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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Batch Sparge Water Temperature Calculation
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Old 08-22-2012, 02:36 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by HopRodGR View Post
Thanks for the replies. I've found that when I drain my runnings, the remaining mash is almost never the same temp as the one I actually mashed at. Usually, it's lower, and when I heat my sparge water to the temp an online calculator calls for, I end up with a sparge temp that is too low, often in the low 160's. How to Brew has a mash in formula, but not one to account for grain that has absorbed water. With there being so many calculators online, I was looking to build my own model to give me a wide range if what I initially plug in for ending mash temp turns out to be wrong.
Tastybrew has two calculators that I have been using in combination.

One for Infusion Masing and one for Sparging.

I also used some the calculations I found on the web and maybe Palmers book for the absorbtion factor...

I found that Tastybrew Sparge Calculator was just a "point" off with what I did by hand so I have been using that since. (I figured 1/10 of a gallon was close enough.

Good luck,

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Old 08-22-2012, 02:54 PM   #12
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This is the TRUTH! I heat my batch sparge water to 190F for every brew. Kai has shown that you can even slarge with room temp water with no effect on beer quality or efficiency. It just doesn't matter.
I wish more people heeded this, since it came from numerous experiments and has been backed up with real-world results. It seems there are so many brewing superstitions out there...
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Old 08-22-2012, 05:00 PM   #13
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That's really interesting, since as a newer homebrewer it is drilled into your head to get your sparge water as close as you can to 170 without going over, when it appears, that is really unnecessary. I generally like reading Kai's stuff so I'll have to dig up his write up on this too.
The truth is that pH is what you need to worry about during the sparge, not water temp. If you couldn't go over 170, you couldn't do decoction mashes, where you boil the grain. It works becasue the pH is low.
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Old 08-22-2012, 05:01 PM   #14
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I wish more people heeded this, since it came from numerous experiments and has been backed up with real-world results. It seems there are so many brewing superstitions out there...
I've brewed over 400 batches and won numerous awards using that technique. That's enough proof for me!
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:35 PM   #15
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I've brewed over 400 batches and won numerous awards using that technique. That's enough proof for me!
And should be for others, too. I for one am appreciative of your experience and have adopted your sparging methods to a tee. I do the same strike and sparge additions (mashing thinner, doing just one sparge addition, no mashout) and I don't worry much about sparge temp. The only reason I heat it to a higher temp is to get boil going faster.
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Open log Fermenting and gas-can secondary?? I am planning my next brew right now!!
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:20 PM   #16
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The truth is that pH is what you need to worry about during the sparge, not water temp. If you couldn't go over 170, you couldn't do decoction mashes, where you boil the grain. It works becasue the pH is low.
Denny, I just want to clarify what you are saying so I am sure I am understanding correctly. I understand the pH concept as it relates to decoction, though isn't the thickness of the decocted portion part of what keeps the pH low enough to nullify tannin extraction?

Building on that, assuming I treat my sparge water to keep the pH down (I use lactic acid currently), is there any reason to be concerned about topping that magic 170 degree number that gets thrown around?
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:33 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by HopRodGR View Post
Denny, I just want to clarify what you are saying so I am sure I am understanding correctly. I understand the pH concept as it relates to decoction, though isn't the thickness of the decocted portion part of what keeps the pH low enough to nullify tannin extraction?

Building on that, assuming I treat my sparge water to keep the pH down (I use lactic acid currently), is there any reason to be concerned about topping that magic 170 degree number that gets thrown around?
Nope. Temp AND PH are the two factors for tannins. That's why he mentioned it only matters for sparging, when the wort is diluted.
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:38 PM   #18
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Nope. Temp AND PH are the two factors for tannins. That's why he mentioned it only matters for sparging, when the wort is diluted.
That's always been my understanding too. That's why I'm following up on this quote from him from post #13...

"The truth is that pH is what you need to worry about during the sparge, not water temp"
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:41 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by HopRodGR View Post
That's really interesting, since as a newer homebrewer it is drilled into your head to get your sparge water as close as you can to 170 without going over, when it appears, that is really unnecessary. I generally like reading Kai's stuff so I'll have to dig up his write up on this too.
Cheers from GR

I also just started homebrewing and always went with 180 degree sparge water.
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:47 PM   #20
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That's always been my understanding too. That's why I'm following up on this quote from him from post #13...

"The truth is that pH is what you need to worry about during the sparge, not water temp"
Well, he means that if you dilute too much you can get tannins, yes...but by the same token he and Kai have proven that you can sparge with cooler water and that would eliminate all possibilities.
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