Author Topic: Water adjustment question  (Read 1840 times)

Offline rbowers

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Water adjustment question
« on: October 24, 2017, 09:31:21 PM »
Been toying around with water adjustments and trying to gain more understanding of the various variables.  My water after carbon filtration is a fairly blank canvas: Ca= 2, Mg = 0, Na = 13, Sulfate = 0, Cl= 7, HCO3 = 13.  pH is 7.8.  I recently listened to the Homebrew network podcast series on water adjustments and they describe doing all your adjustments as expected for the mash water BUT NOT adding any adjustments to sparge water, rather adding those salts to the kettle following the sparge and before the boil.  Part of the reasoning on this is a lack of solubility of the salts in sparge water (which I have experienced in previous batches).  To that end I will be adding the salts to get my planned profile to the mash and then tossing in the sparge salts after the sparge into the kettle before the boil.  I am also messing around with BrunWater spreadsheet and it mentions some acid additions.  The mash will require 2.9mL of Lactic acid (88%) to the 6.4 gal mash water to hit pH 5.3 (this calculation accounts for a malt bill for a fairly light colored saison of 6 SRM).  It also mentions a sparge acidification and this gets me to my question:

?If I am not adding the salts to the sparge water should I add the recommended lactic acid to the sparge water?
?If not, should I add it with the salts to the kettle once sparge is completed?

Again, baseline water pH is 7.8 so not abundantly alkaline so tempted to just leave it out but if I do am I missing any benefits of it in the kettle once all is said and done?  I may be too deep in the weeds on this but looking for advice.

Offline Bob357

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Re: Water adjustment question
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2017, 10:46:14 PM »
If you're batch sparging, there's no need to acidify the sparge water. If fly sparging, I would acidify the sparge water per Brun Water. As for the salts, adding them to the boil is fine.
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Offline denny

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Re: Water adjustment question
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2017, 11:00:05 PM »
If you're batch sparging, there's no need to acidify the sparge water. If fly sparging, I would acidify the sparge water per Brun Water. As for the salts, adding them to the boil is fine.

I'd modify that a bit to say that unless you have a ridiculously high RA, yo don't need to acidify.  RA makes more difference than pH.
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Offline mabrungard

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Re: Water adjustment question
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2017, 12:17:11 PM »
If you're batch sparging, there's no need to acidify the sparge water. If fly sparging, I would acidify the sparge water per Brun Water. As for the salts, adding them to the boil is fine.

I agree...marginally. Batch sparging results in the final runnings keeping a higher gravity and I find that this factor is important for reducing tannin and silicate extraction. But as Denny mentions, if the tap water has high alkalinity, it could still be deleterious to your beer to NOT acidify your batch sparging water.

Acidification is such a simple step. Why not do it for your sparging water too? 
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