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-   -   Got a leak - double dual gauge regulator (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/got-leak-double-dual-gauge-regulator-103656/)

phidelt844 02-15-2009 11:07 PM

Got a leak - double dual gauge regulator
 
Okay, so I think I have an understanding of what's going on here, but I want to confirm...

I picked up a kegging setup with 2 cornys, 5 lb tank, and the double dual gauge regulator from Midwest about a month ago and immediatly kegged two beers. One keg was kicked about a week ago and I cleaned/rebuilt/refilled. So the new one's been on the tap for about a week. Around the same time, I found a slow leak on the other keg's gas in post, so I cleaned out the poppet, lubed the rings, and reseated. Seems that fixed that leak. So anywho, on to my actual question..

I went out of town Friday, and everything seemed fine. This is 5-6 days after I had actually messed with anything. Came back today, and found both of my regulators at 0 psi, as well as the tank pressure. I checked the kegs to see if they had any pressure, and this is where I am confused. The new keg (from a week ago) still has pressure. I can pull the release valve and get a fancy burst of C02. Its regulator, however, reads 0 psi. The other keg (been on tap for ~4 weeks, thought I fixed a small leak last weekend) has almost no pressure when I pull the release valve, and it's regulator reads 0 psi as well.

My newbie knowledge of kegging would lead me to believe that the keg that has been carbing for about a week, that currently still has pressure, would still have a positive reading on the regulator. I mean, if you disconnect the gas QDs, crank the pressure, and kill the gas from the tank, it should maintain that set PSI assuming no leaks. So, if my QD is connected, the regulator is set to 12 psi, and my tank goes dead, I would assume the same principle: the regulator should still show some positive pressure. Sure the beer probably absorbed some, but after 5-6 confirmed days with gas on it, I can't imagine it would be too much.

I'm getting a new tank tomorrow and am trying to narrow down what I'm sure will be a major PITA of a search. Currently, since one of the kegs is basically flat, I'm assuming that that half of my setup is the culprit. But still, I am concerned that my other regulator shot down to zero as well, even with remaining pressure in the keg. Am I reading in to this wrong? Is my assumption that the flat keg is the culprit correct? This is getting too long and frankly I'm starting to confuse myself :drunk:. Thanks for any feedback!

Jeffro 02-15-2009 11:41 PM

I'm a newbie to kegging as well...

I don't trust any of my kegs to hold pressure, so I just leave the main valve on the CO2 the tank closed for the most part.

I usually have 3 kegs on tap and have 2 regulators... One set for carbing pressure at 30 PSI and the other set at serving pressure of about 12 PSI. One has a "Y" on it to go to 2 kegs and I just switch the pressure back and forth between the carbing and serving kegs.

I usually just put the gas to the kegs once a day for how ever long it takes for the pressure to stabilize. Yeah... I'm cheap!

schristian619 02-16-2009 12:40 AM

I bought the same setup a while ago and had the same problem. First keg was fine, but second drained the tank. I discovered there was a leak around the pressure relief valve on the keg lid. I bought a new lid and works like new. Although I also discovered, too late to bring it up to midwest, that one of the regulators was faulty. No matter what i set it to, it will slowly creep up to 30+ psi. So I had to replace it. Other than that, the set up is great. In your case, it seems the flat keg is an indication that that half of the setup is leaking. When you get your new tank, hoof it up, take a paint brush, and dap everything with soapy water. It will be very obvious where the leak is. Also, with the tank empty, the gauge will read 0, even with pressure in the keg, it can still read 0.

MoRoToRiUm 02-16-2009 12:50 AM

+1 on the leaky second keg. If you have starsam I'd use that instead of soap if you have beer in it...

My one reg creeps sometimes, but It's because the lock nut doesn't hold the adjustment screw well... Need to get around to replacing that.

Good luck OP!

david_42 02-16-2009 01:23 PM

Two possibilities:

Only one of the lines has a check valve in it and that keg held pressure,
Or both lines have check valves and the keg that went to zero pressure has a leak. <- Most likely.

phidelt844 02-16-2009 03:38 PM

Both lines have check valves. Sounds like my flat keg is the culprit. I'll pick up a new tank today and give that half of my setup a once-over. Thanks for the advice!

phidelt844 02-16-2009 08:13 PM

All right - C02 tank is filled, and I have a strange issue...

I left my gas QDs disconnected, cranked the PSI on both regulators to 20PSI, and turned off my gas from the tank. After about 30 minutes, my regulator on the left (2nd from the tank, the one that regulated the flat keg) is down to ~18 psi, and the regulator on the right (1st from the tank, the one that regulated the keg that still had pressure) is up to 22 psi! I sprayed down everything looking for a leak to no avail; it seems like it's transferring pressure from one reg to the other!

[EDIT] Well I turned on the gas again, and my regulators shot up to 25 psi on the first, 22 psi on the second. So I'm thinking I didn't give it a chance to equalize the first go 'round. I'll restart my timer and check it again in an hour or two. So does the first regulator have to be a higher psi than the second one? Similar to how adding on additional regulators later in the system works? If I try to have my second regulator set at a higher psi than the first, will the second one just match the first regulator's pressure?

phidelt844 02-16-2009 10:59 PM

Well after a few hours, pressure has dropped from 25/22 to 22/19. I hosed the whole thing down with very soapy water and couldn't find anything. I'm assuming it's a very small leak. Disconnected/reconnected my regulator to the tank and tightened up all connections; maybe got a 1/4 turn on a couple of the hose connects, but I'm not sure that'll make a difference. Put the QDs in water and didn't notice any bubbles. I reset it and I'm gonna let it go for a few hours, but I'm not keeping my hopes up. Any help on where to go from here?

MoRoToRiUm 02-17-2009 08:32 AM

Ok,just to check with all the updates; going from your last post alone-

Pressure dropped 3/2 PSI after a few hours. Are you leaving the CO2 on, or are you shutting off the tank? You have beer in both kegs, correct?

I am thinking you are turning the gas off, and beer is absorbing the CO2 resulting in the pressure drop on your gauges. If that's the case, no worries- leave the gas on and carb up that good homebrew!

If that's not the case... Pending finding other leaks- What type of tubing are you using? If the kegs are empty, pressurize them and put them upside down in still water and look for bubbles (I had a leaky gas poppet before that caused me some headache before I realized it).

Pending updates, I'd say narrow down the variables again- one keg at a time, testing both kegs on both connections to isolate issues and resolve them.... Stick with it! It'll be worth it, trust me- good luck!

phidelt844 02-17-2009 02:11 PM

No kegs involved quite yet. I am currently turning the C02 tank on to charge the system, then shutting it immediately off. I placed my gas QDs in water and saw no bubbles. Last night I tightened everything down, then turned on the gas. The gauges shot right up to 17 psi on the 2nd gauge, and 25 on the 1st gauge. Then I turned the gas off. This morning I checked on it, and my pressure was at 15 psi/19 psi respectively. However, what I found strange is that I tried to turn the gas back on to reset it all, but the dials didn't move... I haven't adjusted my regulator settings or anything, so I expected the needles to shoot back up to 17 and 25 psi. I set my house a bit colder at night, so it may have been 5+ degrees colder ambient. I realize that the C02 tank gauge reads lower in colder temperatures; would temperature have the same effect on my regulators, and read a lower psi at a few degrees colder? I can't think of any other reason why turning my gas back on wouldn't immediately recharge my system, regardless of a small leak. But maybe I'm just trying to convince myself I'm leak free :cross:

[edit] I'm using the gas tubing that came with my setup from Midwest. Pretty sure it's the same 5/16" ID that they sell.

[edit #2] After some research, it seems like people using this method for leak checking are more concerned with the High Pressure Gauge reading. I don't believe my HPG has decresed at all; it seems only my Low Pressure Gauges are going down. My HPG, like my LPGs, did not increase when I turned the gas back on this morning. Does this narrow the problem area down or explain anything?


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