Author Topic: PBW solution longevity?  (Read 3483 times)

Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

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PBW solution longevity?
« on: December 02, 2014, 11:29:00 AM »
If you mix PBW according to the directions how long will the solution remain capable of destroying microorganisms? Can you keep it for a month and still have it be effective?

Thanks in advance for your reply.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2014, 12:03:01 PM »
I mix it with distilled water and use it until the stuff floating on the bottom of the bucket gets too gross for me.  As long as it stays clear and below a PH of 3 it is good to use.  I've kept it in a sealed bucket for more than 6 months with no issues.

Paul
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2014, 12:06:46 PM »
Yes, it will store well and remain effective for quite some time.  Rumor has it that it continues to be effective even when very dirty and colored.  I toss it after it gets turbid looking from removal of grime, but that is just my practice.  If you let it sit, often the grime falls out to the bottom of the bucket and you can rack the clearer PBW solution off of the settled sludge on the bottom.
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Offline wayne1

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2014, 12:52:43 PM »
If you mix PBW according to the directions how long will the solution remain capable of destroying microorganisms? Can you keep it for a month and still have it be effective?

Thanks in advance for your reply.

PBW does not destroy microorganisms. PBW is a non-caustic alkaline cleaner intended for organic soil removal. It will clean out carboys, brew kettles, etc of organics. It should be a one use cleaner. I have heard of using PBW as a soaking cleaner in various carboys. You might be able to transfer the solution from carboy to carboy to continue to remove organic soils, but it is more effective to make up a fresh batch every time.

Acid 5 is a nitric/phosphoric acid blend used to remove inorganic soils such as beer stone. Be careful using this acid. It can hurt you. Gloves and goggles are required for safe use.

StarSan and SaniClean are acid anionic sanitizers. They are not cleaners. The vessel should be cleaned with PBW, either by soaking overnight or with mechanical scrubbing. Rinse well. Then just before liquid id added, StarSan, diluted to the correct ratio, should be used to coat the inner surfaces of the vessel. A 10 minute contact time is plenty. Then you can transfer in the liquid. DO NOT RINSE.

If you dilute Star San with distilled water the mixture will last for quite a long time. You can check pH or contact Five Star to get a titration kit to accurately judge the effectiveness of the solution over time. The titration kit will also test for PBW.

Offline trentmark

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2014, 04:41:53 PM »
If you mix PBW according to the directions how long will the solution remain capable of destroying microorganisms? Can you keep it for a month and still have it be effective?

Thanks in advance for your reply.

PBW does not destroy microorganisms. PBW is a non-caustic alkaline cleaner intended for organic soil removal. It will clean out carboys, brew kettles, etc of organics. It should be a one use cleaner. I have heard of using PBW as a soaking cleaner in various carboys. You might be able to transfer the solution from carboy to carboy to continue to remove organic soils, but it is more effective to make up a fresh batch every time.

Acid 5 is a nitric/phosphoric acid blend used to remove inorganic soils such as beer stone. Be careful using this acid. It can hurt you. Gloves and goggles are required for safe use.

StarSan and SaniClean are acid anionic sanitizers. They are not cleaners. The vessel should be cleaned with PBW, either by soaking overnight or with mechanical scrubbing. Rinse well. Then just before liquid id added, StarSan, diluted to the correct ratio, should be used to coat the inner surfaces of the vessel. A 10 minute contact time is plenty. Then you can transfer in the liquid. DO NOT RINSE.

If you dilute Star San with distilled water the mixture will last for quite a long time. You can check pH or contact Five Star to get a titration kit to accurately judge the effectiveness of the solution over time. The titration kit will also test for PBW.

This is good advice.

Offline denny

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2014, 04:58:01 PM »
I mix it with distilled water and use it until the stuff floating on the bottom of the bucket gets too gross for me.  As long as it stays clear and below a PH of 3 it is good to use.  I've kept it in a sealed bucket for more than 6 months with no issues.

Paul

Paul, you're thinking of Star San, not PBW.

I wouldn't use PBW more than once myself.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2014, 04:59:04 PM »
I mix it with distilled water and use it until the stuff floating on the bottom of the bucket gets too gross for me.  As long as it stays clear and below a PH of 3 it is good to use.  I've kept it in a sealed bucket for more than 6 months with no issues.

Paul

I think I was asleep when I read this this morning.  My answer was for StarSan.  Sorry.

I don't normally try to store PBW.  When I mix up a batch it's really nasty by the time I get done with it so I just pitch it.

Note to self: Don't post before 3rd cup of coffee.

Paul

*** Denny caught my error as I was typing my correction.  Great minds?  Probably not in my case.   ::)
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Offline erockrph

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2014, 05:05:01 PM »
I wouldn't use PBW more than once myself.
Same here. I'm generally mixing it in the vessel to be cleaned, so it's pretty dirty and gross by the time it is ready to pour off.
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2014, 07:30:04 PM »
I often reuse it, but I do a good cleaning before I introduce the PBW - often cleaning 3-4 kegs at once this way, then proceeding to rinse and Star San.  I will carry over the PBW until it gets a bit grungy looking.  I heard a rumor that Ruth's Crist steakhouse uses it for cleaning the grilled on oils from the cast plates used for grilling - and they continue to use it when it is almost entirely black.... Could be urban legend, of course.
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Offline Stevie

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2014, 07:41:07 PM »
WARNING - Over simplification of the working action of PBW as it has been explained to me. I am not a chemist.


PBW is mainly sodium percarbonate. When mixed with water it forms Hydrogen peroxide and Salts. Hydrogen peroxide is an oxidizer and is what does the actual cleaning. Hydrogen peroxide is not very stable and degrades quickly, especially when exposed to light and heat. Based on this, I think saving it is a bad idea.


If you are concerned with the cost, switch to Oxiclean, or generic oxiclean. In my experience it works just as well, but needs a little extra rinsing. When cleaning I use three buckets, one with hot oxiclean, second and third with hot clean water. Everything gets a double rinse followed by a starsan rinse as I have found that this helps prevent haze. PBW would prevent the haze.


One could also make their own "PBW" for pennies using Oxiclean and TSP substitute. Recipes are available all over the forums.

Offline erockrph

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Re: PBW solution longevity?
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2014, 09:59:55 PM »
I often reuse it, but I do a good cleaning before I introduce the PBW - often cleaning 3-4 kegs at once this way, then proceeding to rinse and Star San.  I will carry over the PBW until it gets a bit grungy looking.  I heard a rumor that Ruth's Crist steakhouse uses it for cleaning the grilled on oils from the cast plates used for grilling - and they continue to use it when it is almost entirely black.... Could be urban legend, of course.

I wouldn't be surprised if they used it (not sure about the reusing it thing, though). I've used it for pots and pans with burnt-on crust. It works great to clean a Keurig coffee brewer as well.
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