Poll

If my keg leaked CO2 and my beer went flat, does the quality of my beer get worse if I recarbonate it?

a
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b
0 (0%)

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Author Topic: Flat Beer  (Read 1619 times)

Offline bronxbrewer

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Flat Beer
« on: April 22, 2010, 05:59:32 AM »
I just began kegging and my first batch went flat due to a leak.  I still haven't figured out the leak, I just know that my CO2 tank is empty and my beer is flat.  I am going to fix the leak and recarbonate my beer, but I was curious if the beer will be "skunky" or not?  What makes a beer taste "skunky" anyway?

Thanks

Offline tygo

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2010, 07:08:08 AM »
What makes a beer taste "skunky" anyway?
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The skunked flavor is caused by sunlight or other UV light reacting with the iso-alpha acids in the beer.  So no, you should be fine as far as that goes.  You might have other problems like oxygenation if you have a leak though.
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Offline weithman5

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2010, 07:57:38 AM »
may be flat or oxidized, but as i have recently made the mistake of referring to that as skunky, and subsequently re-educated, the skunky smell/taste comes from (i think i got this right)  a chemical reaction induced by uv light with chemicals from the hops. 
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Offline zee

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2010, 08:04:45 AM »
i don't think you're going to have a problem. as long as your beer stays cold, reactions are pretty slow. as has been said here, skunkyness is a product of uv degradation. the worst you might get is some minor oxidation, but even that, if you leave the keg closed, there will be a nice pillow of co2 on top of your beer which should protect it for a while until you can get a new tank. recarbonating your beer is not a process that will produce off flavors.

fwiw, whenever i put a new keg in the fridge, i pressurize it, usually to about 30psi as i find this helps to set the seals. then spray down the top with starsan. i look for bubbles that might indicate a co2 leak, as well as listening for faint hissing sounds coming from the keg. once that is done, you can vent the pressure and bring it back down to your carbonation temp.

lastly, keg lube works wonders. i've got a couple kegs that refuse to seal properly without keg lube. and i mean, they don't seal at all. turn on the gas and its so bad your hair starts blowing around if you're anywhere near the top of the keg. 30psi and keg lube will fix that right quick.

Offline redbeerman

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2010, 09:23:10 AM »
i don't think you're going to have a problem. as long as your beer stays cold, reactions are pretty slow. as has been said here, skunkyness is a product of uv degradation. the worst you might get is some minor oxidation, but even that, if you leave the keg closed, there will be a nice pillow of co2 on top of your beer which should protect it for a while until you can get a new tank. recarbonating your beer is not a process that will produce off flavors.

fwiw, whenever i put a new keg in the fridge, i pressurize it, usually to about 30psi as i find this helps to set the seals. then spray down the top with starsan. i look for bubbles that might indicate a co2 leak, as well as listening for faint hissing sounds coming from the keg. once that is done, you can vent the pressure and bring it back down to your carbonation temp.

lastly, keg lube works wonders. i've got a couple kegs that refuse to seal properly without keg lube. and i mean, they don't seal at all. turn on the gas and its so bad your hair starts blowing around if you're anywhere near the top of the keg. 30psi and keg lube will fix that right quick.

+1  I do the same.  I actually leave the keg pressurized at 30 psig until it is carbonated.  You shouldn't have any problems recarbing.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2010, 09:42:17 AM »
there will be a nice pillow of co2 on top of your beer which should protect it for a while until you can get a new tank. recarbonating your beer is not a process that will produce off flavors.

+1

It's happened to me before on a couple of occasions and wasn't an issue for me.
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Offline IHBHS

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2010, 07:06:18 PM »
As long as you didn't open the keg up after all your pressure bled off you'll be fine.  There is still a head of CO2 sitting on top of the beer, so oxidation won't have a chance to occur.  There is nothing wrong with re-carbonating your beer, since all you're adding to it is a gas, you're not going to inpart any off flavors to it.  I mean does it impart any flavor the first time your force carbonate it???  No, so you'll be fine.  As for the leak, pressurize your keg and use some sanitized water poured around the mouth of the keg and look for a little bubble.  Opening the keg up to try and seal the leak shouldn't be a problem, but I would transfer the beer into a keg you know seals, just hook two liquid couplers to the same hose and transfer using the gas side on the empty keg as a purge to let the CO2 out and equalize the pressure.
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Offline danetrain

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2010, 07:27:50 PM »
Agreed.  I've found I have trouble  getting a good seal on my kegs unless I blast up the pressure first to set everything into place.
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Offline popester

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Re: Flat Beer
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2010, 06:02:49 PM »
I just began kegging and my first batch went flat due to a leak.  I still haven't figured out the leak, I just know that my CO2 tank is empty and my beer is flat.  I am going to fix the leak and recarbonate my beer, but I was curious if the beer will be "skunky" or not?  What makes a beer taste "skunky" anyway?

Thanks
Sun light