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Burnt batch with electric element

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mesuite77

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Hi all. I’m in the process of converting to an electric brewery doing BIAB in a single vessel. Did my first run recently using the keg-king 2200 watt element and ended up with the batch tasting burnt and burnt wort all over the element. Never had this problem with a copper element of the same wattage.

Any tips on how to prevent this from occurring?

I’ve read some info that it can be a problem with SS as the element doesn’t stay fully wetted. Will a recirc pump running until the batch gets to a rolling boil help?

Thasks for any help you can give me.

Anthony
 

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TwoCrows

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Thats correct, never operate without liquid covering it.

If you used this element to boil say a 1.050 wort , I would take it back.

Never had a problem boiling water or wort. After boiling it should be tan coloured and feel slimy with residue.
 

Grmblz

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Hi all. I’m in the process of converting to an electric brewery doing BIAB in a single vessel. Did my first run recently using the keg-king 2200 watt element and ended up with the batch tasting burnt and burnt wort all over the element. Never had this problem with a copper element of the same wattage.

Any tips on how to prevent this from occurring?

I’ve read some info that it can be a problem with SS as the element doesn’t stay fully wetted. Will a recirc pump running until the batch gets to a rolling boil help?

Thasks for any help you can give me.

Anthony
I'm not familiar with the element you have but from your results it sounds like it's a water heating element.
You need an ULWD element (ultra low watt density) or at the very least a LWD (low watt density) element to boil wort/wash without scorching.
This is an example, you'll notice it's quite long, extra surface area reduces the watts per sq cm thus reducing localised heat 2400 Watt All Stainless Ultra Low Density Element
 

Kev R

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There is some good info here as well as links to were to get stuff.
 

MHB

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Ah "wetting" in this case doesn't mean being under water (or wort) has to do with the way water reacts with different surface materials and mesuite is quite correct in his usage.
If you have the opportunity it might be worth checking the wattage (resistance) of your element. I'm not a big fan of those hot stick type of element I think the surface temperatures are too high and can lead to exactly what has happened to you. Elements that say i.e. 2200W are usually in a range, depending on the maker how close they are to the stated values (bit like buying resistors Gold, Silver, Red line or none where you get within 20%)
That one looks hot!

Pumping wort over the surface might help some, but I suspect that there is more wrong than just the movement of wort.
Mark
 

mesuite77

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Thanks for the info all. I checked the resistance and it was 24.6 ohms. So 2350 watts. I think I’ll look into a ULWD element. Stick with gas till I get that sorted. Don’t like having to tip out a full brew.
 

DazGore

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What was the make up of your grist? Do you BIAB? I find that Pilsner malt seems to make more flour and is subject to scorching on the element.
KL sells a power station that lets you dial down the percentage of power going to your element, so you can hook the element up to it and dial it down to 75% for instance.
 

draakken

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Another vote for too much heat for the length of rod you've got there. Measure the rod, and calculate the watts per sq-cm, and compare that to the element linked in grmblz post. I think you are going to find its quite a bit higher.

I do BIAB with a 5500 Watt element ULWD, and the nylon bag rest directly on the element with no scorching.

When you get into the higher watt density, the surface temp of the element goes up considerably. Not much of a problem if we are just heating plain water, but once you put sugars, nylon bags, hops etc. near that high temp element you can get some localized burning, and it doesn't take much to make a whole batch taste like burnt grain.
 
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mesuite77

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It was BIAB. Just a SMaSH. 98% Marris Otter with a few hundred grams of wheat. Ross’s Nelson Sauvin Summer Ale.
 

BrewLizard

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Not sure if anyone's tried it, but you can also make ULWD elements by combining regular elements. For example 2 parallel x 2 series 2400 W elements gets you a total 2400 W element with 4x the surface area (1/4 the density).
 

Grmblz

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Not sure if anyone's tried it, but you can also make ULWD elements by combining regular elements. For example 2 parallel x 2 series 2400 W elements gets you a total 2400 W element with 4x the surface area (1/4 the density).
Yep, but a single ULWD element is cheaper than 2 normal elements, and you only need a single port, KL recently released a 100L boiler which was going to have a single 1.5" tri clover port, advertised as a still boiler (amongst other things) what sort of element did they think was going into it that wouldn't burn the wash, ideally you'd have a couple of 5.5's ULWD's for 100L, unless "you aint busy for about a month" (Cheech & Chong) So yes what you suggest would work, whether it would be practical is open to debate, and the amount of holes you have in your vessel. :cheers:
 

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