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Listed are the contributions in parts per million (ppm) of each compound per gram added per gallon (and per liter in parenthesis) of water you wish to treat.  In other words, if you want to treat a single gallon of water and you add one gram of listed compound, you will get the listed addition.  I typically only use calcium sulfate, calcium chloride, and lactic acid.

  • Gypsum aka Calcium Sulfate, CaSO4: 61.4 (232.4) ppm Ca, 147.5 (558.3) ppm SO4; great for enhancing hop bitterness and adding calcium
  • Calcium Chloride aka CaCl2: 71.9 ppm (272.2) Ca, 127.5 (482.6) ppm Cl; great for enhancing maltyness and adding calcium
  • Chalk aka Calcium Carbonate, CaCO3: 105.7 (400.1) ppm Ca, 322.3 (1220) ppm CO3; limited usefulness because chalk does not dissolve well in water (about 1 gram per 5 gallons max or less- see part 3.5 for limits and a trick to increase it), but good when used in small amounts to add Ca and alkalinity
  • Baking Soda aka Sodium Carbonate, NaHCO3: 72.3 (273.7) ppm Na, 191.9 (726.4) ppm CO3; good for adding alkalinity, but limited usefulness because it also adds sodium
  • Pickling/Slaking Lime aka Calcium Hydroxide, Ca(OH)2: 142.8 (540.6) ppm Ca, 434.8 (1646) ppm (OH); great for adding alkalinity and Ca, but it can be dangerous to work with; only add to the mash directly to avoid a dramatic pH increase
  • Epsom Salt aka Magnesium Sulfate, MgSO4: 26.1 (98.8) ppm Mg, 103 (389.9) ppm SO4; not very useful because Mg should be kept low
  • Table Salt aka Sodium Chloride, NaCl: 104 (393.7) ppm Na, 160.3 (606.8) ppm Cl; use only non-iodized; not very useful because of added sodium
  • Magnesium Chloride aka MgCl2: 31.6 (117) ppm Mg, 92.2 (349) ppm Cl; not very useful because Mg should be kept low
  • Lactic Acid aka C3H6O3: used to reduce alkalinity, and therefore residual alkalinity (RA), by 100 ppm per 0.64 mL acid per gallon (0.17 mL per liter) at the common strength of 88%; 88% lactic acid has a specific gravity of 1.21 (1.21 g per mL); taste threshold 300-400 ppm minimum (for some people much more): translates to 1.1-1.4 mL per gallon (0.28-0.38 mL per liter) of 88% lactic acid
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