Will .5gal. extra water ruin my batch?

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Joined
Apr 7, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
On brewing day I boiled 3gal. of water, added the extract and other ingredients, then added 2gal. of water to top it off. I didn't compensate for the .5gal of extract.

Is this going to ruin my batch? should I let it ferment longer because of the extra water? Do I need to add slightly more priming sugar on bottling day? Or is .5gal nothing to be worried about?
 
OP
Brewmaster_n00b
Joined
Apr 7, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
I assume this will affect my ABV in the end?
If nothing is affected, wouldn't it be a good rule of thumb to always add .5gal more water to increase yield?
 

woozy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2013
Messages
1,297
Reaction score
131
You probably have *less* than 5 gallons because due to evaporation you probably had less than 3 gallons after your boil.

You aren't supposed to add 2 gallons because you started with 3 gallons. You are supposed to boil away and then however much you are left with, which could be who knows what, you then top off to 5 gallons with however much water you need.

.5 gallons probably isn't a big deal but Original Gravity is the real determining factor.

(I'm a newbie, but I think having extra water would *lower* your original gravity which would mean you need to ferment it *less*. But then as a newbie, I'm constantly being told you can always ferment longer to be on the safe side.)
 

krackin

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
Messages
1,102
Reaction score
268
There is always an effect so what we do is keep track of what we may assume is a potential error as it may be better than we had originally planned.
 

Zippox

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2012
Messages
400
Reaction score
30
Location
Minneapolis
I think it will end up a slightly less flavorful, less ABV, less hoppy beer in the end. So don't plan on doing that for future brews. If it had no effect on beer then the recipe would tell you to add 5.5 gallons of water instead of 5...
 
OP
Brewmaster_n00b
Joined
Apr 7, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
You probably have *less* than 5 gallons because due to evaporation you probably had less than 3 gallons after your boil.

You aren't supposed to add 2 gallons because you started with 3 gallons. You are supposed to boil away and then however much you are left with, which could be who knows what, you then top off to 5 gallons with however much water you need.
I wasn't planning on it but I began pouring the wort into the fermenter which already had the 2gal. in it. Next time I will be sure to pour the wort into an empty fermenter and add water to the 5gal. mark.
 

woozy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2013
Messages
1,297
Reaction score
131
I wasn't planning on it but I began pouring the wort into the fermenter which already had the 2gal. in it. Next time I will be sure to pour the wort into an empty fermenter and add water to the 5gal. mark.
No, no! The two gallons already in the fermenter was *good* (desirable even). Then you add the cooled wort. *then* you look and the level and if it is below 5 (which it probably will be) you can top off to 5.
 
OP
Brewmaster_n00b
Joined
Apr 7, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
ok, then next time I'll boil less then 3gal. I guess I'll try 2.5gal. since that should get me to my 5gal. magic number.
 

woozy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2013
Messages
1,297
Reaction score
131
ok, then next time I'll boil less then 3gal. I guess I'll try 2.5gal. since that should get me to my 5gal. magic number.
I think I misunderstood your question and owe you a huge apology for my confusing and not very good advice. Did you measure and read that you had filled the fermentor to 5.5? If so, ignore **EVERYTHING** I've told you.

Heck! Ignore everything I've told you anyway. I'm just a newbie who has only brewed 3 batches and *none* of them are out of the bottling stage yet. (Oh, except for the *very* first Mr. Beer batch which doesn't count.) I don't know what I'm talking about! I'm just some stranger on the Internet.

The way I read your first post, I thought you *hadn't* read the water level but were assuming 3 + 2 and the extract had to equal 5.5 so it had to be over.

In general you want to boil as much of your full ammount as you possibly can. If you can only boil 2.5 gallons. That's fine. If you can boil the full 5 gallons that's great! If you boil 4 or 3 gallons that's fine. Then you simply top off to the full 5 (if you have to). That's it! Don't complicate further.

Pouring wort into a fermenter that already has water in it? That's fine. No big deal. If the water has been chilled or frozen that'll even help cool your wort. Of course, if you put water in before you'll have to be sure that you don't put in more than you should. But that's easy, if you're boiling 3 gallons don't put in more than 2. If you're boiling 4 don't put in more than 1.

And if you screw up the math and the final batch is 5.5 gallons instead of 5 gallons... well, just shrug and scratch your head and wonder how it happened[*] but don't fret. It's not a big deal.

I'm sorry if I've given you confusing advice. It wasn't my intent. But maybe that should be a learning experience too. Don't try yourself in knots and second-guess yourself over some advice some bozo on the internet tells you. The guy just might be an idiot.

--woozy

[*] I don't think it could be because of the volume of the extract; I kind of assumed that extract was completely soluable in water and wouldn't increase the volume but what do I know... I'm guessing you simply mismeasured and put 3 gallons in instead of 2. Or boiled 4 instead of 3. I'm actually kind of impressed that you didn't have evaporation because I seem to always boil off *huge* amounts.
 
OP
Brewmaster_n00b
Joined
Apr 7, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
0
I'm actually kind of impressed that you didn't have evaporation because I seem to always boil off *huge* amounts.
I left the lid on crocked/partially to let the steam out the top without allowing for a boil-over. :mug:
 
Top