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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Letting StarSan Air Dry
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Old 01-18-2014, 11:52 PM   #1
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Default Letting StarSan Air Dry

I get weirded out by seeing the StarSan bubbles inside my racking tubes. I've read that it won't hurt anything but if you've read the label, it sounds scary. I sanitized my racking tubing with StarSan and allowed to air dry for several hours. I know that plenty of people will use StarSan and after 2 minutes they'll rack their beer. Did I seriously jeopardize my beer by allowing everything to air dry for several hours? And in the future, is air drying less preferable to sanitizing for a few minutes and then getting to work?

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Old 01-18-2014, 11:56 PM   #2
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Starsan is a wet sanitizer. When it dries, it loses effectiveness. Yes, undiluted Starsan is scary stuff. However, at the proper dilution, it's perfectly safe - foam and all. Did you seriously jeopardize your beer? Probably not. If you want to be safe, use Starsan wet. Lots of us do. Myself included.

Don't fear the foam.

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Old 01-19-2014, 12:30 AM   #3
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You should be fine.

prpromin is correct, as long as the proper dilution of star san in h2o is used, there is no need to worry about sanitizing and immediately using your equipment.

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Old 01-19-2014, 01:10 AM   #4
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You didn't serious jeopardize your beer, but you will at some point have some increased risk of contamination if you keep letting StarSan-treated equipment air dry before using.

The best way to use that stuff is to dunk, spritz or spray 20-30 seconds before you use that piece of gear, bucket, tubing, bottles, caps, etc. When I talk to folks who brewed before StarSan was available, I'm very thankful that we have an excellent no-rinse way to keep the nasties out of our brews.
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:16 AM   #5
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Agree, sanitize for few minutes and then ship the beer trough.
Also, spray bottle w/starsan is nicely to have by the hand.

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Old 01-19-2014, 01:51 PM   #6
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I just let the first oz. or two of flow go to drain instead of the carboy. That will take care of the residual foam and keep it out of the beer.

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Old 01-19-2014, 02:05 PM   #7
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"Don't fear the foam!" Star San is harmless if diluted properly. I've sprayed it in my mouth before to demonstrate. The foam does not hurt your beer. It actually breaks down so the yeast can use it. Some people even use StarSan as part of their yeast washing routine. I run Star San through my racking tube and autosiphon then immediately start racking into the fermenter. Of course, the fermenter itself has just been sanitized with Star San so it is often half full of left over foam. I rack right into it. I pour out any that has puddled, but don't worry one whit about the foam in the tube or the fermenter. I've done this for a long time and had no ill effects--other than the second head growing out of my neck. <--Note: that last part was a joke.

I do the same thing when racking from fermenter to keg or when bottling.

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Old 01-19-2014, 02:11 PM   #8
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The foaming action is what helps get StarSan into the nooks and crannies. It's what makes it more effective in killing unwanted microorganisms.

The main ingredient is phosphoric acid--the same stuff found in colas.

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Old 01-19-2014, 02:36 PM   #9
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As all have said DONT FEAR THE FOAM. its fine. When I rack to the ferm after the brew it has so many bubbles from the stuff it will just come out the top and I just throw the airlock on forget it.

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Old 01-24-2014, 01:34 PM   #10
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Wow! Thanks for the feedback! I've got another question for you though. When I'm mixing up my StarSan, I fill a bucket up with 2.5 gallons and add 1 TBSP of the StarSan. Then I use my big metal spoon and stir the heck out of it. I get a little bit of foam on top but nothing to write home about. Recently, I did it backward and added the 1 TBSP of StarSan to the bucket and then used the spray hose from my sink to fill up the bucket to 2.5 gallons but the rest of the bucket was overflowing with foam. I see everyone write "Don't fear the foam". Do you recommend one way of mixing over the other?

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