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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Racking carbonated beer after dip tube clog
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:23 PM   #1
idover
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Default Racking carbonated beer after dip tube clog

I didn't dry hop directly in the keg, but nonetheless, a large amount of loose pellet hop sediment made its way from my carboy. I primed and hooked up to gas and dispenser two days ago. So, I was excited to try my new beer and was able to get a few ounces out when it stopped. After clearing the dip tube, I decided to clear the lines before hooking back up. I used another keg to hold the BLC, so the clogged dip tube was no longer an issue. I was horrified to discover that there was still no flow - hop material had somehow made its way past the poppet and compacted at the top of the dispensing line, inside the tower.

I was never able to get the line out of the tower, so I tried everything I could think of. It seemed to me that applying more pressure would only cause the clog to compact even more and would be even harder to clear, so I tried to keep the pressure low. The most creative was turning the faucet upside down, opening the valve and using the auto-siphon to pump the BLC in direction opposite of the hops had flowed. After a while, I finally applied a higher PSI (40-50), fearing that the line would rupture, but after a few minutes I heard a loud "POP" and out shot the hops and BLC solution flowed.

After cleaning the mess I cleaned both lines, with absolutely no problems. But as soon as I hooked up the new keg and opened the faucet, it immediately stopped. I gave up, disconnected the dispensing line, and went to bed. I'm fairly certain that it's not clogged in the tower this time, so I am planning to rack to another keg.

So, the morale here is to avoid loose pellet hops in a keg.

To hopefully end this saga, my question is - considering the keg is full and the beer is already fully carbonated, can I expect any problems with racking using the common auto-siphon and grain bag attached to the end? Will ~5 gallons of carbonated beer foam too much for this to work?

Thanks for any help,
Isaac

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Old 05-11-2012, 03:57 PM   #2
idover
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Well I racked the beer to another keg last night, but wasn't able to get the last half gallon to move. The amount of hops was far more than I'd realized and it actually somehow stopped the auto-siphon from flowing. So, I just carefully poured the remaining amount into a growler and drank most of it. Really muddy, but I wasn't about to let it sit there and laugh at me. I had no problem with foaming at all, maybe because I set the temperature as low as it would go, and the beer was really cold.

Lesson learned.

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