General Category > Kegging and Bottling

set-and-forget carb problems

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redzim:
Hello,

I have been having problems with the set-it-and-forget-it method of force carbing my corny kegs.  I used to brew 5 gal batches, and had 2 cornys. I have a double manifold on my single-regulator CO2 tank, and would drink from one keg, while the other carbed. Left it at 12 PSI @ 34F all the time, no problems, and it seemed like my kegs would always be carbed and ready to drink in 5 to 7 days.

Well about 4 months ago I moved to 10 gal batches and bought another corny. I also bought a T and another gas fitting for the corny, and plumbed that off one side of my manifold, so I can have 3 kegs attached to the tank now. I schedule my brews so when 5 gals of one brew is gone (drunk or bottled), I can fill up 2 kegs with a new 10 gal batch and let it carb.  However I am now finding that it is taking about 14 days to properly carb the new kegs, still at 12 PSI and  34F. Is this because I now have three kegs on the gas? Or because of my T splitter feeding the two uncarbed kegs? Or does carbing take longer as the gas cylinder gets empty - I think mine is getting empty because it's been going forever, but the gauge still shows the same tank pressure as when it was new.

In a related question, I now have 10 gals of a Brown Ale that is 11 days old in the primary... I was hoping to be able to rack it into the kegs this weekend, but my current beer is not carbed yet, so I can't bottle it as I planned to.... so how long can this ale sit on the yeast in the primary... it was down to final gravity at 8 days, so it is ready to keg.

schristian619:
I have found that 1 week is typically not enough to fully carbonate.  It's very rare that i pull my first pint before the 2 week mark.  FWIW, I use a single regulator with manifolds to connect to 4 kegs. 

As far as your other question, I always leave my beers in primary for 2-3 weeks, sometimes longer.  You should be fine leaving it until your legs are carbed.

mthogan1997:
I haven't had coffee yet and last night was a late night, so, if this is wrong sorry.

If you had 1 ten gallon keg on a line, it would probably take 14 days to carb (doubling your 5 gallon time). Since your kegs are on a T sharing the same port on the manifold, my first thought is that it is like having 1 ten gallon keg on that port. If you put a fully carbed keg on one side of the T and an uncarbed keg on the other, the fully carbed keg would go flat as the CO2 tries to equalize between the kegs.

I'm not a fan of T's. I posted on NB forums some time ago that when I made sparkling wines for my wife, at first I had a T between the wine and a beer. The wine lasted far longer than my beer and would eventually take on the taste of the beers that it was T'd with. When I went to a larger manifold with check valves, no transfer of flavor.

You probably won't have that problem because you are putting the same beer on both sides of the T, but food for thought.

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