Happy HolidaySs Giveaway - Winners Re-Re-Re-Re-Drawn - 24 hours to Claim!

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


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Does draining too fast cause low efficiency?
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-17-2008, 07:59 PM   #1
drunkatuw
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Rochester, MN
Posts: 645
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

Default Does draining too fast cause low efficiency?

I've been having problems with my SS braid in my 10 gal round cooler because it was getting clogged and draining very slowly (taking around 90 min for a 10 gal batch). So I build a copper manifold and used it for the first time today and I thought it was working great. It took about a gallon to clear during vorlauf and then ran quickly and clear. I had the ball valve about 1/2 way open.

I split the batch sparge into two 3 gal sparges (instead of the six gallon sparge beersmith calculated). I thought I was having a perfect brew day and it was the fastest one yet at only 3.5 hours, but when I checked my OG, it was only 1.047 which gave me a sad 58% efficiency. With the SS braid I was getting 75-80% efficiency, so I was a little disappointed in 58%.

I was wondering if I should not have opened the ball valve as much as I was draining the MLT, maybe only 1/4 open so the wort drains slower and more sugars are washed.

Other important info: I mashed at 151 degrees (a little low of my target of 154), then round 1 of batch sparging was at 185 degrees and the second round was 175 degrees.

Grain bill:
9 lb 2-row
8 lb Munich
1 lb Chocolate malt
0.5 lb crystal 60

OG 1.047
expected OG: 1.061

__________________
drunkatuw is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 08:24 PM   #2
WBC
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
WBC's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: La Puente, CA, California
Posts: 2,175
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Default

Yes, slow down the sparging process. Do not mash out. Stir in 185F sparge water and wait a few minutes for the sugars to come out of the grains and then recirculate and drain. Sparge water should be 185F or you will not get the mash up to temperature for good efficiency. 2 equal sparges are best.

__________________

Cheers,
WBC

Fermentor 1: Bill's House Ale II, Fermentor 2: German Helles, Fermentor 3: Bill's Schworzbier (Black Bier)
Tap 1: Bill's House Ale II, Tap 2: German Hefewizen, Tap 3: Nut Brown Ale
Future Brews: Stone IPA Clone, Blonde Ale, Budvar Clone, Newcastle Clone
New toy: Blichmann 27 gallon fermentor


“If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging”

“Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment”


WBC is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 08:40 PM   #3
drunkatuw
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Rochester, MN
Posts: 645
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

Default

I didn't mash out. I drained completely after the 60 min mash and then added 3 gal of 185 sparge water, drained again and then added the last 3 gal of 175 sparge water (I didn't make the second sparge 185 degrees because I was afraid the grain bed would get hotter than 168 and start to extract tannins). I stirred for a minute or so after adding the sparge water and then immediately began to vorlauf. Would I benefit from waiting 10 min after adding the sparge water and stirring? Waiting 10 min would still be faster than waiting the 45 min for it took to sparge with my SS braid.

__________________
drunkatuw is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 08:50 PM   #4
Orfy
For the love of beer!
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Orfy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cheshire, England
Posts: 11,853
Liked 69 Times on 52 Posts
Likes Given: 30

Default

You can drain a batch sparge as fast as you can.
Add all the water at once, stir and leave to let the grain settle and dissolve the sugar then open the valve up full.

Orfy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 08:59 PM   #5
Bobby_M
Vendor and Brewer
HBT_SPONSOR.png
Vendor Ads 
Feedback Score: 2 reviews
 
Bobby_M's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Whitehouse Station, NJ
Posts: 22,254
Liked 1057 Times on 705 Posts
Likes Given: 28

Default

Are you sure your braid was stainless and not plastic? I never had a stuck sparge on the old braid.

If your crush is really coarse, you might benefit from waiting about 10 minutes after each batch infusion/stir. With my crush, waiting is just a waste of time.

__________________
BrewHardware.com has a new website. Please check it out and let me know what you think!
New 100% Stainless Steel Heating Elements are IN!
Chugger Pumps, Pump Kits, Camlocks, Sightglasses, Clear USA made Silicone Tubing, RIMS, Electric Install Parts, etc. Did you know we are also now a full service homebrew shop selling malt, hops, yeast (Wyeast), etc?
Bobby_M is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 09:42 PM   #6
beerthirty
big beers turn my gears
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
beerthirty's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Phoenix AZ
Posts: 2,651
Liked 27 Times on 12 Posts

Default

Did you stir the mash good after adding sparge water both times and voraluf again? I would up the temp on the second sparge also.

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird View Post
"I've got a fever... and the only prescription is, MORE CARBOYS!"
primary- Tangerine Dream, SWMBO slayer,
serving- amber ale hop experiment #6, Roggenbier, apfelwine
planning- Cru?
conditioning- 9/9/09 barleywine
Drink water?... Never, fish fornicate in it.--- W.C. Fields
Most problems can be solved with the proper application of force.
beerthirty is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 09:58 PM   #7
Joe Camel
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Charlottetown, PE, Canada
Posts: 282
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

When you add your sparge water to the tun, the sugar in the grains will dilute in the water until they are in equilibrium, same concentration in the wort as in the grains. Once this happens, there's no gain to be had from sparging slow or fast. The only time you'll see a gain in efficiency from batch sparging slowly is if you're not mixing well enough.

Did you take your OG read from your first runnings? It could be that the mash didn't work as well as expected and that's where you lost efficiency.

__________________

Turn up the good, turn down the suck!
-Deaner

Joe Camel is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 10:09 PM   #8
ajf
Senior Member
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
ajf's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Long Island
Posts: 4,643
Liked 99 Times on 93 Posts
Likes Given: 39

Default

I have a 5g round cooler, and usually fly sparge. A couple months ago, I did an experiment, measuring the gravity of the mash during the 60 minute mash time. I reached 1.098 before adding 4.5 qts mash out water. (I fly sparge, and the mash out helps a lot with efficiency). I stirred really well (or so I thought) and then measured the gravity again. It should have dropped to 1.076 with the extra water, but I measured it at 1.032! I also stirred so vigorously that I disconnected the outlet from the false bottom from the spigot. I had to empty everything into the kettle, rinse and reassemble the false bottom, and refill the MLT from the kettle. At this point, the gravity had gotten up to 1.076. Moral of the story is that the deep grain bed in the cylindrical coolers makes it very difficult to stir effectively, and with a batch sparge, it is the stirring that dissolves the sugars and allows you to drain quickly.
With a 10g cooler, you may not have as deep a grain bed as I did (I was using 11 lbs grain), and my false bottom would make matters a little worse, but I would definitely try draining slower next time, and get some of the benefits of a fly sparge.

-a.

__________________
ajf is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 10:22 PM   #9
drunkatuw
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Rochester, MN
Posts: 645
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

Default

I noticed that I might have a little over 6 gal in my fermentor, so my efficiency isn't quite as bad as I thought (63%), but still 15% lower than my last session. I'm thinking that next time I'll up my batch sparge temp a little and also stir more vigorously.

This was also my first time pitching onto a yeast cake. It's going crazy! Two hours after I dumped the wort onto the yeast cake it was not only fermenting, but already blowing out the blow off tube. I know I didn't leave a lot of headspace with 6 gal in a 6.5gal carboy, but this batch is fermenting like crazy, I wouldn't be surprised if it finishes in less than 24 hours.

__________________
drunkatuw is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-17-2008, 10:42 PM   #10
beerthirty
big beers turn my gears
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
beerthirty's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Phoenix AZ
Posts: 2,651
Liked 27 Times on 12 Posts

Default

Leave it in the primary for 2-3 weeks anyway. the yeast will clean up.

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird View Post
"I've got a fever... and the only prescription is, MORE CARBOYS!"
primary- Tangerine Dream, SWMBO slayer,
serving- amber ale hop experiment #6, Roggenbier, apfelwine
planning- Cru?
conditioning- 9/9/09 barleywine
Drink water?... Never, fish fornicate in it.--- W.C. Fields
Most problems can be solved with the proper application of force.
beerthirty 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
ideas for improving the draining efficiency of brewpot Kershner_Ale Equipment/Sanitation 8 10-05-2009 12:44 AM
When draining the wort from the tun... dmbnpj Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 09-15-2009 03:36 PM
draining mot All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 7 03-17-2008 10:26 PM
Draining the Keggle Turkeyfoot Jr. General Techniques 5 01-14-2008 03:30 PM
draining speed shmevinator All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 6 01-04-2008 10:06 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS