Author Topic: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.  (Read 4959 times)

Offline darthmalt

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« on: January 23, 2012, 09:36:18 AM »
I wish I could search the forum topics.  Perhaps I'm not looking in the right place.  So, I thought I would just post the problem and see what people had to say.

I live in Florida, and it is impossible to chill wort to pitching temperature with an immersion chiller here, because tap water here is still pretty warm (relatively speaking).  What is the most efficient and/or cheapest way to chill wort provided that you have an immersion chiller already?  I saw the u:ber chiller in the gadgets section, but the author didn't say exactly how to put it together and he also said it was pretty expensive.  So, what other suggestions do you all have?


Thanks,
DarthMalt

Offline weithman5

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1681
  • naperville, il
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2012, 09:41:46 AM »
ice or ice packs  with a submersible pump. recirculate water through the chiller and back over the ice.  add ice, ice packs as necessary.  if doing this a lot it could be cheaper to actually get a glycoll chiller or something. it just depends on how much freezer time you want to use freezing ice packs, or such.
Don AHA member

Offline euge

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 7658
  • Estilo Casero
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2012, 10:42:48 AM »
I live in Texas and my tap water in the summer is usually 88F! The icewater recirc is what I usually do- though sanitized frozen PET (soda/pop) bottles placed in the wort once one cannot cool anymore with their tap water will work decently.

Then there is a CFC (google "Therminator") that you can pump ice-water through and cool your wort in a single pass. This might be what you need.

Also research "whirlpool". I use a second pump (March 809) to recirculate the wort over the immersion chiller so that it cools faster and more efficiently. I can get 6 gallons from boiling to 110-120F in 5 minutes, and to 65F in another 15-20 minutes. Even at the height of the Summer.

Hope this helps cause cooling their wort is a major challenge to many homebrewers.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline darthmalt

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2012, 12:06:52 PM »
Thanks, guys.  I really appreciate the info :).

Offline anje

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 232
  • Lafayette, IN
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2012, 12:33:19 PM »
I haven't tried this yet (still need a chiller; yes I'm new), but a double immersion chiller would probably do the trick for you.  Just get/make a second chiller, and join it with your first one. Water runs from the sink into the first chiller, which is immersed in an ice bath, then the colder water runs through the second chiller which is immersed in your wort.
<-- microbiologist brewster n00b.

Hops and toothpaste don't mix.

Offline Gribble

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 165
    • View Profile
    • Low Mo Brewing Company
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2012, 02:01:33 PM »
Thats actually a really good idea.  wouldn't cost you but another 35 bucks to build up the second chiller system.
Low Mo Brewing Company
Industrial Grade Beer Brewed For Professionals

Offline sparkleberry

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 283
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2012, 02:29:27 PM »
I built a second, slightly smaller chiller. I put it in a bucket of water and in the freezer the night before a brew day. after brewing, I use the first chiller normally until I'm down to about 80-90. I then add the prechiller in line(between the hose and the first chiller in the kettle) and am down to great pitching temps in no time.
cheers.

rpl
apertureales

Offline jeffy

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2902
  • Tampa, Fl
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2012, 03:23:46 PM »
I have an extra pump in my system now, so after running hose water through the chiller until I get about 85F, I pump ice water through it to get down lower.  I recirculate back to the kettle with a whirlpool until the whole mass is the proper temperature.

Before I had this system, I used to pump wort out of the kettle, into a counter flow chiller (garden hose attached), into 20 feet of copper tubing in an ice bath, then into fermenters.  This worked fine, even in Florida.  It works best if you move the copper tubing around in the ice bath or stir the ice-water.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline boapiu

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 87
  • Palmetto Bay, FL
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2012, 04:59:48 PM »
the southern folks chime in. i have a secondary immersion chiller that i place in my mash tun full of ice water. i get the mash tun emptied and cleaned out during the boil. for the initial cooling i only use the main chiller in the boil kettle running tap water slowly. once i reach about 90-100 degrees i switch hoses and run water through the chiller in the bucket of ice. i dont recirculate the water, just dump it into the pool which needs topping off anyway. gently stirring the wort helps and i may try to develop an automatic way to use my recirculation pump for this in the future. i used to have a counter flow chiller but i fretted about getting it clean inside.
Beer is an ancient beverage that has been consumed as part of a balanced diet for centuries - it contains the goodness of sprouted grain extracted into rich liquid and fermented to produce a nutritional 'liquid cereal' beverage.

Offline weithman5

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1681
  • naperville, il
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2012, 05:16:04 PM »
there is no need for the second chiller if you can get a submersible pump and recirc the cooling water through the ice
Don AHA member

Offline tubercle

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1639
  • Sweet Caroline
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2012, 06:07:57 PM »
About 80f is as low as I can get mine in a reasonable amount of time with my well water. I place it in the converted freezer at fermentation temps until the next day then pitch the yeast.
Sweet Caroline where the Sun rises over the deep blue sea and sets somewhere beyond Tennessee

Offline darthmalt

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 5
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2012, 05:15:37 PM »
All really good ideas.  I'll have to shop around for a good submersible pump.  Thanks a lot guys!


-->Darth Malt

Offline a10t2

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3833
  • Ask me why I don't like Chico!
    • View Profile
    • SeanTerrill.com
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2012, 06:31:54 PM »
Ice is both the most efficient and the cheapest. If you chill to ~110°F and then add a gallon of ice (sanitary frozen water bottles or whatever, it will drop into the mid-60s.

BTW, here's the search link: http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?action=search
It's the third from the left in the top navigation. Google is even better: http://www.google.com/search?q=efficient+chiller+site:homebrewersassociation.org
Sent from my Microsoft Bob

Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own.
seanterrill.com/category/brewing | twomilebrewing.com

Offline hokerer

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2639
  • Manassas, VA
    • View Profile
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2012, 07:31:04 PM »
About 80f is as low as I can get mine in a reasonable amount of time with my well water. I place it in the converted freezer at fermentation temps until the next day then pitch the yeast.

+1, that's been my method too during the season when my tap water is too warm
Joe

Offline majorvices

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8080
  • Polka. If its too loud you're too young.
    • View Profile
    • Yellowhammer Brewing Company
Re: Cheapest/best wort chilling device.
« Reply #14 on: January 25, 2012, 05:51:46 AM »
About 80f is as low as I can get mine in a reasonable amount of time with my well water. I place it in the converted freezer at fermentation temps until the next day then pitch the yeast.

+1, that's been my method too during the season when my tap water is too warm

+2. Never had a problem either.
Cowboy. Pirate. Brewer.