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Old 06-18-2013, 12:14 PM   #1
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I have been brewing for the past year with a E-Keggle. Nothing fancy just 2 1500 watt elements running off of two separate breakers. I have officially dumped 4 batches of beer because they tasted like a big liquid ash tray. Anyways the 3 I was using HWD elements. Fine, so I switched them out to ULWD elements a few weeks ago. Brewed a basic pale ale yesterday and again a complete ashtray. I always scrubbed the elements clean after each brew... I'm at a loss. I wouldnt think 1500 watts would be enough to scorch wort especially using ULWD elements. Any advice? I already ordered a 12 gallon SS pot and turkey fryer but I can still use my ekeg for sparge and mash water.

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Old 06-18-2013, 12:19 PM   #2
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I have been brewing for the past year with a E-Keggle. Nothing fancy just 2 1500 watt elements running off of two separate breakers. I have officially dumped 4 batches of beer because they tasted like a big liquid ash tray. Anyways the 3 I was using HWD elements. Fine, so I switched them out to ULWD elements a few weeks ago. Brewed a basic pale ale yesterday and again a complete ashtray. I always scrubbed the elements clean after each brew... I'm at a loss. I wouldnt think 1500 watts would be enough to scorch wort especially using ULWD elements. Any advice? I already ordered a 12 gallon SS pot and turkey fryer but I can still use my ekeg for sparge and mash water.
Odd. I've made a lot of beer with my 5500W element (built in 2009). Never had that issue, even once. I make lots of pilsners, too, so I'm sure it would be detectable. I'd love to give you some advice here, but if you tried different elements then I've got nothing.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:23 PM   #3
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Yeah, I'm honestly stumped as well. These new ULWD elements had wort scorched to it so bad that I literally had to use a dremel with a wire disc brush to bust it off as soaking in the oxyclean did nothing.

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Old 06-18-2013, 12:37 PM   #4
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Yeah, I'm honestly stumped as well. These new ULWD elements had wort scorched to it so bad that I literally had to use a dremel with a wire disc brush to bust it off as soaking in the oxyclean did nothing.
After 4 years I do have a hard coating of scorched "something" on my elements. Sometimes, I can knock thick flakes off the elements, but mostly I just ignore it. After abusing these things for so long, including some dry-firing accidents, I can't believe they are still kicking.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:59 PM   #5
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I use a heat stick to help my stove/burner along. I had this once and either I didn't clean my element enough, or I had too much particulate in the beer from the sparge as I was having bad stuck sparge issues and didn't vorlauf to try to keep it from setting up. Is your wort nice and clear?

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Old 06-18-2013, 01:17 PM   #6
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the wort was "ok" as far as clarity. This batch was about 30% rye which may have contributed to the scorching. If this was the 1st batch I would over look it but I've dumped over $100 in beer and 20 hours of time wasted. Not sure what i'm trying to get out of this thread just frustrating. I appreciate the feedback.

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Old 06-18-2013, 03:27 PM   #7
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I'm building my electric brewery right now, so I don't have hands on experience with it...but, there is every indication that it works. I have helped brew on a 7BBL system that is fired with electric elements (10-11k IIRC) and those don't scorch either. I understand that it can be extremely frustrating trying to figure out what is going wrong when something should be working, I would be annoyed to. But, perhaps we can help you find the gremlin in your system.

A couple of questions, what element are you using (brand, coating type)? Have you tested your voltage and amperage that is getting to the elements? Are you doing full wort boils or highly concentrated boils? Those are the thoughts off the top of my head, but there are some folks here who really know electrical systems that will be of much greater trouble shooting help...

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Old 06-18-2013, 03:34 PM   #8
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Is this the ULWD element that your used? If so, it's not ULWD!

Camco 02852/02853 1500W 120V Screw-In Lime Life Foldback Water Heater Element - Ultra Low Watt Density

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Old 06-18-2013, 03:42 PM   #9
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After 4 years I do have a hard coating of scorched "something" on my elements. Sometimes, I can knock thick flakes off the elements, but mostly I just ignore it. After abusing these things for so long, including some dry-firing accidents, I can't believe they are still kicking.
Identical experience here. No ill effects.
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Old 06-18-2013, 03:48 PM   #10
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Is this the ULWD element that your used? If so, it's not ULWD!

Camco 02852/02853 1500W 120V Screw-In Lime Life Foldback Water Heater Element - Ultra Low Watt Density
Then what is it? I'm using one of those and a standard watt density one from HD in my kettle and it runs just fine. No scorched wort yet...
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