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-   -   Water report (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f128/water-report-359081/)

Salamander 10-05-2012 09:12 PM

Water report
CACO3-242, alkalinity total-243,calcium-43.2, chloride-6.98, carbonate-216, iron-.007, magnesium-26.2, ph-7.61,potassium-.74, sodium-2.34, sulfate-6.1, TDS-216, zinc-.002. All units are in mg/l. Your expertise and input would much be appreciated. Thank you in advance.

ajdelange 10-06-2012 12:18 PM

Not sure what 'CACO3' nor 'carbonate' means as clearly the water contains neither calcium carbonate nor much carbonate. Trusting the alkalinity number and the pH the carbonate ion content would be about 0.65 mg/L. The report is imbalanced by 0.8 mEq/L which is quite a bit so none of the numbers can be considered very accurate. They are probably averages.

Nevertheless it is doubtless true that as the numbers suggest you have a hard, alkaline water with little permanent hardness. This makes it a candidate for decarbonation by lime treatment or simple heating/aeration preceded by calcium supplementation which is not only necessary to restore the calcium level to a healthy one but aids the decarbonation process. The problem with doing this is that it is messy, requires heat, lengthens the brew day (or you do it the day before - still means more work) and you really need to take before and after alkalinity measurements to see how you did at least until you have done it enough to know how well you are doing. It would doubtless be easier and certainly more sure to replace your water with RO water or dilute your water with RO water to the point where the alkalinity is down to less than 30 which will take so much RO water you might as well use straight RO. See the Primer for starting guidelines.

ArcLight 10-06-2012 03:10 PM

That Magnesium is a bit high too, might make it a tad bitter, no?

Personally, I'd just use store bought distilled water.
Add some gypsum or calcium chloride as needed.

Salamander 10-06-2012 08:06 PM

I was going to brew a three gallon test batch that consist of 7.25 lbs of two row, .75 of medium crystal, .6 chocolate, and .4 black malts. 1oz of fruggles hop. I may need to reevaluate after reading your responses. Your thoughts.

ajdelange 10-06-2012 09:55 PM

You will have to defeat that alkalinity one way or another. Either you must remove it by boiling or lime treatment or you must neutralize it with acid, be that from a bottle or dark malt, or you must dilute it away. If you try to do it all with dark malt you will have, at this level of alkalinity, a very one dimensional beer and possibly one that is not very drinkable. The easiest way out is dilution with RO water. Try the Primer for some hints as to how to proceed.

DirtyD69 10-06-2012 11:26 PM

Like one guy said if you like the way your water tastes then go with it.

ajdelange 10-07-2012 12:43 PM

Given current knowledge and technology many of us are making beer a lot better than that guy's.

Salamander 10-07-2012 02:39 PM

The water quality report was recorded in ranges and the highest was posted. I'm researching the primer. Thank you for your insight.

DirtyD69 10-08-2012 12:41 AM


Originally Posted by ajdelange
Given current knowledge and technology many of us are making beer a lot better than that guy's.

Still tastes good. Not sure about a lot better.

ajdelange 10-08-2012 05:22 PM

But those of us that followed that guy's philosophy and eventually saw the light are sure.

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