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Old 06-14-2008, 04:21 AM   #1
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Default The perfect HLT

Recently I waited for my water to heat and got to thinking I could create a better HLT.

I would like my water to be at temperature just before brew time. I get up early to make beer to avoid the heat of the day. I was thinking of a natural gas water heater (HLT) that would maintain 175F to 180F. The problem is that none of the water heaters I have seen would be able to be set that high (safety?). This hot water would be great for cleaning my kegs too. I want to wash and rinse in the inverted position. If any of you have knowledge of doing this I would really be interested.


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Old 06-14-2008, 09:00 AM   #2
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Sorry I don't have any MLT advice, but my water heater puts out such hot water (140 degrees) it's almost at mash temp right out of the tap. I know a lot of people just use cold water then heat it up but I use the hot water out of the tap instead.

What about some kind of PID? Isn't there a PID thread around here somewhere?


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Old 06-14-2008, 02:24 PM   #3
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An "on demand" water heater could be an option. But you might run into the same temperature limitations.
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Old 06-14-2008, 03:14 PM   #4
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You'd just have to tweak the thermostat a little. None of them will generate that kind of temperature with the stock thermostat.
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Old 06-14-2008, 04:39 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage View Post
You'd just have to tweak the thermostat a little. None of them will generate that kind of temperature with the stock thermostat.
I think that there are commercial models that can do this and I have been trying to contact MFG's about this type of water heater. It would really be nice to have hot water for brewing that is always at 180 F because you could start brewing right away, always have sparge water not to mention cleaning kegs and CIP conical fermenters. I will let you know what I find.
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Fermentor 1: Bill's House Ale II, Fermentor 2: German Helles, Fermentor 3: Bill's Schworzbier (Black Bier)
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:24 AM   #6
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That would be pretty flippin' sweet but I gotta say.......my water heater puts out water in the 140-5* range and only takes maybe 3min to heat up to mash temps...only a couple more for sparge temps. And for cleaning....145* water is till pretty dang hot....

BUT, if you find it do it
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:42 AM   #7
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Here's a thought... commercial (e.g., restaurant) heat sanitizing dishwashers have a "boost" heater in them to heat water that maintains a minimum of 180dF. Get ahold of one of these "boosters", do a little DIY work, and you've got your hot water!
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:49 AM   #8
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Just make a heatstick, connect it to a temperature controller, and drop it in the HLT you already have. You could make a cage around it to prevent it from hitting the plastic (if its a cooler) but that's all you'd need.

The most important thing is that they must always be submerged when they are plugged in so you would have to keep that in mind. I have one that I use in almost every aspect of my brewing (I'm still extract +PM though) and I LOVE it.

http://www.cedarcreeknetworks.com/heatstick.htm
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:12 PM   #9
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There is also a few threads on a DIY instant water supply for both gas/propane and electric.

I'm looking at electric for when my service is upgraded to 200amp because I feel it is a more compact and controllable system. I don't really want to get into flow control if I don't have to. I think I can get by with manual trial and error on the flow and then just modulating the element via PID love controller to get the output temp I need. IIRC, the consensus was that a 4500watt element could probably do 1 quart per minute at 100ºF rise (170F sparge temp from 70F tap input). I find this kind of system more desirable than holding a bunch of water at temp for any length of time. This would also allow me to use city water pressure to fly sparge on a single pump, single tier system. Seems like butta to me.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:54 PM   #10
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Sounds great Bobby and all the rest of you who commented on the electric elements. The elements sound great for brewing and heating a sump for washing kegs but I still want to make cleaning the kegs and conical with water that is under pressure (hot water heater) and very hot so to sanitize (I will use Starsan to finish the process). I want to use a pump with a heated sump and spray ball to clean the kegs (inverted with Cascade) as it is the easy cleaning solution. The 27 gallon conical can be (CIP) hand scrubed and then rinsed with hot water. This has to be way easier than having to carry around hot water in buckets and pouring it in the vessels to be cleaned.


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Fermentor 1: Bill's House Ale II, Fermentor 2: German Helles, Fermentor 3: Bill's Schworzbier (Black Bier)
Tap 1: Bill's House Ale II, Tap 2: German Hefewizen, Tap 3: Nut Brown Ale
Future Brews: Stone IPA Clone, Blonde Ale, Budvar Clone, Newcastle Clone
New toy: Blichmann 27 gallon fermentor


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