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Old 07-20-2009, 02:26 PM   #1
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Default Use the dishwasher for preliminary cleaning?

I should be bottling my Nukey Brown Ale this coming weekend. I have a case of brand new bottles but I also have a case of "recycle" bottles I want to use. I rinsed out all the recycle bottles after the pour so there shouldn't be any huge nastyness in them but I thought running them all through the dishwasher would be a good idea.

I know that the rinse stuff in dish washing soap and in the machines dispenser is said to kill head retention but I was wondering if after I run them through the machine, would soaking them in Star-San eliminate that problem. At some point I am going to make one of the cool bottle sanitizer pumps but for now, it will just be soaking in a barrel.

Any thoughts or advice on this subject?

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Old 07-20-2009, 02:30 PM   #2
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I've used the dishwasher on the sanitize cycle without soap to sanitize bottles. You then bottle over the opened lid to catch drips and pull the bottles from the rack as needed.

I see no issues if you don't add soap or rinse agent.

Then I found kegging . . . life is much better.

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Old 07-20-2009, 03:19 PM   #3
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I wash my bottles in the dishwasher with soap.

I don't have a sanitize setting. But I sanitize them in a bucket before bottling.

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Old 07-20-2009, 03:49 PM   #4
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I'm not sure how well the dishwasher will actually clean the bottles, since the opening is so small. I actually do things in the opposite direction; I'll rinse them after drinking, and if they're scuzzy I'll wash them in a barrel of oxyclean, and then I sanitize them in the dishwasher. If I do a good job of cleaning the bottles after drinking, it's straight into the dishwasher.

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Old 07-20-2009, 10:47 PM   #5
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So in the various ways youg guys have used the dishwasher there hasn't been an issue of head retention death from the "stuff" in the dishwasher (I can't really empty out the rinse agent stuff - I'd just have to wait until it gave me the empty window and assume it was all gone)

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Old 07-20-2009, 11:10 PM   #6
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I have a dedicated dishwasher in my basement kitchen for beer glasses and bottles. No jet dry or anything in it. I soak bottles in a bathtub of PBW from time to time - remove labels - and rinse after every use. I sanatize in the dishwasher and use the heated dry as well. So far, so good for 50+ batches. I keg every 4th or 5th batch.

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Old 07-20-2009, 11:12 PM   #7
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using dishwasher soap will affect head retention. use PBW instead. but the insides of the bottles probably wont get cleaned by the dishwasher because the neck of the bottle is so small. i would suggest sending a batch through then looking in the bottle for water droplets. no water droplets means no cleaning.

as for dunking them in StarSan. that should be done anyway to sanitize. but a lot of dishwashers will take care of that for you (the sanitizing not the dunking). all the StarSan will do is kill the microbes not remove the residue from the soap.

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Old 07-21-2009, 01:42 AM   #8
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There have been rumors that the heat / cool cycle of the dishwasher isn't good for the bottles (i.e. weakening them). I would not recommend using the dishwasher for cleaning the bottles, but it appears that a lot of people use them to sanitize them.

The absolute best thing to get for bottle is a bottle tree w/ a sanitizer injector. It's unbelievable how much easier it makes the whole process.

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Old 07-21-2009, 01:50 AM   #9
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+1 on dishwasher, no detergent, sanitize setting, heated dry.

As soon as the bottles cool off they are filled with yummy beer.

I've been using the same swing-top bottles for 2 years. No issues.

Rinse the bottles thoroughly as soon as they have dispensed their last drop of beer. Let them dry before storing. Take 'em out of storage and load in the DW.

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Old 07-21-2009, 05:45 PM   #10
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Sort of unrelated follow-up question on dishwasher use:

Can the dishwasher be used to sanitize other equipment? SWMBO has a large metal strainer that I'd like to start using to pour cooled wort into my fermenter. If I were to run it through a full cycle in the dishwasher - wash and sanitize - immediately before using it, could I consider it sanitized for homebrew use? Or should I still use StarSan or something for good measure?

Thanks.

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