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Old 02-03-2011, 08:12 PM   #1
aidan
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Default Brewing with unboiled tap water?

Does anyone here brew with unboiled tap water? ie. use water straight from the tap for topping up after partial boil or for mixing up a kit beer.

I did my fourth batch last night and used water straight from the tap. In my previous batch I boiled the water a day in advance in order to have it cooled down. But my first 2 batches I used straight from the tap and I didn't have a problem.

So I'm wondering if it's considered bad practice to use the water straight from the tap or is it acceptable? It is certainly a lot easier and energy efficient not to have to boil it. My water is good quality city water.

And a related point: For those who are using water straight from the tap - do you rinse with water after sanitising? I sanitised my fermentor with iodophor but then rinsed with water as I didn't like the idea of traces of iodophor in my beer (and rinsing with water is quicker than trying to drain it out). I know some people warn about rinsing with water, saying that it is no longer sanitised after you rinse with tap water. But it's the same water I'm adding directly to my wort so it can't make any difference. Thoughts?



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Old 02-03-2011, 08:14 PM   #2
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Personally, I'd be more concerned about boiling a day in advance. When you heat your water, you lose all the chlorine. As it cools over those 24 hours, you risk an infection since you'll not have any free chlorine to kill whatever bugs happen to go swimming.



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Old 02-03-2011, 08:15 PM   #3
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I don't boil any of my water. But I also don't top off.

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Old 02-03-2011, 08:16 PM   #4
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I wouldn't use tap water to top off. It most likely has chlorine in it which will give you off flavors. There is also a chance that it is not sanitary. But the chlorine is probably the biggest issue you'll run into.

I also use iodophor and I do not rinse after sanitizing. I just drain as much of the leftover solution out as possible.

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Old 02-03-2011, 08:32 PM   #5
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From most of my reading the small amount of chlorine usually used in municipal water supplies shouldn't really cause any off flavors. BUT if for some reason its higher than usual, like if they have just added chlorine, then it can cause a problem.

I personally just use a britta filter to remove any chlorine.

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Old 02-03-2011, 08:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigTexun View Post
Personally, I'd be more concerned about boiling a day in advance. When you heat your water, you lose all the chlorine. As it cools over those 24 hours, you risk an infection since you'll not have any free chlorine to kill whatever bugs happen to go swimming.
Well I did store it in sealed sanitised fermenter and put it in fridge to chill so I don't think that's an issue. But it's a considerable amount of prep work plus energy usage so that's why I'm trying to figure out if I'm running any serious risks by just using the water straight from the tap.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:42 PM   #7
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I always topped off my extract and partial mash brews with tap water after the boil. Never had any sanitation problems or off flavors that I would attribute to that. Of course I live in NYC and the water is considered pretty good.

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Old 02-03-2011, 08:46 PM   #8
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The tap water here tastes like ****e so I spend $6.00 per batch and use bottle spring water. I use tap water for mixing Star San but I wouldn't even try brewing with it here.

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Old 02-03-2011, 08:48 PM   #9
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Used tap water to top off my first brew, no problems here and tastes fine. Also used tap in my current two running brews.


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Old 02-03-2011, 08:49 PM   #10
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I use tap water all the time. Never had a problem with off flavors. Work good for me.



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