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arover

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I just got a whole load of recycled bottles from the local bar for my first batch. Is there something wrong with filling them with water so they sit at the bottom of a boiling pot, and boiling them as part of the sanitizing process? I figured this would be the most efficient way to sanitize, but I haven't seen many recommend, nor say anything bad about it. So, recycling boiled bottles, yes, no?
 

llazy_llama

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It'll work, but it's probably not the easiest, quickest, or safest way. Also, keep in mind that heating the hell out of those bottles will reduce their overall life span. If you're only going to reuse them once or twice, it's not an issue. If you want them to last almost forever, boiling or baking is not the way to go.

My method is to clean and delabel (two birds, one stone) by filling up the bathtub with warm water and Oxiclean. After a few hours of soaking, I store the bottles until I'm ready to use them. When the time comes, I give them a quick rinse in tap water, and hit them up with a vinator/sulfiter filled with water/Star San mix. Cleaning takes a few hours of soaking, which is fine because I'm delabeling at the same time. Santizing takes maybe 3 minutes for a 5 gallon batch worth of bottles.
 

ifishsum

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They should be cleaned before sanitizing - I'd recommend a good oxyclean or bleach soak for several hours to loosen up any gunk first, then rinse well and sanitize however you like. Boiling will work, but unless you have a very large pot I'd think it would be easier to just do a sanitizer bath and then drip dry on a bottle rack or on the empty dishwasher racks.
 

nebben

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When asked, I admit that I "dumpster dived" to find most of the bottles I use for my homebrew batches. A lot of the beer I've drunk in the past year has had logos embossed on the bottles, or just plain screw-on lips. So to get a big reserve of generic 12oz longnecks or fatboys (is that what the short and squat ones are called?) is good when I can find an almost unlimited supply at the local recycling dumpster.

Bottles are bottles. If they're left in a community dumpster or drunk by me, I don't worry too much. They all get an initial de-labeling, scrubbing in and out, and iodophor sanitization just the same.
 

RCCOLA

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I put all mine in the biggest cooler I have full of hot water and oxiclean.This keeps them hot for hours and lets the gunk and labels float off/out.
 
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arover

arover

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Any reason in particular why to soak for a few hrs in the cleaning process? I soaked a small batch of bottles in a semi-hot bleach solution for about 15 minutes, delabled em, and set em out to dry. Should I resoak em with the batch I'm now doing for an hour? I'm soaking them in some clorox, btw, I figure that's fine. It's 6% Sodium Hypochlorite, but obviously diluted into a bigger bucket.
 

Kungpaodog

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I like to soak the bottles for a few hours like everyone else said so that any crusty junk on the inside has a chance to break up and soak off. You might be OK with a short soak, but I feel like a few hours is better if at all possible.
 

xxdcmast

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Yep when i get any bottles that I didnt drink myself I give them a 3 step process. I give them a good scrubbing with my bottle brush and some type of bleach based cleaner. I think I used clorox cleanup last time. In my basement I have a 40 gallon tupperware container I have filled with bleach water I keep my bottles in there until im ready to use them. Rinse them out well before using then hit them with the iodophor sanitizer solution and bottle.
 

fastricky

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Edit: Nevermind, answered my own question with a search...

This stuff looks good on the AHS site: Ultimate Brewery Cleaner (UBC)
 

K-Bizzle

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I recently hooked up with my local taphouse and now have a steady supply of bottles that'll pretty much last forever. I did a bunch of bottles yesterday actually.

Anyway I use the Oxyclean/Santizer soak method as stated.
I also use a bottle brush a bit, just to be on the safe side.

I then put them drip dry on my dishwasher rack and throw them in a box until bottling time.
About an hour before I bottle I throw them back into the dishwasher wisher and set that to run without any cleaner. Basically just to rinse and to be sanitized again on the high heat dry cycle (per the midwest instructional vid).

The unscented Oxyclean is killer on most labels, they just seems to float off.
 
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