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Thread: High boil temps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Danielson CT
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    102

    High boil temps

    Hey all,
    I have been experiencing very high boil temps. I am at 223ft elevation. I reach a boil around 220-222.
    Electric brewery, 1.5bbl, PID controlled. I calibrate against a lab thermometer every brew day. I am hitting my mash temps spot on.
    Is this normal? Doesn't really matter what temp it boils at as long as it boils, just seems strange.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Newcastle NSW Australia
    Posts
    182
    I would calibrate your temp controller and check the wiring to your RTD.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Danielson CT
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    102
    Quote Originally Posted by TiminOz View Post
    I would calibrate your temp controller and check the wiring to your RTD.
    As I mentioned I calibrate it against a lab thermometer each brew day, mash temps are always spot on so I don't think it's out of calibration at all. The wiring seems fine...I would think it wouldn't read anything if it wasn't wired correctly, no?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Lakewood, CO
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    29
    Digital temp probes are usually meant to be operated within a certain temp range, and if not spec'd correctly, can be thrown off by high temps. I use a mash tun that has a digital temp probe, and the readout is always a few degrees high. The dial thermometer reads 152, and the digital readout says 158. But we don't rely on the digital probe, so it's not worth calibrating.

    Boiling point elevation happens with any solution, but unless you're boiling simple syrup (~50 brix), 8-10 degrees of elevation is highly unlikely, especially as close to sea level as you are. I'd say it's instrumentation. Given that, as long as you're not losing too much wort to evaporation, I wouldn't worry about it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Shelby, NC
    Posts
    5
    I am 869' elevation and get rolling boil about 207-08F (which is correct for my elevation). I don't think you're calibrated correctly. What's your method of calibration?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Cincinnati, OH
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    374
    Quote Originally Posted by wlw33 View Post
    As I mentioned I calibrate it against a lab thermometer each brew day, mash temps are always spot on so I don't think it's out of calibration at all. The wiring seems fine...I would think it wouldn't read anything if it wasn't wired correctly, no?
    You can also check your PID is set to the proper input signal (IE a PT100 vs K,J,L Thermocouple) but it sounds to me like you may just have a hot spot near your temp probe. I have brewed from 8,500 ft to about 20 ft of altitude with a couple in between and the highest I saw was 213*F at sea level and 206*F at altitude. These were all low pressure steam though, and the reason I have always tried to avoid direct fire or electric is because of hot spots. Temp of boil may not seem to matter too much, but it can have an effect on TBI (possibly effecting the stability of the produced beer), or on evaporation rates (volume loss). Not super important at the average brew-pub level.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Shelby, NC
    Posts
    5
    Here is another thought, where is your probe located? If it is in a port in the tank wall that could be the problem.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    19
    Quote Originally Posted by whunt91 View Post
    Here is another thought, where is your probe located? If it is in a port in the tank wall that could be the problem.
    Agreed. My kettle's probe is in a built-in thermowell sticking in the side of the kettle, passing through the steam jacket, it always reads a few degrees high when the steam is on (presumably because of conduction along the metal of the thermowell). I don't care, boiling is boiling no matter what the displayed number.

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