Hydrometers are one of the most important tools in the brewing process. They allow you to measure the specific gravity (SG) of your wort or beer, which allows you to know exactly how much sugar is left in your brew. This enables you to know when it is ready to be fermented.
But there are so many hydrometers on the market, and they all seem to have different features and prices. So how do you choose? Well, we’re here to help with our top best hydrometers for brewing!
List of top best hydrometers for brewing
#1: The Brew Supply Alcohol Hydrometer and Cylinder Combo Kit
This is the ultimate homebrew kit for your home brewery. Why? Because it has everything you need to make sure your readings are accurate and easy to read: a triple scale hydrometer with protective case, transparent plastic 250ml cylinder, gentle cleaning brush, microfibre cleaning cloth, easy to understand instruction manual and a complimentary carrying bag.
Whether you’re a casual homebrewer or a seasoned pro, this kit is ideal for setting up your own brewery at home so you can be assured every batch of beer, wine, cider or mead tastes great and is as consistent as possible.
- Triple scale hydrometer with protective case
- Transparent 250ml cylinder which holds the hydrometer and reading chart
- Easy to understand instructions, easy to read measuring ranges
- Two year warranty
- 30 day money back guarantee.
#2: Brewer’s Elite Hydrometer
This hydrometer is perfect for all of your home brewing needs. Featuring a graduated, color-coded scale, the Brewer’s Elite Hydrometer is easy to read and works with any liquid. Use it to quickly calculate the alcohol content of your brew, and with its triple-scale feature, you’ll be able to accurately know when fermentation is complete. It’s a one-of-a-kind tool for avid home brewers and hobbyists, providing the perfect tool for measuring specific gravity, potential alcohol content and percent alcohol by volume.
This home brew hydrometer is the perfect way to measure the progress of your homemade beer, wine, mead or kombucha. From brewing to bottling and aging and everything in between, it’s the ideal companion for your home brewery. Store it in our included cloth pouch when not in use .
- Features a graduated scale system with 1/20th unit graduations.
- Easy-to-read, snap-on rubber sleeve designed with triple scale.
- Nine (9) inches in length – approximately half length of standard beer bottle.
- Measures undiluted alcohol content at 40% ABV and above.
#3: Brewer’s Elite Hydrometer & Test Jar
This is the perfect tool for you if you are a home brewer or making kombucha. With specific gravity hydrometers, graduated color bands and an easy to read design, this kit makes it easy to test the alcohol content of your home brewed beer or wine. These hydrometers include a storage case, cloth, and cleaning brush as well. The second product on our list is a great tool for home brewers and kombucha enthusiasts alike.
This hydrometer testing kit includes a 250ml capacity container with a lid, and a long measuring stick. The product measures specific gravity, alcohol content and Brix. Brewing experts can also use this tool to test the alcohol content of their wine/beer, kombucha or mead. This triple-scale hydrometer includes accurate graduated color bands that show when the final alcoholic content has been reached. The simple design is great to use and easy to read with all glass construction for durability.
- Measures Specific Gravity, Alcohol Content and Brix
- Triple Scale Hydrometer – 0.99 – 1.16 g/ml
- Includes 250 ml capacity container with a lid and measuring stick
- Made of glass and plastic for durability
- Comes with a convenient storage case, cleaning cloth, and alcohol content chart
#4: Brewing America Thermo-Hydrometer ABV Tester Triple Scale for BEER/WINE
This product offers both accuracy and convenience. This high-quality velvety packing box helps you organize your kit. The transparent cylinder enables you to visually check the solution and make sure your hydrometer is completely submerged in the solution. Our kit also includes a brush for cleaning the equipment, as well as a bottle of pure ethanol for calibrating purposes.
- large, easy-to-read thermometer
- large, fine temperature scale
- durable, high-quality triple scale
- accurate reading down to 0.0004 specific gravity
#5: North Mountain Supply – NMSPT-H Glass Hydrometer
This hydrometer is a great tool to have in your home bar or professional bar. This hydrometer will allow you to make the perfect drink when entertaining guests at home or keeping your patrons happy while serving them their favorite spirit.
The glass hydrometer is packaged in a protective hard plastic case and comes in two color options – Silver and Gold. It is ready to use right out of the box. All you have to do is simply place your spirit in the top of the case and give it a gentle swirl, then place the thermometer into your spirit and watch as it rises to the top. The display will tell you exactly how much your spirit is! This tool will come with all you need including a cleaning cloth and complete instructions.
- Measures alcohol content between 0-200 proof or 0-100% Tralle
- Comes packaged in a plastic case with instructions
- Two colors to choose from: silver or gold
#6: Home Brew Stuff HYDROMETER
This hydrometer is a necessity for the hard-working home brewer. With a range of 0 to 200% proof, it can measure anything from beer to wine; and from cider to champagne. This instrument has a long stem and is great for measuring your finished produc
new in box
It can measure up to 200 proof, so it’s great for measuring both low alcohol and high alcohol liquids. The scale is on the side of the unit, so you don’t have to move it from your container to read the measurement. This is especially helpful when dealing with small containers. It also has a long stem that makes it ideal for reading a range of samples. Simply dip and read! Includes full instructions for use.
- Measures up to 200 proof.
- Features a unique scale printed on the side.
- Long stem for measuring samples in containers.
- Full instructions for use included.
#7: Brewing America Brewing Hydrometer Alcohol Tester Kit
The new and improved American-made specific gravity alcohol tester kit combines state-of-the-art science with a stylish, sleek design. It’s the perfect gift for any wine and beer enthusiast who wants to learn more about their brews. Taking a reading is easy; just put the probe into your brew, push the tester rod into the test tube, and then read results on the scale at the top of the hydrometer. Do this once a day for a few days in a row to get an accurate reading.
This hydrometer kit is made in the USA and includes a high quality borosilicate glass test cylinder with an American-made stainless steel bottle brush (not plastic) that’s specifically made for our narrow cylinder.
- Hydrometer is made in the USA
- High quality borosilicate glass test cylinder
- Test tube with a narrow opening and brush (only for this hydrometer)
- Measuring range: 0 to 19.95 ppg. (Standard US measurements are 20 to 120 ppg.
#8: Chefast Hydrometer and Test Jar for Wine, Beer, Mead and Kombucha
You know what’s sucky about regular hydrometers and test jars? They only come in two boring styles. That’s no fun. You know what is fun? The Chefast Kit to make pinpoint measurements of your home brew. This sweet little tester set is made with a triple-scale hydrometer for accurate readings to 1.17 specific gravity, a 250mL plastic cylinder for making your home brew perfect and a well-designed test jar in which to do it.
- Triple-scale hydrometer for accurate readings to 1.17 specific gravity
- 250mL plastic cylinder for making your home brew perfect
- Well-designed test jar in which to do it
- Includes cleaning brush.
#9: Home Brew Ohio PF-KS8O-08O0 Hydrometer, Triple Scale, Multicolor
Take your homebrewing to the next level with this hydrometer. Easy to read and use, this hydrometer will help you measure specific gravity, potential alcohol and brix on all you brews! All-in-one hydrometer that can be used for beer and wine, this handy tool provides instructions for your convenience.
- Easy to read
- Allows brewing tea breweries and homebrew brix alcohol content.
#10: Homebrew Guys Triple Scale Hydrometer Kit. Best for Beer, Wine, Juice, Cider
This kit is a must-have tool for beer, wine, cider, juice or any other liquid with sugar. This handy 3 in 1 tool allows you to quickly and accurately measure vital information and help you brew, ferment and enjoy your delicious home brew with confidence.
The single scale hydrometer helps you to measure the gravity content of liquids and whether fermentation has completed by measuring the specific gravity (SG). The BRIX scale tells you the sugar content in a liquid and allows you to determine if a liquid is right for fermentation. The potential Alcohol scale (PA) gives you an estimate of how much alcohol will be in your finished brew based on SG readings. This handy tool also comes with a PLASTIC test tube that holds 8 fl oz and measures 250 ml.
- Easily measure specific gravity, BRIX (sugar) and potential alcohol.
- 3 scales allow you to measure the sugar content of liquids and estimate the alcohol content to be included in your finished brew.
- Includes handy plastic test tube that holds 8 fl oz and measures 250 ml.
- Made of high quality stainless steel for accurate results every time.
Things to consider when purchasing a hydrometer for brewing
When purchasing a hydrometer for brewing, there are several important factors to consider.
The most common analytical ranges for hydrometers are 0-60° Plato (°P). This is the ideal range for most beer styles. Some styles, like barley wines and imperial stouts, may require a higher analytical range of up to 70°P.
The accuracy of a hydrometer is determined by how closely it measures its true density at a given temperature. If a hydrometer reads incorrectly at room temperature, then it will read incorrectly when used in beer. The more accurate the reading, the better it will be at measuring the specific gravity of beer samples or wort samples at different temperatures.
Some hydrometers include an adjustment screw that allows you to add or subtract from your reading based on the temperature of your sample. This allows you to get an accurate reading regardless of whether you are measuring hot or cold liquids and solutions.
Are refractometers better than hydrometers?
The simple answer is no. Both tools can be used to measure the specific gravity (SG) of beer, but they do so in different ways. With a refractometer, you place a sample of beer on the device and look through the eyepiece to see how much light passes through it. The SG reading tells you how much sugars are present in your beer. A hydrometer uses gravity to measure the amount of sugar dissolved in liquid by floating on top of it at different depths depending on how much sugar there is.
Both tools are useful for homebrewers who want to make sure their beer has reached its ideal final gravity before bottling or kegging it. They’re also useful for measuring alcohol content after fermentation has ended (so you know when it’s ready for drinking).
In short: if you’re looking for an easy way to measure specific gravity without having to buy another tool, then go with a refractometer!
Are there different types of hydrometers?
There are three basic types of hydrometers: floating, swing, and digital.
Floating hydrometers work by having a weight at the bottom of the glass tube, which causes them to sink or float depending on the density of the liquid. The density of a liquid can be measured by comparing it to water; if it has more mass per unit volume than water, it will be denser and sink; if it has less mass per unit volume than water, it will be less dense and float.
Swing hydrometers have a glass tube with one end containing a bulb that floats in water and another end with a handle attached to a string. When you pull up on the string, you cause some of the water inside the tube to exit through an opening in its side wall. The remaining liquid is denser than before because it contains less air. This makes it sink lower in the tube—and therefore gives you an accurate measurement of your sample’s relative density.
Digital hydrometers use electronic sensors to measure specific gravity (density) rather than relying on natural buoyancy or gravity-dependent swings.
What can you use instead of a hydrometer?
There are many things you can use instead of a hydrometer to measure the specific gravity of your beer.
Some people use a refractometer and a thermometer, which give you an accurate reading of the sugar content and alcohol content in your brew. You can also use test strips that measure the density of your beer by dropping them into a sample, or using a DIY kit that allows you to add chemicals and get real-time results on your smartphone.
We hope this guide has been helpful to you in finding the best hydrometers for brewing. We know how hard it can be to find a reasonably priced hydrometer that’s high quality, so we wanted to help narrow down your search by giving you some of our top picks.
It took us several hours of research and testing to narrow down our list of contenders, but we think the results speak for themselves. We’ve found that every one of these instruments is accurate, durable, and easy to use—and they all have great reviews from customers who have purchased them.
Thanks again for reading!