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Walmart value water brand!

Hello i have the spec on the wal-mart value brand water:

Calcium total: 46mg/L

Chlorine: 6.6mg/L

Hardness: 120mg/l

magnesium: .98mg/L

Nitrate:1.5mg/L

Sodium: 2.3mg/L

Total dissolved solid: 150mg/L

Alkalinity: 110mg/L

pH: 7.7

I just need you guy’s to help full me in what i need to add anything when brewing light or brewing dark beers

There must be something horribly wrong with your water if you would rather buy it from walmart

IPA, maybe he has significantly hard or soft water; or maybe its full of chlorine; or maybe its from a well that contains another ion that gives off flavors.

Will, are you AG or extract? Water is MUCH more important for AG. I would recommend downloading Martin’s Bru’n Water. Here you can enter your base water composition and pick what kind of beer you are making (i.e. yellow bitter, yellow malty, yellow balanced in addition to other styles and even city water profiles). This will give you an “ideal” profile and you add your brewing salts to meet the remainder of what salts are needed.

What’s nice about Bru’n Water too is you will enter the grains and their lovibond ratings which will also help target the pH.

Perhaps Martin will be on here and can explain more, but his program comes with my highest recommendation.

lol.
It’s probably only filtered tapwater to boot. A lot of bottled waters are just that.

Interesting. Where did you get the analysis of the bottled water? That profile does not look like RO water, which is how bottled “drinking water” is normally treated. I have always understood RO to be almost completely devoid of minerals.

I highly recommend using Bru’n Water to build your brewing water from whatever your source is.

https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/

[quote=“kcbeersnob”]Interesting. Where did you get the analysis of the bottled water? That profile does not look like RO water, which is how bottled “drinking water” is normally treated. I have always understood RO to be almost completely devoid of minerals. You can normally find the water source and treatment method noted on the bottle label.

I highly recommend using Bru’n Water to build your brewing water from whatever your source is.

https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/[/quote]

Lots of people brew with bottled water for a variety of reasons, and walmart has it for cheap. What’s the problem?

It probably is just filtered tap water, but so what? I personally don’t feel like maintaining an RO filter in my house.

[quote=“kcbeersnob”]Interesting. Where did you get the analysis of the bottled water? That profile does not look like RO water, which is how bottled “drinking water” is normally treated. I have always understood RO to be almost completely devoid of minerals.

I highly recommend using Bru’n Water to build your brewing water from whatever your source is.

https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/[/quote]

RO doesn’t remove ALL minerals, you have to go to DI for that. It removes about 95% of mineral content, so where you end up depends on where you start out. Its also not unheard of for drinking water bottlers to add minerals after filtering to improve taste. I don’t claim to know which is the case for walmart.

I’ll also hazard a guess that walmart has a variety of sources for water, and that you can’t rely on it to always have the same profile. You probably can rely on it to always be fairly soft though.

Drinking Water is most commonly just tap water from somewhere in the region that tastes OK. Its frequently filtered through activated carbon to remove chlorine or chloramine and to remove other taste and odor from the water. A lot of bottlers either treat with ozone or ultraviolet to help assure that the water going into the bottle is free of pathogens. Drinking water is not commonly treated via RO since that is more expensive to produce. So unless the package says its demineralized or something like that, the Drinking Water has probably received minimal treatment.

If the local water doesn’t taste good, then drinking water could be a good alternative. Its great that the OP had the water quality parameters for that drinking water. My only concern is that stores like Walmart, and other large grocery chains source their water from a variety of plants around the country. So unless you know where the water is coming from and what the water profile from that source is, it may not be ideal to use it. One of the most important things a brewer can do is know what their water is. The next most important thing is to know how to treat that water. That is the big push that I try to instill in brewers using Bru’n Water.

The positive thing about using RO or distilled water is that you pretty much know what the water profile is. Then its up to the brewer to add the minerals needed to create the ionic content that suits their next brew. That removes the need to search out the water profile. So brewing with this water source can be beneficial when you can’t find a Drinking Water profile.

My water is pretty hard and needs to be mixed with RO water for most styles. You may want to look to see if any place near you has a water refill station that is processed via RO. In my case my closes grocery store has a station in the back corner where you can refill jugs with RO water for $.39 a gallon. They off 5 gallon jugs and with 2 of those I have enough RO water to do at least 10 gallons of even lighter beers.

I’ve looked at putting in my own RO system but the payback is pretty slow when I can make a few minute drive at get 10 gallons for $4.

I’d be another one that recommends Bru’n Water, took me a bit to come up to speed on water chemistry but the info page sheet in it was a great resource. The is no doubt my beers greatly improved once I started to understand how to adjust mash pH and adjust water chemistry.

The ph is pretty high. You could add gypsum or Burton salts for Ca, but then you’re adding sulphates. Good for IPAs, but if you were brewing a pilsner you would want to cut that with distilled water, or just start with distilled (they carry that at Walmart as well) and build from there. It would probably be okay for darker styles, but even then I think I might dilute it some with distilled. Keeping track of mash ph will tell you a lot - if you have a hard time keeping it in the lower five range, you’ll have your answer. All in all, it’s sure less than ideal for water you’re paying good money for.

Does the Walmart have a “water filling station” with R. Osmosis water? If so, why not use that instead.
If you are extract - you don’t need to add anything to it.
If you are all grain, it is easier to work with as far as adding back any minerals to fit various styles
And, it costs half as much if you fill your own jugs instead of buying the drinking water jugs off the shelf.

I get my water from walmart, taking in my own jugs and it is .39 cents per gallon. Usually around .80 if you buy full jugs off the shelf.

[quote=“Nate42”]

RO doesn’t remove ALL minerals, you have to go to DI for that. It removes about 95% of mineral content, so where you end up depends on where you start out. Its also not unheard of for drinking water bottlers to add minerals after filtering to improve taste. I don’t claim to know which is the case for walmart.[/quote]

I’m no expert, so I’ll provide the reference for my statement regarding RO being “almost completely devoid of minerals:” https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/water-knowledge (see 4.2.1)

Agreed regarding adding minerals back in for taste. This should be indicated on the label, which I’ve seen many times.

Not that it matters, but I’ve got a couple empty Walmart “value” drinking water bottles that indicate they were processed by RO and they say nothing about minerals being added back in. So it’s probably safe to assume the mineral content is similar to what Mark has indicated on his site.

It may be completely crazy for some people here, but i actually buy the poland spring water since it tastes good and I assume that it is treated to kill any bacteria. I know some probably top off their extract batches with filtered tap water, but i like my approach as i feel confident about no contamination from bacteria in the water. And this way i can completely chill the top off water to help me further drop my wort temp.

If I were doing full boils then the appeal would be less, as a full boil kills all the bacteria.

I don’t think that most bottled water is RO filtered. The brands that are produced from tap water are, from my understanding, mainly carbon filtered.

A carbon filter is cheap, easy to maintain, and easy to hook up temporarily for brewing use if you don’t go for a permanent installation (my own filtering system is of the temp variety…I hook it up on brew day and disconnect it as soon as the hot liquor tank is filled).

The only point I was really trying to make is that If your local water tastes good except for the presence of chlorine or chloramine, a carbon filter is a more economical way to go. :smiley:

I (and many others) view bottled water as one of the great marketing scams of the 20the century (unless your municipal water is SO bad as to be unpalatable or if you have well water that’s a bit chunky).

As far as bacteria in bottled water goes, one shouldn’t assume that it is ‘purer’…there are published analysis indicating that many bottled waters actually have higher bacteria counts than average city water out of the tap! (of course, if you’re boiling it, it’s a moot point…just as it is with most tap water!)
:cheers:

[quote=“mppatriots”]It may be completely crazy for some people here, but i actually buy the poland spring water since it tastes good and I assume that it is treated to kill any bacteria. I know some probably top off their extract batches with filtered tap water, but i like my approach as i feel confident about no contamination from bacteria in the water. And this way i can completely chill the top off water to help me further drop my wort temp.

If I were doing full boils then the appeal would be less, as a full boil kills all the bacteria.[/quote]

Not sure if you thought of or tried this, but I used to pop it in the freezer for a couple hours until Ice just starts to form before adding as my top off water. It would really cool things down.

Bottled water may indeed be a great scam - kind of like buying a bag of air. But, if you have tap water with bicarbonate levels approaching 300, it can taste great as water, and still be horrible for brewing certain beer styles. So, in that regard, I am very thankful for it - otherwise I would be confined to browns, porters and stouts.

The “does it taste good” test is not a particularly trustworthy way of deciding if your water is good for brewing or not.

[quote=“Braufessor”]

The “does it taste good” test is not a particularly trustworthy way of deciding if your water is good for brewing or not.[/quote]

I thoroughly agree, but the taste test is sufficient to tell the brewer that the water is good enough to brew a certain range of beer styles.

To be a good brewer and be able to brew more than that range of styles, knowing what the water has in it and how to make it perform, it the next big step. That is where the ‘does it taste good’ mantra fails.

[quote=“mabrungard”][quote=“Braufessor”]

The “does it taste good” test is not a particularly trustworthy way of deciding if your water is good for brewing or not.[/quote]

I thoroughly agree, but the taste test is sufficient to tell the brewer that the water is good enough to brew a certain range of beer styles.

To be a good brewer and be able to brew more than that range of styles, knowing what the water has in it and how to make it perform, it the next big step. That is where the ‘does it taste good’ mantra fails.[/quote]
I agree with you, and I totally plan on understanding water chemistry more, for when i go to all grain.

Every grocery store here in town sells water for pennies. Why in Gods name I’d subject myself to WalMart to buy their stuff is unfathomable. If that’s your only option then you have my pity.

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