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Old 01-17-2013, 06:51 PM   #11
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As was mentioned, it really depends on your water.

If you have chloramines in your water (a form of chlorine), they don't boil off. If you have iron in your water, the beer won't taste good.

I have great tasting water, but it's very alkaline with a high bicarbonate content. That means I make great stouts with my tap water, but not light lagers.

If you call/contact your water supplier, they may be able to give you a good report. Mine couldn't, so I sent a sample to Ward Labs and for $16, I got a full brewing water report.

Without knowing the make up of your water, it would be just anybody's guess.

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Old 01-17-2013, 06:56 PM   #12
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<- uses hot water from the tap.

I adjust for pH with colorplast strips and lactic acid.

It's pretty easy like this:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/2012/10/mash-ph.html

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Old 01-17-2013, 07:55 PM   #13
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I used to just use my tap water as is, eventually I got tired of flying blind. My tap water here is "Surface water" instead of ground water or well water and as a result is medium soft, so now I just adjust depending on the style. I also use campden as my water is chloramined. My water profile naturally is good for continental style pilsners though

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Old 01-17-2013, 08:13 PM   #14
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Does your water smell like chlorine? Does it taste good? If the answer to the first question is no and the second, yes, don't worry about it for now. Eventually you'll want to understand your water and learn how to adjust it.

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Old 01-17-2013, 08:28 PM   #15
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In our neck of the woods, a water softener is a must. For dark beers however, I bypass the softener, which means using cold water as all the water in the water heater has already been softened. Pils, Kolsch, other light beers, I use the softened water from the water heater as you mentioned. No objective tests performed to say if it makes the beer better, but I feel better, and that's whats really important. Brew Beer - feel better, brink beer - feel even better. What a wonderful cycle.

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Old 01-17-2013, 08:52 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichE View Post
In our neck of the woods, a water softener is a must. For dark beers however, I bypass the softener, which means using cold water as all the water in the water heater has already been softened. Pils, Kolsch, other light beers, I use the softened water from the water heater as you mentioned. No objective tests performed to say if it makes the beer better, but I feel better, and that's whats really important. Brew Beer - feel better, brink beer - feel even better. What a wonderful cycle.
I could be wrong, but I've been told that water that has been through a softener is the worst water for brewing. they said that water softeners add too many salts to the water.

I have a softener For my well water too, so I've been meaning to look up some info on this before my next brew day.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:19 PM   #17
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i have a weird situation.

I can drink the water straight from the tap and it's fine, but if I mix up a batch of powdered drink mix, or brew coffee with it, it's downright nasty. So, we have a Brita pitcher for the mixes and coffee. We also have a filter in the refrigerator ice/water dispenser and that tastes OK.

for brewing (& 'prepping'), I have been using Deer Park and that seems to work out OK... but haven't done too many batches. Also have been refilling the gallon jugs with water from the ice/water dispenser and going to start working those into the brew, along with cycling out older 'prepper' water, as needed.

almost scared to use water straight out of the tap for brewing; don't want to ruin a batch

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Old 01-18-2013, 02:38 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrogNerd View Post
i have a weird situation.

I can drink the water straight from the tap and it's fine, but if I mix up a batch of powdered drink mix, or brew coffee with it, it's downright nasty. So, we have a Brita pitcher for the mixes and coffee. We also have a filter in the refrigerator ice/water dispenser and that tastes OK.

for brewing (& 'prepping'), I have been using Deer Park and that seems to work out OK... but haven't done too many batches. Also have been refilling the gallon jugs with water from the ice/water dispenser and going to start working those into the brew, along with cycling out older 'prepper' water, as needed.

almost scared to use water straight out of the tap for brewing; don't want to ruin a batch
When you mix drinks or brew coffee are you using the warm water? Because that might be softened while the cold water is unsoftened
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:19 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt3989 View Post
When you mix drinks or brew coffee are you using the warm water? Because that might be softened while the cold water is unsoftened
cold
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