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Old 03-24-2011, 02:22 AM   #1
Preluder
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Default How important is good water?

Hello,

My name is Justin, this is my first post so hello to all! Have been reading this site for a while now. Got alot of great tips and just have not posted yet as most of my questions have been answered by searching previous threads.

my question now is how important is the water i use? Do most of you use bottled water? I live in Northeast ohio. My city water I think is excellent, comes from a reservoir that does not allow fishing, boats or anything near the water (although some of us sneak out there to fish cause it amazing to fish there lol). I always drink from faucet water and the water taste great. I am on my second batch of beer which is a brewers best APA and have done cream ale and have an Imperial nut in secondaray, all brewers best kits from LHBS, And now have a DFH 60 clone in the secondary that was not made from a kit. Think I am rambling now. Anyways Im getting an off flavor, it is hard for me to describe. But have been thinking that it might be the water.

I do sanitize pretty well using a powder no rinse.

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:29 AM   #2
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Describe your brewing process if you can. Sounds like you're doing extract brewing. Generally, RO or distilled water is best when brewing from kits.

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:42 AM   #3
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Disagree with Wiezer on the distilled water comment. You aren't supposed to use distilled water for extract kits from what I understand. Bottled water or purified water is fine as there are some additives in it that you need when combining with an extract. If your water tastes good to you when you are drinking it straight from the tap, then it's okay to brew with. Now if you get into all-grain you'll need to know your water profile and get more specific with your batches. Describe the off-flavor?

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:47 AM   #4
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Since your water is from a reservoir it has most likely been treated with chlorine or chloramine, you want that out. Other than that I feel, just IMO, you are fine with your tap water if you think it tastes good, although I would probably filter it. Honestly I think RO and distilled leave beer a bit lifeless. Water is the majority of the ingredients in you beer, the base of what your beer is built on, it is very important IMO.

An off flavor can be caused by many things though.

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Old 03-24-2011, 03:02 AM   #5
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Water quality is critical. The good news is, if it tastes good when you drink it, then it's good to brew with...

Now, having said that, there are styles that are probably more suited to brew with your water. In other words, some styles will be better with your water than other styles.

If you're fairly new and make good beer, don't worry about it. If you're gaining experience and want to work on a new challenge, then learn about water reports and quality.

I doubt your off taste is from the water but probably from somewhere else in your process. What brand sanitizer do you use and do you use a cleaner first?

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Old 03-24-2011, 03:26 AM   #6
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i use the ld carlson cleaner and one step sanitizer.
Just cracked another one that sat for an extra two days before i put it in the fridge. Taste is not as bad, it is kinda sweet mabe just needs a bit longer, sat 2 weeks primary , 1 week secondary and bottle about alitte over two weeks now.

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Old 03-24-2011, 06:13 AM   #7
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Meander Reservoir, perhaps? Yes, that is great water. And a great name for your next brew! Meander Reserve. Sounds catchy. Don't get caught by the rangers!

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Old 03-24-2011, 06:19 AM   #8
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I had some bad off flavors from my first 3 brews that I can only attribute to my tap water. I switched to store bough water and my next brew was one of the best IPAs I've ever had

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Old 03-24-2011, 03:13 PM   #9
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jb, does your tap water have those flavors off the tap or do they only manifest when you brew with it?

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Old 03-24-2011, 04:21 PM   #10
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Saying that if your water tastes good to drink then its ok to brew with I am thinking is only true some of the time. Everywhere I move I think the water tastes bad at first but after a year or two of drinking it I start to like it. If this happens then the water may be bad but you may not know it since its what you are used to. I am in Findlay Ohio , and our city water comes from the local reservoir but is treated at some point and may contain trace amounts of chemicals as well as all the minerals and who knows what else from the Blanchard river. I have brewed 3 batches of beer so far which tasted ok except for this strong bitter aftertaste which was the same in all 3. Its not a hops or grain type of bitterness but something else , and its not enough to ruin the beer necessarily but since it was in all 3 I am thinking it has something to do with the water. There might be something in the water that is reacting with the ingredients or yeast or even the alcohol in the finished product that causes the flavor. Im definately gonna start using bottled water for now on when possible.

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