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Old 12-13-2011, 04:56 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by lightmedium View Post
My Star San is cloudy as soon as I mix it, does this mean it isn't working as well as it should? If it starts out cloudy, how do I know how long I can keep it? I guess I need to get lids for my HomeDepot buckets and start using distilled water.
If it starts out cloudy and you have mixed it properly, then you need a new source of water. cloudy will not do for sanitizing. Cheers


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Old 12-13-2011, 11:01 AM   #12
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If you make it with distilled water and it is in an opaque container that doesn't allow light thru, indefinitely. This is as per 5Star whom I asked this question.

I use my ugliest corny keg and make 5 gallons of star san and pressurize it (which also doesn't alter it) so when I need another cup of star san, I just get out my corbra tap. (Also handy for cleaning out the tap lines).

I'm gonna get a sprayer wand so I can just spray down my primaries and kegs instead of having to shake them to distribute the Starsan.


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Old 12-13-2011, 12:09 PM   #13
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Yep, i've been reading John Palmer's How To Brew book (the sanitation chapter) and he states that Star San is basically just an acidifying compound that will lower the pH of water below 3.5. A pH that low becomes anti-microbial and it should remain viable until the solution becomes cloudy or the pH rises above 3.5. If you have a freshwater pH test kit for an aquarium, you can actually test the star san to see where the pH level is if you're that worried.

Once the pH raises above 3.5, it's no longer germicidal, which is what makes it so beneficial to the brewing (and food) industry. When anything mixes with it and raises the pH, it neutralizes the star san it almost instantly. Pretty cool stuff.
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Old 12-13-2011, 12:20 PM   #14
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I mix StarSan w/ my local tap water. It clouds almost immediately but the pH remains ~2.7-2.9. Don't really buy into the whole toss it when it's cloudy thing.
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Old 12-13-2011, 12:25 PM   #15
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Sigh... lot of misinformation about StatSan here. Cloudy can be an indication that it's no longer effective, but it can also mean nothing.

As another poster said, it works entirely by having a pH that microorganisms aren't really able to live in. You want it to be under pH 3.5.

So testing viability is obvious... just check the pH. Many brewers already have meters to do this with, but test strips are cheap, and good enough. My water comes from Lake Ontario, and so it is *very* hard. As a result, it turns very cloudy immediately upon mixing. And yet, I have left this cloudy solution in an *uncovered* bucket for over a month, with the pH never going above 1.5 - that is 100 times more acidic than a pH of 3.5! The fact that it's cloudy doesn't mean microorganisms are somehow going to survive such a low pH any better than they would if the solution was clear. It's acid, and the way it works is extremely straightforward - if the pH remains low enough, it doesn't matter WHAT it looks like.
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Old 12-13-2011, 12:37 PM   #16
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Sigh... lot of misinformation about StatSan here. Cloudy can be an indication that it's no longer effective, but it can also mean nothing.

As another poster said, it works entirely by having a pH that microorganisms aren't really able to live in. You want it to be under pH 3.5.

So testing viability is obvious... just check the pH. Many brewers already have meters to do this with, but test strips are cheap, and good enough. My water comes from Lake Ontario, and so it is *very* hard. As a result, it turns very cloudy immediately upon mixing. And yet, I have left this cloudy solution in an *uncovered* bucket for over a month, with the pH never going above 1.5 - that is 100 times more acidic than a pH of 3.5! The fact that it's cloudy doesn't mean microorganisms are somehow going to survive such a low pH any better than they would if the solution was clear. It's acid, and the way it works is extremely straightforward - if the pH remains low enough, it doesn't matter WHAT it looks like.
Yeah, I found the same thing....The pH remains in sanitizing range a long time, even uncovered and cloudy.

Not sure where this whole "dump it when it's cloudy" hive-think started, but I've found it to be false.
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Old 12-13-2011, 12:37 PM   #17
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I mix StarSan w/ my local tap water. It clouds almost immediately but the pH remains ~2.7-2.9. Don't really buy into the whole toss it when it's cloudy thing.
Cloudy shouldn't matter one whit, as long as the pH is low enough. I mix mine w/ filtered local water & it starts out cloudy, but the pH is correct. I do keep a jug made up w/ distilled water that is crystal clear, but the pH is no different fron the tap batches. I'll typically make a new 2.5 gal (tap water) batch every six weeks or so, sooner if the pH is off (which generally takes a looong time). The distilled batch has lasted over six months & stills turns the test strip red~2 pH

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Old 12-13-2011, 12:41 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Hugh_Jass View Post
I mix StarSan w/ my local tap water. It clouds almost immediately but the pH remains ~2.7-2.9. Don't really buy into the whole toss it when it's cloudy thing.
Exactly ! 5 Star wants us to buy more, but if the PH is below 3 or so it is still sanitizing. Cloudy or not.

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Old 12-13-2011, 01:24 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SankePankey

I use my ugliest corny keg and make 5 gallons of star san and pressurize it (which also doesn't alter it) so when I need another cup of star san, I just get out my corbra tap. (Also handy for cleaning out the tap lines).
So I can store five gallons in an empty keg long term? No side effects? Just dump it out if I ever need the keg for beer? If so that will save me from wasting gallons of this stuff on brew days.
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Old 12-13-2011, 01:40 PM   #20
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So I can store five gallons in an empty keg long term? No side effects? Just dump it out if I ever need the keg for beer? If so that will save me from wasting gallons of this stuff on brew days.
Yep, keep it in a corny. Makes dispensing easy as pie.


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