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Water testing

Been a while. That i did test my water. Here on bonaire. And the local water plant not really customer. Friendly. So me did order. A. Water sample. Kit. From ward lab. Any one. Any experience. With this company. Other question. Have been reading. About. Ph 5.5 stabilizer. Have been reading. Some like it and some dont.

Ward Labs is the most recommended source for water testing from what I’ve heard.

Don’t waste your money on the pH 5.2 mash stabilizer.


I agree on both counts.

Ward Labs is awesome!

5.2 stabilizer is a load of hogwash. Think about it logically. How could any single product claim to magically adjust your pH without regard for where it starts and what the grist bill is? Can’t do it. Waste of money.


Well dag nabbit… I used that stuff years ago… At that time, no meter… the only clue I had was… 5.2 is like the sweetest spot for mashing!!! Oh boy!!! Gotta get that crap…
Keep reading about the effects of, grist and water make up in the mash FOR conversion… Just like all parts of this hobby, it’s a deep rabbit hole should you choose to be very technical… Test what you know, don’t always rely on a program…

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I think every brewer who first got into AG brewing got scammed by 5.2. I know I did…


I will be getting water tested by Ward labs for our new(to us)house soon. They were great to deal with, simple easy to understand results.

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Reason i do ask about this product. Basicly. Shipping other chemicals. On the island. Pain. Me still have enough. But. They claim its a Haz med product. So there is a little fee. Of course. Importing danger products. So means stick with the regular products. And pay 100 dollar hazemed fee

Do they classify gypsum, epsom, calcium chloride, pure salt, baking soda, and pickling lime hazardous? Along with lactic or phosphorous acid, those brewing salts are all you need.

I used 5.2 twice and both times the beer had a weird flavor, similar to salty. I would avoid it.

Non iodized salt, pickling lime used in canning ( most Walmarts have it, so someplace on Bonaire must have it), Epsom salts, and baking soda should all be available without a hassle. So we’re really only talking about calcium chloride and gypsum…

Edit; re acidification using acidulated malt, you could sidestep using lactic or phosphoric for the most part.

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Yes . At the shipping agent. Miami. Call this. Chemicals. So. Its being shipped in a box sealed and sticker. Chemical. Products. Because of the box. You got to pay extra. Kind of messed up. Still have home to do 15 brew sessions. So ask my sister to bring some when she arives to bonaire. Now i have enough info about ph5.2. Stabilizer. Will forget the. Product

They key word. Calcium chloride. Its where they consider it chemical. Indeed other stuff i buy on bonaire.

I’ll be interested in your water report… Do they have a well, or is it ocean water with the salt and whale poop removed?

Desalination osmoses. Water. Suck water from the ocean indeed. Remove fish poop. Waiting to get the testkit. Than send of to the usa. For result.

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Me got question. Regarding. Burton salt. Me do use it in the mash water. But do i need. To use it in sparge water as well. I know to much. Of this will affect the color. On light colored. Beers. This is the only thing me struggling with. Chemicals. Now use brew water spread sheet. Basically. Fill in the info. Adjust to what i like. Or what the spread sheet says. But the thought behinde it graps me.

So why use it if you don’t even know you need it? Sounds like the same approach as the magic 5.2 stuff to me.

Burton salts are a mix of gypsum, calcium carbonate and epson salts. Honestly the idea of mixing this seems irrational to me. How do you know the exact amount you’re using? You don’t.

My advice:

Download Brunwater. Get your “salts” seperately, input your water test result into brunwater and then figure out the right amount of each “salt” needed based upon the grist bill you are using. That’s the only way to be accurate. Anything else is just a guess and you’re just wasting your time.

If you’re only going to guess then you may as well do nothing IMHO.

edit: I also agree with the post above regarding acidulated malt vs acid. I’ve found it works great and brunwater has input and calculations for it included in the spreadsheet.


This is what i got today. From the water plant today.

They’re only giving you a range for each result so not very accurate. pH ranges from 7.5 - 8.5? That’s a pretty large range to treat for. Since it’s desalinated water it may vary over time(?) but I’m no expert on that process. Do you have a pH meter?

I’d wait for the test result from Ward Labs since that will be water straight from your tap.

Totally agree, Burton Salts and 5.2 sound like the same thing. Using those you lose the ability to tailor the chemicals to your desired brew, ie acidifying with more gypsum for a hoppier homebrew, or acidifying with more calcium chloride for a maltier brew.

–>>THIS is one of the key concepts of water treatment in homebrewing IMHO<<–

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Yes have a ph meter. Did check it last monday. It did had a ph level of 6.2

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