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Water treatment systems references?

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  • Water treatment systems references?

    Running multiple 30hl brews/day on borewells. The borewells have terrible water chemistry: very high TDS, Mg, hardness, alkalinity. We have a reasonably elaborate water treatment system patched together by multiple water "professionals". Sand filtration, fines filtration, mixed bed ion exchange, chlorine injection, storage, and RO--including a dosed descaling agent--before further storage prior to use in the brewhouse. I'm looking for up-to-date reference materials that will help me understand what specific equipment--and in what sequence--is best for our situation. I'm beyond Palmer's book; looking more for describing and designing the systems necessary for our situation; not how water quality affects brewing. Issues such as: What other issues might good-tasting water have? Is hypochlorite the best way to assure microbial stability in water storage tanks? Where is the best place for its injection? Is a carbon filter necessary? Where? Appreciate any help with this! Thanks!
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

  • #2
    That's a pretty broad request. The place any water treatment professional is going to want to start is with data describing your water chemistry - i.e., lab results. Without starting there, any solutions offered you may or may not fit your situation. If you're just looking for general reference materials re water treatment - that topic is very broad and the resulting list is nearly endless.

    Water Treatment Systems & Supplies 513-312-2343


    • #3
      Ozonation is also a good alternative of hypochlorite treatment, but you need to ensure that Ozone is depleted before any brewing process. Just treat your water prior to discharge, it quickly converts to oxygen and leaves no residues (Decay rate is very high and needs to be generated onsite).

      Others oxidizing agents are activated peroxygen + Inline UV treatment.

      If your water is free from Chlorine, ammonia and other odour causing agents are within limits I don't think carbon filtration is required and in another case if your water contains any fouling matter then Hypo dose is required before the RO membrane, followed by SMBS treatment to counter free chlorine from Hypo solution.

      You can use carbon filter before membrane to ensure all free chlorine from the Hypo is removed.



      • #4
        Phillip - I've sent you a PM

        Re water sanitation - I would use Chlorine Dioxide or Hypochlorous acid rather than chlorine as it is non tainting. I used to work for one the largest international brewers, and their preference was ClO2. However, hypochlorous acid was coming in at the time I was made redundant, and from what I saw on fruit juice bottling lines, was better than chlorine, UV or ozone. Ozone can be a bit destructive of "rubber" seals, chlorine simply isn't as effective at low dose rates, and UV (like sterile filtration) has no residual kill activity after dosing, unlike Cl2, ClO2 or O3, so any distribution pipework post treatment. Another downside to O3 is that in the levels required (assuming my calculations were correct!) if using for beer dilution in particular, it can raise the beer's DO2 way, way out of acceptable spec.


        • #5
          I haven't got a copy of this particular one, so am not sure exactly what it covers - the EBC blue book. Currently reduced form about 100 euros to 20 euros - plus postage



          • #6
            Download our free e-book and learn everything you need to know about the raw water treatment process, including cost, treatment options, and more!

            Free book! Downloadable


            • #7
              Thanks for the feedback! We're finding it quite the challenge to get perfect water.

              Russ: Our water isn't fit to drink. Samples are analyzed every 6 months. As I said, they're awful. TDS > 500ppm, Mg ~ 40ppm, alk ~ 250ppm, Cl ~ 100ppm, and presence of coliforms are normal. As is about 0.5ppm Fe. So RO is compulsory. My question is what constitutes an effective pre and post treatment for our RO. My current SOP is that we chlorinate incoming raw water after sand and cartridge filters and prior to storage. Then charcoal filter to remove chlorine & odors prior to RO storage as brewing water. Our water "professionals" recommend mixed bed treatment prior to RO, but I can't see others doing the same. I need to educate myself on what constitutes an effective RO pre and post treatment.

              Dheeraj: We're going the way Dick suggested with Chlorine Dioxide. Although the residuals dissipate quickly, our storage residence times aren't over a few days to a week max. So I'm not sure whether it's worth SMBS treatment prior to RO. And yes, a large carbon filter with about 4 minutes theoretical residence time.

              Dick: Thanks for the links!
              Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--


              • #8
                Mixed bed resin BEFORE the RO? Can't imagine a situation where that would be something we'd recommend. Can you email us your lab results?

                Iron needs to be removed before the RO
                Mn needs to be removed before the RO
                Do you have any H2S?

                Proper pretreatment is dependent upon your water testing results.

                Water Treatment Systems & Supplies