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Old 03-30-2013, 03:46 AM   #1
erikrocks
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Default Need a cold water pump...

Background info:
I currently brew 15 gallon batches on an all electric system. I have a shallow well at my house, so cooling 15 gallons through my Therminator isn't doable with my tapwater. As a result, I've configured the system below. One blue barrel holds the cooling water and one is empty. I currently use a Chugger pump to pump water from one barrel to my Therminator 12 feet away and the hot water is then returned to the 2nd barrel to be used during the next brew day as cooling water.

My problem is the Chugger pump is not powerful enough to pump water 12 feet through the plate chiller. It can really only cool down to--at best--75 degrees. The water itself is around 48 degrees.

Can anyone suggest a powerful--yet affordable--inline pump I can use for this situation? It obviously doesn't have to be food safe or high temperature.



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Old 03-30-2013, 05:09 AM   #2
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Guess it depends on what your definition of "affordable" is. I use this http://www.harborfreight.com/1-12-ho...ing-69303.html for boosting water pressure to clean air conditioner coils in areas with extremely low water pressure. It works great, only runs on demand, would be super simple to add inline to your existing system, and is reasonably priced as far as pumps go.... I'm sure I'll get a bunch of people jaw'n on Harbor Freight quality, but I've been using the same pump for 2 years now in less than ideal conditions, and it's still going strong.


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Old 03-30-2013, 12:53 PM   #3
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Thanks for the link, Red. I had forgotten about HArbor Freight. It's not necessarily out of my price range, but what about THIS one? The only drawbacks I can see is it uses brushes and is cast iron instead of stainless, but as long as I drain the water after each use, it should be OK I would think.
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Old 03-30-2013, 08:07 PM   #4
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Question for the OP. I have been considering a similar setup, do you use any additives to the water to keep it from getting funky while being stored?
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bucfanmike View Post
Question for the OP. I have been considering a similar setup, do you use any additives to the water to keep it from getting funky while being stored?
I don't. The water will only be used through my plate chiller, but I also use it for cleaning the system after each session. I usually just make sure one of the barrels is full a day or so before brewday. If it's not, I'll add water.

At some point this summer, I'm going to plumb my water softener discharge water into the barrels. Then I'll really be at zero waste.
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Old 03-31-2013, 02:57 AM   #6
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I don't know if I would use softner discharge water to clean with. Its going to be loaded with all the stuff that the softner has been filtering out plus excess salt from the brine rinse.
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Old 03-31-2013, 03:53 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erikrocks View Post
Thanks for the link, Red. I had forgotten about HArbor Freight. It's not necessarily out of my price range, but what about THIS one? The only drawbacks I can see is it uses brushes and is cast iron instead of stainless, but as long as I drain the water after each use, it should be OK I would think.
Looks ideal! As long as the brushes are cheap and are easy to find, I would think it would be a big deal (definitely check before you buy). Should be able to just use this instead of the Chugger, which gives you an extra pump you can use in your brew process. Sounds like a win win!
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chrisl77 View Post
I don't know if I would use softner discharge water to clean with. Its going to be loaded with all the stuff that the softner has been filtering out plus excess salt from the brine rinse.
Good point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 501irishred
Looks ideal! As long as the brushes are cheap and are easy to find, I would think it would be a big deal (definitely check before you buy). Should be able to just use this instead of the Chugger, which gives you an extra pump you can use in your brew process. Sounds like a win win!
Yup. I picked one up at Harbor Freight yesterday and I'll looking forward to testing t out before brewday on Tuesday...I'll report back.
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Old 04-04-2013, 01:49 AM   #9
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So just to let people know...the Harbor Freight pump works great! I threw a ball valve on the out port and ended up throttling back pretty significantly during the chill. I'm currently going through ~150 gallons of water for a 16 gallon batch. As you can see from my photo, I have 2 barrels--one that starts the brew day full and one that starts the brew day empty. I pump the full barrel through the plate chiller and into the empty barrel. On that first pass, I can get 1/3 of a 16 gallon batch down to 58 degrees! I then took that same (yet heated) water and run it through again. The temperature went up to 62. I then made a third pass, and the temperature of 16 gallons of wort in my Brewhemoth conical was ~66. I'm looking to get my hands on a few more barrels--it would be nice to have 3 full and three empty, so I could easily begin fermentation at 62 or so when I need to .


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