Author Topic: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??  (Read 3588 times)

Offline Laminarman

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Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« on: February 07, 2017, 03:03:25 PM »
Will try kegging in two days, my 5 gallon Hogaarden clone has been in secondary two weeks.  My local HBS said "Whatever you do, do NOT rock the keg and force it under CO2 it makes the carbonation harsh."  I'm leaving right after I keg it for a little over 3 days.  He also said to NOT put it at high pressure but at my final desired volume I want in carbonation and wait a week and the head will be finer.  Not sure how to separate truth from chaff.  I don't think I'd want to leave it under 25psi for three full days?  If you were kegging it Thursday around noon and coming back Sunday around dinner and wanted to try the beer when you got back, what would YOU do??  Or should I just wait until I'm back in town and monitor it closely?  I'm new to this, sorry. 

Offline Stevie

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2017, 03:15:22 PM »
Shaking the keg at high pressure is way easy to overcarb. Shaking the keg at serving pressure works, but you need the beer to be cold.

Leave it at 25 while you are away, reduce the pressure before pouring and see where you are at. I think it will be fine.

Offline stpug

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2017, 03:47:21 PM »
-Carbonate at cold temperatures (fridge temps).
-I would carbonate at 15-17psi at cold temps for 3.25 days (you should be close to ~85% carbed at this point)
-Reduce to serving pressure (8-12psi) and let it finish up at normal pace
-Pour a yeast sample, pour a cleaner sample

(I avoid ever shaking a keg; with the exception of to ensure keg hops are well moistened but that has nothing to do with carbonation)

Offline denny

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2017, 03:51:28 PM »
Will try kegging in two days, my 5 gallon Hogaarden clone has been in secondary two weeks.  My local HBS said "Whatever you do, do NOT rock the keg and force it under CO2 it makes the carbonation harsh."  I'm leaving right after I keg it for a little over 3 days.  He also said to NOT put it at high pressure but at my final desired volume I want in carbonation and wait a week and the head will be finer.  Not sure how to separate truth from chaff.  I don't think I'd want to leave it under 25psi for three full days?  If you were kegging it Thursday around noon and coming back Sunday around dinner and wanted to try the beer when you got back, what would YOU do??  Or should I just wait until I'm back in town and monitor it closely?  I'm new to this, sorry.

That is total BS.  What determines how "fine" the head is is the amount of time you give the CO2 to go into solution.  The reason some people _think_ that not rocking gives better foam is becasue it takes longer to carb, so the CO2 has more time to go into solution. 
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Offline brewinhard

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2017, 03:55:00 PM »


Leave it at 25 while you are away, reduce the pressure before pouring and see where you are at. I think it will be fine.

+1 to this info. Leave it at 25 for 3 days. A witbier should be fairly highly carbonated IMO. After 3 days pull pressure relief valve, then set to lower serving pressure and enjoy!

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2017, 03:58:10 PM »
Agreed with the above. For most beers 25psi/3 days might seem a little overcarbed, but for a style like wit where the carbonation level is fairly high, this sounds about right.
Jon H.

Offline denny

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2017, 04:14:40 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline Laminarman

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2017, 04:20:17 PM »
You guys are freaking awesome.  I'm going to go for 25psi for 3.25 days and try to serve at about 10psi.  It's all new but I'm psyched.  I can also leave it outside on the porch as our outdoor temps will be between 32-38 for those days.  That might make my wife happier than a keg taking up half our SubZero fridge while I'm gone  : ) 

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2017, 04:29:37 PM »
You guys are freaking awesome.  I'm going to go for 25psi for 3.25 days and try to serve at about 10psi.  It's all new but I'm psyched.  I can also leave it outside on the porch as our outdoor temps will be between 32-38 for those days.  That might make my wife happier than a keg taking up half our SubZero fridge while I'm gone  : ) 


If it's gonna be that cold the whole time, you'll definitely be overcarbed. Carbonation is pressure and temp related - CO2 is more readily absorbed at colder temps. At that temp, I wouldn't leave it connected at more than 12-15psi. This chart is pretty helpful get a beer carbed properly and shows the temp/pressure relationship - remember that it's meant to have the beer left connected at pressure for 2 weeks to get full carbonation.


http://www.kegerators.com/carbonation-table.php
Jon H.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2017, 04:32:27 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)

Do you shake the keg?  I stopped doing that awhile ago.

To the OP, make sure you purge the keg as best as possible.  At a minimum, you should purge the headspace after you fill the keg by pressurizing the keg and releasing the PRV several times.  Best practice would be to purge the keg before filling, as well.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2017, 04:34:53 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)
After filling, my kegs sit at 40° for a week at least on 14 psi. Then at some point when there's room on tap, they get moved to the kegerator.  Is that much different than you?

Offline The Beerery

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2017, 05:02:46 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)

Do you shake the keg?  I stopped doing that awhile ago.

To the OP, make sure you purge the keg as best as possible.  At a minimum, you should purge the headspace after you fill the keg by pressurizing the keg and releasing the PRV several times.  Best practice would be to purge the keg before filling, as well.

The more the better. I think its like 100 times and thats still not sufficient with gas mixing laws.

Offline Laminarman

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2017, 05:18:34 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)

Do you shake the keg?  I stopped doing that awhile ago.

To the OP, make sure you purge the keg as best as possible.  At a minimum, you should purge the headspace after you fill the keg by pressurizing the keg and releasing the PRV several times.  Best practice would be to purge the keg before filling, as well.

I planned on purging.  But I have a dumb question.  Are you talking about leaving the top off the keg and letting some CO2 into it to push air out?  That makes no sense.  Won't the volume of beer push the air out?  Then purge the headspace?  I've seen it done to an empty keg just not sure why. 

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2017, 05:23:25 PM »
There are a couple of ways to purge, and as Bryan notes none of them really get all of the O2 out but that's not an issue for everyone.

Easiest:  Fill the keg from your fermenter, seal the keg, pressurize, pull the PRV to release the gas, repeat as many times as you like (at least 3, but see above re: residual O2)

Most involved: Fill the keg to the very top with sanitizer (starsan), seal the keg, push out the sanitizer (into a bucket or another keg) with CO2, fill keg with beer (while sealed, so you'd be doing a pressurized transfer), pressurize to your desired level.

Most advanced: spund.  I can't tell you about this, but search the forum if you're interested.  There are a limited number of people who go this far.

I think as a newbie kegger it's best to start easy, but the pressurized transfer also ain't that hard.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Was told by LHBS to NOT force carbonate. What would you do??
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2017, 05:26:34 PM »
I'm beginning to think I do things different than pretty much everybody.....;)

Do you shake the keg?  I stopped doing that awhile ago.

To the OP, make sure you purge the keg as best as possible.  At a minimum, you should purge the headspace after you fill the keg by pressurizing the keg and releasing the PRV several times.  Best practice would be to purge the keg before filling, as well.

I planned on purging.  But I have a dumb question.  Are you talking about leaving the top off the keg and letting some CO2 into it to push air out?  That makes no sense.  Won't the volume of beer push the air out?  Then purge the headspace?  I've seen it done to an empty keg just not sure why.
There are varying degrees of co2 purging. The best is to fill keg with sanitizer and push it out with co2, then fill the keg through the out post with the PRV open. I use iodophor for sanitation and my kegs leave a pint behind, so I don't do it that way. Next best is to purge the empty keg through the out post with co2 while holding the PRV open. I count about 30 seconds. I've never measured the remaining o2 but I've had great results. Oxidation is never a problem for me. But someone will say I am wrong.

Actually, I don't like forcing the wrong sized disconnect onto the out post, so I have a chunk of pvc tube with a quick carb post on one end. I purge from the bottom with that. Works fine
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 05:35:37 PM by klickitat jim »