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Old 01-09-2013, 05:28 PM   #1
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I'm looking into possible equipment upgrades and I'm interested in a pump to do the recirculating wort chilling that Jamil outlines here: http://www.mrmalty.com/chiller.php

I started researching how to cool my wort quicker (takes me about 30-40 minutes to chill 5 gal or so to pitching temps right now with my immersion chiller) and that seems to be the most effective way.

Other than the obvious of cooling quicker, will I notice quality/taste/clarity differences in my brew? My novice beer tasting palate already tells me my beer tastes great and I'm not really interested in accumulating extra gear just to have extra gear.

Any thoughts or experiences with before/after benefits for cooling/whirlpooling?

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Old 01-09-2013, 05:39 PM   #2
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I use a pump to recric while my Immersion chiller is operating...it cools faster.

I also use the same pump to whirlpool my cooled wort for about 10 min, then let it settle for 30 min, then drain/rack into the fermentor...works great!!

My rig uses 2 pumps, a March and a Chugger.

I also have a 3rd transfer pump (self-priming) that I use for all my transfers/racking (beer and wine)...no siphoning for me. These can only handle temps to 120F

I would never give up my pumps!!
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:44 PM   #3
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I do not use any pumps and designed a system to use gravity from HLT thru cooling. The flow through chiller works great and cools 5 3/4 gallons of wort in 10 minutes using 20 lbs of ice, eight, 64 ounce juice bottles of ice and 2 gallons of water. I batch sparge which works great for me. I get 78% to 82% efficiency regularly. My beer is great, excellent I am told by some others tell me it is better than the beer at the local brewpub (not my words). I am not sure the using pumps or recirculating would improve the flavor of the beer it could I don't know cause I never tried. Gravity works good me, it is simple and I understand it, pumps I do not understand they are to confusing at least to me.
If you look at my build thread you will see my flow through chiller, very simple and effective.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:46 PM   #4
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It's about to get real important as I am moving to a new brewing setup in which I'm going to recirculate the wort to maintain mash temp on an 2.5 gallon electrical BIAB system. Also moving away from gravity feeding my plate chiller so I'd say the pump is going to come in handy.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:09 PM   #5
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The pump was probably the best investment in my eBIAB. I use it to recirculate water while heating it up to strike temps, the wort during mash and during cooling. It makes a huge difference in hitting and holding temperature during mash, and makes chilling through my counterflow chiller so much easier.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voltin View Post
The pump was probably the best investment in my eBIAB. I use it to recirculate water while heating it up to strike temps, the wort during mash and during cooling. It makes a huge difference in hitting and holding temperature during mash, and makes chilling through my counterflow chiller so much easier.
Do you recirculate the entire time you're heating? Or just towards the end to make sure you have consistency throughout? Have you taken notes on the difference? Just curious because it sounds like we are doing something similar and I hadn't thought I would run it while heating.
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inhousebrew

Do you recirculate the entire time you're heating? Or just towards the end to make sure you have consistency throughout? Have you taken notes on the difference? Just curious because it sounds like we are doing something similar and I hadn't thought I would run it while heating.
I run it continuously while heating to make sure my PID is reading an accurate temperature. I found it helps to alleviate under/over shooting by eliminating striation. I typically do other things while my strike water is heating so I set my pid and come back when the buzzer sounds. Same for the mash, the pump keeps the pid reading true and prevents overshooting.
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:25 PM   #8
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Very important. I was using a IC, took forever to cool wort. Bought a pump to whirlpool chill, still took an eternity to cool wort.

Bought a plate chiller, no that's the ticket. less than 10 minutes to chill down to ale pitching temps, this time of year lager temps probably would be possible.

Plus with BIAB I recalculate durring the entire mash.

Time is very important to me, as I have so little. So anything that can safely speed up the brew day is appreciated.

Chris

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Old 01-09-2013, 07:35 PM   #9
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My pump is very important to my setup - I use a counter flow chiller. I tried using it without a pump once, and I just could not get a decent flow through it. With a pump, on the other hand, it's great. The pump also allows me to circulate boiling wort through the chiller for the last 15 minutes of my boil in order to sanitize the chiller, and I use the pump to circulate oxiclean and rinse water through my system at the end of the brew day to clean everything out.

Later this year I plan to add a RIMS tube to my mash tun, at which point I really won't be able to do without the pump!

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Old 01-09-2013, 08:14 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone.

I didn't even think of using the pump to recirculate while mashing (I do BIAB). Do you need a sparge arm for this or do you guys just run the hose onto the top of the grain bed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by goybar View Post
Very important. I was using a IC, took forever to cool wort. Bought a pump to whirlpool chill, still took an eternity to cool wort.
Really, even after getting the pump to whirlpool chill it still took a long time? How did you have it set up?

I took temperature differences between inside of my immersion chiller and near the edge of my kettle while cooling and it was as much as 5 degrees F higher on the outer edge. I'd think if you're mixing it all together you'd be getting a much more consistent temp throughout the kettle.
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