Low temperature boil

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K_Love

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I could only get my pot (outdoor on a Bayou Classis sp10, 4.5gal in a 32qt. pot) to about 210deg. and was wondering what effects a low boil temp may have in the final product. Temperature readings were from my thermometer placed on the inside edge of pot. The middle of the pot was probably higher, as the water was indeed at a low boil. I am going to resolve my heat problem, just worried about my original question. P.S. It was only about 20deg. outside.
 

likwidbliss

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What is a low boil? Water only boils at 212 F, with malt it is slightly higher. What you have is bath water. I steep grains at 160 F. I doubt it will be that good, very light.

:(
 

hopvine

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The only effect will be decreased hop utilization (i.e. less bitterness). Although it sounds as though you DID have a boil and that your real problem is your temperature measurement method. If the temperature probe of your thermometer was touching the side of the pot, you were getting an inaccurate reading. There is no possible way that the liquid temperature in the middle was 212 (boiling) and ~6 inches away it was half of that. You were likely measuring the temp of the wall of your kettle.

Sounds like you'll end up with beer.
 
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K_Love

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Sorry guys, I had to edit my post. My temp was 210deg. on the inside edge of pot (not touching pot, normal placement), not 110deg. Sorry for the confusion, Thanks!
 

MurderMittenBrewing

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I've wondered this about breweries at high altitude. There are some decent breweries in Boulder, CO. Because of the altitude water there boils at 202 F.

I'm sure it'll still work - as Hopvine said, your only issue is probably hop utilization. Can you brew in your garage? I'm surprised that your burner wasn't able to keep up... I use a similar burner and have never had any issues with it keeping temp.
 

david_42

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You're close enough to sea level that it's more likely your thermometer is off a bit. Hop utilization does drop off with temperature, but above 195F, it's not enough to worry about.
 

HomerJR

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I wouldn't think there would be a problem with only a 2* difference. It's possible that your thermometer could be off by that much. And MurderMittenBrewing is right, they make some excellent beers at high altitude.

And I don't think it's a matter of the burner not keeping up. If the wort is boiling, it's not gonna get any hotter, it's at the limit.
 

nebben

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I don't trust thermometers. Physics wins this one. If it boils, then it boils. The thermometer is lying its metal and glass pants off.
 

aubrey

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If this was extract, you're likely fine. With AG you want a good rolling boil to boil off DMS.
 

pkphy39

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As an extra data point - I was brewing this weekend with a new thermometer in my brew kettle, and was a little concerned when it stayed pegged at 200* for the duration of the boil.

Now, I am at altitude so I knew my boiling point would be a little lower..

Like I said, it was a new thermometer, and I had a boil, so I figured it was just a calibration problem.

Fast forward to today, and I found a calculator online for boiling points at altitude. Turns out that the boiling point at my altitude (~6700 ft) is 199.528.

Guess I don't need to re-calibrate that new thermometer!
 

Arkador

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don't worry about the temp, as long as it is a rolling boil.

You need a rolling boil to get proper hop utilization, and burn of DMS as well as a proper hotbreak.
 
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