Saturday, November 26, 2016


 ** Version 2 Now Available **

ezBrewingWater-RO© is a water chemistry calculator created specifically for homebrewers who want to use the best water possible when brewing their beer. When starting out with an RO water source there is no need to interpret water reports or having to guess at water variances associated with seasonal change. Building a brewing water profile, using reverse osmosis or distilled water, is easy to do because salts and other impurities have been stripped away. When starting out with pure brewing water you replace only the salts needed to match the style of beer that you are brewing. Then adjust the pH of your brewing water to optimize enzyme efficiency in the mash. ezBrewingWater-RO© makes even the most complicated brewing water profiles easy to do. With a little practice you will be designing your very own brewing water profiles and actually enjoying the process.  

ezBrewingWater-RO© - The easy way to perfect brewing water!

RO and distilled water have extremely low alkalinity and they are devoid of salts and minerals. They both make the ideal water source to use when creating brewing water profiles that are perfect for any style of beer. ezBrewingWater-RO© makes it easy to choose just the right amount of salts and minerals needed to season brewing water to suite your taste. Adjusting the pH of your brewing water so that the mash stays within an optimal pH range, based on the type of grains used in a recipe, has never been easier to do. ezBrewingWater-RO© is the easy way to perfect brewing water!

Download ezBrewingWater-RO© Version Two 

Homebrewers already know that water is the single largest ingredient used in the beer that they brew. Many have heard it said, or possibly read somewhere that "If your water tastes good, you can brew good beer with it" and yes, of course, that makes perfect sense. But what exactly is in water that makes it 'taste good' and what enables it to make 'good beer'? After all, the water piped into your home today looks and tastes just fine. It contains no sediment, it is sparkling clear in a glass and it tastes good; even if it were to have a slight chlorine aroma. Water like this should be perfect for brewing a 'good beer' right? The simple answer is no, at least not by today's homebrewing standards.

Getting Started:

Enter The Volume Of Water To Be Treated

ezBrewingWater-RO© was created to be used with reverse osmosis, commonly known as RO water, or distilled water. Both types of purified water, RO, and Distilled have been stripped clean of any salts, minerals and other impurities that the source water contained. The water produced by either process has extremely low alkalinity, is devoid of salts or minerals and makes the perfect base water to use when creating any brewing water profile. RO and distilled water are both inexpensive to use and are readily available to buy in many local stores.

Enter The Grains Used In Your Recipe

The flavor and alkalinity of RO water can be restored by replacing measured amounts of salt and mineral content that were stripped away during filtration. Adding measured amounts of gypsum, calcium chloride, Epsom salt and Baking Soda to RO water also adjusts the sulfate to chloride ratio of your brewing water; making it more suitable for any style of beer. The pH level of your mash water can be raised by adding Baking Soda or it can be lowered by adding Lactic Acid, or the mash itself can be lowered by the addition of acidulated malt directly in the mash.

The type of grains used in a recipe determines the acidity of the mash, darker more acidic grains will lower mash pH much more than lighter grains such as 6-Row and wheat. To achieve the best enzyme activity and conversion of starch to sugar the recommended mash pH range is between 5.3 and 5.5 at 77F. Wort produced using a water profile that keeps the mash pH within this range, or 5.1 to 5.3 at mash temperatures, also helps to enhance the performance of yeast during fermentation while discouraging the growth of bacteria. 

Enter The Amount Of Salt, Mineral And Acid To Match Your Beer Style

Homebrewing combines the art of recipe creation with the science of brewing, including the science of water chemistry. Throughout recorded history, the most famous styles of beer originated in unique geological locations. Two prominent styles that come to mind are Kölsch from Cologne, Germany and Dry Irish Stout from Dublin, Ireland. The soft waters of the Cologne Basin give Kölschbier its authentic soft mouth feel while the hard, alkaline waters of Dublin, Ireland accentuate the dry creamy mouthfeel of Stout.

Review The Calculated Water Alkalinity And Mash pH Values

Eliminating chlorine is a very important first step when preparing your brewing water. Chlorine in brewing water is notorious for causing off flavors in beer but fortunately, it is easily removed by slowly running the water through an activated carbon block filter. Chloramines in brewing water will also cause off flavors in the beer and they can be removed through activated carbon block filtering too. The ability to remove chlorine and chloramines are governed by the amount of activated carbon that the water flows through and by the length of contact time the water has with the activated carbon.  

Now that all traces of chlorine or chloramines have been removed the brewing water is perfect for brewing a 'good beer' right? Yes it is, but unfortunately, it is not good enough to brew a great beer. Great beers are brewed using water that has the just the right levels of salts, minerals, alkalinity, pH and a few other important properties. The improvements needed to turn good brewing water into great brewing water requires the use of some very powerful chemistry formulas. A water chemistry calculator like ezBrewingWater-RO© lets you focus on creating the perfect water profile for your next beer without having to worry about the complex chemistry that is involved.


If it were not for the pioneering spirit of visionaries such as John Palmer, Colin Kominski, Kai Troester, AJ Delange and Martin Brungard, brewing water calculators like ezBrewingWater-RO© would not be available to the homebrewing community today. Their tireless dedication and commitment, to applying the laws of science and water chemistry to homebrewing, has given rise to the immense popularity and the superior quality of homebrewed beer.      


  1. Does not work in LibreOffice.

  2. Unfortunately it does not work with Google Sheets also, hopefully at some point open source initiatives will become more compatible with MS Excel.

  3. LibreOffice calc can have problems with .xlsx files. I tried a conversion tool to create a .xls file that I could open. But the result was too badly formatted to be useful. If it is as saved as .xls from Excel, is it usable?

    1. I have to admit, before this post I never heard of LibreOffice. I have begun creating a Google Sheets version. I am trying to figure out how to make the sheet version available to users, without them modifying the gold copy of ezBrewingWater-RO.

  4. The LibreOffice version 2 of ezBrewingWater-RO© is now available for download.

  5. Ok, this is going to take a while....water calculators for dummies. I use RO water, but I just don't understand how to operate any of the water Calculators. I’ve got to be missing a basic idea of how this type of Calculator works. I'n not the brightest tool in the shed, but there is some brain function left in me. I generally follow the Homebrewtalk water primer, but want to be able to use someone’s water Calculator.

    Let’s say I’m brewing Centennial blonde.

    Step one: as a full volume BIAB brewer, I enter my total water necessary in the brewing water box. It’s 8.5G.

    Step 2; enter my grains. 2 row, Crystal 20, Vienna, Cara pils/dextrin.

    Step 3: "Enter the Amount Of Salt, Mineral And Acid To Match Your Beer Style"

    I’m simply baffled.

    Isn't the calculator supposed to tell me how much of each addition to use? How can I enter the amounts if I don’t know what the amounts are?

    1. In a perfect world, yes. Unfortunately there is more to it than just that. I would start out reading about the style on the BJCP website. There you will learn details of the style origins and possibly gain insight into the water properties of the region of the world it originated in.

      From there you can 'flavor' your water to match that of the style by adding brewing salts. Brewing salt additions will affect the alkalinity, sulfate and other water properties. Which influence the perceived bitterness versus maltiness of the beer.

      Each grain type, produced by each maltster, has a DI pH value associated with it. The combination and ratio of grains in a recipe produce a calculated mash pH value. The calculated mash pH value is only as accurate as the malt DI pH values used in the calculation.

      At 77F the accepted optimal range for mash pH is between 5.3 and 5.5. You can begin to see now how your grain bill will also require an acid addition to lower the mash pH value. The averaged mash pH of your grain bill, left untreated with an acid addition, is higher than 5.5. Using any calculator, in conjunction with saving your actual mash pH values, is the best way to proceed.