Author Topic: How Much CO2 Does it Take?  (Read 2546 times)

Offline jwaldner

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How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« on: February 08, 2011, 09:09:51 PM »
I started kegging about 6-months ago and although it's been a bit of a learning curve and I've had some issues I thought I was getting the hang of it.  However, I recently had to refill my 10 lb tank again only after about a month of use.  From other posts it seems a tank of this size should last me about three times that.

I have had some problems with poppets going bad but have replaced all of those and everything else seems airrtight.  I do carbonate all my beers to style some at 10 psi, some at 11 psi or some even lower and leave it at those setting until the keg goes dry.  I usually keep three on tap and have a seperate regulator for each beer. 

Does this seem normal to run through this much CO2 for three kegs in only a month?

Thanks and cheers

Offline BrewArk

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2011, 09:34:44 PM »
A 10# CO2 cylinder should keep three kegs more than a month.  Sounds like you've got a leak :(
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Offline a10t2

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2011, 09:36:27 PM »
Depending on temperature and carb levels, to carb and serve a 5 gal keg should each take about 60-80 g of CO2. So with no losses, a 10 lb tank should carb and serve at least 28 kegs. If you aren't getting 15 out of it, you definitely have a leak.
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Offline oscarvan

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2011, 05:31:51 AM »
Have force carbed and served more than 6 kegs with a 5 pounder.... and still going.
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Offline abraxas

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2011, 06:47:19 AM »
A typical beer is 5 grams/liter carbonation, so about 90 grams CO2 per 5 gallon for carbonation.

CO2 at 50F and 10psi is about 25 gram/5 gallons (.01903m3 * 68947N/m2 / 188.9J/kgK / 283K=.0245kg)

So, including tubing, say 150 grams/5 gallon batch, a 5 lb tank should be able to carbonate and push out 15 5-gallon Corney kegs... 

I use CO2 for all sorts of things (clearing headspace, Beergun, starting a transfer) but even when I am just using it to carbonate and serve I typically feel like 6-8 kegs is a more realistic number.  Unnoticed leaks have brought me to the liquor store twice in two consecutive days more than once.  Also, beverage tubing is going to have some level of permeability as are quick disconnects and other fittings.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2011, 06:51:12 AM by abraxas »

Offline jwaldner

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2011, 06:56:55 AM »
Thaks all,

I've tried several times with some sanitizing solution spayed around the fittings to see if I can find any leaks but don't really see anything bubbling.  I wonder if I took a CO2 detector from my house and put it in my keezer if this would at least give an indication of CO2 leaking?

Thanks again

Offline abraxas

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2011, 07:01:33 AM »
  I wonder if I took a CO2 detector from my house and put it in my keezer if this would at least give an indication of CO2 leaking?

I assume you are referring to a CO meter?

Offline a10t2

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2011, 07:34:19 AM »
Get some of this stuff: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/gas-leak-detector.html

It's a ridiculously large amount that will last you a lifetime, and cheap enough to pay for itself the first time you don't accidentally blow down a tank.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2011, 11:26:05 AM »
Get some of this stuff: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/gas-leak-detector.html

It's a ridiculously large amount that will last you a lifetime, and cheap enough to pay for itself the first time you don't accidentally blow down a tank.
Awesome, I didn't know about that stuff.  I'll have to get some.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2011, 11:34:56 AM »
Get some of this stuff: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/gas-leak-detector.html

It's a ridiculously large amount that will last you a lifetime, and cheap enough to pay for itself the first time you don't accidentally blow down a tank.
Awesome, I didn't know about that stuff.  I'll have to get some.

Starsan solution in a spray bottle works really well for leak detection. I located and fixed 6 different leaks in my new kegerator using starsan solution in a spray bottle. Works great for leak detection and sanitizing as well.  :)
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2011, 11:38:26 AM »
Get some of this stuff: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/gas-leak-detector.html

It's a ridiculously large amount that will last you a lifetime, and cheap enough to pay for itself the first time you don't accidentally blow down a tank.
Awesome, I didn't know about that stuff.  I'll have to get some.

Starsan solution in a spray bottle works really well for leak detection. I located and fixed 6 different leaks in my new kegerator using starsan solution in a spray bottle. Works great for leak detection and sanitizing as well.  :)
That's what I normally use, but I've got one that's been hard to track down, I think it's a very slow leak.  I'm willing to try something new.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline jwaldner

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Re: How Much CO2 Does it Take?
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2011, 06:45:07 PM »
Get some of this stuff: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/gas-leak-detector.html

It's a ridiculously large amount that will last you a lifetime, and cheap enough to pay for itself the first time you don't accidentally blow down a tank.

Sold!!! Thanks, I'll get it on order and give that a try.

Cheers