Author Topic: Cooling down the wort  (Read 530 times)

Offline rugbymike

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Cooling down the wort
« on: January 26, 2014, 01:47:34 PM »
Is it bad to add water to the wort to cool it down quicker after the boil? Currently I am putting my brew pot in a bathtub full of ice water. It seems to work fine but I was wondering if I can also put in the remaining water to get to the 5 gallons.
-Mike

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2014, 01:51:59 PM »
A lot of extract recipes call for adding additional water (if you only boil 3 gallons for instance). How much are you boiling?
IMO, it's fine, I would use distilled water out of a bottle, or pre-boil some water and stick it in the refrigerator.

Offline rugbymike

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2014, 02:54:07 PM »
I am working with typically about 2-2.5 gallons while I am making the wort, then I add the water once it is cooled down to 70 degrees. Once it is cooled I add the room temp. bottled water to get it to 5 gallons before I pitch the yeast.

So adding the water while it is cooling is not a deal breaker?

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2014, 03:21:13 PM »
Someone may correct me here....but below are my suggestions;

-Try and do a full boil if possible
-If you're going to add water, add cold water (adding water or not, the idea is to get the wort down to pitching temps quickly)
-I wouldn't let the wort get all the way down in temp, because the cold water will speed things up once you add it
-Logistically, I would cool the wort down to say 100 degrees, siphon this into your fermentor and then pour in your cold water up to the 5 gallon mark. If you're adding another 2-2.5 gallons of cold water, that water will be down to pitching temps almost immediately.

Offline Jeff M

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2014, 04:15:34 PM »
Someone may correct me here....but below are my suggestions;

-Try and do a full boil if possible
-If you're going to add water, add cold water (adding water or not, the idea is to get the wort down to pitching temps quickly)
-I wouldn't let the wort get all the way down in temp, because the cold water will speed things up once you add it
-Logistically, I would cool the wort down to say 100 degrees, siphon this into your fermentor and then pour in your cold water up to the 5 gallon mark. If you're adding another 2-2.5 gallons of cold water, that water will be down to pitching temps almost immediately.

+1. Its been a while but we used to put 3 gallons of water in the freezer and right as it iced  up we would drop it into the fermenter filled with 200F wort.  it would take it down to 80-90 no issue.

If possible i would full boil for hop utilization reasons and sanitary issues, but if you dont have a chiller yet thats tough to cool.  If you are just getting into brewing than a chiller for full boils would be the next piece of equipment to buy IMO.

Cheers,
Jeff
Granite Coast Brewing Company.
Building a clone of The Electric Brewery to use as a pilot system for new recipes!

Offline kramerog

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2014, 09:13:21 PM »
As a general rule, it is a good idea to cool your wort to 65 F or below for ales before pitching.  Cool your wort to 90 F (for example) and add cold water at 35-40 F (for example) to get in the 62-65 F range.  Your yeast may take a little longer to ferment, but will be better for having been cooler.
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Offline mainebrewer

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Re: Cooling down the wort
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2014, 04:51:38 AM »
Before I was able to boil the full batch size and didn't have a chiller, I would chill the wort down to into the 80-90 degree range then add the top up water to bring it down to pitching temp.
I will add a caution here, if you are fermenting in glass, do not put very hot wort in the carboy and then add very cold water.
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