Do you Need an HLT for Batch Sparge All Grain?

CoolerMashFB10-2TPictured: Brew Hardware’s Mash Tun Conversion KitHands on Review

Many of the cooler all grain system systems on the market include two coolers.  One functions as a Hot Liquor Tank (HLT) the other as a Mash Tun (MLT).  If you’re a batch sparger, you can usually get by with one cooler if you by using a kettle for your hot liquor tank (HLT).  When I first went to all grain, I used my 5 gallon extract kettle to piggy back the first runnings.  Doing this allowed me to temporarily use my boil kettle as a HLT.

It worked something like this…

  1. Heat strike water in boil kettle
  2. Drain strike water into cooler mash tun and mash
  3. Heat sparge water in boil kettle
  4. Recirculate and drain first runnings into 5 gallon extract kettle
  5.  Empty sparge water into cooler mash tun
  6.  Dump first runnings from 5 gallon kettle into boil kettle
  7. Recirculate and drain second runnings into boil kettle
  8. Boil!

Obviously, I batch sparge.  This method would not work with fly/continuous sparging.

Having a large enough kettle to function as a dedicated HLT is preferable, but this piggy back method got me started in all grain at a reasonable cost until I could pick up another kettle.

AlsoAll Grain Tips & Gear | 10 Gallon Mash Tun Conversion Kit [Review] | Cereal Killer Grain MIll | 10 Gallon Cooler for HLT or Mash Tun | My Brewing Spreadsheet [Designed with Batch Sparge in Mind]

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