I usually make drip coffee with a coffee maker, and the grinds go in pretty dry. I use 4 cups of water, but I usually only get around 2.5 cups of actual coffee out of it. I think that those 1.5 cups of water are partially evaporated, and partially absorbed by the grind. I have a theory that if I wet the grinds with cold water, they would saturate the grind but not absorb the flavor, and I could increase my coffee yields without diluting it. Is this a valid idea, or would I just end of creating diluted coffee? Thanks.
Given that I commonly cold brew overnight, I find the idea that cold water would not absorb the flavor somewhat far-fetched. I also find your absorbtion crazy-high unless you are using a huge mount of ground coffee to yield 2.5 cups liquid. I've been french-pressing for months now, but I doubt I lost a cup in making 12 cups (about 8 measuring cups) when I was using my drip machine.
What it would do is to alter (favorably or unfavorably, only you can say, after you try it) the effective temperature of the extraction by supplying some cold water as well as the hot water (and if you are boiling off any significant amount of the 4 cups you start with, it's almost certainly too hot.)