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Old 11-30-2011, 09:54 AM   #1
Maegnar
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Default cleaning fermenter after use

Hey there!

How do you go about cleaning the fermenter after bottling your beer? I've washed mine pretty thoroughly (thou didn't disinfect), but the yeast scent didn't go away. It smells as if the beer was still fermenting in it (thou seems clean and dry).

Thanks!

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Old 11-30-2011, 10:24 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Maegnar View Post
Hey there!

How do you go about cleaning the fermenter after bottling your beer? I've washed mine pretty thoroughly (thou didn't disinfect), but the yeast scent didn't go away. It smells as if the beer was still fermenting in it (thou seems clean and dry).

Thanks!
I only have plastic fermenters. After bottling I fill the fermenter with warm water and add a non scented soaker (sodium percarbonate 32.9% available oxygen 4%)at the prescribed rate. Leave it overnight and rinse it out and it is ready for next brew and never had a problem.
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Old 11-30-2011, 10:46 AM   #3
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Hey there!

It smells as if the beer was still fermenting in it (thou seems clean and dry).

Thanks!
RDWHAHB. There should be no residual odor in glass but there may be some in plastic. After I pull mine out of storage there is a slight beer sweetness (no funky smells). They are clean and dry and no scratches.

I rinse with a little warm water first to remove the trub krausen line using my hands. Then a little unscented "free" dish soap (or maybe an Oxy type cleaner if I have it made up for some other purpose) and a dedicated soft foam type sponge. Rinse very well and dry thoroughly before storing. Before use, I swirl a little water in to remove any possible dust/debris that may have gotten in in storage (overkill) and then sanitize and rack.

The few times I use a carboy (2ndary), I rinse the loose stuff out and then fill to the top with a mild bleach solution 1/4-1/2 cup to 5-6 G carboy and let it soak 12-36 hours.... that tends to dissolve most residue and I use a cheap crappy carboy brush to loosen any residual and then rinse well. (also, a small washcloth in with the last 1/2 of bleach water shaken vigorously does a pretty good job... just make sure the carboy and your hands are dry and you have a safe grip). I tend to grip firmly by the neck and bottom holding the carboy sideways and shake by twisting/working my abs... no need to move your relatively weak arms that are holding a big chunk of glass)
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Old 11-30-2011, 10:52 AM   #4
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Rinse as much loose stuff out as I can with warm water. Put in PBW at the prescribed rate. Fill with water that is hot as fvck. Soak overnite. The next day, drain about half, shake to get anything left, out. Drain then rinse a few times with warm water. No sponge, no dish soap.

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Revvy>>You shouldn't worry about ANYTHING, you didn't hurt the yeast, they know what they need to do, they want to eat all that sugar they are swimming around in. They want to pee alcohol and fart co2, it's their nature.

Bobby_M>>I flood the keg with CO2 for one minute with the lid off, rack the beer in to the bottom gently, seal it, flood it, vent it. If there's still O2 in there after that, F it.

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Old 11-30-2011, 11:22 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by jetmac
Rinse as much loose stuff out as I can with warm water. Put in PBW at the prescribed rate. Fill with water that is hot as fvck. Soak overnite. The next day, drain about half, shake to get anything left, out. Drain then rinse a few times with warm water. No sponge, no dish soap.
This.

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You're talking about beer. That could have been a whole lot more fun.
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:09 PM   #6
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Seems like I've done everything right... Thanks for your answers

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Old 11-30-2011, 02:36 PM   #7
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Rinse as much loose stuff out as I can with warm water. Put in PBW at the prescribed rate. Fill with water that is hot as fvck. Soak overnite. The next day, drain about half, shake to get anything left, out. Drain then rinse a few times with warm water. No sponge, no dish soap.
I use a quarter cup of PBW for five gallons of hot water in a carboy. It works really well; I do not need to scrub at all.
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Old 11-30-2011, 02:57 PM   #8
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This blog has a good post on cleaning and sanitizing. Plus its creator is the owner of my LHBS so i trust him. Its more about cleaning bottles, but i dont see why the same steps cant be used for the rest of your equipment, with some common sense.

Best practices for cleaning beer and wine bottles | Bull City Homebrew Blog

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