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Old 08-06-2010, 12:38 AM   #1
cregan13
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Default Best bottled water for AG brewing

Any insights on which brand of water is best for brewing? Poland Spring? Deer Park? etc. etc.

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Old 08-06-2010, 12:56 AM   #2
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Whatever you think tastes best, I guess.

Most bottled drinking water is dechlorinated, filtered tap water (except distilled which is -- distilled), so it tends to be very soft water. The benefit you get with bottled water -- which can be replicated at home with filters or by boiling the water and letting it cool -- is the dechlorination. (Distilled water can also be useful for building the water profile from scratch or diluting your local tap supply.)

For some beer styles, you need to add salts or acids to arrive at the appropriate water profile for that style. Because bottled water tends to be soft, you can easily use it to brew lighter beers, but you will probably want to mix it with your local water supply and/or add salts. The problem is that you may not be able to find reliable water profile information for the bottled water.

Also, buying bottled water may be cost-prohibitive, especially if your local water supply is of good quality for the kind of beers you make or can be adjusted with some salts at a much cheaper price. You can buy a bag of epsom salt that will last hundreds of batches for the price of a few gallons of bottled water. However, your water supply may taste off or you may not want to go through the hassle of trying to dechlorinate your water.

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Old 08-06-2010, 01:31 AM   #3
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I use my tap water, direct from the city. It tastes good and I run it through a softener. No complaints and it saves money on buying bottled water.

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Old 08-06-2010, 02:49 AM   #4
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Many of the brands of water will have different chemistry depending on where you buy it. For example, Aquafina and Dasani are both just municipal water that's filtered and bottled at the closest Pepsi or Coke plant. Same thing goes for most grocery store branded bottled water. If you want a specific water chemistry, buy either distilled water or RO water and add brewing salts.

Any particular reason you want to use bottled water over your tap water? Most issues with tap water have a fairly simple fix.

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Old 08-06-2010, 02:54 AM   #5
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i live in the city the cdc found purest water in the country, so i just use it right from the tap

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Old 08-06-2010, 02:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avidhomebrewer View Post
I use my tap water, direct from the city. It tastes good and I run it through a softener. No complaints and it saves money on buying bottled water.
That's surprising. Water softeners typically remove many of the minerals needed for brewing and replace them with either sodium or potassuium chloride (depending on the softener type) in quantities way above desired limits. Unless your water softener badly needs to be recharged, I'd think it would make for pretty poor brewing water.
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Old 08-06-2010, 03:03 PM   #7
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My tap water tastes like it came from a pool... I finally switched from bottled water to filtering the tap water. Any basic additions I should consider after running tap water through a 2 micron filter?

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Old 08-06-2010, 03:31 PM   #8
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I installed a filtration system underneath my sink, and it works great. The filter removes a lot of what I don't want, it tastes great. I do add some gypsum when making darker beers tho. I figure I save $8-10 per batch and only have to change the filter 3-4 times per year.

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Old 08-06-2010, 03:52 PM   #9
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That's what I bought, specifically for use with my brewing, so I will set it up as part of my brew setup. For $20 for the housing and $10 for a 2 pack of filters, I figure I'll save $10/per batch over bottled water. After the 3rd brew that savings will really show.

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Old 08-06-2010, 03:52 PM   #10
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Just to let you know you CAN NOT remove chloramine with boiling and standard carbon filters. There is special catalyzed GAC filters that require low flow rate to break it down.

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