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-   -   StarSan and Hard Water (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/starsan-hard-water-384254/)

aamcle 01-24-2013 06:22 PM

StarSan and Hard Water
 
Evening All.

I've got hard water were I live and it seems to have effected the StarSan, the solution became cloudy.

Will this reduce it's potency?

Is this a pH effect can I fix it by adding a little acid and if so what type and how much?

What is the best way of measuring the pH of the system, will pH papers do or do I do I need to get some buffers and calibrate a pH probe.

My experience of probes especially cheap ones is that they are not reliable in solutions of low ionic strength so pH papers would be my preference if they work.

Many Thanks. Aamcle

Varmintman 01-24-2013 06:31 PM

I have hard water here as well. Sheesh I think my starsan turns cloudy just thinking about going in the water. But I do not think it hurts it any. And for me it kind of helps since I once used bottled water and it stayed clear. Cool huh well not so much since I poured the starsan in my humidor and chose at that instant to take a big swig of the stuff.

I only make about a gallon at a time and use it for three batches and then dump it. I do not think I have ever tested it but I have read people reusing it for months so I figure I am safe and sure enough (knock on wood) I have not had a infection yet

Homercidal 01-24-2013 07:07 PM

I have highly akaline water was well, and I really only use distilled water when I mix up Starsan for storing away for later. It's ok if used right away, but getting cloudy is supposed to be on of the signs that it's pH has risen to the point where it's not an effective sanitizer.

With Distilled water I've stored it for months without it getting cloudy.

jeepinjeepin 01-24-2013 07:14 PM

and months and months and months. 1 gallon jug of distilled water is around $1. Spray bottle is $3-6. Saving StarSan a gallon at a time, priceless. Well not priceless, but frugal.

amandabab 01-24-2013 08:08 PM

when I use tap water, I need 1/4oz per gallon to make ph.

MNDan 01-24-2013 08:41 PM

If you have hard water you should pick up an RO system for brewing & drinking water, and with that you can make StarSan that will last forever. I've been using the same 5 gal keg of RO-mixed starsan for 3 years now. Clear as a bell...

Wicked Daddy 01-24-2013 08:58 PM

I use a little more Star San, about 1.5 oz per 5 gallons, use it once to support a brewing/cleaning session and toss it. I guess I'm not frugal.

Hermit 01-25-2013 12:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Homercidal (Post 4821965)
I have highly akaline water was well, and I really only use distilled water when I mix up Starsan for storing away for later. It's ok if used right away, but getting cloudy is supposed to be on of the signs that it's pH has risen to the point where it's not an effective sanitizer.

With Distilled water I've stored it for months without it getting cloudy.

I've heard competing stories. I now have a pH meter so I'm going to check the next time I mix up a batch. I do know that using Starsan in an airlock turns it back to clear. I'm assuming the CO2 makes it more acidic? I'll go from RO water back to plain tap and do some tests next time I need to make a new batch. Mine takes overnight to cloud up.

Varmintman 01-25-2013 02:47 AM

I think I will buy some cheap strips and monitor my starsan as well. If it is bad when cloudy then I am wasting my time using it because mine goes cloudy the instant I mix it up

40watt 01-25-2013 03:11 AM

Take my word for it. My calcium is in the four hundreds. It's gypsum water. It renders starsan useless rather quickly. I have checked the ph and it's a no go according to Mr Talley of Five Star.

I used to keep two five gallon jugs of RO water for brewing, now I keep an extra for mixing Star San and other solutions.

If your water is as hard as mine, it's not good for snything.


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