Central Coast Water

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Hi all, I’ve seen some similar threads but thought this might be deserving of a fresh thread.

I’m starting to read up on water treatment as I’ve been using water straight from the tap and wanted to start brewing some more hoppy, fruity styles like XPAs and the popular NEIPA... based on this report it looks like I probably need to use some Calcium Sulphate and Calcium Chloride to raise some levels and also look at lowering Ph.

https://cdn.centralcoast.nsw.gov.au...7-18_Annual_Drinking_Water_Quality_Report.pdf

Before I go too far down this rabbit hole I thought I’d get some insight from other brewers local to me and see what everyone else is doing: RO? Basic filter and then salts? Nothing? Hopefully some of you are willing to share some of your trade secrets so i can avoid spending unnecessary money on things I shouldn’t be bothering with.

Cheers!
 

gone brewing

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Hi Negima, I take a very basic approach. I use the local tap water and add a campden tablet to remove chloramines. In terms of mineral adjustments, first thing I focus on is adding calcium to a minimum of 50mg/L and secondly I adjust the chloride:sulfate ratio for the flavour profile.

I add a teaspoon of either calcium chloride or calcium sulfate (or 1/2 a teaspoon of each) depending on whether the beer I am making is malty or hoppy, and this achieves both these goals. This amount is for 20-25L of water.

There is a good spreadsheet that you can use to work out this stuff at the bottom of this webpage.
http://howtobrew.com/book/section-3/understanding-the-mash-ph/residual-alkalinity-and-mash-ph
 

gone brewing

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Also, you're welcome to join us for the next homebrew club meeting. It's on this Sunday 18th Nov, 2pm to 5pm at Glenning Valley. PM me for the address.
 
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Hi Negima, I take a very basic approach. I use the local tap water and add a campden tablet to remove chloramines. In terms of mineral adjustments, first thing I focus on is adding calcium to a minimum of 50mg/L and secondly I adjust the chloride:sulfate ratio for the flavour profile.

I add a teaspoon of either calcium chloride or calcium sulfate (or 1/2 a teaspoon of each) depending on whether the beer I am making is malty or hoppy, and this achieves both these goals. This amount is for 20-25L of water.

There is a good spreadsheet that you can use to work out this stuff at the bottom of this webpage.
http://howtobrew.com/book/section-3/understanding-the-mash-ph/residual-alkalinity-and-mash-ph
Sweet, I ended up purchasing Calcium Sulphate, Calcium Chloride and Lactic Acid last night - I'm thinking about getting one of those Caravan inline filters for the hose I use to fill my Grainfather otherwise I might just get some campden tabs too. Thanks for the link; I've been looking at EZwater but that link was a good read to improve understanding.

I have been fairly disappointed with my beers since upgrading from BIAB on the stove to the Grainfather. I suspect its due to my shift in style from dark malty beers to hoppier and paler with the Central Coast water profile exaggerating some of my newbie errors and muting the hops.
 
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Bonenose

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I use brewer’s friend for my water chemistry, put in your chemicals as per water report then you can play around with additions to achieve your desired result. Plenty of other options for brewing calculators would recommend checking them out and find one you like.
 

RogueRanga

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I spoke to one of the civil engineers in the council that looks after the water supply and he said that they only use chlorine in the water and not chloramine. So do you really need the campden tablets?
 

fungrel

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I spoke to one of the civil engineers in the council that looks after the water supply and he said that they only use chlorine in the water and not chloramine. So do you really need the campden tablets?
Depends how much time you have on your hands. Chlorine will evaporate given enough time but you're talking hours not minutes. Campden is a mechanical way of dropping out chlorine instantly.

I take an approach of using RO and adjust from 0 of everything to a profile that i'm happy with. That being said, I mainly brew lagers so i need a soft profile that I can't get from tap.

I've included a screenshot of Wyong water supply that I tested back in 2016. As you can see, the average is just that. So many factors including a downfall earlier in the week can affect the mineral content of the tap.

As gb mentioned, there is absolutely nothing wrong with using your water as-is and just removing chlorine. And you can see from the basic Central Coast profile without using any mineral additions that it's well suited to darker beers (more chloride and less sulfate). Will definitely mute hop profiles for hoppy beers. I found this resource valuable when starting out:

https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/water-knowledge

upload_2019-3-7_7-35-54.png
 
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