Author Topic: Can't clean fermenter  (Read 2236 times)

Offline kramerog

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Can't clean fermenter
« on: March 26, 2013, 10:32:01 AM »
My Better Bottle fermenter still has remnants of the last fermentation in the shoulder of the fermenter.  I think the technical term for this stuff is braun hefe.  I soaked twice overnight with a cold PBW solution of 1 tsp/ gal.  I've soaked for several days in a cold solution of oxyclean (lots of oxyclean).  I've used a spray wand several times.  What is next?  I'm hoping to stay away from caustic.
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Online theDarkSide

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2013, 10:44:46 AM »
A several day soak of Oxyclean has always cleaned my better bottles.  Have you tried using warm water with Oxyclean, around 120F.  It's not hot enough to warp the BB but may work better with soaking.  Eventually it will cool but you should get a good few hours at warmer temperatures.

You could also stick a wash cloth in there with some warm oxyclean/pbw solution and shake the hell out of it.
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Offline blatz

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2013, 10:52:00 AM »
You could also stick a wash cloth in there with some warm oxyclean/pbw solution and shake the hell out of it.

this was always necessary for the stubborn stains when I used BBs.  Works well.
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Offline beersk

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2013, 10:53:46 AM »
1 teaspoon per gallon? That isn't much. I'd have gone with at least 1 tablespoon per gallon with hot water. That should've gotten it all. I usually use a full scoop of the PBW mix I made. The scooper is what comes with the oxiclean tubs. But then again, I use glass carboys, not PET.
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2013, 10:54:01 AM »
A several day soak of Oxyclean has always cleaned my better bottles.  Have you tried using warm water with Oxyclean, around 120F.  It's not hot enough to warp the BB but may work better with soaking.  Eventually it will cool but you should get a good few hours at warmer temperatures.

You could also stick a wash cloth in there with some warm oxyclean/pbw solution and shake the hell out of it.

+1.  I also have a small plastic tube brush that I bent so I can gently brush it away.  If you have a cap, fill it with a gallon of hot (125F) water and some Oxi and soak it upside down and swirl every 15-20 minutes.

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Offline kramerog

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2013, 11:06:49 AM »
Thanks, if the current soak doesn't work, I'll try shaking the fermenter with a strong, warm solution of PBW/oxiclean and a wash cloth. 
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Offline hokerer

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2013, 11:56:19 AM »
Thanks, if the current soak doesn't work, I'll try shaking the fermenter with a strong, warm solution of PBW/oxiclean and a wash cloth.

...or an old sock.  That's what I've always used :)
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Offline dbarber

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2013, 12:07:31 PM »
I use a concentration of 2 oz of PBW in 5 gallons of hot faucet water and let it soak overnight.  On the few occasions where it didn't all come off a 2nd round took care of it.
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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2013, 12:33:40 PM »
Why not use hot water? IIRC the recommended concentration for PBW in cold water is 2-3 oz/gal.
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Offline hoser

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2013, 12:55:45 PM »
I use a concentration of 2 oz of PBW in 5 gallons of hot faucet water and let it soak overnight.  On the few occasions where it didn't all come off a 2nd round took care of it.

This has been my experience as well.  I will say, that for whatever reason, Oxyclean works better for me with cleaning the Better Bottles.  For everything else, I use PBW.

I wouldn't use a brush because you risk scratching the inner plastic surface.

Online fmader

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2013, 03:33:42 PM »
Thanks, if the current soak doesn't work, I'll try shaking the fermenter with a strong, warm solution of PBW/oxiclean and a wash cloth.

I'm not sure, but you might not want to mix the two. Some cleaning materials will react when mixed. Lol you might end up with some bathtub crank!
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Offline hokerer

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2013, 03:48:28 PM »
Thanks, if the current soak doesn't work, I'll try shaking the fermenter with a strong, warm solution of PBW/oxiclean and a wash cloth.

I'm not sure, but you might not want to mix the two. Some cleaning materials will react when mixed. Lol you might end up with some bathtub crank!

Oxiclean is one half of what's already in PBW so mixing those two is no problem
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Online fmader

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2013, 03:58:36 PM »
Thanks, if the current soak doesn't work, I'll try shaking the fermenter with a strong, warm solution of PBW/oxiclean and a wash cloth.

I'm not sure, but you might not want to mix the two. Some cleaning materials will react when mixed. Lol you might end up with some bathtub crank!

Looks like you got the go ahead to mix it up then!  ;)
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Oxiclean is one half of what's already in PBW so mixing those two is no problem
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Offline wort-h.o.g.

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2013, 09:01:38 PM »
My Better Bottle fermenter still has remnants of the last fermentation in the shoulder of the fermenter.  I think the technical term for this stuff is braun hefe.  I soaked twice overnight with a cold PBW solution of 1 tsp/ gal.  I've soaked for several days in a cold solution of oxyclean (lots of oxyclean).  I've used a spray wand several times.  What is next?  I'm hoping to stay away from caustic.


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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Can't clean fermenter
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2013, 07:55:50 AM »
I agree with trying hot water rather than cold water with the oxyclean.
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