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Old 10-27-2008, 08:53 PM   #1
Adam's Apples
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Default Water treatment

I thought, seeing as I have just moved to AG brewing, I should pay more attention to my water.

Turns out I was able to download a report for my area (in UK), which showed the Alkalinity, calcium, magnesium, sodium, sulphate and chloride. I have purchased a ph tester and will be looking to try and get my beers in the correct ph range, depending on the style I'm brewing.

I found this site quite handy - Professional Brewing Aids Information - as it shows the ranges for calcium and alkalinity per style.

This seems like a potentially intricate subject, but isn't something I want to get too hung up on. If I can add the relevant carbonate reducing / calcium increasing salts to each lot of brew water and mash, I should be able to draw up a table of what additions I need per 5/6 gallon brew for each water type.

Is this something you guys have all calculated, or have some of you not found it necessary or used trial and error?

Also, the above site suggests using campden tablets in brewing water to remove chlorine and chloramine. Again, this is something I haven't done up until now, but they have made it sound like this should be regular practice for all brews. Is this something other AG brewers do as standard?

Cheers

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Old 10-27-2008, 09:48 PM   #2
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I use a little less that a half of a Campden Tablet per 5 gallon batch to remove Cloramine. Not sure it helps but it certainly doesn't hurt. To get my water to match water in London for darker beers like Porter, I also add gypsum, salt and baking soda. Beersmith has a great function to allow you to match water styles.

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Old 10-28-2008, 04:52 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Skipstr21 View Post
I use a little less that a half of a Campden Tablet per 5 gallon batch to remove Cloramine. Not sure it helps but it certainly doesn't hurt. To get my water to match water in London for darker beers like Porter, I also add gypsum, salt and baking soda. Beersmith has a great function to allow you to match water styles.
I think I will start adding a campden tablet as part of my regular preperation. As I said, the link I posted shows the alkalinity / calcium ranges for different beer styles. Now I have my City's water stats I should be able to work out the standard additions of water salts needed for each beer style on a regular 5 gallon batch.

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Old 10-28-2008, 05:10 PM   #4
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I know I have chloramines and activated charcoal doesn't capture the chloramines effectively (as stated by my municiple lab manager) so I add a half campden to my HLT.

As for mash pH (Umm All Grain) I use pH stabilzer.

Depending on beer style I may opt to use straight tap water or blend equal portions with RO/Distilled to adjust ions.

Finally, with my water I always add calcium carbonate simply because the yeast need the boost. My calcium levels are woefully low for brewing.

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Old 10-28-2008, 05:42 PM   #5
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If you are just starting with AG I say do nothing first and see how the beers come out. Maybe use 5.2 Buffer in the mash. Alot of water treatment is designed to imitate British water so you may be right where you should be for PAs, IPAs, porters, stouts, etc; I have Chloramine in my water so I use spring water but I've used tap in the past with no problems either.

You may want to go to a local brewery/pub and ask what they use/do. I asked one of the brewers at SFCA's Anchor when on a tour there and they said they don't treat, just tap so that's what I did.(when I lived there)

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Old 10-30-2008, 04:13 PM   #6
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I love to play around with this Water Treatment spreadsheet...

Water Treatment Spreadsheet

It basically allows you to duplicate brewing waters from around the world by introducing additives to distilled water. Pretty cool.

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Old 11-01-2008, 03:20 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beergynt View Post
I love to play around with this Water Treatment spreadsheet...

Water Treatment Spreadsheet

It basically allows you to duplicate brewing waters from around the world by introducing additives to distilled water. Pretty cool.
Just tried the link and got this:

'We're sorry to inform you that on October 31, 2008, CompuServe OurWorld was shut down permanently. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.'

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Old 11-01-2008, 05:51 PM   #8
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I use the spreadsheet linked from here as it's written to be used with CRS and DLS which Brupaks sell in the UK (as per your link).

/Phil.

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Old 10-22-2013, 09:00 PM   #9
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It can be seemingly daunting at first, but it really helps if you take a moment to understand what is going on when you treat the water. I have a series of blog posts about it over at my Life, Fermented blog:
http://lifefermented.wordpress.com/2...-1-the-basics/
As I recommend in my posts, I love to use the Brun Water spreadsheet. You can do so much more with water treatment, like enhance hop character, accentuate maltiness, and help your fermentation out to name a few.

I would recommend against the 5.2 stabilizer. Without knowing what your water is like, it may or may not help, and it will add a ton of sodium to the beer, which can itself have a detrimental effect.

As for chloramines, I happen to have a separate post about that as well.

Happy fermenting,

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