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Old 04-17-2011, 10:38 PM   #1
Flic
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Default Major siphon issues....

So I've been brewing AG for several years and have never had an issue with basic siphoning from the fermenter to the bottling bucket (I use an auto-siphon). A couple brewings ago, I was having issues drawing air into the auto-siphon and also losing the siphon altogether. I usually use a mesh bag over the end since I dry-hop quite a bit. I thought maybe that was the issue but I still had the problem after removing it. Sooo, I bought a new auto-siphon thinking maybe the seals had worn but on my last two beers, same thing happened and lost nearly 2 gallons on each one. Very confused on this as there are a ton of bubbles when it siphons and at times it completely stops. Fermenter is always on kitchen counter with bottling bucket on floor . I even had to resort to adding water to the hose and tried to start my own siphon today but I couldn't even get that going. Any words of wisdom here?? I'm amazed that this problem is plaguing me and I need to solve it before my next batch.



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Old 04-17-2011, 10:51 PM   #2
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I had a really hard time getting a siphon recently until I realized that my hose coming off of the auto-siphon was too long. Shortened it up and it was fine.



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Old 04-17-2011, 10:57 PM   #3
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Have you tried using a smaller ID hose? My autosiphon will leak air at the point where the hose attaches to the siphon tube if it's too big. Usually not enough to lose a siphon but that might be the problem.

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Old 04-18-2011, 02:41 PM   #4
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Also, don't siphon so fast. The greater the pressure drop, the more likely you are to suck in air from somewhere.

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Old 04-18-2011, 03:54 PM   #5
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I always thought autosiphons were a solution in search of a problem and given that they are causing you issues I will suggest the semi-obvious solution of not using them.

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Old 04-18-2011, 04:07 PM   #6
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I have a large size (1/2 inch) autosiphon. I used to use vinyl tubing and had problems getting a good seal unless I used a smaller size tubing (don't remember if it was 3/8 or 5/16) but getting the tubing on the cane was always a struggle, even with hot water to soften the tubing. Now I use 3/8 ID silicone tubing and no more problems. The tubing slips on easily yet forms a perfect seal and has the advantage that I can boil it to sanitize.

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Old 04-18-2011, 05:50 PM   #7
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I think the tubing ID is the problem as it's leaking air. You can either get smaller tubing or try a clamp or ziptie on the end of the racking cane where it meets the tubing.

I bought a 1/2" autosiphon with 1/2" tubing and had the same problem. Hose clamp or super tight ziptie worked. Edit: Don't tighten the hose clamp too much or you could crack the racking cane plastic.

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Old 04-18-2011, 10:00 PM   #8
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I thought it could be the tubing so I have had a hose clamp on it although I'm using 3/8" tubing. I am noticing the bubbles are coming up from the bottom of the auto-siphon as opposed to starting where the hose is attached so that may eliminate the hose being the issue.

whatsleftofyou - How long is your hose? Mine is 6'. I did replace the hose a bit ago (can't recall if problem started before or after) and it may be a little longer than before. I'll try to shorten and test it.

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Old 04-18-2011, 10:25 PM   #9
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My 3/8 ID silicone hose is 6 feet long, so I wouldn't think that would be a problem. If the bubbles come from the bottom, it's either sucking air from around the seal or else it's CO2 coming out of solution - I've never had either problem. I just racked a stout last week with my auto-siphon and don't think I saw a single bubble the whole time until I got to the bottom of the carboy. Maybe the CO2 had a chance to come out of solution and reach equilibrium because it had been in secondary for a month and the carboy had sat out at room temperature for a couple of hours before I started racking?

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Old 04-18-2011, 10:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by remilard View Post
I always thought autosiphons were a solution in search of a problem and given that they are causing you issues I will suggest the semi-obvious solution of not using them.
Blasphemy! I love my auto-siphon..


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