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Old 08-29-2009, 02:03 AM   #1
May 2008
Posts: 28

Just got my water chemistry report in my new house. I haven't brewed here yet so any tips on the report and how to correct would be appreciated. I brew all styles and all grain. So what would be adjusted for pale ales all the way to stouts. I'm just getting into adjusting the water and palmers spreadsheet is making me crosseyed right now.

ph 8.1
sodium 22 ppm
potassium 1 ppm
calcium 25 ppm
magnesium 6 ppm
total hardness CaC03 88ppm
sulfate 6 ppm
chloride 36 ppm
carbonate CO3 3 ppm
bicarbonate HCO3 76 ppm
total alkalinity CaCo3 67


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Old 08-29-2009, 02:41 AM   #2
Jul 2008
Posts: 161
Liked 14 Times on 9 Posts

Welcome to the water confusion...check out the Brewing Science section for a bunch of water related topics.

As for your water? i'm trying to figure out mine as we speak! LOL

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Old 08-29-2009, 02:42 AM   #3
Jun 2008
Henrico, VA
Posts: 259
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

It looks like you've got a water profile that should be relatively easy to work with. Should be able to brew just about anything other than pilsners and other extremely pale beers without dillution. You will however need to get a hold of some gypsum and CaCO3. Mainly you're just going to want to add these two salts (based on that spreadsheet) to keep your alkalinity in line with the alkalinity needed for the target color of your recipe. Also, try to keep an eye on your chloride to sulfate ratio. On the spreadsheet your water probably says malty or very malty as it is. The gypsum will increase your calcium(make sure this gets to at least 50), alkalinity and your sulfate. Use it to get your calcium and alkalinity up at first, but switch to CaCO3 when you have your chloride:sulfate where you want it. (Bitter, malty, balanced). Once you've figured out what to add to your mash (not the mash in water) adjust the target volume to your sparge water, figure out what salts you need to match your mash water and add those salts to the boil. The spreadsheet is tricky at first, but you'll get the hang of it.

You should also listen to the water series on brewstrong.

Good Luck

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Old 08-29-2009, 01:40 PM   #4
Be good to your yeast...
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Jun 2008
Pflugerville, Texas
Posts: 5,447
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I think the last poster meant CaCl2 (calcium chloride, aka halide).

For hoppy beers I adjust pH per Palmer's spreadsheet ( to grab a copy) using gypsum, and calcium chloride for malty beers. The hardness of your water is fine for brewing any style other than a pilsner or light lager. It would even work for a Wit or a Kolsch, and I have used water of similar hardness for a blonde ale with good results following the spreadsheet.

CaCO3 is chalk, I have only needed to use it when brewing an Imperial Stout to increase alkalinity because I had so many roast malts in there that the pH would have been too LOW otherwise.
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Old 08-31-2009, 11:35 PM   #5
Dec 2008
Sunnyvale, CA
Posts: 279
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts

Brewing Water Chemistry Calculator | Brewer's Friend

Sulphate : Chloride ratio highly malty
Alkalinity and SRM good for amber beer (50-150 ppm Alkalinity)
Estimated pH pH = 5.87, residual alkalinity = 40.64

For anything other than very malty amber beers there are two things you can do.

#1 Use mineral additions (gypsum, table salt, calcium chloride, baking soda) to increase the values if necessary.

#2 To reduce any values in your water profile the easiest thing to do it either mix a percentage of distilled or RO water with tap water, which will reduce your values by the same percentage. Or just start off with distilled/RO water and then add the necessary minerals to that.

With both of those methods in mind play with the Palmer spreadsheet or the link I pasted above to arrive at the right type of beer in terms of color and flavor.

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