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Old 07-10-2012, 05:40 AM   #1
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Default efficiency

Are there any general tricks or techniques to increase efficiency? or Is it all in the brewing procedure and temps? is it typically a simple brewing error that causes a lower efficiency? ever since i started all grain brewing i have noticed a 5% drop in mine. it may just be that its summer and hot and humid. could that be my culprit? -thanks cheers

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Old 07-10-2012, 06:25 AM   #2
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First place to look is your grain crush..

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Old 07-10-2012, 06:25 AM   #3
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What about ph? would the waters ph level effect it?

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Old 07-10-2012, 06:26 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tally350z View Post
First place to look is your grain crush..
i have been getting them pre crushed either online or from my lhbs...
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:31 AM   #5
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pH is a factor since the enzymes have an optimal range, that includes acidifying the sparge water. Do you fly, batch, or no sparge? The crush can make quite a difference so maybe your own mill could be your next equip addition.

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Old 07-10-2012, 05:45 PM   #6
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mine fluctuates and i can only assume its the crush... i get it all pre-crushed (probably should invest in a mill) and mine jump around about 10%... annoying.

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Old 07-10-2012, 06:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
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What about ph? would the waters ph level effect it?
Yes, but to a much lesser extent than crush. Crush is always the first thing to look at.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:59 PM   #8
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Yes, but to a much lesser extent than crush. Crush is always the first thing to look at.
thanks, is it safe to assume i need my grains crushed MORE?
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basilchef View Post
What about ph? would the waters ph level effect it?
It is indeed safe to say your grain might need to be crushed more. Aside from crush, the pH level is also a possible issue. Some cities adjust municipal water chemistry with the change of seasons. Another thing to consider is whether your LHBS has changed to a different malt supplier...
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:28 PM   #10
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After grain crush and pH, look at your sparging technique.

Batch sparging is said to be less efficient than fly sparging, though on the homebrew scale that's not a huge deal. Also, batch sparging in two batches (each of half the total sparging volume) seems to get me better efficiency than throwing all the water in one batch sparge.

Remember that not every grain bill will get you the same efficiency. Wheat and other unhulled grains can stick together, which traps liquid and sugar, reducing overall efficiency. Rice hulls are usually the answer to this problem: a half pound in any mash with over 35% wheat.

One efficiency trick is to add a handful or two of rice hulls to every mash, even all-barley mashes.

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