Author Topic: First time kegging  (Read 2166 times)

Offline MrDonde

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First time kegging
« on: September 11, 2016, 09:07:01 PM »
Afternoon,

I have been lagering some brews and I am getting ready to keg for the first time and I wanted to post here to see if I have everything planned out.

So please let me know if I am screwing anything up.

1. Take off connectors and keg lid, drop them into the keg and fill with Oxiclean and warm water. Soak for like 24 hours.
2. Dump out water/cleaner and rinse clean
3. Add sanitizers, in my case StarSan, and some water. Sanitize all the surfaces on the inside of keg and connectors.
4. Transfer brew from secondary into keg and seal the lid
5. Put sealed keg and C02 tank in keezer
6. Using a guide like this http://www.kegerators.com/carbonation-table.php set temperature of keezer, connect C02 tank, and set my PSI
7. Wait 2 weeks for carbonation
8. When ready to serve from keezer connect to tap and set PSI on the keg to 8
9. Enjoy?

Let me know if I missed anything major

Side note. My C02 tank currently reads at 20 PSI, would this be enough to carbonate and dispense the beer or should I get it refilled?

Thanks.
-Donde

Offline Stevie

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2016, 10:24:20 PM »
1 - You don't need to soak for 24 hours unless they are nasty.

4 - Don't forget keg lube on the lid ring. I like to pressurize with about 40psi for 5 minutes or so to get the lid seated.

6/7 - That's the safe way to do it. There are numerous ways to carb faster.

8 - leave at the pressure needed to hold the proper level of carbonation. If you carb at 12, serve at 12.

9 - That's subjective. Do you make good beer ;)

There are other more obsessive steps and processes you can add, but for the first time I think you are good.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2016, 10:27:22 PM »
Good advice.
Jon H.

Offline Stevie

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2016, 10:33:30 PM »
What do you mean by reads at 20psi? The low pressure gauge (output) will depend on what you set it to. The high pressure gauge is only semi-useful. CO2 is in the tank as a liquid. The high pressure gauge will read roughly the same until all of the liquid turns to gas. Once that happens it will go quick. This is generally indicated by a red section on the gauge. Once the needle is at the solid red, your basically out. Storing the tank in the keezer will make the gauge even less useful.


Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2016, 09:50:24 PM »
Purge the keg in some fashion.  Either release the PRV and refill with gas a couple times after filling or better yet purge the keg before filling.  You can do a closed transfer with the right system.  For a first time kegger, I'd purge with the PRV though and work your way up to closed transfer.

For a first time use, I would break the keg down as you describe.  Future uses maybe, maybe not.  Often a good rinse, soak, and sanitize is all you need but be sure to rinse out the dip tube.
It's all in the reflexes. - Jack Burton

Offline MrDonde

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2016, 01:15:56 AM »
Purge the keg in some fashion.  Either release the PRV and refill with gas a couple times after filling or better yet purge the keg before filling.  You can do a closed transfer with the right system.  For a first time kegger, I'd purge with the PRV though and work your way up to closed transfer.

For a first time use, I would break the keg down as you describe.  Future uses maybe, maybe not.  Often a good rinse, soak, and sanitize is all you need but be sure to rinse out the dip tube.

When you say purge kegs, do you mine transfer my brew in fill will C02 then let the C02 out through the PRV and refill with C02 again? Just trying to understand when I should be purging.
-Donde

Offline MrDonde

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2016, 01:21:56 AM »
What do you mean by reads at 20psi? The low pressure gauge (output) will depend on what you set it to. The high pressure gauge is only semi-useful. CO2 is in the tank as a liquid. The high pressure gauge will read roughly the same until all of the liquid turns to gas. Once that happens it will go quick. This is generally indicated by a red section on the gauge. Once the needle is at the solid red, your basically out. Storing the tank in the keezer will make the gauge even less useful.



Currently the C02 tank has been sitting in my garage, around 75-80 degrees F, and the tank is reading 25 PSI. (I could be reading it wrong since again this very new to me.

http://imgur.com/CODFRbK

Another newbie question, in the photo I posted what does the gauge on the left used for? I can send better pictures if that would help.
-Donde

Offline tommymorris

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2016, 01:34:30 AM »
What do you mean by reads at 20psi? The low pressure gauge (output) will depend on what you set it to. The high pressure gauge is only semi-useful. CO2 is in the tank as a liquid. The high pressure gauge will read roughly the same until all of the liquid turns to gas. Once that happens it will go quick. This is generally indicated by a red section on the gauge. Once the needle is at the solid red, your basically out. Storing the tank in the keezer will make the gauge even less useful.



Currently the C02 tank has been sitting in my garage, around 75-80 degrees F, and the tank is reading 25 PSI. (I could be reading it wrong since again this very new to me.

http://imgur.com/CODFRbK

Another newbie question, in the photo I posted what does the gauge on the left used for? I can send better pictures if that would help.
That gauge tells you the pressure of the gaseous co2 in your co2 bottle. It will read a constant value until right before the bottle is empty. At which point it will take a nose dive into the red zone. That's when it's time to think about getting a refill.

The pressure will be quite a bit higher when the bottle sits outside the fridge versus when the bottle is inside the fridge. That is normal.

PS. If the high pressure gauge reads 25PSI the bottle is empty. You may have a leak.  It should read 600-800 PSI when full depending on temperature.

Offline tommymorris

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First time kegging
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2016, 01:39:34 AM »
Purge the keg in some fashion.  Either release the PRV and refill with gas a couple times after filling or better yet purge the keg before filling.  You can do a closed transfer with the right system.  For a first time kegger, I'd purge with the PRV though and work your way up to closed transfer.

For a first time use, I would break the keg down as you describe.  Future uses maybe, maybe not.  Often a good rinse, soak, and sanitize is all you need but be sure to rinse out the dip tube.

When you say purge kegs, do you mine transfer my brew in fill will C02 then let the C02 out through the PRV and refill with C02 again? Just trying to understand when I should be purging.

Purge can mean 2 things.

1. Before filling the keg you may fill the keg with Starsan (all the way to the tippy top) and then pump all Starsan, via co2 and a cobra tap, out leaving only co2 in the keg. That keg is now completely purged of oxygen and ready to fill via closed transfer.  Not everyone does this, but it is a best practice to avoid oxidation.

2. After you have filled the keg with beer close the keg lid and connect co2 at 12PSI (or your preferred value). Pull the release valve 5-10 times at 2-3 second intervals. This purging rids the keg head space of oxygen. This is a normal practice and should always be done.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2016, 01:41:05 AM by alestateyall »

Offline Stevie

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2016, 01:45:17 AM »
Top gauge is output pressure, left gauge is tank pressure. You will want to adjust the screw to the left until the top gauge reads your desired pressure.

Offline MrDonde

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2016, 02:06:07 AM »
Awesome!

Thank you all so much for the information. I will probably give the kegging a go this weekend, need to hit up the homebrew store for a few more things.

I will post on here with results.

Thanks much everyone!
-Donde

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2016, 02:16:49 PM »
When you say purge kegs, do you mine transfer my brew in fill will C02 then let the C02 out through the PRV and refill with C02 again? Just trying to understand when I should be purging.

Yes.  That is the simplest way to do it.  I would start this way and make sure you've got a handle on kegging and then move on to more advanced methods, such as doing a closed transfer.
It's all in the reflexes. - Jack Burton

Offline MrDonde

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2016, 04:50:50 PM »
Alrighty, so today was the big day of popping my kegging cherry.

I think everything went well. I followed the steps I listed above and everything seems to be good. I have my brew on 10 PSI per the chart I got and so in 2 weeks I should be good. (Please alert me if I fudged up there.)

One issue I did find was one of keg has some leaks. Not around the lid but around where the metal meets the plastic handles on top of the keg. The leaks are not terrible but noticeable.

Here is a rough image of where the leaks are http://imgur.com/IiKmSst

Can I still carbonate with the leaks? Is there any way to seal these leaks? Like with epoxy?
-Donde

Offline pete b

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Re: First time kegging
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2016, 05:44:26 PM »
Alrighty, so today was the big day of popping my kegging cherry.

I think everything went well. I followed the steps I listed above and everything seems to be good. I have my brew on 10 PSI per the chart I got and so in 2 weeks I should be good. (Please alert me if I fudged up there.)

One issue I did find was one of keg has some leaks. Not around the lid but around where the metal meets the plastic handles on top of the keg. The leaks are not terrible but noticeable.

Here is a rough image of where the leaks are http://imgur.com/IiKmSst

Can I still carbonate with the leaks? Is there any way to seal these leaks? Like with epoxy?
No leaks can be tolerated. Sometimes they seem to be coming somewhere their not. Ate you certain they are not from the lid?it's way more common and obviously easier to be fixed. Did you put soapy water all over the top to see exactly where it's coming from?
Don't let the bastards cheer you up.

Offline tommymorris

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First time kegging
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2016, 06:48:08 PM »
You can spray starsan (mixed with water) on the keg and look for bubbles. Your co2 will be gone by tomorrow if you don't fix the leak. Use keg lube or Vaseline on rubber o-rings to get a better seal.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2016, 06:50:48 PM by alestateyall »