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Old 02-13-2009, 07:56 PM   #1
Sep 2008
Posts: 260


I've been reading through archives and figured I would just post this question because there is so much info about this, I'm having trouble deciding the correct answer.

I'm batch sparging my all-grain brews in a 10 gallon rubbermaid MLT.

I'm confused on determining the temperature for my sparge water. I don't do a mash out, so I realize I need to heat the grist above 170 for sparging but how do I calculate the temp for this. Can I do this in beersmith??

I usually just guess and I add sparge water that is about 180. What is the easiest way to determine this because I'm sure if you do 2 or 3 batch sparges of different volumes, this would be a factor also, right?

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Old 02-13-2009, 09:51 PM   #2
double_e5's Avatar
Dec 2008
Kansas City
Posts: 900
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I don't try to get real precise with sparge water temp. I use a 10 gal. round cooler also and do two equal batch sparges. My first one I use ~185* water and the second ~175*

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Old 02-13-2009, 10:16 PM   #3
Dec 2008
Posts: 279
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Make a second cooler then you can adjust the temp in there before you add the sparge water + you can do a batch / fly hybrid. Your choice.

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Old 02-14-2009, 01:27 AM   #4
Oct 2008
Youngstown, OH
Posts: 114

You can set up "My Equipment" in Brew Smith. Pick your mash tun and set the starting temp. I preheat so I guesstimate my Tun temp to be 170deg f.
When you set up your recipe choose my equipment, select "adjust temp for equipment" and pick your target temps and volumes for your Mash in, Mash out and sparges.
I set up for a 154deg Mash In, 168deg Mash Out, and 170deg sparges. Brew Smith automatically calculates the strike, mash out and sparge water temps for you.

I am still tweaking my brew house procedures but my last AG came out at 78% efficient. I saw a boost in efficiency when I stopped trying to calculate my sparges for 7gal of wort and just used 2qts/lb grain and adjusted my boil time to end up with 5.5 gal wort.

Volume of water/lb of grain is critical for mash in and sparges but, as I understand it, immediately raising the mash temp to 170 is less critical when batch sparging as the wort is run off much quicker compared to a lauter sparge.

I still mash out close to 170 "just because" but I also drain my mash out directly to my boil kettle and start heating immediately. Probably redundant overkill but I am still experimenting.

Your sparges should be of equal volumes.

I am certainly NOT an expert at this. If any one sees any glaring mis-information here please notify me and the OP.
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Old 02-14-2009, 11:54 AM   #5
Jan 2009
Lincoln Park, MI
Posts: 299
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I don't use beersmith, but I suspect it's the same as promash. Calculating the sparge water (for batch spargers) is the same as calculating the strike water. The only difference is that instead of grain being ~68F, it's close to whatever your mash temp was. The volume will be a little less because the grain will retain some water, but it's not a real issue.

When you make your sparge water 180, what temp does your mash get to? Honestly I don't think it really matters. Raising the mash to 170 does not instantly stop all of the enzymatic activity. It takes heat and time to stop them, so the benefit is negligible there. Assuming you aren't having any problems lautering, there isn't much benefit there either.

When I fly sparge, regardless of the temp of the sparge water, it takes FOREVER to significantly raise the temp of the mash. If I mesh at 154, the temp never gets close to 168 during an hour sparge. At a commercial level, where you are draining hundreds or thousands of gallons of wort, it may be more important. IMO, at a homebrew level it's fun thing to try, but ultimately nothing to worry about (unless you are trying to create a challenge by hitting your numbers).

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