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Electric heating elements


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I have been researching electric heating elements to either use for sparge water or cleaning, or possibly to use in still heating. Most talk in terms of watts. How do equate wattage to temperature? If something says it has a max wattage of 2500 watts, how do i know how hot that can get or how to understand how much heating that does?

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2500watt = 8500btu approx. Wattage to temp is not possible.

And a c/p from a math book.....

"It depends of the starting temperature of the water.

A BTU is the amount of energy required to raise 1 pound of water 1 degree Fahrenheit ... water weighs about 8.34#/gal ... so 8.34 BTU's are required to raise 1 gallon of water 1 degree F. If your starting temperature of the water was 40 degrees F ... there would be 160 degree rise to 200 degrees or ...

1,334 BTU's are required to raise 1 gallon of water from 40 degrees to 200 degrees Fahrenheit."

You need to factor in difference of alcohol weight for better accuracy, but just water weight for rough power requirements will get you there.

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Ask and ye shall receive... more than you thought you wanted to know...

Will not only tell you how long to a temp for a given volume of water and wattage, but how much energy and $$$ it will take...



Oh, and before someone asks how to calculate the 'efficiency' field that is prepopulated at 95% with a more accurate value, I will answer it... you reverse engineer it by heating some water and taking measurements...

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This is the kind of gem you store away in the goodie bag.

Excellent spreadsheet !!!!!!!!

Has anyone ever tried a control test to find out just how close the figures come to the actual?

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spend a few years in with the geeks at homebrewtalk.com electric brewing forum, and you sill see some cool stuff...

lose yourself for a couple hours or weeks at Kal's site: http://www.theelectricbrewery.com

Here is my brewery controller, that will work good for running two stills automatically. The display is any web browser, I have an iPad on the front now:

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  • 3 months later...

watts / volts = amps but if you run a 240volt element on 110 volts then it drops to 1/4 power.

Your element will get as hot as you will let it get. It will never shut off unless you have a controller. It will boil all of your water until it's gone and then the helmet will burn out.

The biggest thing that you want to watch when you're heating up your still is your watt density that is how many watts per square inch of your element.


Master Distiller

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