Water Bottle as a bulk ager?

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WinoOutWest

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Hi there.
I am wondering is anyone sees any issue with me using my old 5 gallon water bottles for bulk aging? These are the blueish refillable water bottles used for the dispensers. I've got 2 of these (with screw top lids) that I'd like to use for bulk aging so I won't have to top up my wines with water or other wine.
Which, of course, also keeps a few more carboys freed up for another batch or two! :D

My thinking is they should be fine as they are obviously food grade plastic.
Any thoughts?
 

Torch404

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This is a rather big debate in the winemakeing circles. Some say that they are permeable and can cause oxygen to get to your wine. Others say they work just fine for bulk aging. I think most people take the stance of, if it could effect the wine why bother. I've never used one so maybe someone who has will chime in here.
 

arcticsid

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NO! Why take the chance in US $ a 5 gallon better botttle is only like 30 skins a glass one about the same. Not worth the risk. I like the better bottles because they are lighter. 5 gallons of liquid(wine) alone is like 40 pounds, plus the weight of a glass carboy, go with the better bottles. here is a link to their website. Good product, I think most everyone in here who is familiar with them will agree. Good choice. Consider it an investment, they will last forever. The ones you mentioned will be okay for a primary, although that to is debatable. I wouldn't hesitate to use it for a primary, and I have. Now I prefer a bucket. But for bulk aging, don't do it. It's just not worth the chance. Do you want to come back in here in 2 or 3 months and have an entire batch of wine messedup?
http://www.better-bottle.com/technical_left.html
 

WinoOutWest

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Well let me clarify what I am working on:
I've got 3 premium kits on the go + 2 lower end kits to give me something to drink while my premiums are aging. I want to use the water bottles for 1-2 months on the cheapies. So when I say bulk aging in this case I am only really looking to have them in there for most likely a month.
 

cpfan

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Gallons mutter mutter.

A 5 gallon water bottle is 19 litres, ie 5 US gallons. A wine kit makes 23 litre, ie 5 Imperial gallons or 6 US gallons. Minor left-over problem.

I am not in favor of using water bottles, especially old ones (whatever old means in your case).

Why not just bottle the kits and ignore the bottles for a couple of months. There's not much (if any) difference between bulk aging and bottle aging, unless you feel the wine needs extra time to settle.

Steve
 

Lurker

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I agree with Steve as far as bottle aging vs. bulk aging. I have one of the plastics mentioned. The only time I have used it was when I had to rack a glass carboy but did not have any place to put the wine. I racked into the plastic, washed the glass carboy, and racked it right back into glass. I was in plastic for only a few minutes. I do believe that the plastics are permeable. :b
 

Leanne

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I use plastic for the early stages. Why take the risk otherwise?
 

Wade E

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I dont think a month would hurt but wouldnt really go beyond that.
 

WinoOutWest

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Thanks for all the replies - this place is great for us newbies. I've completed one batch now and have 7 more on the go - all in seconds. Not bad for a Jan '10 start to this sport.

I compromised: Going to use one water bottle for a month and I bought 2 5 gal glass carboys today for the others...

Cheers!
:b

p.s. Why do we have a beer cheers smiley but no wine cheers!?
 
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