Beginners Guide to Water Treatment

Discussion in 'Grain, Hops, Yeast & Water' started by strange-steve, Aug 12, 2016.

  1. Jan 10, 2017 #41

    clarkeuk

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    Note that sodium bicarbonate should not be added to sparge water, only to the mash

    hi ss
    thanks again for a great post
    could you please clarify if the rule above only applies to sodium bicarbonate and that all other treatment's can be added to both mash and sparge waters
    cheers clarke
     
  2. Jan 11, 2017 #42

    strange-steve

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    Yes that only applies to sodium bicarbonate, other treatments should be added to both mash and sparge water.
    The reason sodium bicarbonate shouldn't be added to sparge water is because tannins can be extracted from the grains if the pH is too high, so the sparge water should never have its alkalinity increased.
     
  3. Jan 11, 2017 #43

    clarkeuk

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    Great stuff .very helpful
    Thanks again
    Clarke

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  4. Jan 12, 2017 #44

    clarkeuk

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    Hi strange Steve
    Me again sorry to b a pain in the **** but if you could answer a couple more questions it would be much appreciated
    When adding gypsum or calcium chloride to increase the calcium do you always us a mix of them both (more % gypsum to chloride for hoppy beer and more % chloride to gypsum for maltier beers) or can you use just one for the respective beer type.
    Also do you put your calcium chloride into the HLT and dissolve (as I have seen done ont Internet) as on my tub it says add to the grist
    Thanks again Clarke

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  5. Jan 12, 2017 #45

    strange-steve

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    I'd keep it simple, so if you're doing a hoppy beer use gypsum only and for a malty beer use calcium chloride only, but only up to its maximum of 0.25g/L. If you need to add more calcium then make up the difference with gypsum.
    I always add the salts to the water in the HLT to make sure it's properly mixed.
     
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  6. Jan 13, 2017 #46

    BREWERS DROOP

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    A great post ss,just got my readings from our water company

    Sulphate 84.9mg
    Chloride 39.5 mg
    Alkaline 139.6 mg
    Hardness/Calcium 55.9 mg
    Chloride 39.5 mg
    Magnesium 0.76
    Sodium 27.5
    PH 7.45
    Aluminium 6.04
    Iron 10.27
    Nitrate 14.34

    I only brew IPA and I use a single carbon filter to fill the kettle
    Any suggestions would be appreciated

    Looking at John Palmers book these readings are all at the lower end of his range.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2017
  7. Jan 13, 2017 #47

    clarkeuk

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    Great stuff .very helpful
    Thanks again
    Clarke

    👍



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  8. Jan 13, 2017 #48

    strange-steve

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    Well the first thing is chlorine removal. You say you use a carbon filter which is good for chlorine removal, however it's not very efficient at removing chloramine which is just as problematic. I'd recommend saving yourself some time by skipping the filtration and using campden tablets instead. They're cheap as chips and very effective.

    Next you want to lower your alkalinity. As it is, it's fine for stouts and porters but a bit too high for an IPA. You'd ideally want to lower the alkalinity to around 20-30 ppm which means removing 110-120 ppm. To do this add either 0.22ml/L of lactic acid or 0.6ml/L of CRS.

    Thirdly, increase your calcium to around 100 ppm. Because you brew IPAs, stick to gypsum to make the hops shine. Around 0.2g/L of gypsum will add about 46 ppm of calcium bringing your total over 100 ppm.

    Job done. That'll give you a decent IPA water profile that should make a noticeable difference.
     
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  9. Jan 13, 2017 #49

    BREWERS DROOP

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    Absolutely fantastic,thanks ss
     
  10. Jan 13, 2017 #50

    BREWERS DROOP

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    What impact on the ph will it have on adding lactic acid,or is it something that will rectify itself during the mash.Or is it added to the hlt
     
  11. Jan 13, 2017 #51

    timtoos

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    Hi SS,

    What water profile would you be looking for to brew a pilsner lager?

    Would you be aiming for the alkalinity of a pale ale (<20ppm) and make the calcium levels up to 100 ppm with 50/50 calcium chloride and gypsum?

    Cheers
     
  12. Jan 13, 2017 #52

    strange-steve

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    Lactic acid (and CRS) lower the mash ph by neutralizing alkalinity. It is added to the water before you heat it to strike/sparge temperature.

    If you were to brew a pale ale without any treatment you'd probably have a mash ph around 5.9-6.0 whereas the desired ph is somewhere near 5.3.
     
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  13. Jan 13, 2017 #53

    strange-steve

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    Pilsner is a bit of a special case, if you have water with a high mineral content it would probably be worth using something like Tesco Ashbeck, or RO water if you can get it, with a little touch of calcium chloride, just to bring the calcium up to around 40-50 ppm.

    You want a low mineral water profile for a pilsner with as little treatment as possible. Trying to lower the alkalinity with acids isn't ideal because it's such a clean style, and it can come across in the flavour.
     
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  14. Jan 14, 2017 #54

    timtoos

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    Thanks SS.

    Since my water is basically RO it should be ok. I have 15ppm for calcium and HCO3 is 6.6. pH is 5.2.

    The water is from a spring and tested to make sure its safe and its fine. Although the pH is very low.

    What additions would you recommend?
     
  15. Jan 14, 2017 #55

    strange-steve

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    Tbh I'd probably go ahead and use that water as it is, maybe a very small amount of gypsum or calcium chloride but try to keep the calcium relatively low.
     
  16. Jan 14, 2017 #56

    JFB

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    I've read the OP about thirty times now and I think it just about sinking in! I added all the wizardry potions to my malt miller order and I shall suggest a trip to the garden centre later so I can nip into the gold fish shop.
    Great post Steve, no doubt I shall be bugging you about my results soonish..
     
  17. Jan 14, 2017 #57

    MyQul

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    PLEASE NOTE GOLD FISH IN THE MASH DOES NOT LOWER THE MASH PH :whistle::lol:
     
  18. Jan 15, 2017 #58

    Budgie

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    No, but it does provide a lovely golden hue to your beer.
     
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  19. Jan 18, 2017 #59

    JFB

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    @strange-steve I've just done my water tests which was a job in its self for a D grader in science like me!
    I have a alkalinity of 240 ppm and a wacking great 410 ppm of calcium.
    I'm planning a Belgium strong ale(amber?) this week.
    So would I be going in at CRS 1.1ml per litre. And my mega teeth building calcium nothing??
    Thanks
     
  20. Jan 18, 2017 #60

    strange-steve

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    :shock:
    Have you double checked those figures? The calcium seems very high compared to the alkalinity.
     

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