Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Things that affect Hydrometer readings
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-26-2012, 02:41 PM   #1
maltoftheearth
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
maltoftheearth's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Carthage, North Carolina
Posts: 499
Liked 11 Times on 9 Posts
Likes Given: 20

Default Things that affect Hydrometer readings

In trying to troubleshoot an issue I *may* be having with my hydrometer (see below) I have run into the following issues brewers have encountered with hydrometer readings:

* bubbles may push the hydrometer higher in the tube/thief, solve by waiting a minute before reading the hydrometer;

* temperature matters, adjust gravity reading for temps significantly higher/lower than 60F;

* taking a reading at the top, not the bottom, of the meniscus;

I would like to suggest that different parts of the carboy *may* have different sugar levels. Is that true? I have seen some here indicate that the corn sugar and water mixture added when bottling often falls to the bottom of the bottling bucket and results in less equal distribution of sugars as a result. I have no idea whether this is true or not.

This question arises b/c I took a gravity reading of my wort yesterday after the cool down (adjusted reading of 1.042) and then one day afterwards before adding yeast or anything else (adjusted reading of 1.050.) This is a HUGE difference and I don't know how to account for it. Suggestions other than those posted here are welcome!

__________________

Brewed in 2014: Rye IPA, Honey Sage Ale, Belgian Golden Strong, California Common, Bavarian Style Lager, Weizen, Coffee Stout, Gruit, Gale Ale, Isle of Skye Golden clone, Oktoberfest, Rauchbier, Alpha Male IPA & Chocolate Pepper Stout.

maltoftheearth is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-26-2012, 02:50 PM   #2
MalFet
/bɪər nərd/
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
MalFet's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: NYC / Kathmandu
Posts: 8,277
Liked 1270 Times on 845 Posts
Likes Given: 584

Default

I assume this is a full volume boil?

The convention is to read at the bottom of the meniscus, but in reality so long as you are doing the same thing each time it probably doesn't matter.

__________________

"Be excellent to each other." -Benjamin Franklin

MalFet is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-26-2012, 02:53 PM   #3
markcurling
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: London
Posts: 142
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Wort/DME/sugar/crap dried on to the bulb of the hydro has thrown mine a long way off before!

__________________
markcurling is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-26-2012, 07:19 PM   #4
maltoftheearth
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
maltoftheearth's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Carthage, North Carolina
Posts: 499
Liked 11 Times on 9 Posts
Likes Given: 20

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MalFet View Post
I assume this is a full volume boil?

The convention is to read at the bottom of the meniscus, but in reality so long as you are doing the same thing each time it probably doesn't matter.
Yes, full volume boil.

And the hydrometer is brand spanking new -- no crud on it yet! Actually, it broke later in the day so now it IS crud.
__________________

Brewed in 2014: Rye IPA, Honey Sage Ale, Belgian Golden Strong, California Common, Bavarian Style Lager, Weizen, Coffee Stout, Gruit, Gale Ale, Isle of Skye Golden clone, Oktoberfest, Rauchbier, Alpha Male IPA & Chocolate Pepper Stout.

maltoftheearth is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-26-2012, 08:15 PM   #5
BrewChem
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 262
Liked 84 Times on 38 Posts

Default

All sorts of things can effect a hydrometer reading... some can have quite a noticeable effect.. others, not so much...


If the wort is not thoroughly blended, the sample pulled for testing will not be representitive of the entire batch.

Temperature equilibration... allow enough time for the temperature of the tube, hydrometer and wort to stabilize before reading.

If the thief or test jar has residual water or sanitizer in it, it can dilute the sample and give a false low reading. Give the tube and hydrometer a quick rinse with a small portion of wort prior to pulling your test sample.

Suspended solids in the sample can effect the boyancy of the hydrometer. If a cloudy, murky sample is tested, filtered, then re-tested... there can be a noticeable difference in the reading depending on the amount of suspended solids and the density of the solids themselves.

Be sure the hydrometer is free-floating in the wort, i.e not 'stuck' to the sidewalls of the thief/tube.


there are probly plenty more...

__________________
BrewChem is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hydrometer readings for SG T8rAleKing Equipment/Sanitation 6 02-15-2012 08:06 PM
Hydrometer readings and temperature? KeyWestBrewing Equipment/Sanitation 6 02-04-2012 11:53 PM
Different readings on hydrometer vs. Refractometer IrishBrewer74 Equipment/Sanitation 10 01-09-2012 04:23 PM
Refractometer and Hydrometer readings off BeezBrew Equipment/Sanitation 7 08-09-2011 12:09 AM
Container for hydrometer readings? Daniel82 Equipment/Sanitation 9 12-18-2010 02:17 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS