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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Can you get all the smell out of a plastic fermenter?
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Old 02-09-2011, 03:50 AM   #1
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Default Can you get all the smell out of a plastic fermenter?

I have two Cooper's plastic fermenters, and so far love them. My Cooper's Lager kit, first ever brew, cleaned out from the fermenter nicely, no left over smell. The hefeweizen I did recently left a lot more smell in the fermenter, and it was a brand new fermenter (the second one I'd bought), so it's the first beer in it.

Everything was sanitized perfectly and all that and after fermentation was done and I bottled I cleaned it out immediately. Though I must admit... for the first cleaning I used hot water and sponged the insides clean. Then I filled to the top with water and added 5 tablespoons of Oxyclean and stirred it up and let it soak overnight. Well, the smell was still there after rinsing it out and drying it. Not as bad of course but I could still smell the traces.

So tonight I filled it with a small pool of water at the bottom plus Oxyclean and this time used the sponge and water/Oxyclean solution to sponge the entire insides. After that I filled to the top with very hot water and added more Oxyclean and let it soak a few hours and rinsed it all out. It's a lot better now but I still detect a faint trace of the scent.

With plastic of course you can't scrub or you'll create bacteria pockets. So what's the deal here... do all plastic fermenters leave some slight faint trace of smell or do I need to clean differently? If so, how and with what?


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Old 02-09-2011, 04:14 AM   #2
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Wait till you ferment a hop-bomb IPA.

Don't worry about it. It won't affect any of your future brews flavor or aroma.

You won't totally get the smell out, but if you leave it open for about a week, it will lighten up some.

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCCOLA View Post
Wait till you ferment a hop-bomb IPA.

Don't worry about it. It won't affect any of your future brews flavor or aroma.

You won't totally get the smell out, but if you leave it open for about a week, it will lighten up some.
Ha, I can imagine how a strong IBU IPA would smell after. I took a wiff of the fermenter since it's air drying about an hour now and the smell is indeed mostly gone, but still a faint trace. Good to hear though that this is common and not a point to worry. I definitely don't mind, and actually expect there'd be, a subtle smell but this was stronger than I thought normal and got a bit irked. I definitely would next time start straight off with the Oxyclean wipedown then the Oxyclean soak. I kinda thought maybe a clean wipedown with water then the soak would be adequate but I guess that was wrong.


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Old 02-09-2011, 04:28 AM   #4
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nothing to worry about, but i found an outstanding de-smeller is about 2 oz of clorox and a fillup of water, then a 45 minute soak, and a couple quick rinses. cures what ills ya

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:31 AM   #5
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nothing to worry about, but i found an outstanding de-smeller is about 2 oz of clorox and a fillup of water, then a 45 minute soak, and a couple quick rinses. cures what ills ya
Good to know as I have a bunch of Clorox that I bought when I first got my kit to sanitize with. Used it once to sanitize for my first batch then just got some Star San for simplicity and have almost two bottles sitting around I'd never use otherwise


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Old 02-09-2011, 04:33 AM   #6
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When my primary is empty, I like to walk by and smell it...but hey, I'm a weirdo

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:34 AM   #7
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don't use more than about 2 oz

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:35 AM   #8
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1/4 cup clorox to 5 gallons is one rinse, followed by a hot water bath, then an oxy clean free (2 scoops soak for 30 min) in warm water, takes even the hoppiest smell from the plastic. YES OVERKILL! but will do the job!

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:37 AM   #9
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DO NOT MIX ANY CHLORINE & OXY bad gasses erupt!

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Old 02-09-2011, 04:38 AM   #10
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When my primary is empty, I like to walk by and smell it...but hey, I'm a weirdo
You're not alone. My..my name is RC...and...I'm a bucket sniffer! There--it's out.

Love that hoppy aroma after some monster c-hop brew is finished.

I actually leave my bucket on the dining room table for a few days after bottling to let it air out and to stick my head in it every time I walk by it.
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