Author Topic: About to destroy my immersion chiller...  (Read 1473 times)

Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2014, 03:03:30 PM »
I go the same route as most noted above, but I get below 60 with my well water year round and only use ice in the winter when I can freeze 5 gallon buckets part way by leaving them out over night - free ice!  It saves me on water overall in the winter and avoids the ice cake on the drive with the closed loop system just adding new ice when needed.  This time of year the lagers go in the fermentation chest for a few hours then whip and pitch and go to bed - then wake up to bubbles in the morning, typically.  Ales don't need or get the ice treatment - and I make most of my ales in the winter so I can dial in the heat wrap to keep them in the low 60's in my 30-40F garage.  Saison is the exception, of course.  Summertime beer that one usually.
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Offline kramerog

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2014, 04:28:11 PM »
I'm still debating the best way to cool.  Once I put fermenters in fridge and once I immersed a fermenter in an ice bath.  The ice bath is faster but the temperature strip thingy on the side of the fermenter can get in the way.  Also thinking about freezing a jug of water, sanitizing the frozen jug and putting the jug into the kettle.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #17 on: July 31, 2014, 04:38:42 PM »
Also thinking about freezing a jug of water, sanitizing the frozen jug and putting the jug into the kettle.

I still do that in the hot months - done it for a long time. It's a really easy, low tech way to get those last few degrees F of cooling. You just need to stir steadily while the jug is in there to be able to measure a steady temp. Another tip - cool with your IC until it reaches its limit and remove it. Once it hits its cooling limit, it actually will slow down any further cooling by holding its steady temp. I've cooled to lager pitching temps (~48F) doing this.
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Offline rdgill

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #18 on: July 31, 2014, 04:53:00 PM »
I used frozen 2 liter pop bottles in a cooler hooked up to a submersible pump, sitting aside the first couple gallons of hot water and keeping it for later so it does not heat up the cooler water.  I have been able to cool the wort in 20 minutes.

Offline Thomas_TK_Kinzer

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2014, 05:46:18 PM »
You're wasting the ice, if you are using the ice in the initial part of the chilling.

Just use tap water to take the majority of the heat out of the kettle with the chiller. Switch to the chilled water recirculation when the wort gets down to about 20 or 30 degrees of your tap water temperature.

This way, the tap water can carry away most of the heat and you save the chilled water to take it down that extra bit that the tap water can't.

+1 too.

Offline gymrat

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2014, 07:27:53 PM »
I put a pond pump in a cooler with a few pounds of ice. When I get the temp down to 100 with my garden hose I take it off the hose and hook it to the pond pump and circulate the ice water through it.
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Offline dzlater

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #21 on: August 01, 2014, 02:55:09 AM »
My method has been to use the immersion chiller till it gets to the point where it won't go any lower usually around 80. Then put the kettle in a cooler of ice water and stir. My new kettle doesn't fit in the cooler so I have been using the chiller, transfer to the fermentor and then put the fermentor in the ice bath.
I've been thinking of going the pond pump route, then I could also put a valve on the kettle. In the winter the IC does fine by itself.
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Offline philm63

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2014, 04:00:16 AM »
Having gone this route myself and seeing that it was painfully slow, I bought another 25-footer and tossed it into a bucket of tap water as a pre-chiller to supplement the one in the kettle. Minimal returns.

So, I made a new 50-footer, and I combined the two original 25-footers into one 50' pre-chiller and ran that water through my newly made 50' 3/8" copper IC in the kettle. I start with tap water (about 80 F in the summer here) add ice at about the 120 F point, and get 6 gallons down to 65 F in around 12 minutes consistently.

More surface area on the IC in the wort = faster cooling; all else being equal. 50' is better than 25', 1/2" is better than 3/8", etc.
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Offline jtoots

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2014, 05:37:23 AM »
I'm loving this thread... at the end of the day, as fun as brewing is, I really just want to put the effort (and myself) to bed.  Great ideas here.  Philm63, I'm particularly liking the pre-chiller you've put together as I'd prefer to stay pumpless.

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #24 on: August 01, 2014, 06:05:03 AM »
If your sanitation practices are stringent there is no reason to stress about leaving the beer up to 12 hours in your ferm chamber to reach proper pitching levels before pitching. There are even commercial breweries out there which do this. Lots of em.
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Offline Steve in TX

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #25 on: August 01, 2014, 07:08:44 AM »
Could always try no-chill. The Aussies love it. I have thought about it but never pulled the trigger.

Offline David Lester

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #26 on: August 01, 2014, 07:44:09 AM »
A year or two ago I set up my system to chill the wort with a counter flow chiller and a whirlpool fitting into the kettle.  I tried to get the whole 10 gallon mass down to pitching temps, first with well water, then when I got down to about 100F with ice water.  This took forever and went through a lot of ice.   I was trying to leave all the cold break in the kettle.
Lately I recirculate through the chiller with well water and the whirlpool attachment down to 100F and then pump the wort through the ice water counter flow directly into the fermenters.  I gave up on leaving the cold break in the kettle.  I can regulate the flow to target temps for ales or lagers this way.
It still takes 40 to 60 minutes, but I'm in Florida.  My well water is 72F.

Jeffy, try whirlpooling the wort prior to cooling and draw the wort from the side of the kettle. If there is a lot of trub and you have a small kettle, you'll get about 10% of the trub drawn into the fermenter. I cured this by whirl pooling into another kettle, which was whirl pooling a second time. When drawn off the second kettle, the wort is perfectly clear.

I had to do this because trub and hops were getting into my reverse flow chiller. It would get stuck and later mildue and contaminate the next batch of beer.

Good luck,

Offline eyousey

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #27 on: August 01, 2014, 07:59:15 AM »
I have a pull down sprayer kitchen faucet, so I use a small pond pump in a small cooler.  I fill the cooler with tap water and pump it through the my 1/2" x 50' double coil IC.  Once I hit between 90-100F, I pump most of the water out of the cooler, fill it with ice and recirculate the cooling water.  I also gently stir my wort to keep it moving over the coil of the IC.  I typically drop about 10-13F/min with the tap water.  Then it slows down with the ice water.  I monitor the temp of the recirculating ice bath water and the wort temp.  When the are within in about 5-10F of each other and the ice is all gone, I pump out most of the water and fill it back up with ice.  I've gotten lagers down to 45F like this. 

Lagers take about 45-60 minutes and ales (~60F) take about 30-40 minutes.  I've got city water, so right now it is about 70F but in the winter it is about 45F.  Winter cooling is very quick.  I think I was doing nearly 20F/min with this past winters super cool water temps. 

I'm thinking about getting a slighter higher volume pond pump.  The temp of the water coming out of the chiller is about 5 degrees below the wort's.  A little more flow rate should increase the difference and increase cooling along the last bit of length of the coil.  Then I'll use the older pump to stir the ice bath water to help with cooling.

Offline weithman5

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #28 on: August 01, 2014, 08:00:58 AM »
waste ice or waste water take your pick. 10 pounds of ice can absorb more heat than a gallon of 70 degree water.  that said, i throw my kettle in the fridge over night  decant the wort off the cold break in the morning then pitch
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Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: About to destroy my immersion chiller...
« Reply #29 on: August 01, 2014, 08:46:35 AM »
Kyle's right

Now to convince my clients and wife...
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