Using frozen water bottle as a wort chiller

Just did this with an amber ale that’s still in the fermenter. I always keep some large plastic water bottles frozen in the freezer for use in coolers, whatever. My beer’s been pretty cloudy mostly (only on my 5th batch now), so I wanted to get my cooling process faster. I sanitized two of my frozen bottles and put them directly into the wort while it was cooling in an ice bath. Worked like a charm. Had it under 100 degrees in very little time. This was a 1-gallon batch.

Anybody see a downside to this, as long as I’m making sure they’re sanitized? Sure is a lot cheaper than buying a chiller.

If it works it works.

I usually have about 3 to 4 gallons in the boil kettle. I set it in the kitchen sink and fill the sink with cold water. Kettle lid is partially off. I stir gently until the sink water is warm. Drain the water and refill. When the second refill water is tepid, drain and add ice from the frig freezer bin and refill with tap water. Stir occasionally. Wort will be under 70°F within 20 minutes.

I havebeen. Using 3 frozen 2lt bottles and it works fine just sanitize well haven’t had any contamination issues cheap and efficient that’s not to say i. Just ordered a chiller good work brew on

My preference is to avoid putting unnecessary things into the wort once the boil has been completed - so I hadn’t thought about this approach to cooling the wort before pitching the yeast. But I was curious and had some time late this afternoon.

It appears that restaurants (I don’t work in that industry) have devices called cooling paddles that are food grade plastic at high temps (random example) to cool liquids quickly - although this post suggests that they may not work well for getting the wort to pitching temp.

For my one gallon batches, I’m happy with a 30 minute cool down which goes like this:

  • at the start of cool down, put the kettle in the sink and fill the sink until the kettle floats.
  • seven minutes later, replace the water with tap water
  • eight minutes later (fifteen minutes after cool down begins) replace with water with 2 gallons of refrigerated water
  • 15 minutes later (30 minutes after cool down begins), confirm the temp and pitch the yeast.

If I were looking for a way to shave some minutes off of the wort cooling step (or save a couple of gallons of water), Australian no chill brewing would be something that I’d take a look at.

For my one gallon batches, I add a quarter teaspoon (not tablespoon, teaspoon) of Irish Moss to the boil about 15 minutes before flameout. It clears the beer up very nicely.

me can not use a wort chiller her on the island water from the faucet comes out at a temp around 90 to 80 fh so i do use a big cement bucket with four bags of ice got the temp fast down .but putting ice bottles into to wort .this might cause infection of the wort or am i wrong?

Wash the bottles before you freeze them. Keep them in a clean bag in the freezer so as not to get any contaminants on them when putting stuff in and out of the freezer. On brew day rinse them in starsan an throw them in to chill. Make sure you fill the bottles with clean water just in case they leak. That’s how I would do it anyway.

I did that a long time ago before getting a chiller. That was without having the pot in an ice bath. I froze a bunch of plastic bottles of water then dunked them in no rinse sanitizer just before dunking them in the wort. It always worked but was kind of labor intensive and you really need a spare fridge or freezer because that many bottles takes up a lot of room. Don’t fill the bottles all the way up either. :open_mouth:

Great idea.

Isn’t it kind of cheating to use irish moss? What would the Germans say?

Who cares what the Germans say, when here, do as here would do! Sneezles61

You won’t be allowed into the German forum with talk like that

“Das war ein ausgezeichnetes Bier - gestochen scharfe, klare, erfrischende. Wären Sie so freundlich, uns Gießen ein anderes?”

edit: use google translate, it comes out wrong if you use bing

“You won’t be allowed into the German forum with talk like that”

I still haven’t gotten over being banned for an article I had published in Zymurgy that had nothing to do with their little forum. :slight_smile:

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who cares about germans