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Author Topic: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...  (Read 11070 times)

Online HopDen

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #120 on: July 01, 2021, 01:20:20 pm »
I wanted to bounce something off the expert panel here on AHA on this topic.  One constant that I see when I have a beer that is stubborn to clear goes like this:  I go to tap a beer and I get some clear beer (proabably in the line) and then I see a good sized-blob of something cloudy and then I get semi-clear beer.  That first glass of beer is VERY cloudy.  As the session continues the beer is clearer but not CRYSTAL clear and it stays that way for the rest of the session.  The next time the beer is tapped (days later or whatever) the same thing happens.  Very cloudy first glass followed by clearer beer the rest of the session.  When my beers clear properly, the first glass of the keg might be cloudy as expected but subsequent beers are clear and the first pour of any session is clear.  Does this one piece of information suggest anything?  How could suspended [whatever] continue to be in the keg like that so that the first pour of every session is so unbelievably cloudy?  The good news is that more recent batches have been better (clear from the start) so whatever it was might be in the rear-view mirror.  Cheers Beerheads.

2 things come to mind. First is that maybe the amount of CO2 pressure is too great and it is forcing the beer out the dip tube at a greater velocity. It is that velocity that is causing a greater suction than needed to pour a glass.When I add a new keg to the fridge I will force carb over night at 30 psi while turning all other CO2 valves on the gas manifold off. You can still pour a beer from them if desired. After the overnight force carb, I set everything back to serving pressure and open all manifold valves. Second, and this is pure skepticism, maybe this has more to do with line balance. I think length of gas and serving lines have to be at certain lengths to balance or equalize the pour??


Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #121 on: July 01, 2021, 01:41:55 pm »
I wanted to bounce something off the expert panel here on AHA on this topic.  One constant that I see when I have a beer that is stubborn to clear goes like this:  I go to tap a beer and I get some clear beer (proabably in the line) and then I see a good sized-blob of something cloudy and then I get semi-clear beer.  That first glass of beer is VERY cloudy.  As the session continues the beer is clearer but not CRYSTAL clear and it stays that way for the rest of the session.  The next time the beer is tapped (days later or whatever) the same thing happens.  Very cloudy first glass followed by clearer beer the rest of the session.  When my beers clear properly, the first glass of the keg might be cloudy as expected but subsequent beers are clear and the first pour of any session is clear.  Does this one piece of information suggest anything?  How could suspended [whatever] continue to be in the keg like that so that the first pour of every session is so unbelievably cloudy?  The good news is that more recent batches have been better (clear from the start) so whatever it was might be in the rear-view mirror.  Cheers Beerheads.

2 things come to mind. First is that maybe the amount of CO2 pressure is too great and it is forcing the beer out the dip tube at a greater velocity. It is that velocity that is causing a greater suction than needed to pour a glass.When I add a new keg to the fridge I will force carb over night at 30 psi while turning all other CO2 valves on the gas manifold off. You can still pour a beer from them if desired. After the overnight force carb, I set everything back to serving pressure and open all manifold valves. Second, and this is pure skepticism, maybe this has more to do with line balance. I think length of gas and serving lines have to be at certain lengths to balance or equalize the pour??
I like it but my draft system has been in place for a long time and when things are right the dispensing of beer is no problem.  I might get a slightly foamy pour on pour #1 but that happens either way.  I feel like this has to be a process issue like I didn't boil vigorously enough or I had a pH issue (I *did* just find out my old meter was flaky) or some other problem during the brewing of the beer as opposed to the dispensing of the beer but I'm going to keep it in mind because you never know. 
Ken from Chicago. 
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Offline denny

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #122 on: July 01, 2021, 03:19:58 pm »
Ken, I've seen it many times before.  I assume it's stuff in suspension that continues to drop out when the beer is cold.  It collects around the dip tube.  You pull it out in the first glass or 2, then have clear beer until you let it sit for a while and more "stuff" drops out.  WAG.
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Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #123 on: July 01, 2021, 03:29:16 pm »
Ken, I've seen it many times before.  I assume it's stuff in suspension that continues to drop out when the beer is cold.  It collects around the dip tube.  You pull it out in the first glass or 2, then have clear beer until you let it sit for a while and more "stuff" drops out.  WAG.
That's definitely it but when my beer drops clear then this does not happen... all of the glasses of beer are clear without this happening.  When this *DOES* happen, the first beer is CRAZY CLOUDY and the rest of the glasses are just less cloudy.  I guess I'm just trying to figure out what I did to cause this. 

EDIT:  When I moved from "gel solution when the beer was cold to Biofine when the beer was basement temp" things went downhill fast.  The BioFine added at basement temp did NOTHING and I wonder if it actually compounded the problem.  Even adding a gel solution afterwards when the beer was cold did not work.  I stopped using the BioFine 5-6 batches ago as a result and just went with gel when the beer was cold. 
« Last Edit: July 01, 2021, 03:41:24 pm by Village Taphouse »
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #124 on: July 02, 2021, 09:50:36 am »
Sounds like it could be chill haze. Beer in the line is warmer, so it has no chill haze.

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Offline denny

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #125 on: July 02, 2021, 11:10:14 am »
Sounds like it could be chill haze. Beer in the line is warmer, so it has no chill haze.

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If the keg and line are both refrigerated in the same unit, why would the line be warmer?
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #126 on: July 02, 2021, 01:00:12 pm »
Sounds like it could be chill haze. Beer in the line is warmer, so it has no chill haze.

Sent from my SM-G998U using Tapatalk

If the keg and line are both refrigerated in the same unit, why would the line be warmer?
My tower isn't refrigerated/no fan and the beer in the lines is probably 10 degrees warmer. Maybe other setups are different, but I generally toss the first ounce or two if I haven't poured a beer recently.

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Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #127 on: July 02, 2021, 01:31:06 pm »
There is a very short length of tubing going from fridge to shank that is not cold but it's been like that for a long time.  I hear the chill haze comment and I agree but the part that is very strange is this thing where the first glass of the session is always super hazy.  I'm about to turn the corner on some newer beers where I know my boil rate was better, I used gel, I was more careful with pH, etc. so I will update this when I see the results of that.  Cheers Beerheads.
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Offline denny

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Re: Reasons for why a beer wouldn't clear...
« Reply #128 on: July 02, 2021, 01:35:09 pm »
Sounds like it could be chill haze. Beer in the line is warmer, so it has no chill haze.

Sent from my SM-G998U using Tapatalk

If the keg and line are both refrigerated in the same unit, why would the line be warmer?
My tower isn't refrigerated/no fan and the beer in the lines is probably 10 degrees warmer. Maybe other setups are different, but I generally toss the first ounce or two if I haven't poured a beer recently.

Sent from my SM-G998U using Tapatalk

Got it.  My serving setup is more basic, so it didnt occur to me.
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