Author Topic: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.  (Read 2396 times)

Offline RavenSon01

  • BeerSmith New Brewer
  • *
  • Posts: 1
  • Karma: 0
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« on: September 22, 2016, 10:28:45 AM »
Hey Everyone,

Being a home brewer on a budget I am always looking for ways to cut cost without sacrificing quality in my brewing process. Up until recently I have been using bottled water at a cost of nearly $1.50 per gallon. I have decided to buy a 5 gallon water jug and go the 30 cents per gallon water dispenser route.

My question is has anyone had contamination problems with a similar process? I cant think of it being a problem but wanted to ask around. I don't use the tap because of it's water treatment. It's safe to drink but compared to the filtered water it is just not as good tasting.

Thanks for any help.

Offline BOB357

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 132
  • Karma: 10
  • Beer is my bucket list!
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2016, 05:29:19 PM »
Most of the dispensers in super markets use Reverse Osmosis. UV light is used to kill bacteria as part of this process, so the water should be sanitary. Not sure about spring water dispensers, but I suspect they do the same. Be sure to sanitize your jug and you might also spray a no-rinse sanitizer in and around the nozzle of the dispenser to be sure.

Pitching plenty of healthy yeast is another step that greatly reduces chances of contamination.FUTAEY
Bob

Offline KipDM

  • BeerSmith Master Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 79
  • Karma: 1
  • Brewing: makes friends and settles nerves!
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2017, 09:27:40 AM »
your tap water:
has it effected the flavor of your beer or are you just talking about it's taste straight from the tap?
i personally use tap water for all my beers and it has had very, very little impact on my finished product.

another thing you could consider that, long term, will save you money: buy one of those filters that attaches to your existing faucet. you can always just detach it when you don't want to use it, that way you can choose when you want tap or filtered water. you could also try using one of the filter pitchers [and then you can fill it and refrigerate it so when you top off it helps you reach pitching temp faster].

a semi-free test: fill a glass of tap water, let it sit in the fridge. boil a small pot of tap water, then cool it, pour into a glass, then place in fridge. wait a bit so it'll be good and chilled then taste compare the tap versus boiled tap water tastes. if they both taste the same [and off] to you then move to filtered. if the boiled actually tastes better....make a batch with the tap water and boil your top-off tap water!

a LOT of treated waters 'taste' goes away after either boiling it or letting it sit [in a bottle] in sunlight for a while. i know these aren't answering the question you asked but they all could save you money in the long run if you plan on continuing to brew.

good luck and let us know what happens!
KipDM
On Tap: Autumn Amber, Columbus Warrior DIPA
Primary: none :(
Secondary: Pumpkin Spice Ale

Offline flars

  • BeerSmith Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 28
  • Karma: 0
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2017, 02:45:39 PM »
your tap water:
has it effected the flavor of your beer or are you just talking about it's taste straight from the tap?
i personally use tap water for all my beers and it has had very, very little impact on my finished product.

another thing you could consider that, long term, will save you money: buy one of those filters that attaches to your existing faucet. you can always just detach it when you don't want to use it, that way you can choose when you want tap or filtered water. you could also try using one of the filter pitchers [and then you can fill it and refrigerate it so when you top off it helps you reach pitching temp faster].

a semi-free test: fill a glass of tap water, let it sit in the fridge. boil a small pot of tap water, then cool it, pour into a glass, then place in fridge. wait a bit so it'll be good and chilled then taste compare the tap versus boiled tap water tastes. if they both taste the same [and off] to you then move to filtered. if the boiled actually tastes better....make a batch with the tap water and boil your top-off tap water!

a LOT of treated waters 'taste' goes away after either boiling it or letting it sit [in a bottle] in sunlight for a while. i know these aren't answering the question you asked but they all could save you money in the long run if you plan on continuing to brew.

good luck and let us know what happens!

Is your tap water from your own well?  All municipal is treated with chlorine, chloramines, or both which can affect the beer you are brewing.  Even though the water from the tap may taste okay it will adversely affect some styles of beer.  Chlorine will dissipate with a boil or long exposure to air in a kettle.  Campden tablets are needed to remove chloramines.



Offline Nantharat

  • BeerSmith New Brewer
  • *
  • Posts: 2
  • Karma: -1
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2017, 02:25:00 AM »
It is a very good idea to produce your own beer.

Offline Ck27

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 329
  • Karma: -11
  • BeerSmith's Unofficial Spam Police.... Do Not Spam
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2017, 10:11:37 AM »
your tap water:
has it effected the flavor of your beer or are you just talking about it's taste straight from the tap?
i personally use tap water for all my beers and it has had very, very little impact on my finished product.

another thing you could consider that, long term, will save you money: buy one of those filters that attaches to your existing faucet. you can always just detach it when you don't want to use it, that way you can choose when you want tap or filtered water. you could also try using one of the filter pitchers [and then you can fill it and refrigerate it so when you top off it helps you reach pitching temp faster].

a semi-free test: fill a glass of tap water, let it sit in the fridge. boil a small pot of tap water, then cool it, pour into a glass, then place in fridge. wait a bit so it'll be good and chilled then taste compare the tap versus boiled tap water tastes. if they both taste the same [and off] to you then move to filtered. if the boiled actually tastes better....make a batch with the tap water and boil your top-off tap water!

a LOT of treated waters 'taste' goes away after either boiling it or letting it sit [in a bottle] in sunlight for a while. i know these aren't answering the question you asked but they all could save you money in the long run if you plan on continuing to brew.

good luck and let us know what happens!

Is your tap water from your own well?  All municipal is treated with chlorine, chloramines, or both which can affect the beer you are brewing.  Even though the water from the tap may taste okay it will adversely affect some styles of beer.  Chlorine will dissipate with a boil or long exposure to air in a kettle.  Campden tablets are needed to remove chloramines.

Or a carbon block filter. Campden tablets work reasonably well

Offline Josh_Saratin

  • BeerSmith Apprentice Brewer
  • **
  • Posts: 11
  • Karma: 0
  • Desert Sun Brewing
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #6 on: December 03, 2017, 10:57:46 AM »
Hey There,
Thought I would share my opinion since having more information from others is often very beneficial. I personally use the Tap water for every batch I use here in Tucson. The pH is definitely more basic than it should be (you can use German acid malt in this case) so check the quality of the water near you. I have been producing great tasting beer all of my friends have been going crazy for without buying any of my water (Since i'm in an apartment it is included in my rent here). If you really are interested, I do recommend buying a filter you can place on your faucet and brew a batch with that to see a difference, maybe keep a bottle from you one of your earlier batches to compare the taste too. I do have a filter that is in my fridge on the shelf that I run the faucet water through then grab water from in normal day to day drinking that does taste better because of it.

Also to answer your question a little more, I have never had any contamination in any of my beers even when I used to do partial mash and top offed with water straight from the sink faucet. So I don't think that the change in water going form the 1.50 jugs to a dispenser should be any issue. I do practice very detailed sanitation methods (I'm very very big on sanitation).
Hope that helps a little bit...

Also most of the large breweries here (10,000 BBS + a year) use tap water.

-Josh
« Last Edit: December 03, 2017, 11:01:19 AM by Josh_Saratin »
Currently Bottled: Pretty Blonde Ale (Centennial, Cascade)
Currently in Progress: The Jefe Hefeweizen

Offline tom_hampton

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 929
  • Karma: 64
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
    • Tom's Miata Racing Blog
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2017, 08:42:37 PM »
Ck27,  carbon filter will only remove chloramines at a very slow filter rate (sub 1 gpm).  That IS what I do, but it's an important note.   Also carbon filter will not remove contaminants if they exist (not all of them anyway).   

To the OP,  i would never add non sterile water, filtered or not as top up water.  I don't trust anything I didn't do post boil.  So,  if cost were my concern... I would use filtered, boiled, and cooled tap water. 

That said, I would suggest considering upgrading to full boil so that you don't have to mess with the whole top up water thing.  Besides everything about your beer will get better when you go full boil.  It's a bit of expense to upgrade to a larger pot.   But it's worth it.  Besides those aluminum turkey fryer pots are pretty cheap and will do the job just fine.
R.I.P.:Belgian Blonde
On Tap: Apfelwein, Kolsch(v2), Pumpkin Ale, Belgian Specialty 
Aging/Storing: Coffee Porter, Chocolate Porter, Flanders Red, English Barlywine
Fermenting: Maggie's Altbier
Next Up: PtE(1.1), Belgian Dubbel?

Working thru all BCS recipes

Offline Beer Volcano

  • BeerSmith Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 29
  • Karma: 0
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2017, 04:36:57 PM »
  Besides those aluminum turkey fryer pots are pretty cheap and will do the job just fine.

Oh.

I thought using aluminum kettles was a big no no.

Offline Oginme

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 1322
  • Karma: 64
  • Goats, guitars, and a home brew; Life is good!
    • Longvu LaManchas
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2017, 06:03:04 PM »
Aluminum kettles are fine.  When you do your first boil in it, you will get a matte finish on the surface which is oxidized aluminum.  This layer of oxidation will protect from additional aluminum leaching into the wort in your boil.  Don't scrub it off and you will be fine.

Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!

Offline tom_hampton

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 929
  • Karma: 64
  • BeerSmith 2 Rocks!
    • Tom's Miata Racing Blog
Re: Using Bottled water to top off Extract.
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2017, 09:34:32 PM »
I boiled in aluminum for many years until I upgraded to a keggle. I can't tell that theres anything wrong with me. ;)
R.I.P.:Belgian Blonde
On Tap: Apfelwein, Kolsch(v2), Pumpkin Ale, Belgian Specialty 
Aging/Storing: Coffee Porter, Chocolate Porter, Flanders Red, English Barlywine
Fermenting: Maggie's Altbier
Next Up: PtE(1.1), Belgian Dubbel?

Working thru all BCS recipes