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Old 11-20-2008, 08:39 PM   #1
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Default water chemistry

So I recently got a water analysis from my water company...and I'm not entirely sure what it tells me in the context of brewing (so far I've mostly brewed British ales...it'll probably stay that way, though I'd like to play with lagers a little once it gets cold enough for the cold corner in my basement to duck under 55 degrees).

Here's the info:
Total Hardness (as CaCo3): 171-206 ppm
ph: 7.2-7.6
Alkalinity: 180-210
Total Dissolved Solids: 101-245 ppm
Chlorine: .9-1.5 ppm
Fluoride: .7-1 ppm
Nitrate: 2-8 ppm
Sulfate: 3-13 ppm
Sodium: 1-7 ppm
Chloride: 1-18 ppm
Magnesium: 13-25 ppm
Iron: <.01 ppm.

Thanks!

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Old 11-20-2008, 08:57 PM   #2
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I don't see calcium but the bottom line is really PH. Dark beers will do great but lighter ones will not lower the PH enough when you mash.

Go here and absorb LOL

How to Brew - By John Palmer - Reading a Water Report

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Old 11-20-2008, 09:00 PM   #3
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Post in this thread...we've been talking about this stuff over the last 3-4 days...and there's some links to other articles...there's a couple guys in there who know their water stuff

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/wate...how-fix-88393/

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Old 11-20-2008, 10:00 PM   #4
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Hello from State College! Is this borough water or another? The borough water is pretty high in carbonates and this can give a harsh bitterness to hoppier beers (the report I got had them higher than yours). This is also true in lagers where there are less other flavors to compete with the hops. Otto's (our local brew pub) uses a blend of Reverse Osmosis water and tap water for their beers. They use different ratios for different styles. The only beers I don't mess with my water are marzens and bocks - my water is pretty close to Munichs. Another member lives a little NW of town and his water (well water) is very different from mine. The hop flavors of my beers got substantially smoother when I started treating my water.

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Old 11-20-2008, 10:41 PM   #5
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Yeah, it's borough water. What sorts of things do you do to your water for certain styles?

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Old 11-21-2008, 03:07 PM   #6
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Mostly all I do is treat my water with pickling lime and potassium metabisulfite. The potassium metabisulfite is to remove the chlorine and chloramines from the water and the lime is to remove the carbonate. The lime reacts with the carbonates to form an insoluble product which settles out. I do this one day in advance of brewing to give it time to settle out.

I add back a little gypsum to my Altbier, but that about it for additions.

I do carefully check my mash pH as if too much lime is used it really rasies the water pH. I'm not sure how much of an issue this would be for extract brewing.

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Old 09-18-2009, 04:09 PM   #7
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Do you guys know if Lemont has S.C. burough water?
I've just moved to town and noticed the hardness. I made a hefe, figured it should be fine either way, haven't had chance to get an analysis or sit down to work on what it means with spreadsheet.
Previously I just diluted with RO or distilled to get to a safe point, then added back as needed.
I have boiled to reduce hardness, but because I had not gotten an analysis of the boiled water to put into my water profiles for calculating a mix, I had only used that on beers where water extremes were not required (bocks, stouts, etc.)

I'll definitely need to dig out my ph strips and start watching again. I got spoiled with my last home's well water.

I did carbon filter the water slowly to fill up for brew day, hoping that was enough to handle the chloramines.

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