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Copper Coils and Wort Chillers


Monitoring the temperature of the wort is necessary when making beer. When the temperature falls below 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60oC) even before any fermentation activity is observed, the beer is at high risk of being contaminated with bacteria and wild yeast strains. In order to reduce this risk, it is important for the wort to spend as little time as possible in this temperature range. Thus, force cooling is usually employed by home brewers so that the yeasts can take effect without the risk of contamination.

The hot wort needs to be cooled down to reduce the production of dimethyl sulfide which can affect the flavour of the entire beer. Dimethyl sulfide is produced in large volumes during the boiling process. And once the boiling process stops, so does the natural removal of the gas. If the dimethyl sulfide is not removed, it produces a flavour and aroma reminiscent of sweet canned corn.

There are many techniques and equipment that home brewers use to cool down the wort and one of them is copper coils as wort chillers. Copper, in brewing metallurgy, has the highest conductivity of heat thus it can handle hot wort well. It is also inert and it builds up a stable oxide layer that protects any interaction with the wort; thus, the flavour of the wort remains the same. (more info below)
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However, copper can develop into a toxic blue-green oxide which is made up of copper sulfate, cupric acetate, and cupric chloride. To avoid the formation of this toxic substance on the copper coil, cleaning it with vinegar is necessary. Do not use oxidizers like bleach and hydrogen peroxide because it corrodes the surface which makes it weak in handling the acidic wort.

If you are looking for copper coils and wort chillers, Ontario Beer Kegs has various sizes and dimensions. There is sure to be one to fit your needs