Can you add water after fermentation has begun? - Home Brew Forums
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Can you add water after fermentation has begun?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 10-24-2011, 08:42 PM   #1
Alellujah
Recipes 
 
Mar 2010
Davenport, Iowa
Posts: 18


I put this in another thread, but it wasn't getting any action, so I'm starting anew.

I brewed a barleywine last night that came out to 1.124, but only about 4 gallons of wort (with a layer of trub on the bottom). I've already pitched and fermentation looks strong and healthy.

That OG is way higher than what I wanted, and volume is about a gallon and 1/2 shy. So the question is, is it too late to top up with a gallon and 1/2 of boiled and cooled water? I know all my readings will be off, but I just want more volume at a lower OG.

Thanks in advance!



 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2011, 08:46 PM   #2
weirdboy
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Recipes 
 
May 2009
Los Angeles
Posts: 8,163
Liked 481 Times on 389 Posts


Well I have added other fermentables like simple syrup, molasses, etc. If I were going to add water I might do it at packaging time, though. That way, I can sample different dilutions to figure out what ratio I like best.



 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2011, 09:11 PM   #3
Rev2010
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
Rev2010's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jan 2011
Bayonne, NJ
Posts: 2,679
Liked 332 Times on 236 Posts


^^^ I'd probably do the same. When bottling or kegging time comes boil up the remainder volume you want with your priming sugar for 5-10 minutes then cool and put in the bottling bucket. Rack on top and give a gentle stir with a sanitized spoon and bottle. Unless there's a smarter way - anyone?


Rev.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2011, 09:23 PM   #4
Alellujah
Recipes 
 
Mar 2010
Davenport, Iowa
Posts: 18

Thanks for the ideas, guys.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2011, 04:05 AM   #5
Phil
Recipes 
 
Feb 2010
PNW
Posts: 10

Wouldn't there be an issue in putting that much oxygenated water into your fermented wort? I don't know how long a you would need to boil a gallon and a half of water to de-oxygenate it, but likely longer than your 5-minute flash-sterilize.

If it were me I'd think about adding sooner rather than later - get the benefits of oxygen when your yeast want it rather than risking stale beer later. Just a thought.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2011, 04:12 AM   #6
bolts
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Recipes 
 
Sep 2009
Portland, OR
Posts: 306
Liked 8 Times on 7 Posts


Somewhere in a book/article/podcast a while back talked about blending with carbonated water. Basically, fill a keg with how much water you want to blend in (no chlorine...), get it carbonated to the same pressure and top off with your beer. Not sure how you would do this post-fermentation without kegs.

Edit: I'm assuming that you should boil the water first to sterilize and deoxygenate.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2011, 04:32 AM   #7
kcpup
Recipes 
 
Aug 2009
Missouri
Posts: 269
Liked 5 Times on 4 Posts


Well I'd suggest adding distilled water to your beer. You don't have to boil...it's already ok. Just sanitize the outside container before pouring.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2011, 07:44 AM   #8
Rockape66
Recipes 
 
Jan 2011
Marysville, OH
Posts: 334
Liked 7 Times on 4 Posts


It is pretty easy to calculate this: Concentration1 x Volume1 = Concentration2 x Volume 2. Volume 2 = Concentration 1 x Volume 1 / Concentration 2. Volume 2 - Volume 1 = Volume to add. Boil your water for sanitation or use distilled/RO, don't worry about oxidation; its still early in fermentation. The yeast will use the oxygen without damage.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2011, 12:33 PM   #9
Alellujah
Recipes 
 
Mar 2010
Davenport, Iowa
Posts: 18

Thanks so much for all the input, everyone!
I think that what I would consider doing is adding extra water to my priming sugar and blending it in that way. However, I've decided to take my lumps and just ride it out. Lesson learned: More pre-boil water volume for this style and amount of hops used.



 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Is it okay to add more water during fermentation? Miclip All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 6 08-15-2011 01:51 PM
Add water after fermentation? mattmcl All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 2 11-14-2009 10:37 PM
Orange Cascade v2.0 Brewday has begun The Pol All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 109 07-06-2009 12:27 PM
So my brewday has begun... Willsellout All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 9 07-04-2007 04:37 PM
Brew day has begun..what a PITA! Willsellout All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 24 03-20-2007 02:14 AM


Forum Jump