Author Topic: Water question  (Read 692 times)

Offline krustybb

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Water question
« on: January 29, 2012, 07:39:14 AM »
Okay I live in  national forest and I have well water. I have sent some off to get tested but will not get it for awhile. I am about to start an extremely busy month at work and I want to brew tonight. I am doing my first all grain. I am doing a robust porter. It should come out pretty dark. My question is should I add some 5.2 stabilizer or add some baking soda to keep my PH from dropping to far? Or should I not worry about it? The water tastes great in my opinion but I am sure it has some minerals in there. I wish I had gotten the report sooner. I thought about adding a gallon of purified water to thin out the tap water. I don't know.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Water question
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2012, 07:54:19 AM »
Do you have any way to measure pH? 

I would use the Baking Soda over 5.2.  Without a measurement of pH, you are just shooting in the dark.  Have you added enough, have you added too little?

You can cold steep the roasted grains in a pan of water with 2 quarts/Lb of grain.  Do the mash with the light grains.  Add the dark liquid (and even the grains if you want) to the mash when you start to vorlauf.  This will keep the pH in the right range -hopefully - and you will get the color and flavor contribution of the dark grains.

When you have your water report, post it in the ingredients section, there is a post your water report thread with a sticky.
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Offline krustybb

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Re: Water question
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2012, 07:56:23 AM »
Sadly the grains are crushed and all mixed together.

Offline hokerer

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Re: Water question
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2012, 09:54:38 AM »
Well, your porter probably has a significant amount of dark grains which tend to drive pH too low.  Adding baking soda would be your best bet but, like Jeff said, without measuring your pH, you're shooting in the dark as far as whether and how much to add.

As for the 5.2 stabilizer, just forget about it as it seems to not really buy you anything.
Joe

Offline nateo

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Re: Water question
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2012, 10:32:22 AM »
Unless your well water is really soft, I doubt you'll need to increase the alkalinity. Even with fairly alkaline (~100ppm) water, after measuring the mash pH, I usually need to lower the pH or just leave it alone for my dark beers, almost never raise it.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Water question
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2012, 10:33:56 AM »
Do you know the ingredients, or is it a kit?  Can you guess at the water profile based on what is nearby?

I think I would either just go with the well water and RDWHAHB, or use all store bought RO water and add minerals using Bru'n water.
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Offline denny

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Re: Water question
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2012, 10:45:55 AM »
I think I would either just go with the well water and RDWHAHB, or use all store bought RO water and add minerals using Bru'n water.

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Offline mabrungard

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Re: Water question
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2012, 03:31:32 PM »
Unless the OP thinks that the mash pH IS going to go too low based on past experience, I wouldn't add alkalinity to the brewing water.  There are more bad things that could happen if the mash pH is too high than if its too low.  Tom's advice to dilute is probably the safest way to go.  But unless the OP thinks there is going to be a problem, it might be overkill.  

Oh, don't add 5.2 to your water unless you want bad beer.  It doesn't work in most cases.  
« Last Edit: January 29, 2012, 03:34:30 PM by mabrungard »
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