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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Brew Science > My Ward Labs Report: What Does It Mean?
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Old 10-03-2012, 11:09 PM   #1
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Default My Ward Labs Report: What Does It Mean?

Just got the results from my Ward Labs water report. I'm not sure what I'm looking for but based on some other threads I've read it sounds like maybe alkalinity is pretty high (116)?

Would you brew with this water? I've used it for yeast starters and in brews with about a 3:1 ratio of bottled(spring):tap but never a full batch.

7.5 pH
303 Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) Est, ppm
0.50 Electrical Conductivity, mmho/cm
4.8 / 4.9 Cations / Anions, me/L

25 Sodium, Na
7 Potassium, K
58 Calcium, Ca
8 Magnesium, Mg
178 Total Hardness, CaCO3
1.4 (SAFE) Nitrate, NO3-N
9 Sulfate, SO4-S
68 Chloride, Cl
< 1 Carbonate, CO3
141 Bicarbonate, HCO3
116 Total Alkalinity, CaCO3
0.32 Total Phosphorus, P
< 0.01 Total Iron, Fe

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Old 10-04-2012, 12:08 AM   #2
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Your alkalinity is a little high but not unmanageably so. Lots of guys have brewed lots of beer with water worse than this. There are certainly things that can be done to improve the beer you can make with this water and number one on this list is mitigating the alkalinity which you can do by various methods the simplest of which is dilution with low ion content water. See the Primer in the Stickies.

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Old 10-04-2012, 06:02 PM   #3
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Awesome thanks! I'll check that out.

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Old 10-04-2012, 06:11 PM   #4
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Ok I'm not sure what I'm looking for in that sticky.

Are you saying I should dilute my water with water produced by the method outlined in the primer? How do I get an idea of what the ratio should be? I don't see anything in there about low ion content or how to dilute or anything like that.

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Old 10-04-2012, 07:55 PM   #5
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This water is similar to the water I used to deal with in Tallahassee. The alkalinity is not too extreme and could be neutralized easily with acid. Dilution with RO or distilled is another option. Bru'n Water provides the tools for figuring out what sort of acid addition or dilution a brewer might consider for each brew.

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Old 10-04-2012, 11:38 PM   #6
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The Primer gives guidance on what to add to 'soft' water to get started in water treatment. Soft water is defined as having alkalinity less than 35 and everything else less than 20. As the Primer says if you dilute with RO or DI water 1:1 everyhing gets cut in half. If you dilute 2:1, everything is reduces to 33%. If you dilute 3:1 everything goes to 25%. Your alkalinity is 116. A quarter of that is 29 which is under 30 so a 3:1 dilution is what you would need to qualify your diluted water as soft and thus suitable for the Primer's treatment recommendations.

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