Author Topic: Anybody familiar with PBW?  (Read 998 times)

Offline gymrat

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Anybody familiar with PBW?
« on: March 18, 2013, 09:56:47 AM »
Once it is mixed 1 tablespoon to 1 gallon is it safe to get on your skin?
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Offline denny

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2013, 10:28:02 AM »
Yeah.  At least it's never bothered me.  FWIW, I seldom mix it that strong.  It seems to be equally effective at a much lower concentration.
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Offline AmandaK

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2013, 10:32:02 AM »
I used to mix at that concentration. It makes the skin feel a bit slick, so I always washed it clean before too long (read: 10-20 seconds or so) and my skin didn't melt off.  ;D
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Offline blatz

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2013, 10:35:33 AM »
yeah - rinse quickly after use.  i would wear gloves when using sanitizers though - they tend to wreck my hands from time to time.

denny/amandaK - what concentration are you guys using now?
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2013, 10:36:27 AM »
If I am working in a tub of the stuff for 30 minutes or so de-laberling bottles it starts to really dry out my hands. I would suggest using gloves for prolonged exposure but I have not had problems sticking my hands in it to scrub a fermenter (gently)
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2013, 10:59:46 AM »
yeah - rinse quickly after use.  i would wear gloves when using sanitizers though - they tend to wreck my hands from time to time.

denny/amandaK - what concentration are you guys using now?

I use a concentration of 1 teaspoon per gallon right now and it works perfectly well for cleaning fermenters. I typically like to rinse my fermenters after 24 hours of soaking in PBW, but I find at the lower concentration it still rinses clean easily even if it sits an extra day or so.

You might need to go higher if you're trying to get scorched-on crud off a kettle.
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Offline svejk

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2013, 11:13:50 AM »
The slippery feeling of PBW always creeps me out because I read somewhere it was dissolving the fat in your skin.  I have no idea if it is true or not, but even if it isn't true I can't get the image out of my mind.  On the bright side, whenever I'm using PBW I usually have a bucket of Starsan close by, so if I get any on my hands, I can dip them into the Starsan and the slickness goes away immediately because it is neutralized by the acid.

Offline denny

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Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2013, 11:34:11 AM »
yeah - rinse quickly after use.  i would wear gloves when using sanitizers though - they tend to wreck my hands from time to time.

denny/amandaK - what concentration are you guys using now?

2-3 Tbsp. per 5-6 gal.
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Offline gymrat

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2013, 11:45:11 AM »
does the water have to be hot for it to work?
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Offline denny

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Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2013, 11:49:41 AM »
does the water have to be hot for it to work?


I think it's more effective with hot water.
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2013, 12:12:02 PM »
The slippery feeling of PBW always creeps me out because I read somewhere it was dissolving the fat in your skin.

It definitely is saponifying (turning the lipids into soaps), but it's a relatively weak alkali, especially at working strength. It does really dry out the skin with lengthy/repeated contact, but it's nowhere near as dangerous as something like sodium or potassium hydroxide (lye). I kind of doubt it would even feel slippery without the surfactants.

does the water have to be hot for it to work?

IIRC the instructions on the bucket say to use twice the concentration at <100°F.
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Offline the_pig

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Re: Anybody familiar with PBW?
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2013, 12:41:31 PM »
This is great to know.  I believe that the mixing instructions on the plastic jar call for a much higher concentration (in ounces, if I'm not mistaken - I don't have any around to look at right now).  And I have really dried out my hands at that level - plus you go throgh jars pretty quickly.