Author Topic: Starting to think about water  (Read 730 times)

Offline trapae

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Starting to think about water
« on: May 27, 2017, 07:32:13 AM »
 I've been brewing all grain for about seven years now and have obsessively tweaked all parts of my Brewing set up/process, all except one..........Water chemistry.
I use arrowhead Springwater and to my taste buds my beers of turn out good. But I think I'm ready to embark upon figure out water chemistry.  I've glanced at Bru'n water and it seems a bit complicated. Just wondering if anyone knows of a good primer source that is a good place to start?  ( something a little more manageable than Palmers 300 page book. )
Thanks
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Offline denny

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2017, 07:48:47 AM »
Do a Google search for Brunwater walkthroughs.  Go to the Brunwater website and read the water knowledge page.
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Offline flars

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2017, 08:26:08 AM »
You will also need a comprehensive water report of what is in the water you are using.  Once you have that Brunwater will seem less complicated.  Wards Laboratories has a water test just for brewers.

Offline denny

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2017, 08:31:20 AM »
You will also need a comprehensive water report of what is in the water you are using.  Once you have that Brunwater will seem less complicated.  Wards Laboratories has a water test just for brewers.

The brewers test is overkill unless you know yo have some problems that it covers.  Otherwise test W-6 is less expensive and gives you all the info you need.
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Offline trapae

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2017, 09:47:44 AM »
 Got the report for my local water. Problem is our water here is soooo hard I have to use a house water softener. The water report showed too high sodium I think. So I guess I have to use RO water and rebuild?
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Offline denny

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2017, 10:02:23 AM »
Got the report for my local water. Problem is our water here is soooo hard I have to use a house water softener. The water report showed too high sodium I think. So I guess I have to use RO water and rebuild?

Probably your best option.  Ion exchange softeners are often really high in sodium.
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2017, 10:41:29 AM »
+1. I know the water softeners I've seen require salt additions to do the voodoo.


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Offline braufessor

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2017, 04:17:21 PM »
Got the report for my local water. Problem is our water here is soooo hard I have to use a house water softener. The water report showed too high sodium I think. So I guess I have to use RO water and rebuild?

Definitely don't use the water softener water.  I am in the same boat as you with very hard water.  When I do use my tap water, I use it from an outside faucet (those don't go through the softener.)  I predominantly use RO water from refill station in walmart.  I have 6 x 3 gallon jugs I fill.  Depending on the beer I brew, I use anywhere from 100%RO water for all light lagers, IPA's, Blondes, etc.....  I may blend some hard water in for things like ambers and browns.  I go toward 60-100% hard tap water for porters, stouts, etc.
You can get about anywhere though by building from RO. However, I do like that high bicarbonate water from my outdoor faucet for the darker beers - helps me keep mash ph a bit higher with the acidic roast malts and seems to possibly smooth out the flavors in the roast grains.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 04:26:11 PM by braufessor »

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

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Re: Starting to think about water
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2017, 09:27:58 AM »
Because my water fits the kinds of beer I like to brew, brown ales to midnight stouts, I get by with minimal water adjustment. My water is quite hard and a few grams of gypsum and calcium chloride work for me.

I'll occasionally drink an IPA, wheat beer, or saison, but don't want 5-gallons of any of them.

Of course, the nice thing about home brewing is we're each in charge of our brew kettles, so each to his own when it comes to taste.

Brew on!
It's easier to read brewing books and get information from the forum than to sacrifice virgins to appease the brewing gods when bad beer happens!