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Wort Cooling Questions

Hi all

I’m new to this forum and to home brewing. I am hopin that I will be brewing my first batch on Tuesday of Caribou Slobber. My question is since I do not have a wort chiller has anyone used a cooling paddle. I work in the food service industry and we use it to rapidly cool soups out of the danger zone. I would post a pic but i can’t figure out how to do that lol. Basically it is a hollow plastic containor that you fill with water and freeze. Then you are able to put into your soup/wort and stir to cool it down. Also anyone have any tips or advice for me on brewing my first batch. I have already read how to brew and feel confident in my self.

Thanks in advance

How many gallons is your boil?

My concern is that the wand thingy that your talking about might not have enough cool to counteract the heat.

Also you may have to consider sanitizing it beforehand.

Probably sticking with the tried and true ice bath will be the most effective.

I plan on sticking to the recipe since this is my first time brewing. It is goin to be a partial boil of 2.5 gallons. If any one has any tips or advice for me it is greatly appreciated.

Sticking to the recipe is a good way to start.

If your cooling stick can handle rapid chilling of 2.5 gallons of soup, it should be fine for wort. By “danger zone” you mean <80F, yes? Just be aware that you should get the wort below 70 (and preferably into the low 60s) before pitching you yeast.

When using an immersion chiller, most people let it sit in the boiling wort for 10-15 minutes to let that sanitize the surface. Your chilling stick will by it’s nature not allow the same effect to occur, as it will keep the surface cool as it chills the wort. So yes, you will need to sanitize it first.

One tip: pre-chill your mix water beforehand. Adding refrigerated water to the wort at the end will bring the temperature down pretty well.

The “danger zone” for food is where bacteria grow most rapidly (140 - 40 degrees) So we bring the food to 40 degrees or lower within 2 hours.

As rebuiltcellars tip about the chilled water. Am I to add this to the wort while it is cooling. And also should I boil this water before I put it in to cool. And should I also sanitize the container that I am goin to put the water in to be chilled. Or am I just being overly cautious. Which might not be a bad thing for a newbie like myself.

It’s best to cool the wort into the 70’s then add the cold water to make up the full volume, this should cool the wort down into the 60’s so you can pitch your yeast.

Ok will do thanks. What about boiling the water and sanitizing the jug that will hold the chilled water? Is it necessary to boil the water I have read several places that some people do boil their water before chilling it to add to the wort. I plan on using water that has been through a Brita water pitcher. Was unsure about this.

For my last 4 batches, I have put my top off water (2 gallons) in the freezer at the beginning of the boil. Post boil, when my ice bath gets the wort to below 100f, I take the jugs out of the freezer and empty the ice cold water into the carboy. Then I pour the wort on top. Each time I have hit 60f on the nose. Perfect pitching temp for ales.

Cheers,
Ron

Edit: You can boil your topoff water if you like, I’m using distilled so I don’t. When I first started brewing I used straight tap water to topoff and never had a sanitation problem.

A Brita filter contains some silver in it. This should be effective enough to kill any unwanted bacteria.

That depends on your water. If there is chlorine or chloramines in your water, you want to get rid of that so it doesn’t affect the flavor. Boiling gets rid of chlorine, and 1 Camden tablet per 20 gallons of water rids it of chloramines. Past that, if the water is safe to drink it is very unlikely that it contains organisms that will spoil the beer, though some boil just to be absolutely sure.
Sanitizing the container that will hold the water before hand is recommended. Fast & easy to do; and it is more likely that spoilage organisms will be lurking in containers than in drinking water.

Boil 2 1/2 - 3 gallons the day before and put it in sanitized containers in the fridge….when you are done just pour into carboy over with the cooled wort. I always did an ice bath to get the wort to about 100.

Ice bath to get it below 100 works very well. then as others suggest add your chilled top-off water.

I always used bottled distilled water. I’d put 3 gallons in the fridge the day before so that by the time my wort was ready, the bottled water was near 35F.

2.5gallons of 35F water plus 2.5gallons of 80F wort = 5gallons of 57.5F wort. :wink:

cheers

I do something similar. I get the 2.5 gallon spring or distilled water containers with the built-in spigot. I put it in the freezer or outside if it’s cold enough a few hours ahead of time. Chill the wort in an ice bath to get it to 80-90 F. When it’s time to use, I spray some Starsan around the spigot (or the cap for 1 gallon containers) and add about 1 gallon of the chilled water to the bottom of the fermenting bucket. After I transfer the wort, I add the remaining water to top off to 5.25-5.5 gallons. Always seems to be low 60’s at that point. I shake the #%&@ out of the bucket to aerate and mix the wort.
:cheers:

[quote=“NickB987”]Hi all

. My question is since I do not have a wort chiller has anyone used a cooling paddle.

Thanks in advance[/quote]

I bought a half gallon one and it is not enough to cool a three gallon batch (my normal batch size). I got three gallons of hot water from 200 to 160 and that was all I could manage. A bigger one or two might do the job.
On the other hand I bought a 20 x 3/8 I C from my LHBS (Bader Brewing) and got my last batch down to 64f in 15 minutes.

I have a boil kettle that allows me to start at near full volume leaving me with only ~.5 to 1 gallon top-off. I try to start with maximum volume because the advice I’ve seen offered in this forum led me to believe that I would get a better final product. My question is, which is better, bigger volume with longer cool times but less top-off, or smaller volumes with quicker cool times but more top-off? I’ve only brewed 2 batches and haven’t decided on which type of wort chiller to invest in, so I use the giant cooler full of cold water and frozen water bottles method for now. I cooled my last 4 gallons of wort from boiling to ~ 85° in about 25 minutes. I topped it with cold water, and waited until it was down to 68° to pitch. Does it make that much of a difference or am I picking the fly poop out of the pepper? :smiley:

[quote=“Rookie L A”][quote=“NickB987”]Hi all

. My question is since I do not have a wort chiller has anyone used a cooling paddle.

Thanks in advance[/quote]

I bought a half gallon one and it is not enough to cool a three gallon batch (my normal batch size). I got three gallons of hot water from 200 to 160 and that was all I could manage. A bigger one or two might do the job.
On the other hand I bought a 20 x 3/8 I C from my LHBS (Bader Brewing) and got my last batch down to 64f in 15 minutes.[/quote]

Thanks for the info I was thinking of getting two of them so that way I could switch them out when the first one wasn’t cooling the wort anymore

[quote=“NickB987”][quote=“Rookie L A”][quote=“NickB987”]Hi all

. My question is since I do not have a wort chiller has anyone used a cooling paddle.

Thanks in advance[/quote]

I bought a half gallon one and it is not enough to cool a three gallon batch (my normal batch size). I got three gallons of hot water from 200 to 160 and that was all I could manage. A bigger one or two might do the job.
On the other hand I bought a 20 x 3/8 I C from my LHBS (Bader Brewing) and got my last batch down to 64f in 15 minutes.[/quote]

Thanks for the info I was thinking of getting two of them so that way I could switch them out when the first one wasn’t cooling the wort anymore[/quote]

I’m going to stick with my I C, but keep the paddle handy when the tap water is warmer in the summer and to get the last few degrees down when I’m brewing a lager.

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