Author Topic: RO Water  (Read 1490 times)

Offline fmader

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RO Water
« on: October 05, 2014, 01:09:26 PM »
I feel a little silly posting this, but I'm ignorant of this topic. My local Wal-Mart just installed an RO Water dispenser. $1.85 for five gallons... Paying a $1.85 verse fetching spring water to brew is an easy trade off. I understand that RO water is a great starting point to brew. But here's my question... Is all RO water the same? Or should an analysis be conducted on this water?
Frank

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2014, 01:29:20 PM »
RO will have a small amount of minerals. How small depends on the feed water and the filter condition. You could be fine without testing, but if you are like me your curiosity will get the best of you.

I have to ask, did you ever get the spring water tested? That could help you decide. Spring water can be very low to very high in minerals.
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Offline fmader

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2014, 03:18:48 PM »
RO will have a small amount of minerals. How small depends on the feed water and the filter condition. You could be fine without testing, but if you are like me your curiosity will get the best of you.

I have to ask, did you ever get the spring water tested? That could help you decide. Spring water can be very low to very high in minerals.

I have not. I've not really gotten into water chemistry. That water made better beer than our well water. I was about to get our well water tested until I found this little gem at Walmart. The spring I was getting the water from is 20 minutes down the road and filling 60 gallons at a time is a PITA.
Frank

Offline brewinhard

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2014, 06:40:26 PM »
I feel a little silly posting this, but I'm ignorant of this topic. My local Wal-Mart just installed an RO Water dispenser. $1.85 for five gallons... Paying a $1.85 verse fetching spring water to brew is an easy trade off. I understand that RO water is a great starting point to brew. But here's my question... Is all RO water the same? Or should an analysis be conducted on this water?


$1.85 for 5 gallons is a good deal!  Sounds like its time to dabble in some water chemistry.... ;)

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2014, 06:55:29 PM »

 Spring water can be very low to very high in minerals.


+1.  At the very least, assuming the store's RO machine filter is in good shape, you'll be getting more consistent, cheaper water, Frank.  I bought a fairly cheap TDS meter like this one to check the water each time before I buy it. So far the water from the store I buy from has tested great every time.

http://www.amazon.com/HM-Digital-TDS-EZ-Measurement-Resolution/dp/B002C0A7ZY/ref=sr_1_1/187-7410435-6778256?ie=UTF8&qid=1412534812&sr=8-1&keywords=tds+meter
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2014, 08:37:36 PM »

 Spring water can be very low to very high in minerals.


+1.  At the very least, assuming the store's RO machine filter is in good shape, you'll be getting more consistent, cheaper water, Frank.  I bought a fairly cheap TDS meter like this one to check the water each time before I buy it. So far the water from the store I buy from has tested great every time.

http://www.amazon.com/HM-Digital-TDS-EZ-Measurement-Resolution/dp/B002C0A7ZY/ref=sr_1_1/187-7410435-6778256?ie=UTF8&qid=1412534812&sr=8-1&keywords=tds+meter

I bought a TDS meter too. Just because.
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Offline 69franx

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2014, 09:55:56 PM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2014, 10:16:24 PM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


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So the RO reads what - let others know for comparison.
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Offline fmader

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2014, 10:19:36 PM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


Sent from Franx Brew Works using Tapatalk
So the RO reads what - let others know for comparison.

Yes. What should RO read?
Frank

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2014, 10:23:57 PM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


Sent from Franx Brew Works using Tapatalk
So the RO reads what - let others know for comparison.

Yes. What should RO read?

Pretty low. The stuff I bought from a store the next town over was 12 ppm TDS and all of the nrewing ions were
<1 ppm. That was from ward labs, - for the record.
Jeff Rankert
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Offline ajk

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2014, 10:37:39 PM »
I also use RO water from the machine in the store and am happy with it. I usually blend with tap water, the ratio depending on what I'm brewing. But for the lightest beers, I use 100% RO and build back up.

Also, it doesn't hurt to have a couple 5-gallon jugs of potable water around in case of apocalypse.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2014, 10:50:48 PM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


Sent from Franx Brew Works using Tapatalk
So the RO reads what - let others know for comparison.

Yes. What should RO read?

Pretty low. The stuff I bought from a store the next town over was 12 ppm TDS and all of the nrewing ions were
<1 ppm. That was from ward labs, - for the record.

Yeah, my last brewing RO was ~ 16 TDS with all the brewing ions < 1.5 ppm IIRC.  The thing is, you could tell if the store's filter/membrane were past needing changed if you tested and it was suddenly 80 or 100ppm TDS. The manual with my meter said that RO should pretty much always be < 25ppm TDS.
Jon H.

Offline pete b

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2014, 11:26:52 PM »
I also use RO water from the machine in the store and am happy with it. I usually blend with tap water, the ratio depending on what I'm brewing. But for the lightest beers, I use 100% RO and build back up.

Also, it doesn't hurt to have a couple 5-gallon jugs of potable water beer around in case of apocalypse.
;D
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Offline 69franx

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2014, 11:47:52 PM »
Sorry. I have not brewed since I bought the TDS meter, so I have not checked any RO water levels with it yet. I'll let you know when I do though
Frank L.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: RO Water
« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2014, 12:28:07 AM »
I have been building from grocery store bought RO for the last several batches. It's nice and cheap and gives me a better idea of my starting point.  After reading HoosierBrew's suggestion on another thread, I also bought a cheap TDS meter. Have not brewed since I bought it though. My water softened tap water read somewhere in the 130 range though. Glad I'm using RO!


Sent from Franx Brew Works using Tapatalk
So the RO reads what - let others know for comparison.

Yes. What should RO read?

Pretty low. The stuff I bought from a store the next town over was 12 ppm TDS and all of the nrewing ions were
<1 ppm. That was from ward labs, - for the record.

Yeah, my last brewing RO was ~ 16 TDS with all the brewing ions < 1.5 ppm IIRC.  The thing is, you could tell if the store's filter/membrane were past needing changed if you tested and it was suddenly 80 or 100ppm TDS. The manual with my meter said that RO should pretty much always be < 25ppm TDS.

My old mid price pH meter did not cal up the last brew day, so it was time to get a better one (Milwaukee 101 this time). Pulled the trigger on a TDS meter at the same time.
Jeff Rankert
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
AHA Governing Committee
BJCP National
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!