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Yet another water question

So, I’ve got my 2013 water report.

Chlorine(chloramine)-------2.46
Calcium----------------------35.2
Magnesium------------------4.7
Sodium-----------------------72
Sulfate-----------------------192
Total Hardness as CaCo3–107
Ph-----------------------------9.7
Alkalinity--------------------30

There is not a listing for chloride concentration, only Clorine(chloramine). I’m getting ready to make the jump to all-grain brewing, so should I treat the chloramine as I would Chloride?

Thanks for any feedback
Cheers!!

No. Chlorine and chloride are completely different.

[quote=“The Fhunt”] so should I treat the chloramine as I would Chloride?[/quote]No, you should treat the chloramine with a campden tablet.

I’m most concerned with the relatively high sodium and sulfate. The combination of those two ions at elevated concentration can produce harsher and less pleasant flavor. I suggest that a 1 to 1 dilution could be a good idea to avoid that aspect. Given the 192 ppm sulfate concentration, I suggest that a simple pale ale might be a good starting beer. I recommend that when you get a chance, make batches with and without the dilution to assess if the flavor impact of the high sodium clashes with the sulfate. In the diluted beer, I would bring the sulfate level back up to around the 200 ppm range so that you only look at the sodium effect.

For that water report to balance, the chloride concentration may be around 24 ppm. Of course, other ions could alter that balance and the validity of the estimated chloride concentration.

Yeah, I’ve been doing my homework and realized that regardless of the chloride count my sulfate level is really high. And I’m not seeing an easy or economical way to remove it, so I’m thinking I will do a 50% dillution of distilled water to start out with. I’ve got bru’n water downloaded, and a wardlabs beer kit on the way. So I guess I’ll find out within the next week.

Many Thanks

Brew on America!!

[quote=“The Fhunt”]So I guess I’ll find out within the next week.

Many Thanks

Brew on America!![/quote]
I’m curious what your Ward Labs report came back with.

My water profile was pretty similar to yours above, only my sulfate level was 123 and chloride was 103. Sodium was 92. PITA to manage. I’ve been diluting with 25% distilled, which I’m now thinking is not aggressive enough. Some of of my beers have had a strange harshness lately.

I’m on the other side of the state line. We get our water from the KS river. I imagine yours comes from the MO.

OK…got my report back from Ward Labs. The municipal water report and what I got from Ward Labs are strikingly different.(municipal report is the 2012 that just came out)

PH---------10
cation/anion ratio-----2.9/3.6

Sodium-----21
Potassium–6
Calcium-----26
Magnesium-7
Total hardness as CaCO3–94
NO3-N------4
SO4-S-------22
Chloride----15
CO3---------31
HCO3-------28
Total Alk. CaCO3–75
Phosphorus–.54
Iron-------<.01

So I’ve been playing with Bru’n water just getting comfortable with it, and it’s telling me that my ion ratio should be under 0.5 ratio. Is this that important if I’m adjusting the water composition anyhow? And does anyone have any input for a 1st All Grain beer that’s not going to tie my head in knots?

Cheers!

Some of of my beers have had a strange harshness lately.

I’ve brewed all extract up until now and I have noticed, that although my beers have their own characteristics, they all have a weirdness in common. I can’t explain the taste, but it’s in everything I have brewed. I’m getting ready to bottle a Plunder that I made with 100% distilled water, just in time for me to move on to more complicated brewing. :slight_smile:

[quote=“The Fhunt”]Some of of my beers have had a strange harshness lately.

I’ve brewed all extract up until now and I have noticed, that although my beers have their own characteristics, they all have a weirdness in common. I can’t explain the taste, but it’s in everything I have brewed. I’m getting ready to bottle a Plunder that I made with 100% distilled water, just in time for me to move on to more complicated brewing. :slight_smile: [/quote]
I had the same experience with my first three extract brews: a Belgian ale, Dunkelweizen and Stout, all with a weird similarity. Brewed my fourth and fifth batches, APA and IPA using jugs of spring water instead of tap. The common taste that was in with the first 3 was gone.
Last 2 batches were an American Wheat and an Imperial IPA, but they aren’t ready yet. That said, I’m done with extract brewing, I’ve accumulated enough to go full grain, no more syrup!

[quote=“The Fhunt”]OK…got my report back from Ward Labs. The municipal water report and what I got from Ward Labs are strikingly different.(municipal report is the 2012 that just came out)

PH---------10
cation/anion ratio-----2.9/3.6

Sodium-----21
Potassium–6
Calcium-----26
Magnesium-7
Total hardness as CaCO3–94
NO3-N------4
SO4-S-------22
Chloride----15
CO3---------31
HCO3-------28
Total Alk. CaCO3–75
Phosphorus–.54
Iron-------<.01

So I’ve been playing with Bru’n water just getting comfortable with it, and it’s telling me that my ion ratio should be under 0.5 ratio. Is this that important if I’m adjusting the water composition anyhow? And does anyone have any input for a 1st All Grain beer that’s not going to tie my head in knots?

Cheers![/quote]

The thing with the ion balance is informational only. Its telling you that either there are other ions in the water that weren’t tested for or there is an error in the testing or reporting. Its nice to have the ion totals come close to balancing.

[quote=“mabrungard”]
The thing with the ion balance is informational only. Its telling you that either there are other ions in the water that weren’t tested for or there is an error in the testing or reporting. Its nice to have the ion totals come close to balancing.[/quote]
Thanks Martin. What “other ions” might you be referring to and how significant would their presence be?

I thought something was amiss with your original sodium and sulfate, good to see its pretty workable after all.

Martin, If you catch this post I was wonder about something in his Ward Labs report.
It is a lab so I am certain they would be accurate on stuff like this, but looking at the reported total alkalinity of (75) I am to understand that would translate to a HCO3 of around (91.5) not a lower number like (28).

From what I have always known and to find my own HCO3, I use my utility’s total alkalinity of lets say last months 59 ppm I would then times this amount by 1.22 to find my HCO3 which would then be 72 ppm. Which when checked against my current tap PH and the utility’s reported alkalinity in Bru N water the spreadsheet always shows me this 1.22 method is correct as it agrees within a point or two usually.

Is there something I am missing and/or mis-calculating or is the wards lab report incorrect?
Is it the PH of his supply being around 10.0 or something as I have a tap PH around 8.0-9.0 in most cases and maybe that is part of the story I am missing?

The species of the carbonate ion vary with water pH. The term: carbonate species refers to three ions: carbonic acid, bicarbonate, and carbonate. In the case of the water above, the pH is somewhat high and the water contains a combination of carbonate and bicarbonate. So you wouldn’t use just the bicarbonate content to calculate alkalinity. The sum of alkalinity contributions from those two ions does equal the 75 ppm cited in the report. You can use the alkalinity conversion tool in Bru’n Water to verify the levels of bicarb and carbonate in the report. If the water pH is relatively low, then most of the alkalinity is likely to be the bicarbonate form and the 1.22 conversion will work.

Other ions that might throw off a water report include silicate, fluoride, bromide, strontium, and other minor ions. Silicate is the only one that I expect could be present in significant concentration to seriously alter the balance. The typical ions of significance in drinking water are included in the Ward report.

Great, thanks for the reply Martin.

I thought it may have something to do with the higher PH and the nature of the water composition in regards to what you stated. I thought I remembered seeing the fact that my water is largely bicarbonate based and this was why I could use 1.22 Thank you for clearing that up it makes understanding this subject all the easier.

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