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Old 09-05-2012, 02:58 AM   #1
gjabball
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Default New to water chemistry and need help!!!!

Where do I start with this water profile?

Starting Water (ppm):
Ca: 145
Mg: 38.5
Na: 135
Cl: 300
SO4: 165
CaCO3: 520

I was using the EZ water calculator spreadsheet but don't know where to start.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?
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Old 09-05-2012, 03:29 AM   #2
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I don't wish to be discouraging but the best answer is to throw it away and find another source of water. There are things you could do to get the alkalinity down but they are not for beginners. When I lived in LA we didn't drink that water and I wouldn't brew with it either. Obtain RO or otherwise deionized water and brew with that. The Primer will give you an idea as to how to get started and you can move on to one of the spreadsheets from there.
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Old 09-05-2012, 03:32 AM   #3
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Yeah, that water is horrible. Spend a few bucks on RO water and you'll be glad you did.
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Old 09-05-2012, 03:35 AM   #4
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Do I just buy distilled water or get an RO filter? Any good reading on how to treat RO water?

Thanks both of you for your quick responses!
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Old 09-05-2012, 04:03 AM   #5
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Get RO water from the machine at the grocery store and read AJ's primer (which he told you about already ) at the top of the brew science forum.
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Old 09-05-2012, 04:15 AM   #6
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You can either buy RO water or install and RO unit but if you do you should also install a water softener as if you don't the membrane will probably crud up pretty quickly with chalk. Of course you can buy quite a few replacement cartridges for the cost of a water softener but I would think you'd want a water softener for the sake of the dish washer, clothes washer, showers etc.
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Old 09-05-2012, 04:36 AM   #7
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Thanks for the help. I listened to brew strong's 4 water podcasts the other day and want to learn how to adjust for different types of beer.
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Old 09-06-2012, 04:02 AM   #8
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So I read the primer and wanted to make sure I understand it correctly. If I am making a pumpkin ale, I would buy RO water. Then add 1 tsp of calcium chloride dihydrate and 2% grist. If I consider this a british beer then add an additional 1 tsp of Calcium chloride and 1 tsp of gypsum. Is this all into the mash? Then sparge with RO water. Do I need to adjust for the final volume of water in the brew kettle? Does this all sound right?

Thanks for helping me out.
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Old 09-06-2012, 12:53 PM   #9
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One tsp CaCl2 (whatever the LHBS sells which is probably a mixture of the dihyrate, monohydrate and anhydride) per 5 gallons of water. 2% of the grist should be sauermalz (acidulated malt). This is a recommended starting point i.e. you should brew the beer this way the first time. The second time, if you are interested in a more British quality, add some gypsum but do gradually e.g. a half tsp/5 gal in the second brew etc.. You can be roughly guided as to how much to use by trying some gypsum added directly to the first beer to taste.

The salts go into the water. The sauermalz goes into the grist.
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Old 09-06-2012, 01:45 PM   #10
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One more question. The salts go into the water and the grain goes into the grist but Palmer was saying you need to account for the difference between your mash water and your final preboil volume. Do I need to adjust anything in my boil kettle after I for sparge for the extra untreated water?
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