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Old 04-20-2014, 04:14 AM   #1
ZenBrew
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Default Question about Cleaning Kegs and Lines

I think I might go overboard when cleaning my kegs and lines. I'm hoping I can do a little less cleaning after getting some feedback from you all.

Here is what I do every time I finish a beer and get ready to put a new one in:

1. Take apart the faucet, soak it in oxyclean solution, rinse it, lube all o rings, sanitize it with Star San, put it back together.
2. Repeat #1 for the gas and liquid keg couples.
3. Repeat #1 for each keg.
4. Put oxyclean solution in keg and run through the line. Let it sit in line for at least 15 minutes.
5. Rinse with hot water. Run through line.
6. Let Star San solution sit in keg. Make sure it gets over every surface at least 20 seconds. Run through line, but let it sit in line for 15 minutes.

Instead of doing all of that every time, I am hoping to only do steps 4-6 every other time to reduce the amount of cleaning/lubing I have to do. Does this seem like a good idea or should I really take everything apart to get that deep clean/lubing every single time?

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Old 04-20-2014, 04:42 AM   #2
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Depends. Are you immediately putting another keg on? I just pop one keg off then another keg on, bleed out the old, then go on my merry way. It's basically a sealed system. Usually, I'll dip the tap opening and dip/wipe the keg connections in/with some starsan for a bit for good measure.

Your new keg should already be lubed before hooking up. I take apart my tap and components every 3 kegs and clean. Never had an infection in over 3 years of kegging. I mark everything with a grease pen so I don't forget.

If it's going to be a bit before I re-tap then I just run some starsan through the lines, drain, then leave everything open to dry out. Re-sanitize before tapping again.

Some people go super OCD about it. The same people check to make sure their car is locked 8 times before they leave it...

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Old 04-20-2014, 05:10 AM   #3
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Thanks! I think I'll do what you do and clean out everything real good every 3rd time. That sounds much better.

I should have mentioned, I will make sure my keg is well lubed every time!

And hey! Who told you how many times I check to make sure my car is locked?!?

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Old 04-21-2014, 01:37 AM   #4
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I do 4-6, but a quick version of it and I only flush lines if it's going to be a little time between kegs or if it's a completely different style. I finally took my kegs apart last week and I have had them 1.5 years. I still haven't taken my faucets apart yet and it's been just so long as the kegs.

Only thing I do different is I bought some beer line cleaner and I run that through the lines with the kegs and flush with hot water.

Not trying to hijack your thread, but should lines be sanitized after using blc? I haven't been, I have just been flushing with water and calling it good.

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Old 04-21-2014, 02:10 AM   #5
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Uhhh...

I just soak in oxyclean for a minimum of 24hrs. Filled right to the very top. I've never taken them apart unless to change orings.

Right before kegging I fill them with about a half gallon of starsan, shake and dump.

I clean my lines about once every 3-6 months (they're always full of beer) and i've never had an infection, in the keg or the bottle. You're not going to get an infection with a keg at 36 degrees F. I don't even think I'd bat an eye if I sneezed in my kegs right before filling them..

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Old 04-21-2014, 03:07 AM   #6
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I wonder how Coca-Cola and Pepsi used to clean them for a refill back in the day when Cornelius kegs were used.

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Old 04-21-2014, 03:17 AM   #7
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I clean my empty kegs w/ B-Brite in hot water. after a soak of 30-60
Min I run about a gallon through the supply line & tap that had been in use. Then, I rinse the keg thoroughly w/ hot water & again flush the service line & tap.
Then I hook up a new keg of homebrew.


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Old 04-22-2014, 03:29 PM   #8
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My Procedure

1) Shake empty keg with hot water then dump (bulk residue removal).
2) Shake empty keg with hot oxiclean and push that through the beer lines. Then dump
3) Rinse keg with hot water.
4) Fill Keg with warm star san and flush that through the beer lines.

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Old 04-22-2014, 03:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenBrew View Post

1. Take apart the faucet, soak it in oxyclean solution, rinse it, lube all o rings, sanitize it with Star San, put it back together.
2. Repeat #1 for the gas and liquid keg couples.
3. Repeat #1 for each keg.
4. Put oxyclean solution in keg and run through the line. Let it sit in line for at least 15 minutes.
5. Rinse with hot water. Run through line.
6. Let Star San solution sit in keg. Make sure it gets over every surface at least 20 seconds. Run through line, but let it sit in line for 15 minutes.
You're doing this with each new keg? Wow! No way would I be kegging if I thought I had to do this with each new keg. 1/2 the point of kegging, IMO is the simplicity and ease.

I push some oxyclean, hot water, stansan, through the lines every 2-3 kegs or so. If I forget and let it go longer, I don't stress over it. Once a year I completely break down the entire system (kegs, taps, connections, lines, etc) and soak every thing in Oxyclean over night, sanitize, and reinstall the next day. This includes replacing the beer lines.

As someone else said, the entire system is pretty much closed and if you pour beer regularly and keep the temps steady without spikes, excessive cleaning isn't needed.
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hnycrk View Post
I wonder how Coca-Cola and Pepsi used to clean them for a refill back in the day when Cornelius kegs were used.
I wonder why some places sodas/beer tastes like crap.


Not OCD by any means, but ya need to sanitize ever now and then.
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