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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Chillers and Stir Plates > Running hot wort through an immersion coil in cold water to cool ?
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:23 PM   #11
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I was trying to be "positive".

I tried to use my heat-exchange coil twice. Now it sits on a shelf in my garage with dents and kinks it didn't have when I first made it...


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Old 10-17-2013, 10:27 PM   #12
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Ultimately, you're going to probably be happier with a standard immersion chiller that you can hook up to your kitchen sink. You boil the chiller IN the wort for the last few minutes of the boil so it is sterilized.
Thanks for all the quick replies guys. I currently do use an immersion chiller now and add it at the 10-15 minute mark so I know how that all works. More then anything I was just trying to get away from using soooo much water. I can also understand that I would probably have to have the wort recirculate a few times if I did use my method above.. killing more time. My ground water is really cold so maybe i'll just end up giving the CFC a try and working out a way to recirculate the water down the road.


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Old 10-17-2013, 10:28 PM   #13
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The heat-exchange chiller is no easier to clean than a counterflow chiller. In fact it's exactly the same. Pump boiling water through it for 10 or 15 minutes at minimum and then pump some sanitizer through it. And that really ought to be done before and after using it.

Hence my 'love hate' relationship with my CFC. I'm thrilled that the wort comes out ready to pitch pretty much as fast as I can pump it from my BK.

I'm not thrilled about firing up my HLT again, getting to boiling and purging the entire CFC before and after I use it.
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Old 10-17-2013, 11:19 PM   #14
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I'm not thrilled about firing up my HLT again, getting to boiling and purging the entire CFC before and after I use it.
I love my CFC!

I recirculate the last 15 minutes of the boil with it, and then when the boil is over, I turn on the water. The CFC is sanitized, the wort is clear and cooled, and then to clear, I run the cleaner through it when I clean the boil kettle. I was considering a plate chiller a few years ago, but the CFC works so well for me that I'm not going to change. Of course, I have very cold tap water so it chills effectively.

It does use quite a bit of water. I save the first 10 gallons or so of the hottest water, to use for cleaning and rinsing and for the washing machine, but the rest goes down the drain oftentimes.
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Old 10-18-2013, 01:02 AM   #15
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I tried this once.

Once.

It took 42 pounds of ice to chill 5 gallons of wort from boiling to 70 degrees this way.

I wouldn't recommend it. A wort chiller is a great pre-chiller for a CFC, though!
Agreed. Even though I threw it out there for OP's consumption, I only did it "once" too.
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:19 PM   #16
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Lolo...
If water usage is what's got ya down on the IC, here's how I cut my water usage WAY back.
1) Between 200-170 I let it flow at a medium rate through the chiller and catch the water for cleaning purposes on the other end.
2)At 170 I dial the flow back, this will slow your cooling time slightly.....but standby I speed it back up at the end. When the flow coming out the end of the discharge hose is tolerable, I start using that water to water the plants. I'm usually about 10G of water into it at this point.
3) At 120F I hook my IC up to a bucket of ice water with a cheap (and I mean cheap, it was $15 at Orchard Supply Hardware) pond pump and a barbed water hose female connection at the outflow. That chills it to pitch temp in no time....I use up to 20lbs of ice if I'm not conserving ice this way, but I save a ton of water. I have done this successfully with 10lbs of ice though and your tap water is colder then mine, so you probably could too. Altogether I figure I use about 15G of tap water to cool as opposed to the 25-30 I used to use when just flowing tap water through the IC the whole time. I also cool considerably faster this way as most of the time you'll see a real slowdown in temperature change as you go below 120 and try to get it down to pitch temp. Since you have a CFC at this point, you could use the pond pump to prime the CFC with ice water and it will work even better.

Using the extra coil you have as a prechiller is also something I've tried and it helps the water usage some..but not as much as the pond pump method in my experience.

Hope this helps. I too struggle with the amount of water wasted by an IC, especially living where I live...water is a scarce resource.

Edit: one important piece that I left out. I use my brew pump to continue moving the wort in the kettle around the IC the whole time, and I manually agitate the ice water in the bucket (when I've moved to the pond pump) as well. Both of these things speeds cooling, and the brew pump recirculating helps save water/speed cooling when you're using tap water.
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:51 PM   #17
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I have a brew buddy that starts his cooling process with rainwater from his rain barrels, before switching over to ice water to do the final chill.

Has 2 55 gallon drums laying horizontally and slightly elevated, they are hooked up in series, and a 150 or so gallon horse watering trough, all equipped with hose bibs to allow attachment of his pump inlet.

Amazing how much water you can collect from the roof of a house!

He uses a CFC for cooldown.
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:04 PM   #18
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I put a valve on my immersion chiller. Like under your kitchen sink or toilet and turn the flow down to where I feel the heat (hot) coming from the exit side and kind of throttle the water that way and it works great for me I don't want cold water blasting through so I control it to the point where I can feel the heat coming out!
Try it you'll like it!
One more edit
I didn't like putting the chiller into the wort for the last ten mins because it spit up water that was still in it so now I just soak it in sanitizer with the other things in a 5 gal bucket.
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:06 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by joesmink View Post
I put a valve on my immersion chiller. Like under your kitchen sink or toilet and turn the flow down to where I feel the heat (hot) coming from the exit side and kind of throttle the water that way and it works great for me I don't want cold water blasting through so I control it to the point where I can feel the heat coming out!
Try it you'll like it!
I will try this.. Usually I just whirlpool crank on the water and start doing other things. Thanks

Edit: I do use some water for clean-up for the mash tun and then I typically like to spray the outside of the kettle to cool it down also.
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:12 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by MuddyCreek View Post
I was trying to be "positive".

I tried to use my heat-exchange coil twice. Now it sits on a shelf in my garage with dents and kinks it didn't have when I first made it...
There, I FIXED IT!


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