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Old 04-13-2014, 07:14 PM   #1
statyk
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Default Can/should I water down my beer?

Hi all, I've got a question.

I've got a batch of an IIPA finishing up in secondary (dry-hopped) and about ready to bottle. Apparently when I first topped of my partial boil I miscalculated a bit as the total volume is about a gallon short (of a 5gal batch). My target OG was for 1.080 but it measured about 1.085 of so. After a solid 4 weeks in primary it registered about 1.022, target FG should be about 1.016.

The question is: now that it's about ready to bottle, is there any reason I can't add some extra (boiled & cooled) water with my priming sugar to get my total volume up near 5 gallons and get the gravity back into whack?

I appreciate any feedback. I especially appreciate prompt feedback since I'm planning on bottling in an hour or so. Thanks!

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Old 04-13-2014, 11:01 PM   #2
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Personally, I would taste the beer first. If you have a killer IIPA, I would leave it alone and bottle four gallons.

Adding a gallon at bottling time will certainly dilute some of the hop character in your beer. Also, the water will have a different gravity than your beer, so it may not mix in as well, or easy, as you would think.

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Old 04-13-2014, 11:26 PM   #3
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No problem adding water.

I used to intentionally hit a 5 or 10 points higher than my intended OG, ferment, then add water before bottling. I did this so I could get larger batches with only a 6g carboy.

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Old 04-13-2014, 11:36 PM   #4
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By boiled your assuming all oxygen has been removed? Because if not it will ruin the beer. Dunno. I would carb high and mix in the glass.

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Old 04-14-2014, 03:51 AM   #5
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Taste it first, you can adjust it with boiled / distilled water if it seems too hoppy / alcoholic (is that even possible?).

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Old 04-15-2014, 04:09 AM   #6
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I only have a 5gal. Carboy, so I make 4 gallons and dilute all of my batches during bottling. Never been a problem, though I am far from an expert.

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Old 04-15-2014, 04:19 AM   #7
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No problem adding water, but I would boil the crap out of it first to sterilize and remove oxygen.

One thing though, make sure you add water until you hit your FG, not your desired volume. Volume isn't important, specific gravity is.

I agree about tasting it first though. If it tastes perfect as-is, I'd leave it alone. If you decide it needs to be a bit thinner, add water.


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