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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > How big a burner do I need for a full boil?
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Old 03-31-2008, 03:52 PM   #1
zacster
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Default How big a burner do I need for a full boil?

I've been looking at buying a large pot, but I'm not sure the stove will handle it well, even though it has high output burners. It takes a long time for the smaller pot I use now to boil with 2g of water + extract.

Do you use your stovetop for full boils? How many BTUs does a burner need to put out to do 5-6 gallons of liquid?

And how much is it costing us to do this anyway? My gas bills are high enough.


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Old 03-31-2008, 04:05 PM   #2
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Get yourself a turkey fryer rig at Lowe's / HD / etc...

They work great as full boil setups for 5 gallon batches.
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Old 03-31-2008, 05:09 PM   #3
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I think you'll have trouble with full boils, although some people split the batches into two pots. I've got a 10,000 BTU camp stove & it's fine for keeping sparge water hot, but not for boiling it.
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Old 03-31-2008, 06:12 PM   #4
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I tried to do a full boil on my stove and literally broke the burner with the weight of the pot, 6 gallons of water and extract... It did eventually boil but it took WAY too long to get there..

I use the sears kit for $50 here

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...?keyword=frier

Works perfect...
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Old 03-31-2008, 06:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zacster
I've been looking at buying a large pot, but I'm not sure the stove will handle it well, even though it has high output burners. It takes a long time for the smaller pot I use now to boil with 2g of water + extract.

Do you use your stovetop for full boils? How many BTUs does a burner need to put out to do 5-6 gallons of liquid?

And how much is it costing us to do this anyway? My gas bills are high enough.
do you live in a state with a Meijer?
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Old 03-31-2008, 06:25 PM   #6
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This shows why you need to poke around sometimes. I've seen turkey fryers mentioned and never gave it a thought about what they were used for, it just sounded like something I didn't want to deal with.

I'll have to look the next time I'm at Lowes or HD. I was there yesterday to get propane tank exchanges. Are they in the area with the grills usually? And since I asked about the gas usage, how much propane does it take to do a full boil?
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:05 PM   #7
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+1 on the turkey fryer kit!

I bought one at Home Depot (link) for $37.92 on special and it came with a 30qt(7.5g) aluminum pot. The burner included heats a full boil up fast...maybe 20 mins at most on full blast. As far as the price of gas, my propane tank refill was $23 + tax. I've done 2 batches and used the same gas for BBQ 3 times and I still have more than 1/2 of the tank left. I read on here someone got between 5-7 batches out of theirs. Just three things to keep in mind with the fryer kits with an aluminum pot:

1. Boil a full pot of water for 30m in your new aluminum pot before using it for you actual brewing water. This builds up an oxidation layer on the aluminum which will remove possible "tinny" taste from your beer. Alternately, put the pot in the oven @ 350F for 10 minutes.

2. My fryer burner took a bit of tuning to get the fuel/air mixture right. Light it before hand and adjust the air intake so that you can only see blue flame. This will give you the hottest flame, which is more efficient on gas.

3. If you have a lot of evaporation, plan to add maybe .5g or so at the end of the boil. If you put too much in at first (like I did with my last batch), then you have to really babysit the kettle and watch for boilovers.

I've really enjoyed outside brewing, and the burner is great. Go for it!
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zacster
Are they in the area with the grills usually? And since I asked about the gas usage, how much propane does it take to do a full boil?
Yes...go to the grill / outdoor section.
I can get 5-6 10 gallon boil batches out of a single tank.

If you get to doing brews on a regular basis, pick up a spare. Nothing worse than runing out half way through...
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Old 04-01-2008, 02:04 AM   #9
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I always have a spare for the grill. That doesn't mean that I think to fill the empty before I empty the second one.
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Old 04-01-2008, 03:40 AM   #10
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FWIW an aluminum pot will boil easier than stainless. My first batch I did 2- 2.5 gallon batches and I had to have the burners on a large commercial stove on high to keep the boil going. I just recently popped an aluminum 32qt pot on the same stove with 6 gallons of water and I had full boil going in under 45 minutes. Much easier with the aluminum.


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