Blichmann AutoSparge

SKU: 40618

This elegantly simple sparge mechanism automatically sets the hot liquor flow rate and liquid level in your mash / lauter tun. See John Blichmann explain this product here!


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Availability: Out of stock

$69.99

Blichmann AutoSparge

Details

Finally a sparging system that's a "set-it-and-forget-it" design! This elegantly simple sparge mechanism automatically sets the hot liquor flow rate and liquid level in your mash / lauter tun. As you change the sparge rate into your boil kettle, the AutoSparge™ automatically responds by increasing or decreasing your hot liquor flow to compensate and keeps a constant level in your tun. Awesome for RIMS systems!

Works great with gravity systems OR with pumps! Wort gently rotates on top of grain bed to reduce channeling, oxygen pick-up, and to increase extraction efficiency. WIth a constant hot liquor level over your grain bed, complicated rotating sparge arms are unnecessary complications!

Valve body and float ball with rod are 100% stainless steel. Includes 18" silicone hose and stainless hose float. Requires a 13/16 mounting hole. Threads accept a 1/2" female NPT fitting.

Fits any pot larger than 12" in diameter including converted kegs. Adaptable to coolers.

Additional Information

Support Documents: N/A

Customer Reviews

I love it, others may not. Review by Daniel
Rating
While I totally understand the perspective of the negative reviews for the Autosparge, I have had nothing but good experiences after twenty plus batches using it. For a fly-sparge setup it is exactly what I needed to implement a low-maintenance system for controlling the flow from my HLT without constantly monitoring the valve. It has allowed me to focus on other things like runoff SG, kettle volume, and pH instead of constantly worrying about under/over-filling the mashtun. Thanks for a great design, Blichmann. I wish I could afford more than just your accessories, but you still rock. (Posted on 11/6/14)
works great! Review by SpotTab
Rating
I use mine for gravity-fed sparge water and it works like a champ. I can leave my RIMS system unattended for 40 minutes during sparge, and it’s foolproof. My only quibble is the same as Ken’s (4 posts below): the threads are 1/2" straight, not NPT as advertised. John was helpful when I emailed him about this, but I think it would be a better unit with tapered threads that would work with any old NPT fitting. Fortunately, I have access to a machine shop at work so I just zipped mine through an NPT die to correct the problem. Otherwise, a great product and much better than trying to adapt a toilet float valve to a brewing application. (Posted on 12/7/12)
Do not use with a pump Review by fxbghokie
Rating
I could not restrict the pump flow enough to keep liquid from blowing past the shutoff valve. It might work better gravity fed. Blichmann should make that clear in the description. I own several Blichmann products and this is the only one I do not recommend. (Posted on 6/20/12)
Shaft too short!! Review by DonPippins
Rating
Brewing 13 gallons in a Blichmann 20 gallon pot last week end. The autosparge was connected into the pot near the rim and the rod was much too short to reach the grain bed and still float. Looking for a longer rod !!!
If you're brewing less than 15gal in a 20 gallon pot you'll have to find a longer rod too ! Or find some other way to adjust the height where it is installed ??!! (Posted on 4/26/12)
Second time was a charm Review by Jeremy @ Geaux Brewing
Rating
After talking with Blichmann Engineering when we first purchased this and not getting the results we wanted, we returned it. Decided to give it another try and buy it again to use on our last brew session and it worked darn near flawlessly. Even using a March 809 HS at wide open, there was very little leakage.

While I used to hold the same opinion of some of the negative reviews here, I can now say that the AutoSparge has found a permanent place in our brew rig. (Posted on 4/21/12)
Love it Review by Ken
Rating
I have done many batches and it works just great. Creating a nice slow whirlpool about the bed. I use a March pump and a tee and ball valve before the AutoSparge valve. The ball valve to cut down pressure/flow to Autosparge which stops the valve leakage. Then the other port of the tee is a return line to the HLT. Keeps water in the continuously flowing return loop hot as the flow into mash is low. I maintain about 1" of water above bed. Keeps a perfect level. Another trick is the AutoSparge threads are 1/2" straight and not normal tapered pipe threads. Use the Blichmann quick connects which have matching threads and you get more turns on the AutoSparge then just a few turns using a tapered fitting. (Posted on 3/2/12)
Clarification on operation Review by Blichmann Engineering
Rating
Hello all. John here from Blichmann Engineering. It is normal for some wort to leak out the end of the unit during operation. The clearance is intentional and no rubber seals are used to prevent the piston from sticking from wort and grain particles. This wort just drains onto the top of the mash bed so is not an issue. It will still fully shut off and control flow as needed as the float rises.

If you have an earlier model with seals in them simply remove them and any sticking issues should be resolved.

If you are still experiencing sticking this is not normal. Please contact us at feedback@blichmannengineering.com and we'll work with you to get it resolved. (Posted on 12/15/11)
Worked good the first 8 uses, then failed & broke Review by CrudeBrewCrew David
Rating
I love the idea of it, & the first 8 times I used it... it worked great! Unfortunately, it broke & is now missing internal parts (which probably got thrown out in the last spent grain mash) and now just freely flows out water... I think the idea is there, but needs more work! (Posted on 11/30/11)
DO NOT BUY THIS! Review by Brian
Rating
This is a complete waste of money, the valve sticks after a few times and it leaked. I rebuilt it but continued to have probelems. It never worked as described. A complete waste of time and money. (Posted on 9/1/11)
Poor engineering. Review by Charlie
In theory this is a great idea. I tried to use this on my system to recirculate as well as sparging, but on my first attempt at using it, it leaked out of the front where the shaft moves in and out to control the flow more than out of the hose. I'm glad I put a ball valve in front of it so I could control the flow manually. I'm heading down to Home Depot tomorrow to look for a toilet float and valve to replace this with. Man I'm am so disappointed with Blichmann Engineering. (Posted on 9/1/11)
Works well. Review by Hooblus
Rating
No problems with the Auto Sparge on my system. Very happy with the performance. I use it for recirculation on a RIMS and for sparging. Very happy with it. (Posted on 6/27/11)
Doesn't work for me Review by rick
Rating
I tried this during 5 brew sessions as RIMS and for sparging. Used a March pump rated max 5psi. It spews liquid around the valve and air enters when valve opens/closes or when pump output reduced. Pump loses its prime and lots of time wasted regaining temps and stopping sparge to reprime. Nothing auto about this thing. I have returned mine. (Posted on 5/6/11)
works better if gravity fed Review by dad'slackey
Rating
I have used this product for 25 batches - until this last batch I used a March pump to supply water and had to mess with the darn thing during the sparge - For this last batch, I removed the pump from the equation and it worked exactly like I had always wanted. I have not had a single issue with a sticking valve. I would like to be able to set the float level a little lower, maybe now with a gravity fed syatem, I'll be able to do that. It sure does take ALOT of the hassle out of sparging (Posted on 2/4/11)
Works well the first two batches...but then. Review by Thomas Dobson
Rating
Works well initially but then begin to stick. Save your money. Balance the flow in and flow out manually. (Posted on 1/30/11)
Great Product Review by Jeremy
Rating
This piece of equipment quickly won me over after using it for the first time. I can't say I wasn't a little puzzled about he it was supposed to work until I actually had it in my hands. It has been love ever since. Fly sparging has never been so easy. (Posted on 1/4/11)
Don't even use the float feature Review by Cam
Rating
I've had the autospare and have brewed more than 10 batches of beer using this piece of equipment. I have never had a problem with the valve sticking, but I always found it a burden to set the float. I would want it to maintain level about 2 inches above the grain bed, so I would always try to set it towards the end of my first runnings. I found that very frustrating, so now I just keep the lid on my pot to maintain the heat inside and set my sparge rate using the outlet valve of my HLT. I have found this to be much easier, so I don't even use the float feature. I don't think I would purchase this product again if given the choice. (Posted on 12/29/10)
Set it and forget it. Review by Matthew
Rating
I've used this since I started AG brewing. I get consistent efficiency results every time making sparging one of my easiest tasks while brewing.

I measure out how much sparge water I need and the AutoSparge primarily acts to not overflow my mash tun, maintaining 2-3 inches above the grain bed until my hot liquor tun is empty.

When done cleaning I dry it and give the piston chamber a few blasts of compressed air to dry. This seems to prevent any corrosion or piston action issues for me.

Don’t think I would sparge without it!
(Posted on 11/9/10)
Total Waste of Money Review by Brian
Rating
The system worked in a lmited way initially but eventually started leaking so much I had to buy a gasket kit. That didn't work and I have thrown it into the corner. If you want to try this, buy one from someone who bought it and doesn't use it. A total waste of money. Poorly constructed and bad engineering. (Posted on 10/30/10)
Great for one or two brew days Review by Beerman
Rating
When first used, this is pretty accurate and resourceful compared to what is available. However, after a few brew sessions, the piston begins to cease during sparging, which leads to less than accurate sparging or a dry grain bed...great concept, horrible construction. It's a horrible investment and doesn't function properly consistently. Save your money! (Posted on 9/16/10)
Works Great Review by david
This has made the process so much easier. My auto sparge is new and I have only used it twice. However, both times it did its job, automate the sparge and let me sit back without worrying about matching the water flow between the Mash Tun and the Boiler.

My only issues are that you must preset the heigth of the arm above the grain bed. Otherwise, you'll struggle to adjust it at 170 degrees during the sparge, which is painful. Also, if your grain bed is too low due to a deep mash tun, it doesn't work. The solution is to purchase a longer "float arm" online at a plumming supply store. Check with Northern Brewer to see if they carry it. I didn't see one, but you never know unless you ask.

Cool tool,
David Lester
Maltose Falcons (Posted on 9/5/10)
Works well initially but.... Review by NeuroJoe
Rating
Even after cleaning the mash/lautertun thoroughly after each batch, the piston and cylinder inside the brass valve oxidizes, which prevents the piston from moving smoothly. So even if the float wants to rise and shut off the flow of water from your hot liquor tank, the sticking piston prevents this and water continues to fill the mash/lautertun. (Posted on 7/30/10)
Once past the learning curve this is well worth the money. Review by Edwin
Rating
You have to have at least 2+ inches of sparge water above the mash in order to ensure you dont disturb the grain bed. I use a March pump to transfer my sparge water so you will also have to restrict the pump output in order to ensure the pressure dosent force the auto sparge valve open. Other than that just make sure that you set the arm level before sparging! Otherwise you will burn yourself trying to fix it! (Posted on 3/13/10)

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