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advise on steam needed

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  • advise on steam needed

    Hello all,
    As I'm finally getting a bit closer to setting up the equipment I've had sitting storage for 2 years, I now have to start looking around for a steam boiler.
    How do I figure out the steam requirment for a 30 hl, 3 vessel brewhouse ?
    Also, what are your feelings regarding electrical steam generators and gas fired boilers?


  • #2
    I have a 100 psig electrical fired steam boiler for my 7 bbl brewhouse -- my feeling is that if you are on top of your maintenance, they work great. You might want to look up the specs on the ES series of boilers at Sussmann's website, mine is the ES-72, and is adequate for my brewhouse; a 30hl house would certainly require more BTU/hr rating than mine.
    Every other brewhouse I've worked in used *huge* gas fired boilers (on the order of 1.2-1.5 mBTU) for their requirments. YMMV.
    "By man's sweat and God's love, beer came into the world" -- St. Arnold of Metz


    • #3
      Boiler requirements can vary depending on how you will use the brewhouse, ie. simultaneous batches, steam heat in the mash tun, brewing water from the HL tank, etc.. Generally speaking, you should be looking at approx. 45-50k BTU per bbl for a low pressure steam boiler on a 3 vessel brewhouse. For a 30HL system that roughly equals a low pressure boiler input BTU of 1.2-1.5 million BTU.

      We have always used low pressure (<15 PSI) steam for several reasons: natural gas is almost always less expensive to use than electricity, and the cost and regulatory requirements on low pressure boilers is much less than that of high pressure boilers. However, electric boilers may be simpler to operate, require less space, and have no water treatment issues.


      • #4
        Just a correction on my part, I should have said electric boilers may have fewer water treatment issues rather than none.


        • #5
          I would go with the higher - 1.5 Mbtu would be my minimum for a 30hL system.

          The incremental costs of going with a larger boiler can be small if you go for a modular design.

          Electric boilers, while efficient and responsive can be expensive to operate.

          Have you thought about a high efficiency oil burner (like #7 heating oil)?

          We do that here and works a charm. Electricity is phenomenally expensive, no natural gas and propane is only alternative.

          Oil tanks are stored inside (> five feet from burner). They are new but should last at least 30 years.


          Liam McKenna


          • #6
            Hi again, couldn't get back to you before but thanks for your replies.
            I haven't got experience with low pressure steam and I know that my brewing equipment has been designed for high pressure steam. The wort kettle has 3 steam zones with the cone in the middle requireing higher pressure to create a good, rolling boil.
            How does 1.5 million BTU boiler input for a low pressure system translate into a high pressure boiler input requirement?

            I looked up the Sussmann ES72 Rob. It's a 72 kW boiler which would mean that I would roughly need 260 kW input. I'm a bit concerned about the electricity cable requierment for that no. of kW's and also the cost of running it.



            • #7
              oil burner

              Hi all,
              This is kind of off the subject but has anyone used their fryer oil as biodiesel in their oil buring boilers? Being a brewpub with two large fryers, I was thinking it would be easy to setup and eco friendly. Shoot me a message if anyone has this setup. Thanks

              MickDuff's Brewing Co.


              • #8

                Sam at Red Lodge Ales is a self-distributing brewer and collects the used fry oil from his accounts. He then makes bio-diesel to run the delivery truck and power his oil-fired boiler. He's a real nice guy and I'm sure would be happy to help. You can reach him at


                • #9
                  Low Pressure Steam Boilers

                  I do not know if it is a fit for your industry but I have {2} Kewanne 300HP firetube steam boilers 15 psig with water feed sytem. Year new 2000/2001 with complete set of manuals. They have never been put into service. Can be loaded on your truck. Location Mount Clemens,Mi. Pictures provided on request. Best Offer

                  Thanks Jack Michaels