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Old 01-17-2013, 02:17 AM   #1
MathiasMicrobrew
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Default Major foam on first pour!

I don't know what is causing this problem and maybe you guys cld help me out. I have a kegerator setup at 38F and my tap system is properly balanced at 11 psi. The first two or so weeks, my smashing pumpkin ale poured a two finger head then out of nowhere, it started pouring about half foam!

I thought maybe it was over carbing so I dropped the pressure to 8 psi and let it carbing down and it still does it. It's only on the first pour cause I pour another right after and its perfect. I'm thinking its sucking air somewhere?

This is my 5th batch with this setup and no problems like this have occurred. Thanks in advance!

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Old 01-17-2013, 02:25 AM   #2
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Sounds like temperature differential in the tower to me. If you don't use a fan to force cold air into the tower, your first pour will be foamy as the lines cool. The warm lines let the co2 come out of solution much easier.

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Old 01-17-2013, 02:33 AM   #3
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I have my keg, lines and co2 tank inside the fridge and I drilled thru the front to put a faucet on the door.

It's just weird that it was ok until a week ago

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Old 01-17-2013, 03:17 AM   #4
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I'm having similar issues and will definitely watch this thread.

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Old 01-17-2013, 03:33 AM   #5
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If it's only the first pour, then there's really only two possibilities. One is that the shank/faucet/lines are significantly warmer than the beer in the bottom of the keg. A longer shank with more thermal mass sticking into the cold fridge can often help. So can a little muffin fan inside the fridge to circulate the air and prevent temperature stratification.

The other possibility is that the carbonation level of the beer is higher than whatever corresponds to the serving pressure you're using. If the serving pressure is lower than the carbonation, the CO2 will break out of solution and form pockets of gas in the line as it sits, which will create a foamy first pour. If this is the case, turning the serving pressure down would only make the problem worse.

If you look at the beer lines after it's been sitting for a couple of hours do you see any pockets of gas? How did you carbonate the beer? What's the ambient temp outside of the fridge? Have you tried measuring the temps at the bottom and top of the fridge to see what kind of temperature stratification you have?

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Old 01-17-2013, 11:35 AM   #6
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Yes I do find pockets of gas in the line and most of my shank is inside the fridge. My fridge is in my unheated garage where it has been down to 12 at some nights. I forced carbed the beer in the keg.

I'm thinking the outside ambient temp has something to do with it and I might try turning back up to 11 psi.

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Old 01-17-2013, 01:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MathiasMicrobrew View Post
Yes I do find pockets of gas in the line and most of my shank is inside the fridge. My fridge is in my unheated garage where it has been down to 12 at some nights.
1) Pockets of gas are because it's overcarbed relative to your pressure. This makes sense if you carbed at 11 psi and now you're at 8 psi

2) The fact that it's 12 degrees at night is probably the problem. If the temperature gets lower than you think, the beer will absorb a lot more CO2 so it'll continue to be overcarbed compared to your serving pressure.

Turn the pressure back up to 11 psi and try to keep the temperature consistent. I'll add that most fridges aren't designed to work in ambient temperatures that cold. Move the fridge inside, or buy a dual stage temp controller and throw in a light bulb or heating pad.
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