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Old 10-30-2009, 11:19 PM   #1
DRoyLenz
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Default Brewing with highly-chlorinated water (Chicago)

I'll be brewing up my second AG batch this weekend. I wasn't going to worry about my water chemistry, because the tap water I've been using here in Chicago has been treating me just fine on my extract brews, and I haven't had a chance to taste my first AG brew, a Belgian Wit.

I'm going to be brewing a pretty big beer with a lot of dark malts, so I was advised to consider bring up the pH of my water using chalk. In my research, I have found that Chicago keeps their water at a pH of ~8.4 I believe, and I can't find a number, but apparently, the water is heavily chlorinated.

I would like to brew this weekend, and I have no way of getting to the LHBS. I was hoping I could just use bottled spring water. Or do you think I should hold out and get some Campden Tablets and some Chalk?

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Old 10-30-2009, 11:36 PM   #2
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Bottled spring water is fine.

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Old 10-30-2009, 11:52 PM   #3
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Bottled water works fine.

Getthe campden tablets anyhow as one tablet is enough for 20 gallons of water. Get the potassium ones not the sodium.

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Old 10-31-2009, 12:10 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, I think I'll swing by the grocery store and price it out. Thanks!

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Old 11-02-2009, 09:54 AM   #5
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Do Campden tablets need to be boiled in order to be effective? I've switched to all grain and would prefer to throw it in while the strike water is warming up; would they still do their job without negative side effects in ~170 degree water?

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Old 11-02-2009, 12:38 PM   #6
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No it doesn't need to be boiled at all.

The best way to do it would be to add 1 tablet for every 20 gallons of water you are going to use in a vented container the night before you brew. Make sure you crush the tablet up so it dissolves better.

That's it. It's super easy and simple.

You can also put it in you beer before fermentation finishes to halt the yeast too if you for some reason don't want it to attenuate fully.

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