Water profile advice

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steve123

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I haven’t really focused on changing my water profile that much until recently and have attempted it on my last 3 brews.
On my last brew I used strange Steve’s calculator and after letting mash rest for 20 minutes, I took a sample let it cool, and took a PH reading that showed as 6.24 I added some crs and it seemed to increase the PH to 6.35. I calibrated my PH meter when I first got it, I tested my water before adding any treatment and it showed as 8.15.

I had my water tested just over a year ago
Calcium 33.7
Chloride 7.6
Sulphate 46.5
Alkalinity 32 (caco3)
PH 8.03

I’m planning my next brew and want to get it somewhere in the correct range

Could someone look at my figures and give some advice. I’m going to do a large mash and do smaller boils to fill up 6 fermenters.
Beer type lager and Belgian ale
Grain bill 25kg
OG 1.051
Mash water 62l
Sparge water 145l

The calculator gives the following additions (I will also add a campden tablet)
Mash
Gypsum - 3.7g
Calcium chloride 8.7g
Sodium bicarbonate 5.2g

Sparge
Gypsum 7.2g
Calcium chloride 19g
CRS 9.5 ml

The quantities seem so low that I’m concerned that I’ve done something wrong and it will have little impact on the PH level
 

Galena

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First question is, what temperature are you measuring mash pH?
Don't worry about your tap water pH, it has little to no effect on your mash pH

secondly your water profile may have changed quite a bit since the test a year ago depending on your water source as water companies can switch it around, have you done a salifert test to back it up?

When you say you want to get it in the correct range, what is your target water profile and target pH?
 

steve123

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I was aiming for a mash PH value,

I don’t have a Salifert test kit, I appreciate it may vary, but was happy there would be slight variations but probably not enough to worry about. I got a water report from my water company for year ending 2020 and compared it to the year before. Although all values aren’t on it the ones that are were in a similar ball park.

I think I measured PH level at around 20c

Ph target range somewhere between 5.2-5.6
 

Galena

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I'll have a think about it, I am too smashed right now (from a long bike ride, not the drink ;) ) to give it much thought.
 

RoomWithABrew

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@steve123
You mention calibrating pH meter when you first got it.
Couple of things if you are not using really regularly you should recalibrate. Probably recalibrate regularly even if you are.
Secondly are you storing the pH meter with batteries out and in the correct storage medium. Letting the pH bulb dry out is very bad and recalibrating from that state was no good for me.

Using storage medium on a bit of sponge in the bottom of the cap means I can trust my pH meter now.
It was a cheap electronic meter and didn't mention the storage medium at all, just something I picked up on when I saw a bottle of storage medium on the shelf in LHBS and discussed it with the owner.

pH normally seems pretty close on with the data I put into brewersfreind though.
 
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scomet

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Bru’n Water is the best tool I have used. Matins’ spreadsheet hits the Ph bang-on every brew, can take a bit of getting your head around (me anyway!) but worth the effort.
Galena is correct local, H20 profiles can be misleading…

Download Bru'n Water
Cheers
scomet
 

steve123

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I didn’t realise I needed to keep bulb moist, I will check it and look to add a sponge to moist sponge in there. I do keep the batteries in it. Should I remove these.

I will download the software you suggest

If I check mash ph and it is high should I add crs or gypsum to try and bring it down
 

Galena

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I didn’t realise I needed to keep bulb moist, I will check it and look to add a sponge to moist sponge in there. I do keep the batteries in it. Should I remove these.

I will download the software you suggest

If I check mash ph and it is high should I add crs or gypsum to try and bring it down
Bru n' Water is great software, but i do find it a bit overly complicated, you could also try EZ Water Calculator
Another option is to start using Brewfather, it is free for up to 10 recipes and has a very easy to use interface.

Once you have checked mash pH, generally 15 mins or so into the mash plus having let it cool to 20 - 25 C (room temperature) it is pretty much too late to make further additions. What you need to do (in my opinion) is aim for your target, using one of the calculators, at 15 mins, take a sample and chill it to room temp, if you are out by much then you should allow for that in your next brew.

Adding Gypsum at this stage will alter your Sulphate level which you may not wish to do, you can add a little lactic acid, but once again probably too late anyway.
 

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