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Old 03-31-2008, 06:59 PM   #1
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Default How do you clean and sanitize your bottles

hey guys,

I am trying to think of ways to clean and sanitize bottles. The past two batches I have soaked them in oxyclean, rinsed well and run them in the dishwasher without soap to sanitize. Any recommendations on other ways to do it?

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:24 PM   #2
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I clean my bottles after I drink them. That way it doesn't take much, and I only have to worry about sanitizing.

to sanitize, I dip in star san for 30 seconds, then onto a bottle tree to drip off the excess, and then they are filled and capped.

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:32 PM   #3
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I've used two methods here, depending on the state of the bottles. If they are already de-labeled, you can skip step 2 and 3.

1. Using a bottle washer and hot water, rinse bottles inside thoroughly.
2. Put all the rinsed bottles into the bathtub with hot water and a few glugs of bleach (a glug is a scientific measurement in my book). Soak for 30 minutes.
3. Slide/peel the labels off the bottles, then use a scotch brite or other scrubbing pad to remove label remnants.
4. Place de-labeled bottles in the dishwaher
5. Set dishwasher for Sanitize Wash cycle, and add 2 tsp of no-rinse sanitizer(I use Iodophor) to the soap reservoir.
6. After cycle completes, leave bottles in dishwasher long enough for them to dry completely and cool (usually 1-2 hours after cycle ends).

I've done this and I have had no contaminated bottles of beer (yet!). If you've got a dishwasher to use, it's much easier than using a bottle tree. When bottling, I also put the bottling bucket on the counter above my dishwasher. With the door open, all of my beer spills just fell on the dishwasher door and made for simple cleanup.

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:33 PM   #4
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I do not (yet) have a bottle tree, so I lay out paper towles on the counter, sanitize, swirl them out and set upside down on the towles. In theory the sanitizer in the bottle should run out onto the towl and keep the rims clean until I fill them. Just dont hop around or you will see what glass dominoes can do to your bottle area!

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:49 PM   #5
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After pouring, I rinse out the bottle and set it on the kitchen counter. When 6 or 8 bottles accumulate, I wash them all in oxyclean and hang them on my bottling tree to dry. When the bottle tree gets full, I put them in case holders until I need them.

On bottling day, I fill my kitchen sink with a hot oxyclean solution and attach a bottle washer to my kitchen tap. I fill 12 bottles with oxy clean, shake them up, pour them out, and rinse them with the bottle washer. Then I submerge them in my 5-gallon bucket of StarSan solution for a minute, and hang them on the bottle tree to drip dry. Repeat with the next batch of 12 bottles until all bottles have been cleaned and sanitized.

I could skip the oxyclean wash on bottling day because every bottle has already been washed once. I still do it, though, because some of the bottles sit for a long time before getting used and they get pretty dusty, so I feel better about it.

It takes about 45 minutes to clean and sanitize 50 bottles this way at a moderate pace.

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:49 PM   #6
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I rinse my bottles as I drink them and then store them until I have 12 or so around.
Then I put them in a 5 gallon bucket with water and oxyclean.
I let them soak over night or until I get back around to them.
Then I dump the oxyclean and rinse inside and out with hot water and store on a bottle tree to dry.
On bottling day I give each bottle a spray of Starsan on the inside and fill them up.

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Old 03-31-2008, 07:50 PM   #7
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I clean in oxyclean after I empty them of their contents, store in a clean place, then sanitize with Iodophor when it comes time to bottle.

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Old 03-31-2008, 08:00 PM   #8
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Thanks guys. I was wondering the same thing.

Will I be able to get all the residue out of the old bottles I've been saving for the past month?

Chris

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Old 03-31-2008, 08:04 PM   #9
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I got some old Sierra Nevada bottles from a friends house that were pretty nasty. SN bottles often have a little sediment in the bottom, so some of these things were really gunked up. I hit them with my faucet-attached bottle washer and some super-hot water and the nasties came right off. Plus, I soaked them in the tub with bleach to take the labels off, and then ran them through the dishwasher and that took care of everything else.

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Old 03-31-2008, 08:14 PM   #10
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If they're commercial bottles, I rinse them well after I drink out of them, then put them in the box they came in, when I get a lot, I soak them in PBW in my kitchen sink for 45 minutes to get the labels off, then I rinse them well, and put them back in their box. If they're already homebrewed bottles, I just rinse them well and put them away. When bottling day comes, I fill up my dishwasher and put it on the hottest cycle with no detergent, then run it. When I'm bottling, I pull my bottles directly out of the dishwasher.

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