Brew water

I was just wondering what water most people use for boiling. i have done 4 kits so far and used distilled water each time. what do most people use? is there any reason not to use distilled? Thanks

If those are extracts kits, then RO or distilled water is fine to use. It may actually be much better than tap water if that tap water is too mineralized.

Extract or all grain? Extract, you are fine with distilled.

I too have made 4 kits so far and each time I have used distilled water from the store. If good water = good beer then personally I wouldn’t use my tap water as I don’t like to drink it. But thats just me. Not sure how much of a difference it makes after being boiled.

Extract brewing so far. My second brew(dead ringer), bombed. I must have done something wrong because it is almost undrinkable. Really stringent and kind of metallic aftertaste. Just wondering if distilled water could have had something to do with it. My first, Sierra Madre, and third, Black IPA, both turned out fine though.

Are you fermenting with beer temps in the low to mid 60’s? Are you pitching enough yeast? Are you allowing a minimum of two weeks and hopefully three in primary? How is your sanitation?

I fermented between 62 and 65°. I did make a yeast starter using what I thought were appropriate calculations From Brewers friends.com. I left it in primary for 10 days. The final gravity came out just right. I know I am new but I am obsessive about sanitation so I’m not really sure what went wrong. I have tasted bells and this definitely tastes nothing like it. Oh well, I will just keep brewing.

Not sure, it seems like you have a good handle on a lot of the basics.

I had the same thing with a brewers best dunkelweizen kit I brewed. It was my first extract kit. The beer had a metallic taste. I used our tap water for that. Now I use store bought spring water for all grain. I don’t know anything about water chemistry, but I am trying to learn. To this day I don’t know where that metallic taste came from and never had it since.

Since some breweries boast about their water quality, has anyone ever filled water jugs at a local brewery then filter and use at home? Just a crazy thought.

As long as you are acidifying and adding minerals the way that brewery does it for their particular beers, it could work for you. Just be aware that if working with extract, there are already a dose of ions in the extract that add to the overall ion content in the wort.

But in general, using a brewery’s water is no more a guarantee of good beer than starting with your tap water. In most cases, breweries use the local tap water and treat it as needed for brewing.

Next time try spring water instead and see if you notice any difference. Just a thought…

Ok thanks

I started out buying spring water for all my brews, extract and on to AG. I quit several batches ago and just use tap water to cut out a cost. I can tell no difference at all.

Just curious, did you get a water analysis from your water authority? Do you take PH samples of your mash? Do you do anything to your water? I am afraid to use our municipal water. It doesn’t taste bad at all, but I don’t know what they use for disinfectant besides chlorine. I hear there is chemical that is added that can’t be boiled off, not sure what it is. On a brew day I was drawing water from the tap and it was muddy. I was glad I bought water that day. I went to the water authority for a print out of their water analysis and what they gave me did no good. The report had nothing in it about the mineral content, PH or alkalinity. I just bought PH strips (colorPHast) to see where my mash PH will be with the spring water. :slight_smile:

We get a water analysis every year but I don’t pay it much attention. I know people can get all involved in their water and that’s fine and dandy but I don’t. I do use a campden tablet every time though. I divide it up and use it in my strike and sparge water. My city probably does not have the best drinking water in the world, but we use to drink, to make coffee, to make tea and Kool-Aid, so why not beer? I never check the pH either. That’s complicating a simple issue to me. Not to tell other people how to brew, it’s just how I roll with my brewing. Like I said, I have not noticed a change in the taste of my brews at all. If anything they have gotten much better and that’s due to AG and full volume boils. However, I’m not lax on sanitizing or fermentation temps. Other things, I RDWAHAHB.

Just curious, did you get a water analysis from your water authority? Do you take PH samples of your mash? Do you do anything to your water? I am afraid to use our municipal water. It doesn’t taste bad at all, but I don’t know what they use for disinfectant besides chlorine. I hear there is chemical that is added that can’t be boiled off, not sure what it is. On a brew day I was drawing water from the tap and it was muddy. I was glad I bought water that day. I went to the water authority for a print out of their water analysis and what they gave me did no good. The report had nothing in it about the mineral content, PH or alkalinity. I just bought PH strips (colorPHast) to see where my mash PH will be with the spring water. :slight_smile: [/quote]

I think you are speaking of chloramine. and yes, it doesn’t boil out. I use tap water (Minneapolis has some quality tap water) and just add half a campden tablet before I brew.

I tried brewing with bottled spring water a few times, but didn’t notice a difference. maybe with AG, but for me brewing extract, it wasn’t worth the extra time or money.

I’d get a water report from your city and go from there.

When I read about water adjustments, it’s out of my league. It seems over my head. I should buy some campden tablets and try my municipal water. Maybe it would not hurt to add an external carbon filter to the water supply in my work-brew shop. I just might look into that. That would save $13.00 on the cost of a brew day. For my sparge water I usually heat about 6.5 gallons. Do you think half a campden tablet would be ok for that amount of water? I bought 5.2 PH Stabilizer and added it to the strike and sparge water but had nothing to check the PH with. So, now I have the PH strips, and read where the 5.2 stabilizer is a waste of money.
The water analysis I got was from the water authority. The ladies at the water authority had no clue as to what I was asking for. They handed me a paper with a bunch of nothing on it.
I found some labs near me I can take my water to for them to test, I just haven’t had the time to get there yet.
What can you do about chloramine?

Boiling kills chlorine, Campden kills chloramine.

Do you filter your water with a carbon filter? Any recommendations for a certain type of filter?