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Old 01-13-2010, 02:05 PM   #21
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You could always just top off with distilled water. That would be more sterile than straight tap water. Its an added cost, and I think tap water would be fine though.



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Old 01-13-2010, 03:41 PM   #22
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Drinking water, like every other substance, contains small amounts of bacteria. Most of these bacteria are common ones and they are generally not harmful.

http://www.lenntech.com/applications/drinking/faq/drinking-water-faq.htm

Harmful to humans and beer loving are two different things. Would you use a hot water rinse after washing your fermentor and call it done? It will have far less water left over than topping off is going to add. If you have no solids left in the fermenter (or bottle) then this would be all that is needed. I'll stick with sanitize EVERYTHING that comes in contact post boil myself.



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Old 01-13-2010, 03:45 PM   #23
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If I don't use bottled, I boil every bit of water that I use for brewing. Top up water, mash and sparge water, everything. It's not hard to do, doesn't take much time and even if the water coming into the house is fine, I don't know if the cat licked the faucet 10 minutes before I started brewing.

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Old 01-13-2010, 03:55 PM   #24
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My tap water has been used in 45+ brews. Not 1 problem.

I did have 1 infected batch from not thoroughly sanitizing.

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Old 01-13-2010, 03:55 PM   #25
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Well Scott,
I hope we all made this is a clear as mud for you. Obviously, there is no consensus here. I've never contaminated any of my brew with top up water. None of my brewing friends have contaminated their brews from top up water. If I were still doing partial mashes on the stove, I would STILL be topping up right from the tap. Nevertheless, the choice is yours. Looks like the boil and/or distill folks are not having a problem either...so you'll have to go with your gut on this one.

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Old 01-13-2010, 07:12 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermit View Post
Actually, beer was made because they didn't understand sanitation and boiling it and adding hops meant people didn't get sick like they did from the unboiled water.
Fermentation was the "sanitizer" that made the water drinkable. Checkout Ancient Sumerian brewing, no boiling involved. Hops weren't introduced until the 16th century.

Six of one, half dozen of another.
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Old 01-13-2010, 10:47 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hermit View Post
Bacteria doesn't multiply as well in treated water as it does in nice sweet sugar water, like wort. When testing water for bacteria count the first thing the water company does is sterilize the tap so that isn't included in the count. At least that is what I have seen them do on TV.
I boil my water and top up a few liters as required, no problems.
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Old 01-13-2010, 10:48 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rushis View Post
Fermentation was the "sanitizer" that made the water drinkable. Checkout Ancient Sumerian brewing, no boiling involved. Hops weren't introduced until the 16th century.

Six of one, half dozen of another.
They probably stirred the brew with a stick back then
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:37 AM   #29
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We have a superb source of local spring water here in southeastern Michigan, called Absopure. I've been using their water in all my brews and each has turned out very well. I always top off from a freshly-opened 5 gallon jug of Absopure spring water. If their jugs are clean enough to accept shelf storage for 2 years, they're clean enough to add to my beer!

No bacteria problems thus far.

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Old 01-14-2010, 01:01 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h4rdluck View Post
I dunno .. im on like brew 20 so far and strictly use tap water. I'm on city water though. Some of my friends are on well water....wouldn't use that stuff to brew thats for sure.
I've used well water for my entire homebrewing career. You couldn't pay me to use water from the municipal supply.

Oh, and don't bother boiling your top-off water. Dump it in, good and loud so it oxygenates, pitch your yeast, and have a beer.


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