Reading a water report

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Reading a water report

Postby turkeyjerky214 » Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:20 am

I went to American Water's website and searched for my zip code under "Find Your Water Quality Report". This is what it came up with:
http://www.amwater.com/ccr/STLSTC.pdf

After reading through it, I can't seem to find the information that BeerTools Pro is asking for in my water profile box. The input fields are:
Ca++
Na+
HC03-
Hardness
Mg++
SO4--
Cl-
Alkalinity

I figured this report would essentially be the same info I'd get if I sent away for it. Is that not the case?
-Brian

On Tap: Sour Belgian Brown, Amber Ale, Milk Stout, English Dark Mild, American Brown, Vienna Lager

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Re: Reading a water report

Postby JoeHPhil » Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:57 am

Brian,

There is an earlier string on the forum with water info on what you asked. I started it after having the same questions you did. About this time last year
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby tlael » Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:31 pm

This one maybe?
viewtopic.php?f=23&t=3984

You'd probably need more info from this report than the one you linked to:
http://www.amwater.com/twq/STLSTC_twq.pdf

Sending a sample to Ward Labs would provide a more thorough, accurate report.
The Amwater reports are averaged and you have to back calculate for some values.
-Tim Lael

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Re: Reading a water report

Postby turkeyjerky214 » Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:37 pm

Yeah, that's cheap enough that I might as well do it. Any advice on bottling or shipping? They don't seem to give a whole lot of details on their site. I figure I'd just fill an empty water bottle, and then stuff some newspaper in the box with it to keep from getting busted open.
-Brian

On Tap: Sour Belgian Brown, Amber Ale, Milk Stout, English Dark Mild, American Brown, Vienna Lager

Fermenting: Roggenbier, Pumpkin Ale
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby beermikester » Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:54 am

I found a thing at Home Depot for a free water test. They give you a postage paid envelope and a small 2oz bottle for sending the water in.

Now, I haven't sent a water sample in yet. My suspicion is that the reason they give you the free analysis is to try to sell you a water softener or something. I was going to send in unfiltered and filtered water, just to see what their analysis showed. But if you don't feel like sending your water to them, you could always go to Home Depot and get one of their kits, and just use the bottle that they give out for free.

Mike

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Re: Reading a water report

Postby tlael » Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:00 am

turkeyjerky214 wrote:Yeah, that's cheap enough that I might as well do it. Any advice on bottling or shipping? They don't seem to give a whole lot of details on their site. I figure I'd just fill an empty water bottle, and then stuff some newspaper in the box with it to keep from getting busted open.


Ward will send you a bottle and shipping tube (with a return label IIRC) "free of charge".
I called 1-800-887-7645 (Ward Labs) and paid for my sample and had the bottle and return shipping label and container within a few days.
-Tim Lael

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Re: Reading a water report

Postby wnordmann » Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:04 am

beermikester wrote:I found a thing at Home Depot for a free water test. They give you a postage paid envelope and a small 2oz bottle for sending the water in.

Now, I haven't sent a water sample in yet. My suspicion is that the reason they give you the free analysis is to try to sell you a water softener or something. I was going to send in unfiltered and filtered water, just to see what their analysis showed. But if you don't feel like sending your water to them, you could always go to Home Depot and get one of their kits, and just use the bottle that they give out for free.

Mike


Send a 3rd bottle inoculated with yeast and see if they pick up the bacteria living in the water.
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby siwelwerd » Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:53 am

wnordmann wrote:Send a 3rd bottle inoculated with yeast and see if they pick up the bacteria living in the water.


<pedant>Yeast are fungi, not bacteria, so innocculating with yeast won't change the bacteria count. </pedant>
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby wnordmann » Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:58 am

I knew Bacteria was the wrong word, I just didn't know the correct one. Thanks for make us all smarter. :)
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby turkeyjerky214 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 9:54 am

Image

So I finally got my water report back from Ward, and I'm having some difficulty getting it inputed correctly into my brew software. Smart people, forgive me for my ignorance. It's been about 12 years since I took chemistry.

- I'm assuming that Ca++ is Calcium, Mg++ is Magnesium, Na+ is Sodium, SO4 is Sulfate, HCO3- is Bicarbonate, and Cl- is Chloride even though on the water report they don't have the + or - that is listed in the software. Is this correct?

- I'm an idiot and sent them water right out of the tap instead of out of my filter. Assuming my carbon filter does what it's supposed to, how will it affect these values?

- When I input the data from the report, BeerTools Pro automatically adjusts the Hardness and Alkalinity, but while the Hardness value lines up with what's in the report, the Alkalinity is way off (38.69 vs 65). When I change the Alkalinity to 65, it changes the Bicarbonate to 53. Any ideas on this?
-Brian

On Tap: Sour Belgian Brown, Amber Ale, Milk Stout, English Dark Mild, American Brown, Vienna Lager

Fermenting: Roggenbier, Pumpkin Ale
Kegged: Dunkelweizen, Hefeweizen, Barleywine
Lagering: Märzen, Doppelbock, Düsseldorf Alt
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby slarkin712 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 12:50 pm

You are correct about the ions. The + and- tell the charge of the ion.
I can't say for certain, but I don't think a carbon filter will change the ion concentrations in your water. It will remove organic compounds and chlorine(not chloride).
The Beersmith alkalinity value may be incorrect because you have the pH entered as 7 and your lab report has 9.4. Alkalinity is related to pH, so this is probably the issue you are seeing.
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby jeffjm » Thu Sep 19, 2013 1:55 pm

When you're reading a ward labs report, they are reporting sulfate as sulfur (note the difference, it's SO4-S on the report, and S04-- in your program.). You need to multiply their value by three in order to get the correct amount of sulfate into your brewing software.
I set out running but I take my time.
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby siwelwerd » Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:17 pm

turkeyjerky214 wrote:- When I input the data from the report, BeerTools Pro automatically adjusts the Hardness and Alkalinity, but while the Hardness value lines up with what's in the report, the Alkalinity is way off (38.69 vs 65). When I change the Alkalinity to 65, it changes the Bicarbonate to 53. Any ideas on this?


Does changing the pH to the reported 9.4 help?

I've read some things that the reported Carbonate, Bicarbonate, and total alkalinity from ward never jive with the theoretical relationships. The advice I've seen is to go with the total alkalinity number. Practically, your report suggests that you will probably want to add some chalk to your brown/black beers, but your pH will be okay for anything amber or lighter. This is what I did when I lived in Rock Hill (which I assume gets the same water as Brentwood), and had good results.
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby turkeyjerky214 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 10:13 pm

slarkin712 wrote:The Beersmith alkalinity value may be incorrect because you have the pH entered as 7 and your lab report has 9.4. Alkalinity is related to pH, so this is probably the issue you are seeing.


I forgot that when I took the screenshot, I hadn't adjusted he pH yet, but the number I listed in my post was correct. When the pH is set at 9.4, the Alkalinity is 38.69.


siwelwerd wrote:I've read some things that the reported Carbonate, Bicarbonate, and total alkalinity from ward never jive with the theoretical relationships. The advice I've seen is to go with the total alkalinity number. Practically, your report suggests that you will probably want to add some chalk to your brown/black beers, but your pH will be okay for anything amber or lighter. This is what I did when I lived in Rock Hill (which I assume gets the same water as Brentwood), and had good results.


When I adjust the Alkalinity with the correct pH input, it changes from 47 to 53. That's a lot closer than I initially thought it was. So you're saying I should rely on the Alkalinity of 65 and Bicarbonate of 53 instead of the reported 47?
-Brian

On Tap: Sour Belgian Brown, Amber Ale, Milk Stout, English Dark Mild, American Brown, Vienna Lager

Fermenting: Roggenbier, Pumpkin Ale
Kegged: Dunkelweizen, Hefeweizen, Barleywine
Lagering: Märzen, Doppelbock, Düsseldorf Alt
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Re: Reading a water report

Postby robininski » Sat Sep 21, 2013 9:28 am

Did NO one listen or read Jeffs post. you must multiply Wards SO4-S (ppm) X 3
If you don't and adjust water (your Sulfate will be too high) (your beer will be crap, too)
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