Author Topic: Water options  (Read 2933 times)

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Water options
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2014, 09:06:02 PM »
You may have excellent tap water after the chlorine has been removed. Assuming that you are on a public water supply, your local public water utility should be able to supply an average analysis of your water.

With that said, I believe that Martin B. lived in Florida for a few years.  He would be an excellent resource.

Potentially, but again, it's also tied into the water softener.

Offline Stevie

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Re: Water options
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2014, 09:44:27 PM »
You will want to avoid softened water. When I lived in a house with a softener, only the cold indoor lines were softened and the outdoor hose bibs were not. Maybe you have the same sort of setup.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Water options
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2014, 10:04:49 PM »
You will want to avoid softened water.


Yep. Most softened water has high sodium levels.
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Offline wingnut

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Re: Water options
« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2014, 10:29:29 PM »
I just keep water simple....

I buy Distilled or RO water from the store (10 gallons per batch)
I add 1 TBS Gypsum and 1 TBS Calcium Chloride (you can pick these up from the homebrew shop) per 5 gallons.

Keeping it simple is the way to go in my book. 
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Re: Water options
« Reply #19 on: December 30, 2014, 12:28:54 AM »
Potentially, but again, it's also tied into the water softener.

Well, you are looking at RO or bottled water unless you have an upstream tap from your water softener.   

Offline mbalbritton

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Re: Water options
« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2014, 04:08:17 AM »
No water softener. Same water comes in as goes out to sinks, tubs, showers and outdoor spigots.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Water options
« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2014, 02:53:25 PM »
I just keep water simple....

I buy Distilled or RO water from the store (10 gallons per batch)
I add 1 TBS Gypsum and 1 TBS Calcium Chloride (you can pick these up from the homebrew shop) per 5 gallons.

Keeping it simple is the way to go in my book.

I like keeping it simple.  This method should work well for a lot of styles.  Cheers!
Dave

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Offline flbrewer

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Re: Water options
« Reply #22 on: January 01, 2015, 09:23:52 PM »
I just keep water simple....

I buy Distilled or RO water from the store (10 gallons per batch)
I add 1 TBS Gypsum and 1 TBS Calcium Chloride (you can pick these up from the homebrew shop) per 5 gallons.

Keeping it simple is the way to go in my book.

I just picked up both of these to follow your lead initially with RO water. One thing I just read thought says the Calcium Chloride is used in place of Gypsum. Any thoughts?

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Water options
« Reply #23 on: January 01, 2015, 10:35:09 PM »
Chloride enhances malt flavor.  Gypsum/sulfate enhances hop bitterness.  If you prefer one over the other for a particular style then decide based on that.  If you want a balanced beer then use them 50/50 or lean a little more towards chloride as calcium chloride is smoother and less "offensive".  If you use a lot of gypsum the beer will taste harshly bitter.  Too much chloride?  Meh... almost impossible to do that.  A calculator like BrunWater is still your best bet if/when you are ready to get serious about water adjustments, which can be put off for later.
Dave

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Offline wingnut

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Re: Water options
« Reply #24 on: January 02, 2015, 02:05:27 PM »
Chloride enhances malt flavor.  Gypsum/sulfate enhances hop bitterness.  If you prefer one over the other for a particular style then decide based on that.  If you want a balanced beer then use them 50/50 or lean a little more towards chloride as calcium chloride is smoother and less "offensive".  If you use a lot of gypsum the beer will taste harshly bitter.  Too much chloride?  Meh... almost impossible to do that.  A calculator like BrunWater is still your best bet if/when you are ready to get serious about water adjustments, which can be put off for later.

^^^^  Exactly.  I start my recipies with a 50/50 split and that works well for the beers I like to drink.   It works for my hoppy American Brown Ales... right on through to my German Pilsners. Even the Belgian APAs and Porters come out great. 

If I have a beer that I want the hops to pop a bit more, or make the malt pop more, I would shift the ratio so that I use more Gypsum to make the hops stand out, or more Calcium Chloride to accentuate the malt. (Note, I have not found a reason to do this yet)

My homes have traditionally had hard well water, and that is what I used quite a bit in my brewing career... the wisdom I have learned is that less is more when it comes to minerals in the water.  By going distilled/RO it gets the minerals "out of the way" and with a simple addition of putting back a few minerals to the water...everything becomes consistent and easy... and the flavors become less muddled and stand out on their own.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Water options
« Reply #25 on: January 03, 2015, 01:25:02 PM »
I had my softened water tested and its only 65 ppm sodium. That's fine for almost everything. I don't have anywhere nearby that has RO water and distilled only by the gallon. So I add back what brun water recommends for the beer I'm making.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Water options
« Reply #26 on: January 03, 2015, 02:37:00 PM »
I had my softened water tested and its only 65 ppm sodium. That's fine for almost everything. I don't have anywhere nearby that has RO water and distilled only by the gallon. So I add back what brun water recommends for the beer I'm making.

This is a good point, know what is in the water. Maine has some pretty good water to begin with, so not much ion exchange would happen between Ca-Mg and Na. My soft water would probably be very high in Na, as the hardness is very high.

The blanket statement on not using soft water may not be absolute.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Water options
« Reply #27 on: January 03, 2015, 03:03:49 PM »
65ppm wouldn't be too high to use at all, unless you needed to use baking soda to raise pH for darker styles. That would raise Na pretty high.
Jon H.

Offline pete b

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Re: Water options
« Reply #28 on: January 03, 2015, 03:11:59 PM »
65ppm wouldn't be too high to use at all, unless you needed to use baking soda to raise pH for darker styles. That would raise Na pretty high.
That's a case where I would dilute with distilled. I keep a couple gallons handy but it would be a pain to use as my main source.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Water options
« Reply #29 on: January 03, 2015, 04:09:31 PM »
65ppm wouldn't be too high to use at all, unless you needed to use baking soda to raise pH for darker styles. That would raise Na pretty high.
While 65ppm isn't off-the-charts high, it's about as high as I'd feel comfortable going. I'd be concerned that if you start adding a lot of other minerals, then the cumulative effect may net you some minerally-tasting beer.
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