Author Topic: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!  (Read 490 times)

Offline soymateofeo

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Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« on: December 02, 2019, 05:21:27 AM »
So I left my oxygen wand and airstone in starsan and forgot for 2 days. I didn't think anything would happen but, although the stem and airstone were stainless, the swivel nut was not. I'm not sure what it was but it made the whole solution smell like crap.  the airstone and the wand were fine. My question is this:

Can I clean my stone and wand of this funky smell and just get a stainless swivel nut or do I need to buy yet ANOTHER oxygen wand?

I guess I have another question. What was that reaction that occurred?   

Thanks,
Matt

Offline goose

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2019, 02:38:27 PM »
Two questions:
1) What metal is the swivel nut made out of?
2) What does the odor smell like (that would give a good idea of what reaction happened)?
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2019, 02:43:11 PM »
Replace the swivel nut. You might want to clean the rest with PBW to be sure no metallic flavors carry over.

I take it the nut corroded?
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Offline Robert

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2019, 02:53:34 PM »
I use a "blowoff" airlock consisting of a tube from a gas QD on my fermenter into a jar of Star San, so the tube is in there for a week or so.  For some  time I had a tube with a swivel nut on the Star San end in place.  Apparently the swivel nut from LHBS was chromed brass.  Over several batches, it turned black, then eventually the chrome was all gone and it was down to nice, clean brass.  So apparently Star San eats chrome. (It also eats the vinyl tubing, and some other plastics, but not HDPE -- that's what it's packaged in.) But clearly not stainless if your stone is still fine, so I'd just rinse it and flush it with water really well and make sure it's not clogged with any residue.  Since I know Star San attacks at least some plastics, I'd check the flare washer in that swivel to see if it needs replacement.
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2019, 07:46:29 PM »
I had the same occurrence as Robert, but I didn’t get an off smell that I noticed, anyway...we probably need a metallurgist to comment. I’m looking at using a keg purge to keg blowoff set up to avoid needing a tube into sanitizer as used at present.
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Offline Robert

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2019, 07:59:06 PM »
BTW I wouldn't care what a swivel nut is made of, as long as the barb, disconnect, or other fitting it's keeping in place is suitable for contact with beer.  And in the case of my O2 wand, sure, it's in contact with the beer, but only for a minute or two, so again I wouldn't worry about it not being stainless as long as it cleans up nice.  But if corroded, I'd replace it for sure. Unless they grow in your back yard, I'd bet stainless swivel nuts would be an unnecessary expense.
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Offline jtoots

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2019, 08:12:04 PM »
I let a bit of starsan sit in a small stainless kettle until it evaporated. That kettle will never be the same, it now is kind of peppered with black stuff. Weird. It turns plastic tubes foggy very quickly too so I figure glass is the only place to store starsan for prolonged periods.

Offline Robert

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2019, 08:22:49 PM »


I figure glass is the only place to store starsan for prolonged periods.

Except that the concentrate is packaged in HDPE and can sit there harmlessly for all time.  I also have always kept diluted Star San in HDPE buckets and spray bottles indefinitely with no ill effects.  Star San does seem to affect at least the plasticizers in some other plastic materials, like PVC tubing, which is why your tubing gets sticky and cloudy.  But if it's a blow off tube, it will still perform its function.  Racking tubes and beer lines shouldn't have prolonged exposure.
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Offline soymateofeo

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2019, 01:56:58 PM »
Two questions:
1) What metal is the swivel nut made out of?
2) What does the odor smell like (that would give a good idea of what reaction happened)?

I assume chrome plated brass.  The smell is a very unique "brass inbstarsan too long" smell.  It is abunique smell.  Odd how the whole contraption is stainless except for the swivel nut. 

Offline soymateofeo

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2019, 01:57:57 PM »
Replace the swivel nut. You might want to clean the rest with PBW to be sure no metallic flavors carry over.

I take it the nut corroded?

Corroded and turned black.

Offline goose

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2019, 02:07:48 PM »
Two questions:
1) What metal is the swivel nut made out of?
2) What does the odor smell like (that would give a good idea of what reaction happened)?

I assume chrome plated brass.  The smell is a very unique "brass inbstarsan too long" smell.  It is abunique smell.  Odd how the whole contraption is stainless except for the swivel nut.

I think you found t he problem
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2019, 03:16:05 PM »
Two questions:
1) What metal is the swivel nut made out of?
2) What does the odor smell like (that would give a good idea of what reaction happened)?

I assume chrome plated brass.  The smell is a very unique "brass inbstarsan too long" smell.  It is abunique smell.  Odd how the whole contraption is stainless except for the swivel nut.

You should be able to find a SS replacement.

I thought it would be black. Happened to me years back with some Gizmo.
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Offline Robert

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2019, 04:51:27 PM »
If you don't want to try to find a SS nut, and can only get chromed, just don't leave it in there!  Also, I've left my wand in iodophor for quite a while and it doesn't seem to have the same effect.  I know that contains phosphoric acid, but it must be either the concentration or the active sanitizing acid (can't recall what it is at the moment) in Star San that is the problem with metals and plastics.
Rob Stein
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2019, 10:18:13 PM »
If you don't want to try to find a SS nut, and can only get chromed, just don't leave it in there!  Also, I've left my wand in iodophor for quite a while and it doesn't seem to have the same effect.  I know that contains phosphoric acid, but it must be either the concentration or the active sanitizing acid (can't recall what it is at the moment) in Star San that is the problem with metals and plastics.

Star San is 50% Phosphoric acid and 15% Dodecylbenzenesulfonic something or other acid (35% inert ingredients)
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Offline Robert

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Re: Left my oxygen wand in starsan for 2 days ... oops!
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2019, 10:39:18 PM »
Well, then maybe it's the dodecabenzylwhooziwhatsit that's eating up the gear.  My acid cleaner and rinse, like BS Remover, Acid 5, and other standard brewery products, is 42% phosphoric acid with surfactants and other inert ingredients, and does no harm, only good, to everything it touches.  Then again, I never leave any cleaner in contact with equipment for extended periods.  It might also be a lesson here that even "no rinse" sanitizers should only be applied right before equipment is to be used. (Says the guy who just cleaned a fermenter, CO2 purged it with iodophor, and left it closed up for weekend brewing.    )
Rob Stein
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