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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Brew Science > EZ Water Spreadsheet
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Old 05-01-2013, 06:47 PM   #1
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Default EZ Water Spreadsheet

I have been using the 2.0 version to estimate my salt additions. Mainly as a baseline for estimating mash pH, which I then check on brew day with a pH meter.

I was in the spreadsheet today when I read (maybe even for the first time) a caveat on the sheet that says sparge additions that you calculate should be added to the boil, not the sparge.

With the state of my tap water, I have been using 100% RO water and then making my adjustments per the what I calculate in the spreadsheet.

I have, however, been adding my sparge calculations to the sparge water, not to the boil kettle. Have I just been diluting their impact? What am I missing out on by adding them to the sparge water, not the BK? For me, it made sense to add them to the sparge water because I add mostly CaCl and CaSO4, which the sheet indicate drop mash pH. If I am using these in my sparge water, will it not also reduce the pH of my sparge water, reducing the change that my pH will rise too high during my sparge?

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Old 05-01-2013, 08:43 PM   #2
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Neither CaCl nor CaS04 have an effect on mash Ph. I use EZ Water too, and that section is a bit of a misnomer. Only the acid or acid malt additions in that section will affect the Ph.

As for the sparge additions, EZ Water says you can do it either way. Personally, I just add to the sparge water prior to sparging. I'm assuming more of it will make it into the finished product if you add it straight to the boil kettle.

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Old 05-01-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by johnsnownw
As for the sparge additions, EZ Water says you can do it either way. Personally, I just add to the sparge water prior to sparging. I'm assuming more of it will make it into the finished product if you add it straight to the boil kettle.
I figured it would be a matter of more or less making it to the kettle but was looking for a sanity check. Since using the sheet and moderate additions of acid malt, I have been consistently hitting 5.2-5.3 mash pH and have not noticed any astringency that would be expected from high sparge pH leading to tannin extraction.

It's been working for me so far. I wanted to make sure I was still on the right track.
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Old 05-02-2013, 12:38 PM   #4
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Neither CaCl nor CaS04 have an effect on mash Ph.
Both do. Malt releases a lot of inorganic phosphate into the mash. If the mash contains calcium it reacts to precipitate hydroxyl apatite

10Ca++ + 6H2PO4- + 2H2O --> Ca10(PO4)6(OH)2 + 14H+

Those 14 H+ neutralize the alkalinity of water and malt. This is why 'residual alkalinity' (the portion not neutralized after the calcium reaction) is less the harder the water is. The EZ spreadsheet reflects this pH shift. Have I misunderstood your comment?
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Old 05-02-2013, 03:19 PM   #5
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Both do. Malt releases a lot of inorganic phosphate into the mash. If the mash contains calcium it reacts to precipitate hydroxyl apatit

10Ca++ + 6H2PO4- + 2H2O --> Ca10(PO4)6(OH)2 + 14H+

Those 14 H+ neutralize the alkalinity of water and malt. This is why 'residual alkalinity' (the portion not neutralized after the calcium reaction) is less the harder the water is. The EZ spreadsheet reflects this pH shift. Have I misunderstood your comment?
No, you're right. I suppose I should have used the caveat that adding or removing them with regard to Mash Ph is far more easily controlled with the acid or acid malt. For instance, it takes 2 grams of Chloride or Sulfate to make a .02 difference. Acid has a far greater effectiveness, as 2 ml/g of Lactic nets a gain of .11.

I suppose I've only been using EZ Water to test my water, perhaps in other water Gypsum and Chloride have a greater effectiveness.
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