Author Topic: Types of Water  (Read 1158 times)

Offline jth138

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Types of Water
« on: January 13, 2011, 02:07:35 AM »
I was wondering what type of water would be best for brewing?  My water supply is not the best and i usually filter it before drinking.  So i was considering buying jugs of water from the grocery store.

what type of water would be best?   Distilled, Mineral, Spring


thanks

Offline Hokerer

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2011, 02:26:47 AM »
Of those three, spring water is probably your best bet.  Distilled won't have minerals that fermentation requires and mineral would probably have too many.

On the other hand, if your water tastes ok after you filter it, it most likely would be fine for brewing and wouldn't cost you anything.
Joe

Offline jth138

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2011, 02:36:17 AM »
thanks, i usually drink the water but it is filtered through the filter on the refrigerator.  right now that is the only way i have to filter my water. 

spring water that is sold at the grocery store is only 60 cents a gallon.  my water home water would probably be ok, but i really don't want to risk it giving my beer an "off" taste. 

Offline johnf

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2011, 03:15:42 AM »
thanks, i usually drink the water but it is filtered through the filter on the refrigerator.  right now that is the only way i have to filter my water. 

spring water that is sold at the grocery store is only 60 cents a gallon.  my water home water would probably be ok, but i really don't want to risk it giving my beer an "off" taste. 

I can buy RO water at most grocery stores in my area for 39 cents a gallon.

Offline jth138

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2011, 03:26:27 AM »
what exactly is RO water?

Offline euge

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2011, 07:54:29 AM »
what exactly is RO water?

Reverse osmosis- which removes most of the minerals or salts from the water making it essentially pure.

Spring water from the store is a safe bet.
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2011, 01:16:40 PM »
I'd go with distilled and add my salts, this way you know exactly what you have.  With spring/drinking water you don't know exactly whats in it, usually just a municipal water supply from a soft water type.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline Kaiser

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2011, 02:17:55 PM »
Yes, if you have to buy water anyway, you may want to think about buying R/O water and add minerals. While this gives you the most flexibility it also thrusts you into the sometimes daunting field of water chemistry.

But for the interim I'd go with spring water as well.

Kai

Offline richardt

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2011, 02:32:03 PM »
If you have a few clean and empty water jugs (or better bottle or 5 gallon Homer bucket), you can take it to your local supermarket and fill it up with RO water for around 35 cents/gallon.  You're saving money by not having to pay for the container.
And you know the water is pretty much devoid of any salts.  So you'll be adding brew salts to create the desired profile for the style you're planning to make.  The salts are not expensive and your local grocery store, LHBS, or online sites have all the ones you'll need.
Kosher salt [no iodine], epsom salt, and baking soda are available at your grocery store, while CaCl, and chalk, and gypsum are at your LHBS or online.  Don't forget activated charcoal filters (use the RV inline filter that hooks up to your garden hose--about 20 bucks at WalMart) and campden tablets (to deactivate chlorine and chloramines) if you do use your local water instead.  I have crappy water (excessively high bicarbonates and high sulfates), so I prefer to just build up from RO water. 
IMO, it is a small price to pay for better beer since I'm investing so much of my valuable personal time in brewing--I might as well make sure that the ingredient that makes up 90% of my beer is as good as I can get it. I devote similar attention to the quality and health of the other three ingredients (malt, hops, yeast) as well as optimizing sanitation and fermentation temps.

Offline jth138

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Re: Types of Water
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2011, 11:42:37 PM »
thank you all so much for the advice, i really appreciate it.


cheers!   to a good brewing future