Are eva 4mm ID lines too restrictive to clean 4 taps at once?

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Michele Craft

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Hi all,

Would love to be able to clean all 4 of my taps at once. I use 4mm ID (8mm OD) EVA barrier lines for beer and gas with ball lock posts on my sankey couplers. I have a few of those QD ball lock jumper posts and an aquarium pump that puts out 1,100gpm. I would LOVE to be able to do all my lines at once (jumper 1/2 and 3/4 in the keezer and 2/3 at the taps) but it won't push it. I know the holes in the QC ball lock jumpers aren't very big and my lines are pretty long (10 - 12') but even with the pump sitting in a bucket about even with the top of the keg (it's another 16" or so up to the taps, I don't use a collar, I have a hinged lid with black iron pipe taps), it just will not push. I even tried just 2 lines together and no go, tho one works ok. I'm wondering if it's because of the smaller beer line ID size just creating too much restriction.

Any guesses?

thanks!
 

day_trippr

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I'm surprised to read of such long lines with the 4mm ID EVABarrier tubing. I'm not surprised trying to daisy-chain them for cleaning doesn't work.
I used 12 foot runs back when I was using 3/16" ID Bevlex 200, but when I switched to the EVABarrier 4mm ID I dropped down to just over 6 feet each.

That said, even with the Bevlex it was clear I'd never be able to effectively clean my six tap lines/faucets/QDs in series, so I've always cleaned them in parallel, using a manifold based system with a beefy submersible pump...

Cheers!
 
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Michele Craft

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I'm surprised to read of such long lines with the 4mm ID EVABarrier tubing. I'm not surprised trying to daisy-chain them for cleaning doesn't work.
I used 12 foot runs back when I was using 3/16" ID Bevlex 200, but when I switched to the EVABarrier 4mm ID I dropped down to just over 6 feet each.

That said, even with the Bevlex it was clear I'd never be able to effectively clean my six tap lines/faucets/QDs in series, so I've always cleaned them in parallel, using a manifold based system with a beefy submersible pump...

Cheers!

I have them that long only because it was my first build and well, you can't make them longer once you cut them. I can definitely stand to take length off them and it'll help with wrangling lines in the cooler too since the copper pipe I have about 1' down into the cooler and then up into the elbow of the tower to act as a heat sink already tends to make it tight in the cabinet. Should I be concerned about the type of beer I'm using as it relates to line length and serving pressure? I have 2 gas manifolds so I can split off something that may need a wildly different pressure (i.e. right now my lager is on its own manifold). Even in parallel it would cut the time in half but it just didn't seem like it wanted to push it. I was tempted to take an old boat bilge pump ala this and try rigging it up since tho the gph rating is the same as my aquarium pump, I'd assume the head rating is stronger on the bilge pump.

 

day_trippr

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There are at least a handful of beer styles that traditionally have "higher than regular ale" carbonation levels, like wheat beers, saisons, some belgians, etc., and those would require longer beer lines to tame the higher carbonation levels. I usually have one of those boisterous brews on tap and for that I run 9 feet of the 4mm ID EVA tubing, whereas the "normal" kegs get 6 foot runs.

fwiw, if you go all-in with the EVABarrier using the push-to-connect fittings at both ends one could easily swap line lengths as necessary from one keg/beer style to another.

I would not assume anything wrt pump specs :) I use a cheap, generic oil-free submersible that claims 1100 gph, and it gets the job done. I originally tried the same brand's 800 gph and it was unsatisfactory...

Cheers!
 
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Michele Craft

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I just went back to my old thread where I had committed to cutting the lines back and then never did. So 10' is what I have. And yes, PTC connections so it's just a matter of putting the tool in to un-push. I run at 10 psi for the shandy/hefe types I've had on and then for the lager, I put that on its own at 14 psi tho in reading notes, I can't for the life of me figure out why, I guess "because I could". My current pump is definitely ok for single line recirc cleaning, so I may test it again on 2 lines by getting the pump up even higher than I had it before as a start if the QD ball lock jumper posts SHOULD be able to work so I can rul those out as a limiter.
 
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Michele Craft

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I clean 5 jumpered together, with up to 12' per line. Flow is slow but it gets done when pushing with 10-15 psi CO2.

Ah but using CO2. I don't actually know how to do that and it doesn't waste gas? I only have 1 5# tank that's on the hump.
 

AlexKay

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Pro tip: if you are pushing with CO2 and things aren’t flowing at all, DON’T just keep turning up the pressure figuring it’ll work itself out somehow. Ask me how I know.
 

Bobby_M

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A small aquarium pump is not going to generate more than 5psi or so. Each foot of EVA is going to absorb about 1 psi. I would expect the flow to be slow through ONE line. Diaphragm pumps are capable of up to 120psi.
 

Gozie Boy

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I haven't tried it with 4mm lines (yet), but I don't see why it would be much different than daisy-chaining larger diameter lines together. The thought here is that if you are properly balanced with each diameter size, then presumably your pressure drop will be about the same across each (due to the specific line lengths required to establish said balance and pint pour rate). However, the pressure drop is rate sensitive, and the smaller lines would have larger delP if you are trying to flow at a much higher rate than your dispensing rate. But at the same rate, you should have about the same performance, no?
 

IslandLizard

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[...] and an aquarium pump that puts out 1,100gpm.
1100 (one thousand one hundred) gallons per minute?
Impossible.

A small aquarium pump is not going to generate more than 5psi or so. Each foot of EVA is going to absorb about 1 psi. I would expect the flow to be slow through ONE line. Diaphragm pumps are capable of up to 120psi.
That! ^
 

day_trippr

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Settle down, we're simply using manufacturer's claims to differentiate between pump sizes, not substantiating them.
And my pump does claim 1100 gph...
 
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Michele Craft

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I haven't tried it with 4mm lines (yet), but I don't see why it would be much different than daisy-chaining larger diameter lines together. The thought here is that if you are properly balanced with each diameter size, then presumably your pressure drop will be about the same across each (due to the specific line lengths required to establish said balance and pint pour rate). However, the pressure drop is rate sensitive, and the smaller lines would have larger delP if you are trying to flow at a much higher rate than your dispensing rate. But at the same rate, you should have about the same performance, no?

My pour rate from looking back to comments made when I set things up are in the 10 - 15 second range on a pint. I was never in a hurry and was satisfied with the head produced etc. I never thought to hook up the pump and discharged it into a pint glass and measure the time to see if it produced the same as a pour. But the other thing is I never tried pouring 2 or 4 at once so I can't compare to pump performance when daisy chained.

Settle down, we're simply using manufacturer's claims to differentiate between pump sizes, not substantiating them.
And my pump does claim 1100 gph...

Thanks! Exactly, I'm just going by what the box says lol!

A small aquarium pump is not going to generate more than 5psi or so. Each foot of EVA is going to absorb about 1 psi. I would expect the flow to be slow through ONE line. Diaphragm pumps are capable of up to 120psi.

The flow on one which is 10' of beer line plus a few feet from pump to faucet shank is ok, way more than a trickle tho not lighting the worlds on fire. Do you by chance have a diaphragm pump you recommend that's not in the $800 commercial line cleaning pump range?
 

Knightshade

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So I've got 4mm EvaBarrier lines..that are about 3 meters each...and this 528 GPH aquarium pump.


I've done 3 lines at a time. I connected ball lock connectors to the faucets and fudged together some additional evabarrier connections. It was slow...but it did work.
 
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Michele Craft

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Huh I wouldn't think 9'ish (3m) vs my 10' would make much difference so interesting in that my GPH is almost 2x yours but who knows.

@Bobby_M if there's pumps with 120psi do you worry about blowing the first few fittings (i.e. my first faucet to tube connection in the "tower"). I don't know what the various types of fittings are rated for.
 
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Michele Craft

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No need to fudge connections! Try these and these. Works a treat.

not sure what you mean, I'm not fudging anything. I already have the ball lock jumpers you mentioned (that's what we're talking about here) and I can't use the growler fill thing as I have perlicks, plus I take my taps off at each cleaning anyway and clean separately
 

AlexKay

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not sure what you mean, I'm not fudging anything. I already have the ball lock jumpers you mentioned (that's what we're talking about here) and I can't use the growler fill thing as I have perlicks, plus I take my taps off at each cleaning anyway and clean separately
I was responding to Knightshade, who used the word “fudged” himself. You can get those push-in growler filler thingies sized for Perlicks, too, but no need if you’re already happy.
 

Knightshade

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I was responding to Knightshade, who used the word “fudged” himself. You can get those push-in growler filler thingies sized for Perlicks, too, but no need if you’re already happy.

I figured it would be easier to translate vs. gundecking..which is the word I usually use.

I hooked up ball lock disconnect faucet adapters to the three, threw on the ball locks with duotight connectors on, then hooked up a T connector. So the pump was pushing up 1 line, and splitting up 2 and back down into the bucket inside the fridge to recirculate. The tubing was at odd angles/lengths since I wasn't sure it was going to work anyways, so I didn't bother trimming them down. It was a lot more effective just cleaning 2 at a time vs. 3 which was effectively at a drip.

I've since picked up a couple of those ball lock jumpers, just haven't figure out how I'll use them yet as no kegs have kicked recently.
 

Yesfan

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No need to fudge connections! Try these and these. Works a treat.


That ball lock jumper post from NB is for beer disconnects only. Bobby M has some that works with both gas and liquid disconnects. Might not be important info, but thought I'd mention it. I like the dual purpose versions as I can use one to set the pressure on my spunding valve by connecting it to my main gas line.

@Michele Craft

You could probably go shorter on that 4mm hose. I think on mine, I went with 5ft length and still had perfect pours. 5.5ft is the recommended length for 9-14psi on Bobby's website.
 
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Michele Craft

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@Michele Craft

You could probably go shorter on that 4mm hose. I think on mine, I went with 5ft length and still had perfect pours. 5.5ft is the recommended length for 9-14psi on Bobby's website.

Thanks for that! Since I only have 2 kegs running at the moment, I'll probably cut those back 2', see how it goes, then go maybe 1' at a time to get down into the 6' range to be safe (can't glue them back together and tho I put unions on both legs of the pipe tower, I don't want to have to take it apart because I cut too much off).
 
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