Author Topic: cleaning? How often?  (Read 786 times)

Offline gsandel

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cleaning? How often?
« on: December 30, 2010, 02:28:21 PM »
As I set up my first keggerator, how often should I be doing routine cleaning, how often do I strip it down to soak and clean, and how often should I replace my tubing?...or a better question would be, how often do YOU do these things.

Any tips, tricks, or pitfalls would be sincerely appreciated.
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Offline euge

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2010, 03:22:43 PM »
I break down my kegs every time they get refilled. It's so easy to do. However others just flush really well.

Beer lines should be flushed periodically but after each keg floats would be optimal. See any gunk in there it should be cleaned.

Other than that taps etc should be cleaned frequently per your comfort level.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2010, 03:29:25 PM »
I have yet to set up tap towers.  I'm using picnic taps on my kegs.

I clean these and the lines every time I change a keg.  But this is likely easier than cleaning lines inside a tower.

Like euge, I break down my kegs every time they're empty.  Or, more accurately, right before I refill them.  I will often be lazy and leave them under pressure but empty for some time before I clean them.
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Offline liquidbrewing

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2010, 04:32:02 PM »
Obviously, tearing them down every time it kicks is a great habit.  However, I tear them apart about every two batches.  I usually just do a good rinse and then fill about halfway with a pbw or oxy clean solution, let that set a few minutes, pressurize the keg and run the solution through the lines.  Empty cleaning solution and repeat the above with star san.  I store my "empty" kegs in a pressurized star san solution.

No problems with infections or any off flavors.  If the beer is good in the keg when it kicks, it begs the question, "Why do you have to clean it to begin with?"  But seriously, cleanliness is the most important thing.

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Offline gsandel

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2010, 04:50:26 PM »
thanks.  To start, I have one faucet and one picnic tap.  I had the thought of just throwing the picnic tap into a cup of starsan after each pour....and either spray or hold a cup of star san up to the faucet after my pour or at my last pour of the day.  I think if I have two taps it might not be such a pain to break one down each time a keg kicks before I hook the next one up.

I am kind of strict about cleanliness.  Hell, you can clean (soak) while having a beer easy.

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Offline tubercle

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2010, 05:49:00 PM »
Tubercle cleans the tap and beer lines on a daily basis with a water/alcohol solution, usually in the 5 to 7 % alcohol range.
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Offline corkybstewart

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2010, 06:27:11 PM »
Tubercle cleans the tap and beer lines on a daily basis with a water/alcohol solution, usually in the 5 to 7 % alcohol range.
+1

I clean my beer lines about once every 6 weeks. 
I've never broken a keg down and many of mine have been in service for 14 years now.  My standard approach is to rinse a keg with water to get the residual sediment from the bottom as soon as it's empty, then set it aside until I have several empties or fermenters to clean at the same time.  Once I have several vessels to clean fill the first one with a very hot PBW solution.  After 30-45 minutes I push this solution to the next keg and let it sit for 30-45 minutes.  After each keg is cleaned I rinse it out and set it aside.  Once all kegs are cleaned I fill the first one with nearly boiling water and using a jumper hose and CO2 I push the hot water through all the kegs.  I turn them upside down to dry for a few hours then seal and pressurize them.
I've been kegging for 14years now and have never had an infected keg of beer.  I even turned a batch of crappy cider into excellent vinegar IN A KEG because I didn't know any better :o :o.  That keg was cleaned with my normal procedure and has been in the normal rotation for probably 10 years with no infected beer.  If you want to go to all that trouble to take the keg apart and clean it every time go for it.  I personally think it's a complete wast of time.
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Offline phillamb168

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2010, 01:21:11 AM »
Tubercle cleans the tap and beer lines on a daily basis with a water/alcohol solution, usually in the 5 to 7 % alcohol range.

I do the same thing. Does your water/alcohol solution have a small percentage of lupulin as well?
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Offline tubercle

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2010, 06:57:01 AM »
Tubercle cleans the tap and beer lines on a daily basis with a water/alcohol solution, usually in the 5 to 7 % alcohol range.

I do the same thing. Does your water/alcohol solution have a small percentage of lupulin as well?

 Forgot about the lupulin ;D

 The occasional yeast particle is added for a little internal scrubbing action as it bounces down the line :D :D :D
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Offline oscarvan

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Re: cleaning? How often?
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2011, 02:54:25 AM »
Tubercle cleans the tap and beer lines on a daily basis with a water/alcohol solution, usually in the 5 to 7 % alcohol range.

+2

Then when the keg kicks I put some PBW in the keg, shake and "tap" some, let sit. When the next batch is ready to be kegged I rinse the keg, fill with sanitizer, tap some of that and then dump the sanitizer and put the beer in the keg. Ready to go.....(Dump the first beer....sanitizer doesn't taste well).
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