Getting Started with the BrewPi Spark

First of all, thank you for buying a BrewPi Spark! Your support means a lot to us and it helps us to continue improving our brewing software.

We are currently moving most of our documentation to a new wiki at The information might still be incomplete still in places, but please don’t hesitate to point out what we’re missing or even better: fill in the missing info yourself. You only need to register for an account on the wiki to start editing pages.

The BrewPi Hardware Test screen

Your BrewPi Spark shipped the firmware in test mode. We use this mode to confirm that the controller works correctly before it ships. Test mode auto-detects connected temperature sensors and lets you toggle the digital outputs on the controller. You can also use the test mode to confirm that all your sensors and your heaters and coolers are working when you have built them into your fridge.

You can power the BrewPi Spark with a 12V adapter or with a micro USB power supply. If you are wiring your own sensors, we recommend to use only a 5V USB power supply until you are sure you have connected everything correctly. Not having 12V in the system reduces the chances of damaging something.

Please refer to your fridge hacking guide on how to wire the SSRs inside your fridge. The fridge hacking guide has been made with our old Arduino based controller, but the process of wiring the SSRs is still the same. We have plans to do a big ‘My BrewPi build’ showoff in a separate area of the wiki, so if you want to share your build make a lot of photos!

Five green connectors for the outputs have been included. With these connectors you do not need to strip your wires. Just insert the cable and push in the orange part. The sticker on the back of the controller shows which pin is plus and which is minus.

For configuring your sensors and heater/cooler, please copy the device list example here:

This configuration is done via the web interface. Setting up the BrewPi web server is described on the wiki.


  1. Einar on March 10, 2015 at 23:11

    I cannot wait to see this little guy in action. Looks great so far.

  2. Omega3 on March 11, 2015 at 02:14

    Just got mine today was able to play around with everything, can’t wait for it to be able to do its thing.

  3. Nathan on March 11, 2015 at 05:36

    Can you post a couple bullet points on how to update this to the alpha firmware? I don’t need detailed instructions, just a starting point. Thanks!

    • Elco on March 11, 2015 at 13:10

      I just updated the page.

  4. Moelinger on March 19, 2015 at 00:00

    Version 0.2.7 is working great!

  5. Beerwoz on March 19, 2015 at 02:33

    Just got my spark a few days ago. I was looking for some instructions to link it to my brewpi on my raspberry pi. Seems like you intended a release that could work on the 13th. A little lost here and feeling like I have a really fancy thermometer.

    • Elco on March 19, 2015 at 18:39

      Both Matthew and I got sick with the flu, so that caused the delay. We are both back on our feet and working on the software.

  6. Beerwoz on March 20, 2015 at 06:42

    Elco, sorry about your bought with the flu, really sucks. I hope you are feeling better. Looking forward to the new release and some instructions for the new spark. Thank you for all your hard work.

    • Nathan on March 20, 2015 at 17:42

      Beerwoz, sounds like you may not have connected the raspberry pi to the spark yet. Even with the current software you can get brewpi running on your Raspberry Pi, connect your spark, and start playing around with the webserver. The instructions for doing that are here:

  7. Beerwoz on March 21, 2015 at 00:26

    Nathan thanks for writing back. To be clear I’ve had a brew pi for quite some time working with my Audrino however I had complications so I upgraded to the spark. I just looked over the information you sent the last update was in February 2014. Am I missing something?

  8. Nathan on March 21, 2015 at 01:23

    nah, probably not. There was an alpha release as mentioned above but nothing other than that. I just didn’t know if you had tried out the webserver yet. I didn’t really know how it all worked a few days ago when I got mine and thought you might have been in the same boat.

  9. Eric v B on April 2, 2015 at 12:50

    Finaly I have my BrewPi running. Now it’s time for the next challenge: connecting to the Spark. Is there a manual to connect the spark to the BrewPi? I’m new to linux so I need small steps.

  10. John on April 2, 2015 at 18:20

    Eric if you have found this page and have the BrewPi updated as per the other page you are almost there. type:
    sudo ~/brewpi-tools/
    0 to select developer twice for the two options that come up
    don’t update the hex .
    continue on with the instructions on this page

    •After the script has restarted and the Web UI says that the script is running, refresh the web page. I just restated the BrewPi and went to the brewpi wepage (ie
    •Go to maintenance panel -> reprogram Spark Core
    •Download brewpi.bin from the link above and save it somewhere. (on the laptop was easier)
    •Browse to the file and click program. Do not restore settings or devices.

  11. Eric v B on April 3, 2015 at 22:51

    Today another improvement. Due to a misunderstanding I thought raspberry and Spark should connect by WIFI but it was connecting by USB cable (silly me). Now the spark is running it’s test program and I can monitor the temps and settings on its IP in the webbrowser. Next step is testing it on a fridge with a bucket of water.

  12. Moelinger on April 6, 2015 at 17:56

    Anyone having an issue with the temps being off? Brewpi web interface says the beer is 70.9 but the spark says its 67.2. The spark has the correct temp, therefore it is cooling it 3 degrees cooler than it should be.

  13. Patrick on August 30, 2015 at 12:27

    I did everything according to the guide above. Seems like BrewPi is running, I can access it through a browser. So far I was not able to run the script. Is the script supposed to run even when there is no device (Arduino or Spark) connected or can this be the error?

    I am stuck on updating to the development branch. It says everywhere that the update-script is supposed to ask me on which branch I want to be, but it just tells me that I am on the master branch without giving me a choice. What am I missing?

    • Elco Jacobs on January 20, 2016 at 01:45

      For an Arduino, you’ll have to run the updater with command line option: –ask
      We now have a legacy branch for Arduino users. The script will not run without a controller connected.

  14. Kip on August 9, 2016 at 04:39


    This documentation seems old. Do you have updated documentation for brewpi + SPARK 2.0?


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