Can you use ice

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hehawbrew

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I'm no expert, but I think it would water it down too much.

I've often wondered about those plastic/ reusable cubes. Let em soak in sanitizer first of course....
 

andrewtouron

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Put the ice around the bucket in a sink, add some water, and table salt to it. Is will be cooled to 75-80 degrees in no time flat. The salt will actually activate with the ice and get the water surrounding the wort, a heck of a lot colder a heck of a lot faster! Cheers
 

dmboiler

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I used ice in my first batch with no ill effects. I sanitized some clean tupperware and filled with boiled water. It ended up being about a gallon of water worth of ice (8 lbs). Tossed it in the wort, which was also sitting in an ice bath and had it cool within 15 minutes.

I wouldn't trust the bagged ice you can buy, or the stuff that comes out of my ice maker, for that matter.
 
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Now, let's suppose you are doing partial volume boils and adding chilled water to your fermenter after you chill your wort.
I suppose, if you know your volume to be added, it could be added as ice instead of water. As long as you are sure your ice source is good quality.
On the other hand, one of the benefits of chilling your wort before adding it to your fermenter, is to participate out the cold break material, and either whirlpool it or filter it out. If you are doing your chilling in the fermenter by adding ice, then your cold break is left in fermenter. Maybe not a big deal, but it would increase the amount of trub in the fermenter.
 
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I used ice in my first batch with no ill effects. I sanitized some clean tupperware and filled with boiled water. It ended up being about a gallon of water worth of ice (8 lbs). Tossed it in the wort, which was also sitting in an ice bath and had it cool within 15 minutes.

I wouldn't trust the bagged ice you can buy, or the stuff that comes out of my ice maker, for that matter.
To me, this looks like a good idea!
 

dmashl

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If you can afford about $30, make yourself a DIY wort chiller. 25 foot flexible copper tube, 10 foot vinyl tubing, and 4 hose clamps.
 

moscoeb

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I do partial boils. When I start to heat my water, I put three gal of distilled water in the freezer and cook as usual.
When I chill my wort, I chill it in the pot in a ice bath till it reaches 120-150 in about 10 min or less. I then dump as much of the almost frozen water into the pot as it will hold and it drops it instantly down to 70-80. I then put this in the fermenter and top off the rest of the way with the remainder chilled water till I reach 5 gal. I am always 60-70 when done.
Pitch the yeast and forget about it.
 

Travestian

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I do partial boils. When I start to heat my water, I put three gal of distilled water in the freezer and cook as usual.
When I chill my wort, I chill it in the pot in a ice bath till it reaches 120-150 in about 10 min or less. I then dump as much of the almost frozen water into the pot as it will hold and it drops it instantly down to 70-80. I then put this in the fermenter and top off the rest of the way with the remainder chilled water till I reach 5 gal. I am always 60-70 when done.
Pitch the yeast and forget about it.
Unfortunately partial boils don't exist with all grain :(
 

cooldood

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I do it all the time with no ill effect.

If you are doing extract and need make up water, why not?
 

freisste

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Travestian said:
Unfortunately partial boils don't exist with all grain :(
I just did one. Why not? Three gal water for 9lbs grain, sparged to about 3.5 gal for the boil. Then topped up about 2 gal into the fermenter.
 

tampa911

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My last brew day (2nd ever) I preboiled a gallon of water and put it in the freezer in sanitized containers. I did a partial boil (2.5 gallons) and after the brew, I took my pot and put it in an ice bath for 5 minutes or so and whirlpooled to add oxygen. I had a gallon and a half of pre-chilled water that I placed in the fridge a few days earlier. I shook the water jugs vigorously to oxygenate, poured them in my primary then poured the wort on top and added the gallon of ice.

The wort was too cold to melt the ice... My next brew day I will add the ice to the hot wort almost immedatly and repeat all of the other steps, but long story short if you are doing a partial boil ice is the best way to cool as long as you are sanitizing and using clean water.
 

freisste

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Ha. Great story. I recently made the same mistake on a lager. 24 hours later there was still a BIG chunk of ice in the fermenter. Live and learn.
 

moscoeb

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Travestian said:
Unfortunately partial boils don't exist with all grain :(
Yup, one of biggest reasons I haven't stepped up to biab or all grain.
Wort chiller and a big enough turkey fryer I can afford.
One of these days.
 

tampa911

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I am in FL so with full boils cooling is going to be a challenge even with a wort chiller due to our above average ground water temps. I have not measured but I would say 60 -70 degree tap water is not unusual even in "winter". I have a few ideas I am kicking around once I get to the point of full boils, but with partial boils a gallon of ice does the trick without flinching.
 

moscoeb

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tampa911 said:
I am in FL so with full boils cooling is going to be a challenge even with a wort chiller due to our above average ground water temps. I have not measured but I would say 60 -70 degree tap water is not unusual even in "winter". I have a few ideas I am kicking around once I get to the point of full boils, but with partial boils a gallon of ice does the trick without flinching.
Get/make two chillers. Put one in a tub of ice, then the second in your wort. Use it as a prechiller.
 

MisterClean

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Get/make two chillers. Put one in a tub of ice, then the second in your wort. Use it as a prechiller.
If you're just going to use a tub of ice anyway, what would be the advantage of using a chiller rather than just putting the pot directly in the tub? I understand the surface area would be greater, but is it really that much more efficient/quicker? And is it quick enough to justify the double cost?

I had thought about doing a double chiller myself, because like OP, my tap water just isn't that cold here in Texas. To me, the sink seems to work just fine and 60ish bucks could be better spent on more fermenters or kegs.


Buuut...just had the idea: What about making a jockey box, and using quick connects on the inlet and outlet, instead of a tap/faucet? Could use a picnic tap for slinging beer at parties and picnics, or use it as a pre-chiller when its wort cooling time? I may have to look into this...
 

moscoeb

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I was just gonna say to use it when you are away from the house and use it to chill draft beer when serving!
That's the real excuse to get it, the other is is just another use! :)
 

william_shakes_beer

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You can also freeze water in 2L soda bottles. Sanitize the outside of the bottles and drop them into the wort. No dilution required. Personally, I just cool to about 100F, then drop the wort into my fermenter and pop it in the ferm chamber for a while.
 

tampa911

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Sorry to hijack the thread but I am going to start playing around with a chiller on my next few partial boils. I am going to make a standard wort chiller. I have a big plastic "beer tub" that I fill with 20 lbs of ice and water on brew day to use as an ice bath for the pot. I have a transfer pump I use for my pond, so I will fill a bucket with cool tap water, drop the brew pot in the ice bath and run a few gallons of regular water through the chiller to drop from boiling temps. I will then move the intake hose to the ice water from the ice bath and recirculate to drop the wort down to pitching temps. I will always have the prechilled top off water to finish the job as I refine my chiller process/design.
 

FuzzeWuzze

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My LHBS actually recommended it on their sheet when i brewed my first Extract.

Boil to get 3 gallons at the end, put in a gallon of tap water, and the night before freeze a 1 gallon jug of water in the freezer...cut the bottom off to let the giant ice cube drop in...it took a while for it to get my wort down to 70 since i had no chiller...but it worked and to this date is one of my best beers...of course as it was my first I got help from the LHBS on ingredients, so i have no recipe to recreate it...bah.
 
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