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Got water results in now need help

I got my results in and haven’t really had time to look up on them. Anyone give me a little help on them?

pH 7.5
Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) Est, ppm 105
Electrical Conductivity, mmho/cm 0.17
Cations / Anions, me/L 1.8 / 1.8
ppm
Sodium, Na 26
Potassium, K 18
Calcium, Ca < 1
Magnesium, Mg 2
Total Hardness, CaCO3 8
Nitrate, NO3-N 0.3 (SAFE)
Sulfate, SO4-S < 1
Chloride, Cl 2
Carbonate, CO3 < 1
Bicarbonate, HCO3 103
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3 85
“<” - Not Detected / Below Detection Limit

Wow, that is some seriously soft, highly alkaline water. Should be great for darker brews. John Palmer has a spreadsheet that’s pretty useful for figuring out the range of styles your water is “good” for, and for calculating additions necessary to optimize your water for styles outside that range.

It’s on this page
http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/chapter15-3.html
.

Direct download
http://howtobrew.com/section3/Palmers_Mash_RA_ver3ptO.xls
[xls]

Check out the Palmer tool as noted or Brun Water…

Your sodium, calcium, sulfate, and chloride are low making the water softish…but your bicarbonate is higher…not outrageous, but high enough it needs to be dealt with for light color beers.

I’d consider this an acceptable base water. You will want to buffer your mash with an acid of some sort for lighter color brews and add some salts for pretty much all styles. You may want to acidify your sparge water to 5.6-5.7 also for the lighter stuff.

You can make good beer with your water for sure.

Or if you wish to be prostyle and make quick work of the water game without needing a PH meter or PH papers or what not>>>> As I have widely advocated since Martin first brought out the spreadsheet brunwater last year as a stand alone system of treatment it has the best brass tacks water knowledge/tool and is my best recommendation to brewers newer to the water game that may not have meters and such and may find they never need one now because as explained before my mash and sparge for that matter have been within 0.1-0.2 PH units which is all you really need to start having mucho success with less mental and monetary investment. I can state this as a Guarantee: 8) I am in no way affiliated with the author I just use the free suite in my own brewing and give it high marks.

https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/

I really didn’t want to get into water chemistry right now because I really have no time. This added step is going to make it hard for me to really have time or feel like even brewing anymore.

Should I just stick to bottled water for now?

[quote=“vanwolfhausen”]I really didn’t want to get into water chemistry right now because I really have no time. This added step is going to make it hard for me to really have time or feel like even brewing anymore.

Should I just stick to bottled water for now?[/quote]

I was quite worried about this kind of stuff at first too, but it’s really not that bad.

Are you just getting started with AG, or have you made AG beers before but just not worried about water chemistry?

If you don’t have a lot of time but would still like to take advantage of your water report I would suggest spending a little time with Brunwater and at least develop some generic water profiles for beers with different color ranges Light, Amber, Brown, Dark. Later on when you can devote some time you can work up specific profiles for each grain bill you brew.

Yes, I have 100s of AG under my belt and my water in old house worked really well with good hardness. I just don’t have time to get into water chemistry right now and don’t even know where to start. I make A LOT of Pale Ale, IPA, Barley wines etc. But, I do make pretty much everthing so kind of would like an easy(or easier) way to figure out what needs to be added to harden water up with each kind of style of beer. I run my own medical facility so by time I am done at end of day and on weekends the LAST thing I want to use is my brain anymore.

Also I don’t have excel so can’t run brun water.

There is not a whole lot somebody can actually walk you through as it all depends on beer grist itself and your personal methods or drive.

In the past this topic took a lot of walk through and back and forth to understand believe me I am no chemist and I spent 6 months studying what and why before buying a meter and adjusting on the fly which is old school as of 12 months ago due to Kai and Martins work amongst others. As just followed up it became so much easier to understand and Martins one page explanation of the whole game is very easy to digest. Sure figuring out the calculator takes a minute but its way easier than the old school trial and error we had just a couple months ago. Don’t sell yourself short give Martins water page and spreadsheet a read/shot and Ill bet tons comes together.

Also you can run it on a couple free office suites also, somebody with this knowledge can firm that aspect for me. At the very least guy, read his water info page on the site as mentioned it will give you the brass tacks you need to understand----NO BS

Thanks but, right now I would like to brew in next few weeks and know I won’t have enough to digest it before then. I can’t use Martin’s spreadsheet because I don’t have excel. For now should I just use 5 gallon bottled water to get some beer made?

Why would you ask about water comp and then state you dont have time. You already seem to understand it is a subject that takes more than 2 minutes to understand.

You have time to interact with us about it for 5 minutes that’s all it takes to read his page right on the main site. You can also run the suite with free tools- not excel perse.

If you cannot take this 5 minutes to read everything it takes to understand not his suite but his short concise rundown on minerals and acids/the adjustment game as a whole. Then yes just use some bottled water that is more or less the same as your supply water and you are no closer to better beer and revisit the subject when you feel you can spare sometime from your busy schedule. Because it sounds as though you maybe figured somebody could just feed you some canned info for every beer you make. I hear there are consultants that you can hire for this type of procedure.

What are you going to brew? If it’s dark (20SRM or higher) you should be able to use what you have. If you’re doing something in the range of 10SRM, I would mix 50% distilled water with your tap water.

I personally have no idea of the mineral content of various bottled water, so it’s tough to say if that’s the best route or not.

I think that Openoffice Calc is an acceptable replacement for excel (see link for free download if you want to give it a shot).

http://download.openoffice.fm/free/

I’m not gonna say this is the best approach but it will get you by. Go get Reverse Osmosis (RO) water. It is usually marketed as drinking water but if you read the label closely you can find the mention of RO. For light colored beers add 3% by weight (of the grain bill) of Acid Malt and 1/2 teaspoon of CaCl - this is assuming a 5 gal batch BTW. This is a rather “generic” approach but… you wanted simple :wink: . You will due far better working up as mentioned a few water “profiles” for the type beers you tend to brew because as you darken up the wanted chemistry changes.

Do a search. I have seen a thread that discusses a rather simplistic appraoch to water. It always started with RO water and built from there. It never used very many additions. It was likely nowhere near as exact at the more involved aproaches, but they are more involved and this is very simple.

Barry

For the styles you mention, at minimum, I would try adding 1g (preferably 2g) per gallon of gypsum to your water. This should provide enough Ca to convert your mash and get mash into proper pH. Your Ca is way low. Next, I would acidify sparge water by adding 3ml of 10% phosphoric acid to a pH of 5.6 (I ran Bru’n water for you). Made some dang good ales with this kind of simplicity and my water is similar in alkalinity.

[quote=“ITsPossible”]Why would you ask about water comp and then state you dont have time. You already seem to understand it is a subject that takes more than 2 minutes to understand.

You have time to interact with us about it for 5 minutes that’s all it takes to read his page right on the main site. You can also run the suite with free tools- not excel perse.

If you cannot take this 5 minutes to read everything it takes to understand not his suite but his short concise rundown on minerals and acids/the adjustment game as a whole. Then yes just use some bottled water that is more or less the same as your supply water and you are no closer to better beer and revisit the subject when you feel you can spare sometime from your busy schedule. Because it sounds as though you maybe figured somebody could just feed you some canned info for every beer you make. I hear there are consultants that you can hire for this type of procedure.[/quote]

Whoa, buddy sorry to bark up your tree. I have read the page and continue to re-read it. I honestly didn’t figure my new water would need this much attention. I am sure I will get some time to understand it. Not looking for a ‘Consultant’ as you call it. Just some courtesy so if I am frustrating you with this it’s a lot easier to just not write back.

Thanks Zwiller and Vulkin for the feedback.

#1 It really is as simple as stuff like Zwiller just mentioned.

#2 You have more patience than I Zwiller, somebody shows they could care less to do any effort at all towards a goal like this and expect board members can give any time whatsoever to their goal then is ballsy in my opinion. That’s why the snarks came out to play.

Cause I am sure nothing has ever frustrated you before when you first learned how to do something? Forgive me for saying anything. Not about to get into a back an forth on a discussion board with somebody I will never meet. Just leave it as I got frustrated with trying to figure this out in a day. I don’t like not knowing how to do something.

I already stated I studied this topic extensively and the subject frustrated me plenty and took months to understand because resources such as Martin,Kai etc… and his info page in particular today were far and few between years ago. I regularly run the numbers to a T for many Van, But you blatantly showed that you are not going to take the time to understand yourself but you want others guidance? You can see where someone that might be an aid could be turned off. And luckily Zwiller was willing to work with you on your level and did run the numbers so you could start to understand so more power to him.

I really think everyone here is trying to help, and as stated above, we’ve all been frustrated and confused plenty of times. It’s tough to impart of interpret tone on a message board like this, so I always try to assume that things are intended to help, even if the words sometimes look harsh “on paper”.

Long story short, I think you have some good suggestions here for some simple approaches, and also plenty of people who are willing to help with the finer points if you find the time and can get a spreadsheet up and running using a freeware version of excel (believe me, with my work I often feel like I can’t take on even a little bit more, so I suspect I understand where you’re coming from :slight_smile: ).

Personally, I think that a few simple questions/answers could cut out a lot of head-scratching if you work “open-loop”, but either way, you should be able to make something work.

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