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Should I dillute with Distilled?

So I’m going to do a cream ale (5 gal batch) this weekend. My recipe is 4.25 lb Pilsner Malt, 4.25 lb 2-Row and 1.5 lbs of Flaked Corn. My issues is my mash pH due to the lack of specialty grains. With a starting water pH of 8.3 i have very little acid in my grains to lower past say 5.5 pH. Here is my water profile on an unsoftened line.

pH 8.3
TDS Est 257
EC 0.43
Cations 3.8
Anions 3.6
Sodium 30
Calcium 32
Magnesium 10
Potassium 2
Total Hardness 122
Nitrate 0.9 (SAFE)
Sulfur 23
CO3 3
HCO3 65
Chloride 33
Total Alkalinity 58

I typically add some Calcium Chloride (2g) to get my water in the 5.2-5.4 range. I know many people will just suggest get some 5.2 stabilizer. But I’d like to know with that water profile and with a mash volume of around 4.5 gals (takes in to effect all loses, absoroption, etc), should I add some distilled water to try to “soften” it up?

I do have a water softener, but no clue of the specs as this is the first time i"m doing a 100% base malt brew so never had expected pH issues this “bad”. Though I know 5.5 isn’t horrible, I’d like to get it a smidge lower and wanted some suggestions.

Thanks.

Don’t use water from a softener. Cut 50/50 with DI water and use a little CaCl2 to drop the pH.

Your suggestions matches up with what i got when I put it in a calculator. So I’m glad you match up not knowing I already tested the 50/50 theory.

Water pH doesn’t mean squat, its alkalinity that is key to mash pH. Your water appears pretty soft which will make it easy to drop the pH. Why do you need to dilute with distillerd/RO? Worried about chloride?

I want to dilute because when I put my water chemistry and grain bill into a program, it tells me my expected pH of the mash will be 5.5-5.6.

Even with a modest addition of calcium chloride and calcium sulfate? Or maybe a squirt of lactic acid? Thats my usual recipe and my water is more alkaline than yours.

Although I must admit to using RO and building from scratch on occasion.

[quote=“tom sawyer”]Even with a modest addition of calcium chloride and calcium sulfate? Or maybe a squirt of lactic acid? Thats my usual recipe and my water is more alkaline than yours.

Although I must admit to using RO and building from scratch on occasion.[/quote]

You say modest, and that’s what I’m trying to avoid. I’d rather not use too many salts if I could make the adjustment with water alone.

Just ran this through bru’nwater and dilution makes no difference to the mash pH, so don’t bother because adding 0.5g CaCl2 per gallon of water in the mash will put your calcium at 68ppm and balance out your sulfate. Then adding 0.5 mL per gallon of lactic will get you to 5.3 or 0.4 mL puts it at 5.4

Don’t have lactic, only phosphoric.

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