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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Should I use this tap water or bottled spring water?
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Old 02-01-2013, 11:44 PM   #1
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Default Should I use this tap water or bottled spring water?

So I'm doing my third AG batch tomorrow. The last couple times I brewed I used generic spring water. Should I go ahead with this water profile or buy more spring water? I don't have the proper tools to adjust my water profile unless its something I can get at the store. No LHBS




pH 8.8
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) Est 196
Electrical Conductivity, mmho/cm 0.33
Cations / Anions, me/L 3.3 / 3.5

Sodium, Na- 75 ppm
Potassium K-<1 ppm
Calcium Ca- 1 ppm
Magnesium Mg- <1 ppm
Total Hardness, CaCO3- 3 ppm
Nitrate, NO3‐N- .1 ppm
Sulfate, SO4‐S- 3 ppm
Chloride, Cl- 6 ppm
Carbonate, CO3- 21ppm
Bicarbonate, HCO3- 145ppm
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3 154

Thanks

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Old 02-01-2013, 11:51 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thood6 View Post
So I'm doing my third AG batch tomorrow. The last couple times I brewed I used generic spring water. Should I go ahead with this water profile or buy more spring water? I don't have the proper tools to adjust my water profile unless its something I can get at the store. No LHBS

pH 8.8
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) Est 196
Electrical Conductivity, mmho/cm 0.33
Cations / Anions, me/L 3.3 / 3.5

Sodium, Na- 75 ppm
Potassium K-<1 ppm
Calcium Ca- 1 ppm
Magnesium Mg- <1 ppm
Total Hardness, CaCO3- 3 ppm
Nitrate, NO3‐N- .1 ppm
Sulfate, SO4‐S- 3 ppm
Chloride, Cl- 6 ppm
Carbonate, CO3- 21ppm
Bicarbonate, HCO3- 145ppm
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3 154

Thanks
Have you read through the first post in this thread yet?
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f128/bre...primer-198460/

It's a good place to start if you're interested in water but aren't really sure how to begin. If I were more knowledgeable about water chemistry, I'd have more to offer, but until someone else chimes in, that might be worth a read.
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:05 AM   #3
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Actually, that water doesn't look half bad, at least compared to mine. The sodium and alkalinity is a bit high, but everything else is quite low. If I had this water, I'd probably dilute it with RO or distilled to drop the sodium and alkalinity and then add back gypsum and calcium chloride to get your calcium and sulfate/chloride numbers up... depending on what you are brewing.

To get a better idea of what you have to work with, download Bru'n Water and plug in your water profile.

As for now, I'd be hesitant to brew with this water given the high alk and low calcium. You might be better off diluting half and half with spring water, in the hope that it brings up your Ca and drops the alkalinity. Regardless, you'll want to pick up some gypsum and calcium chloride at some point if you plan to adjust your tap water.

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Old 02-02-2013, 06:20 AM   #4
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I also like to use the How-to-Brew chapter as a reference as well. It kinda depends on what kind of beer you're brewing. I'm by no means an expert, but the place I'd start first is the hardness. You're a little high, which means that you're probably fine for a darker beer, but if you're trying to brew lighter beers, you may have to either dilute with RO water or lower the pH with something (lactic acid, acid malt, etc). As for your other salts, your sodium is higher than some, but I don't think that you'd run into trouble with it as it is. I've always read that you need around 50ppm Ca for proper yeast fermentation and flocculation. Since both your chloride and sulfate levels are low as well, you can use either CaCl2 or CaSO4. If you're brewing a hoppy beer, go with more CaSO4, and for malty beers go with more CaCl2. Good luck!

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Old 02-02-2013, 01:19 PM   #5
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I use either distilled or spring water for my partial mash beers. Works pretty well so far I need to study this water chemistry basics myself. Baby steps ya know...
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Old 02-02-2013, 03:41 PM   #6
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I've always used bottled spring water. The water in my area is perfectly safe from drinking but it's not really that good tasting. The usual rule of thumb is that good tasting water makes good tasting beer.

Huh - that was post #1500. I've been away for a couple of years, seldom posting or reading. Just stopped by today for no particular reason.

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Old 02-02-2013, 04:23 PM   #7
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You could use that water for mashing, if you dilute at least 4:1 or so. Don't sparge with it. And you want to use reverse osmosis or distilled water rather than spring water.

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Old 02-02-2013, 11:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgmartin000
You could use that water for mashing, if you dilute at least 4:1 or so. Don't sparge with it. And you want to use reverse osmosis or distilled water rather than spring water.
Why is spring water not ok? That's what I ended up using.
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Old 02-03-2013, 03:31 PM   #9
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Bump

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Old 02-03-2013, 03:35 PM   #10
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Idk,spring water works fine for me?...
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