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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Opinion on my cooling of wort
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Old 09-03-2012, 11:05 PM   #21
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I am in East Texas - it was 106 on the back porch Saturday when I brewed last (OktoberFast per BM). Anyway, I do the two step and cool with ground water from flame out to about 100 degrees with an IC. I then switch from ground water to iced water pumped around by a submersible. It melts 10-15 pounds of ice but gets me down to about 65. I put on quick disconnects to the switch goes very fast.

This seems to work well - total cool time about 30 minutes.

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Old 09-03-2012, 11:18 PM   #22
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Ok. Just brewed what will be a raspberry wheat. Used a pre chiller using a Rubbermaid tote and 25 pounds of ice, and water and rock salt. It took 20 minutes to get down to 100 F. I should have used a styrofoam cooler. The ice melted quickly. Got down to 80 F in an hour total time. I went ahead and put into two carboys and put in freezer that was already cold. Took 30 minutes and it hit 70 and I pitched the yeast.

Has anyone used a plate chiller. I'd buy one if I knew they worked very well. I'm really not worried about the beer taking too long to cool, I'm worried about having a stroke in this heat. It was 102 in my garage and 98 outside.

If you try it again, put your prechiller in the cooler then fill it with ice (I go get my ice when I start my mash. I use 40 LBs and get it for $1.50 per 20 lb bag). Don't add any water. As you start your chill the water from you hose will melt the ice pretty quickly. As soon as you are able to move the prechiller around in the ice/ice water, get it moving. Move the chiller in the wort at the same time. I usually bounce the prechiller up and down and move the chiller around in a circle. Once in a while if my ice seems to be melting too fast, I throw a frozen gallon jug in the cooler toward the end of the process.

As I said above, I get to 60* in less than 15 minutes and us about 15-20 gallons of water. It was 95* when I brewed the other day. I run about 75' feet of garden hose across my lawn in the hot sun.
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Old 09-05-2012, 06:25 PM   #23
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If you try it again, put your prechiller in the cooler then fill it with ice (I go get my ice when I start my mash. I use 40 LBs and get it for $1.50 per 20 lb bag). Don't add any water. As you start your chill the water from you hose will melt the ice pretty quickly. As soon as you are able to move the prechiller around in the ice/ice water, get it moving. Move the chiller in the wort at the same time. I usually bounce the prechiller up and down and move the chiller around in a circle. Once in a while if my ice seems to be melting too fast, I throw a frozen gallon jug in the cooler toward the end of the process.

As I said above, I get to 60* in less than 15 minutes and us about 15-20 gallons of water. It was 95* when I brewed the other day. I run about 75' feet of garden hose across my lawn in the hot sun.
Newbie here.

A general question on "pre-chillers". My thermodynamics aren't as strong as my electromagnetism, but here goes...

Would it not be a better use of the ice water to run through the main immersion chiller? I am assuming there are more losses (losses to bucket and air over time) with the ice water sitting in a bucket, "pre-chilling" than just pumping it through the main chiller?

Based on what I have seen in breweries (and in my line of work) is running chiller water (ice water) through a heat exchanger and counter flowing the process liquid (wort). There is no intermediate cooling of some 'carrier' liquid (which is water in this case).

Am I dumb or plain wrong?
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Old 09-05-2012, 06:33 PM   #24
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Newbie here.

A general question on "pre-chillers". My thermodynamics aren't as strong as my electromagnetism, but here goes...

Would it not be a better use of the ice water to run through the main immersion chiller? ...
Sure, it would probably cool quicker to run the icewater directly thru the chiller, but now you have to buy a water pump and find a power source. It's quite a bit simpler to just use the tap water.
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Old 09-05-2012, 06:44 PM   #25
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Newbie here.

A general question on "pre-chillers". My thermodynamics aren't as strong as my electromagnetism, but here goes...

Would it not be a better use of the ice water to run through the main immersion chiller? I am assuming there are more losses (losses to bucket and air over time) with the ice water sitting in a bucket, "pre-chilling" than just pumping it through the main chiller?

Based on what I have seen in breweries (and in my line of work) is running chiller water (ice water) through a heat exchanger and counter flowing the process liquid (wort). There is no intermediate cooling of some 'carrier' liquid (which is water in this case).

Am I dumb or plain wrong?
seems as though they both live in the south and have problems with hop tap water....maybe i dont understand your question but for them to drop to pitching temps (68-75) they need the use of a second PRE chiller
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Old 09-05-2012, 07:52 PM   #26
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I have not used a pump and ice water, but most that I have read about have good results. Because they lose so much ice to the hot return water, most cool with tap water until about 100* and then switch to pumping ice water through the chiller. I use the prechiller in the ice because I have the extra chiller, I don't have a pump, I don't have to switch hoses, and I know that this works well for me. As I said above, $3.00 worth of ice and less than 20 gallons of water gets 5.5 gallons of 200+ degree wort down to 60* in well under 15 minutes. I don't know that I have read of much better results other than with counter-flow chillers and plate chillers (and you would still have to pre chill the cooling water somehow)

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Old 09-07-2012, 01:59 PM   #27
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I had the 'pumpless' epiphany the morning after posting this. 'Cost-effective' and 'efficient' don't always go hand in hand.

I see now if you don't want to spend the cash on a pump, then pre-chilling is the best way to go.

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Old 09-07-2012, 02:02 PM   #28
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seems as though they both live in the south and have problems with hop tap water....maybe i dont understand your question but for them to drop to pitching temps (68-75) they need the use of a second PRE chiller
The question was, why not just pump the ice water directly through one chiller. That way you eliminate the absorption of heat from the other sources in the 'pre' stage (bucket heat, ambient air, water to copper, copper to water).

Turns out I was assuming they just had a pump laying around. Which, they do not.
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