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Pre-heating cooler mash-tun?

Hello I have a question about pre-heating mash-tun’s. See I use a 10gal cylindrical igloo cooler for my mash-tun how hot should my pre- heated water be ?. See I want to add my amount of water that I would be mashing with an use that to pre-heat with instead of adding a gallon of boil water to pre heat.

That would depend on the temperature of the cooler. I actually never preheated my mash tun and never had a problem hitting temps. I’ll just add a couple degrees to the strike temperature

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No prob hitting my target water heat. Indeed just add about 3 degrees higher. Than your strike water maybe beacuse here its constant. Temp of 90 to 100 fh. Out side.

It sure seems I heated my strike water to 180… Sneezles61

I have 2 large coffee urns that heat 3.5 gallons of my water to exactly 180 I then pour that into the tun and stir I’ll then add in about 1/2 gallon of cold to get the temperature to about 165 to dough in 70deg grain. I’ll hit about 155 mash temp. Of course I’ll use more or less cold water to adjust the mash temp. I’m not that anal about grain to water ratio. I used to be but after counciling by other brewers I got over it

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I’m sure glad the brewers talked you down from the mash paddle… If you’d jumped… This forum would be boring with out you! Sneezles61

Speaking of ratio. I just did a Hefe with a decoction and had to try and manually add water to step mash as well. Never could hit step temps right on. Wa always a couple of degrees under. I kept adding water to try and get it up, to no avail. I am sure my ratio was up around 3 qt/lb before all was said and done. I was not worried about it. Gravity came out as expected and efficiency was good.

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I heat my strike water in the SS MT now but when I used a cooler I just warmed it with tap water as hot as it came from the faucet. Not scientific but kept the cooler from dropping the temp very much. I also shot for a little high temp as it was easier to add cold water to drop it than heating water and adding to raise it.

I usually preheat by just dumping in a tea kettle of boiling water, then start heating my strike water. When that’s done, I dump out the mashtun, and add the strike water and grain.
However, if you don’t want to take the extra step, just heat your strike water to maybe 5 degrees above your target, and add the grain when it cools down to where you want it to be. You will have the extra time while it cools, but if you’re OK with that, then you are good to go.

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I underlet into my 10G Igloo mash tun using a SS pump from the HLT.
I let the water rise above the false bottom first (to avoid stuck sparges) then stop and add the grain and then continue till the water level rises to the grain bed layer . Then I use a wooden paddle to mix the grain then close the lid. Vorlauf a few times then take a temp. This is much easier than the Pour Water and Add a bit of Grain procedure…

Getting the Strike Temp right is a crap shoot.

There is brewing software out there that help (Brewer’s Friend).

Strike Temp is almost always 10-20 deg higher than desired temp.

Good luck.

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I use Brewtoad to design my recipes, and will take a look in their ‘mashing temp’ section, but it’s almost always off. However, I found the Greenbaymasher’s website years ago. Their algorithm is dead on all the time- you can use it to calculate strike temperature, figure out if your mashtun has enough room for your grainbill and mash thickness, and calculate how much boiling water to add if you’re doing a step mash. They don’t cover decoctions, but I used Braukaiser’s site years ago to calculate that. And now always use the same amount(3 qt for my system)

I disagree with a crap shoot. I use an app on my phone called home brew calculators by ghost chili and it’s right on.

AWWWW, the joys of BIAB… :slight_smile: Sneezles61

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I will check it out, thanks.

yeah I was exaggerating. The Brewer’s Friend calculators get pretty close.

Not a crap shoot. Usually it works within a few degrees. There is logic to the calculations.
I have had events that I really missed the mark and could not figure out why.
Usually with much smaller batch sizes and colder temps. Something I need to work on, figure out.

A thermapen would help you so much… ALSO, temp of your brewery and grist… Then water… If you start high, you can come down in temp with cold water… Its harder to get it warmer… Just keep a wiley eye to the process… Sneezles61

I always preheated for 15 min. Gets my mind ready for the brew day.

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