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New Aluminum Boil Kettle

My son just got a new Auminum pot for a boil kettle and has boiled water in it to be sure it is clean,etc. It has discolored on the inside to a kind of charcoal color. Is this normal? Does it have to be cleaned off? I’ve just used stainless pot and don’t know. Help please.

That oxidation layer is normal and desirable. Do not scrub it off, it will help keep from having a metallic taste in the beer. If you read a lot you will get some who will say not to use aluminum but I have and have had no issues. I think the idea that it is bad is outdated thinking.

+1 i used to think that is was bad. but many brewers on this site have use aluminum for years with no issue

Yep, leave the oxidation layer in place. A brew buddy of mine used a Scotch Brite pad to get his looking new and started picking up metallic flavors.

Yea that is perfectly normal, i’ve included pics to show you what my AL kettle looks like. You can see the new shiny metal and the oxide layer, mine is not uniform because i normally boil 7 gallons in my 15 gallon pot so there is a ring in the middle.

Thanks for all the replies, especially the pics. We’re good to go.

Look up the term “Passivation.” We use large processing tanks at work and must “passivate” tanks if they are new or haven’t been used in a long time. This layer creates a beneficial coating to protect the product from metalic leaching. It is a required SOP.


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