Which Produce Reduced (Cathodic) Water

Containing the Negative Hydrogen Ion (Hydride Ion)

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Background Note: If you need additional background information on the occurrence of the negative hydrogen ion (H-minus ion) in nature, in living beings and in nutrition, then please first go to the Negative Hydrogen Ion Main Page on this (Negative Hydrogen Ion) website.

Anyone consuming a significant quantity of fresh and raw plant or animal food of high quality and freshness will automatically ingest a generous amount of H-minus ions.  Unfortunately, incidence of H- in its primary form as well as the more complex biological compounds (functional hydrides, etc.) which can carry it (NADH, certain vitamins, etc.) is drastically reduced by heating, processing, milling, prolonged exposure to air or prolonged storage.

Additionally, anyone consuming relatively fresh, and unheated and untreated (and unfiltered) water from any of the following sources may also consume a significant amount of H- ions in the primary form:

  • high-latitude glacial runoff streams
  • high-altitude mountain wells and springs
  • some deep wells in relatively stable geological formations
  • some sources of moving water in open air (some rivers, mountain creeks, etc.)
Intentional Supplementation

Some people deliberately ingest the H-ion in various forms as a nutritional supplement for the health benefits, primarily its advantages as a primal antioxidant or primeval antioxidant, and one with extremely low molecular weight and size, allowing it access to many and varied tissues and levels of biochemical activity.

Perhaps the most common supplemental source of supplemental H- for the past 50 years in Japan and past 20 years in the USA has been so-called "alkaline ionized water" or "microwater" from kitchen countertop water ionizers, which is more accurately called electrolyzed reduced water (ERW); this is the nomenculature which most commonly appears in the scientific literature to denote this water.  Such water, as produced at the cathodic pole via electrolysis in the water ionizers, exhibits a poorly-buffered strongly alkaline pH, and an ORP of -150 (mildly reducing) to -850 (strongly reducing), indicating a high degree of reducing activity and strong presence of the H- ion.  This cathodic (negative pole) water is often called "reduced water" due to its reducing, or antioxidant activity, and has been called "microwater" on the commercial market due to the fact that the alkaline reduced water from the cathodic pole of the electrolysis chamber exhibits a smaller cluster size, due to the charge of the H- ions.

A brief overview of commercial and household water ionizers

Alkaline ionized water (sometimes called Microwater by the vendors of the water ionizers; the scientific term is Electrolyzed Reduced Water, or "ERW", which is a much more accurate term than "alkaline water") contains a good amount of the negative hydrogen ion (and free atomic hydrogen as well), which is the same powerful antioxidant (it is the most primitive antioxidant found in nature, known as a primal antioxidant) as found in MegaH (aka MegaH-)™.   As a refresher, both free hydrogen and the negative hydrogen ion were apparently rather plentiful in the diets of our Paleolithic ancestors (and even more recent) and also that of primitive life forms on Earth, as it is found primarily in fresh raw foods (plant and animal), especially from wild-grown and organic sources.  The H- ion is also found in some deep well water, in water from some high-altitude mountain springs and wells, and also in the streams containing glacial runoff water from high-altitude glaciers.  By the way, because of its ubiquity in the environment on Earth in the past, the H- ion in water could be called the "Paleolithic antioxidant".

Water Ionizers

There are two basic types of water ionizers for making this water at home, and here is some background information:

There are dozens of Japanese and Korean companies making small white kitchen countertop appliances which hook up, much like a countertop water filter, to the kitchen faucet, and produce alkaline water (ERW) via electrolysis. The machines run from about $600 to about $3,000 (US) retail.  Almost all of these machines produce an ERW which is of low to medium strength, with an ORP (oxidation reduction potential) of about -150 to -240 (the ORP is the best single simple indicator of strength, the more negative the stronger the antioxidant properties), and a pH of about 9.2. The alkaline pH is an accidental by-product, and not responsible for the health benefits, although for a person who is very acidic, the alkalinity may help some.  Overall, ORP is the best (easily available and cheap) indicator or corollary for the presence of the H- ion: the more strongly negative the ORP, the greater amount of hydrogen and the H- ion (antioxidant), in general.  In reality, even the ORP is only a corollary of the presence of the H- ion, and not a direct measure.  Since these devices hook up to the kitchen faucet, they are know as flow-thru devices.  Now, the strength of the water from these flow-thru devices hooked up to filtered tap water (or unfiltered well water) is fairly weak, but still has good health benefits.  If one wants much stronger water, with a much higher concentration of H and H-, then they will be interested in a batch device, described below.

There is another class of countertop machines, and these run in batch mode, producing (depending upon the size of the machine)  from 24 oz. to 0.6 gal. of ERW every 15 minutes; these devices retail from $1,100 to about $5,000 (most around $1,950).  These machines have adjustable batch process timers, and if you run them for the full 15 minutes, with a tiny amount of salt added to the water to improve conductivity, the ORP of the final ERW is about -830.  Since ORP is a semi-logarithmic scale, an ORP of -830 is an indicator that the quantity of H- ions is incredibly more than in ERW with an ORP of -200 (over a million-fold). 

If you decide to buy a batch mode device, do NOT purchase one of the cheap pitcher-type devices -- they all use either stainless steel or ceramic electrodes, neither of which I approve.  I strongly prefer titanium electrodes or platinum-coated titanium electrodes -- see Sources section below!

If One Owns a Water Ionizer, Does One Need to Own an ORP Meter?

No, not at all!  Not much happens to the machines to degrade the quality of the water coming from them, so it is NOT necessary to constantly or periodically check the ORP of the "alkaline water".  Nonetheless, since many folks have asked:  Good digital ORP meters cost about $155 and up, and cheap ones which are not at all accurate after the first week cost about $70.   Probably the meter which is cheapest yet most reliable is the Hanna Water Test, made by lab instrument manufacturer Hanna.  You can find any of a dozen vendors on the web selling this 4-way meter (ORP, pH, water temperature, water conductivity) for about $155 plus postage.

Regardless of quality, the ORP electrode an all ORP meters will degrade with use, and the readings will tend to regress toward the region of +350.  In other words, when this happens, measurements on water with a strongly negative ORP such as -830 mv will result in mediocre readings of about -100 or even +100, and readings on strongly oxidizing water (e.g.,+1,100 mv ORP) will also regress toward +350. Luckily, this dulling of sensitivity is simply due to ion contamination ("ion migration") of the insulator on the center reference electrode, and can be reversed by soaking the electrode for 20 to 30 minutes in the acid oxidizing water produced by the other pole of the ionizer.  This will draw out and neutralize most of the contaminating ions. There is actually an even better neutralizing compound made from potassium iodide and iodine, but that is a bit beyond the reach of the average household user of ORP meters.

Which Type of Device Do I Use?

I own both types of ERW machines, but I almost exclusively use the batch devices due the strength of the ERW, even though they take a bit more effort (filling the water, draining it).  I then store the ERW in amber glass jugs (1/2 gal and 1 gal) in a dark cool place, to allow the water the maximum shelf life (probably at least 2 months, but I am still testing that!). You can safely assume that the water, if stored in a clean amber glass jug, is good for at least 2 weeks.  I use only the latter type of device (batch device) nowadays, and when I was on a cooked diet, I drank about 6 glasses or more of this water daily, as part of my water intake.  Now that I eat raw, I have far less need for it, and drink three 5 ounce glasses a day -- the rest of my water intake is unfiltered tap water from my mountain well.  Once you have made this water, you can store it for up to two weeks in an amber/brown glass jug (available in pint, half-gallon and gallon sizes at homebrew beer supply stores.)

If using a batch type device, it is extremely important NOT to use the vast quantity of salt added to the water which the manufacturers recommend for production of oxidizing (acid) water for commercial use.  Rather, use far less, and add only a good unheated sea salt at only the rate of 0.1 gram per liter, which is about 0.35 grams per gallon.  I mix my tap water (mountain well water) with the salt in a one-gallon plastic jug (much like a milk jug or the type of jug in which spring water is sold.)


If you just want a cheap countertop flow-thru device, the cheapest deal will be to buy a Jupiter Technos water ionizer - see among other sites.  The price will probably be about $590 (2012 update: $750).  For an even better quality, but more expensive, countertop ionizer, call Ion & Light, below.

If you wish to purchase a good batch-type device (can make much more powerful water), I recommend the Super Oxide Mini (24 ounces per batch, for about $1200) or the Super Oxide Labo (70 ounces per batch, about $1995) from Ion and Light in San Francisco. Both devices have only platinum-coated titanium electrodes and are of the highest quality.  By the way, these batch machines have the word "oxide" in the name because the primary market for which they are designed (hospitals, clinics, plant nurseries) is one which uses the acid oxidized water rather than the alkaline reduced water (in fact, these users discard the alkaline water!)  I own one of each, but I usually use the Labo, because it makes more water in one batch.  2012 update: Ion & Light are no longer in business.

Non-Electrolytic Means of Producing Reduced Water (RW)

Now, a teaser: there are actually NUMEROUS other ways of creating H-minus ions in water, and without electricity/electrolysis, and often without the artificial corollary of high alkalinity as well.  These methods yield water commonly referred to as "reduced water", or RW.  However, many of these methods really cannot get the H-minus concentration to a place where the resultant ORP is much stronger than -300 mv.  There are a few that can go much further. 

It is my observation that the so-called species of "active hydrogen", when found in water, are also often linked to so-called ormus forms of various elements or to ormus-like energies. If you wish to read about a device which I have built which employs magnets and magnetite sand to apparently induce creation of ormus-type forms of elements in water, please check out my Ormus Water website at

Relative Hydrogen Score, aka rH Score, an Absolute 
Measure of Hydrogen Reducing Power Calculated
from ORP and pH Measures

For a brief tutorial on the Relative Hydrogen Score, or rH score, please see the on-site page devoted to that topic! rH score is an absolute measure of hydrogen reducing power (and of oxidizing power) which is independent of changes in pH, and which is calculated from measures of ORP and pH.

Donations and Support for this Website

This freely-offered educational website has been totally self-supported by the author, Vinny Pinto, since its inception (and many of my websites were started between August 2000 and June 2003). While I offer the content on this website freely, as a gift to all from my heart, it is quite obvious that not only did my research in these realms (and also my training, including formal education, that allowed me to offer this material in the first place) incur costs, but there are also monthly and yearly costs associated with web hosting, domain registration, etc. As you have likely noticed, I have chosen not to accept any advertising on any of my websites. As a result of all of these factors, any funds that you might choose to donate toward supporting my research work and this site will be very much appreciated.

Thus, I am seeking donations to help me to support this site -- even two dollars helps! If you wish to donate, you may do so by using your credit card, ATM card, debit card, or transfer from your bank account, via fully secure means. To make a donation, please go to the Donations and Support page! All transactions are secure; in all cases, you get to choose the donation amount!

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Further Information

Further Notes on Water Ionizers, Filtration, and Ultra-Strong Electrolyzed Reduced Water -- This on-site informational article offers further notes on countertop water ionizers, filtration of water in the ionizers, and consumption of alkaline or reduced electrolyzed water, including consumption of ultra-strong electrolyzed reduced water with an ORP stronger than -600 mv, and, in many cases, with an ORP stronger than -790 mv.

If you want to get even more in-depth information on ERW and making it, especially in home-brew devices, than this page offers, I recommend first finishing this page, and then going to the page entitled Some Thoughts and Observations on Production of H-minus Ion Enriched-Water by Electrolysis

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