Easy/Cheap/Effective glass carboy cleaning method - Home Brew Forums

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Old 06-05-2010, 02:31 AM   #1
Jun 2010
Posts: 100
Liked 2 Times on 1 Posts

I wanted to share a method I use to clean my carboys. I generally only soak (dilute bleach vinegar water solution) then give a quick pass with my carboy brush. Very effective in my experience.

But if you have some stubborn stains, try mixing a few ozs (depends on carboy size 5 ozs for a 6.5 gal works for me) of rubbing alcohol and some salt. The salt will not dissolve in the alcohol and acts as a liquid sandpaper of sorts. Bung the carboy and roll and/or shake. Gets the glass very clean. Will not scratch the glass in any way, regardless of my analogy.

For added economy, the solution can be transferred to another carboy or storage vessel. Can be reused (as a cleaner, not a sanitizer) for quite a long time.

The alcohol can react with plastic, so I cant say if it will work without hazing the plastic, but for glasss, its a champ.

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Old 06-05-2010, 11:42 AM   #2
GRHunter's Avatar
Jan 2010
Posts: 564
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I am an Oxyclean fan. But it's good have an alternative plan in case my wife uses up all the Oxyclean on something stupid like laundry.
Brewing beer is a fun and rewarding hobby. When you do good, you get beer. When you do bad, you get beer.
It's a lot like recreation league softball.

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Old 06-05-2010, 01:15 PM   #3
Budzu's Avatar
Mar 2009
Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 747
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The alcohol method works wonders for me for cleaning the stubborn stuff off the inside of a glass "tobacco" pipe. I mean it nukes the stuff, and that is stubborn stuff. Krausen gunk must be child's play
Countertop Brutus Budzu-style

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Old 06-05-2010, 01:27 PM   #4
Dec 2009
Erie, PA
Posts: 675
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Originally Posted by GRHunter View Post
I am an Oxyclean fan. But it's good have an alternative plan in case my wife uses up all the Oxyclean on something stupid like laundry.
+1 an overnight bath in oxy then rinse...good to have options though!!
You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.
----Frank Zappa

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Old 06-05-2010, 02:47 PM   #5
homebrewer_99's Avatar
Feb 2005
Atkinson (near the Quad Cities), IL
Posts: 17,792
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How do you guys get "stubborn stains" in a carboy?

I use the "clean as you go" method. I'm almost done cleaning by the time I'm done brewing. You've got to sit down and figure out a process that works for you.

I just spray the carboy out after emptying and it comes out clean. Then I'll use some Oxy and my "rag on a stick" in my drill to "scrub" it and re-rinse. then I'll shake some Star San in it for a few seconds and drain. Done.

I never get built up gunk (see primary for that) in the secondary. For that there's an overnight soak in Oxy, rinse, and a sponge wipe down before air drying.
HB Bill

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Old 06-05-2010, 03:11 PM   #6
bferullo's Avatar
Feb 2009
Bel Air, MD
Posts: 534
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I use a slurry of baking soda mixed with warm water. I dump some rice in the carboy, add the slurry and shake like hell. The Rice acts as scrubbing pads and the baking soda helps get rid of gunk and any lingering smells.

For a more detailed version check out http://www.csibc.net and look at their tips section. This is where I learned about it.

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