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Brewing Water PDF Print
Contributed by Hubert Hanghofer   
May 24, 2005 at 01:36 PM
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Brewing Water
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Adjusting your Brewing Water

You can de-carbonate your water by water treatment with slaked lime. I posted instructions to HBD#2540.

But now I would like to introduce another, very simple method, that enables you to fit almost any water to any beerstyle:

Analysis of untreated (well) water

At first we have to store the original status. --You should get the values for A, B, C, D and F from your water supplier. The values are automatically entered into the calculations when you leave an input-field.

Calcium Ca2+ A mg/L
Magnesium Mg2+ B mg/L
Chlorid Cl- C mg/L
Sulfat SO42- D mg/L
Total Hardness E °dH = A*0.14 + B*0.23
Note: 1°dH = 1,25°e = 1,78°f = 0,178mmol Ca++/L = 17,8ppm CaCO3
Alkalinity KS 4.3 F mmol/L
Carbonat (temporary) hardness G °dH = F * 2.8
Residual alkalinity (RA) according to Kolbach H °dH = G - 0.040*A - 0.033*B
Desired ion profile

Now consider if the level of flavor relevant Chlorid and Sulfat should be rised or adjusted to fit a certain brewing water. Dave Draper lists water analyses from all around the world on his website. If no addition of mineral salts is desired, then enter the same values as in C and D.

Chlorid Cl- I mg/L (<100)
Sulfat SO42- J mg/L (<180)
Required addition of mineral salts
Total amount of brewing water K Liter
Calciumchlorid CaCl2*2H2O L grams = K * (I-C) / 482.29
Calciumsulfat CaSO4*2H2O M grams = K * (J-D) / 557.93
Adjusting residual Alkalinity

If adding Calcium salts, the RA will be further reduced because of the acidifying effect of the Calcium ions. Salt additions are limited however and thus the remaining RA will still be too high for some beerstyles, if water rich in carbonates is used. If you want to avoid time consuming water treatment methods, you simply can neutralize the carbonates with lactic acid! This is done in German breweries with wort that has been fermented at about 45C with lactic bacteria from the malt (goes with Reinheitsgebot!). Homebrewers can use conventional food grade lactic acid or so called acid-malt. With a typical lactic acid level of 3% you need about 4% acid-malt per grain-bill to reduce RA by 10°dH.

Total Ca2+ N mg/L = A + (L*272.62 + M*232.79) / K
Residual alkalinity after addition of mineral salts O °dH = G - 0.040*N - 0.033*B
Desired residual alkalinity P °dH
Required addition of lactic acid 80% Q mL = (O-P) * K * 0.0335

Last Updated ( Feb 14, 2013 at 09:43 PM )
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