My mash kettle has a heating element inside it. So the false bottom is raised to be above the heating element. When I fill the kettle 2 gallons are bellow the false bottom. It does recirculate the wort during the mash. So far I have done 3 batches with my setup. What I did was if the mash required 3.5 gallons of water I would fill up to the false bottom then add 3.5 gallons of water, since if I only put 3.5 gallons only 1.5 would be above the false bottom. So when it comes time to sparge/transfer to boil kettle if I need 6 gallons about 4.5 get added before any sparge would make it to the kettle if the grains soak up about 1 gallon… So instead of having 2.5 from mash and 3.5 from sparge I get 4.5/1.5, so my sparge always goes too fast. I figure this will effect my efficiency.
What would be my best option for starting water amount in the mash kettle taking into account the 2 gallons bellow the false bottom?
Would I be better off just moving to a cooler? Or possibly the RIMS rocket? so I get rid of the 2 gallon issue?