Author Topic: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower  (Read 14904 times)

Offline rodmanxxx

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how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« on: September 12, 2014, 06:11:11 PM »
I built a fridge into my new bar & drilled holes in tops to run beer lines. The top of the fridge is about 6" below the bar top, and I have the beer lines above the fridge wrapped in heavy aluminum tape surrounding a couple inches of spray foam insulation, and insulation in the tower as well. Today I saw an idea of encasing each beer line in 1/2" copper tubing that runs from the top of the tower and extends 12" into the fridge. I am looking to get a colder start on my pours to reduce foam. Do you think this copper idea would work? I don't mind doing the extra work of cutting out the foam insulation I sprayed if this will work. Or any other ideas? I have seen installing a small fan and could do that if it's better, but I like this copper idea.
THanks!
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Offline duncan

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2014, 06:14:33 PM »
I've heard some people rig up a computer fan that pushes cold air from the fridge up into the tower. Copper pipe sounds like a decent idea.

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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2014, 06:21:28 PM »
Ran into the same problem with my kegerator tower, got sick of dumping the first warm half pint of the day and bought one of these. Works as advertised  :

http://www.towercooler.com/

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Offline Stevie

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2014, 06:28:34 PM »
The copper might work ok. A solid rod would be better.

I think the fan is the better plan.

Offline rodmanxxx

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2014, 07:26:57 PM »
Since I have decided I want to fix this, I am going to run the copper tubes over the beer lines, maybe this weekend if I have time. If it's still not good enough, then I will build/buy a fan, something like HoosierBrew suggested. I'll post result of copper rod experiment.
THanks all!
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Offline Stevie

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2014, 09:22:34 PM »
Oh, each line is in copper. I thought it was just jammed in the middle. That could work, but unsure how well. The thermal mass isn't very high, but the conduction is.

Offline micsager

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2014, 10:03:00 PM »
Here's the one I bought.  Quite similar to the other post.  Works like a dream.  I initially bought only one to try it out.  Two weeks later, I ordered the second. 

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IGBTZDI/ref=pe_385040_30332190_TE_3p_dp_1
« Last Edit: September 17, 2014, 06:44:18 PM by micsager »

Offline David Lester

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Cheap DIY Tower Cooler
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2014, 04:25:05 PM »
The cheap DIY Tower cooler is as follows: Take a computer fan, connect a funnel on the output side of the fan. Connect a hose to the funnel (small enough hose to fit up the tower), push the hose up the tower so that the end of the hose is near the top of the tower. Hook it up to a AC to DC adapter and your done.

The hose should be long enough so that the fan is near the bottom without touching. The coolest air sits at the bottom and hot air moves to the top of the kegorator. This project will also help move around the cold air to stabilize the overall temperature. Also, you don't want the fan to be too close, or touch, the bottom of the kegorator. If you have a keg leak, your fan will fall victim to shorting out due to liquids in the circuitry.

The fan can come from an old computer your not using, and look for an unused AC/DC adapter. I believe a DC 12 volt will work. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Cheers

Offline tommymorris

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2014, 04:39:44 PM »

I built a fridge into my new bar & drilled holes in tops to run beer lines. The top of the fridge is about 6" below the bar top, and I have the beer lines above the fridge wrapped in heavy aluminum tape surrounding a couple inches of spray foam insulation, and insulation in the tower as well. Today I saw an idea of encasing each beer line in 1/2" copper tubing that runs from the top of the tower and extends 12" into the fridge. I am looking to get a colder start on my pours to reduce foam. Do you think this copper idea would work? I don't mind doing the extra work of cutting out the foam insulation I sprayed if this will work. Or any other ideas? I have seen installing a small fan and could do that if it's better, but I like this copper idea.
THanks!

I wonder of all the insulation you have now is helping or hurting. The insulation may dampen the flow of any cool air you try to blow into the tower. 

Offline Werks21

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2014, 01:38:51 AM »

I built a fridge into my new bar & drilled holes in tops to run beer lines. The top of the fridge is about 6" below the bar top, and I have the beer lines above the fridge wrapped in heavy aluminum tape surrounding a couple inches of spray foam insulation, and insulation in the tower as well. Today I saw an idea of encasing each beer line in 1/2" copper tubing that runs from the top of the tower and extends 12" into the fridge. I am looking to get a colder start on my pours to reduce foam. Do you think this copper idea would work? I don't mind doing the extra work of cutting out the foam insulation I sprayed if this will work. Or any other ideas? I have seen installing a small fan and could do that if it's better, but I like this copper idea.
THanks!

I wonder of all the insulation you have now is helping or hurting. The insulation may dampen the flow of any cool air you try to blow into the tower.

Good point. if the tower airspace is not connected with the fridge airspace then those beer lines cant be cold. and as far as the copper goes it will carry hot or cold equally well. if its already cool up there it stands a chance but if its warm the copper will probably get warm over the height of the tower similar to the way the beer does. now if there was a fan blowing air up that copper pipe... that would be one frosty beer line, though from what I've heard a fan alone solves the problem.
Jonathan W.
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Offline thatgeekguy

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2014, 06:20:32 PM »
When I first built my kegerator I tried running the lines through individual copper pipes that had an ID that matched the OD of the hoses, they extended all the way from the top of the tower to the bottom of the kegerator. They didn't do a very good job of passive cooling, so I built the fan box shown in my kegerator below. That hose goes all the way up to the top of the tower and constantly blows a low stream of cold air to keep the lines the same temp as the kegerator. USB powered speed controlled fan wired to a old phone charger.

You could do a similar arrangement, but use a large piece of PVC to fill the gap between the top of your fridge and the bottom of your tower.

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Offline rodmanxxx

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Re: how to keep beer lines cold in a keg tower
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2014, 09:09:49 PM »
When I put the 2nd keg into my 4.4 mini fridge, I realized I don't have any room try to fit copper pipes in there. Everybody here said that the cold air pump with hose running to top of tower works good, and that is what I will be installing this weekend. Thanks for all the advice.
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