Commercial 5 gallon keg and foaming

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BoitAHL

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Hello all,

On occasion I will purchase a commercial 5 gallon keg and put it in my Keg King Kegerator. It's normally New Holland Dragons Milk but I bought Blue Moon this time. With the Dragons Milk it normally takes a couple days for the keg to settle before it starts pouring normally. But the Blue Moon has been sitting for over a week and I'm still getting severe foaming. Please see the pictures below of my connections, gauges, and foaming. FYI I included a photo of a glass of my BYO Abysmal BBA Stout which pours perfectly. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
 

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day_trippr

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What temperature and CO2 pressure have you been using? Looks like almost 11 psi at the gauge, which might mean 10 psi at the keg.
Too low a pressure can actually cause foamy pours - although tbh that pour looks so foamy I'd look for a mechanical problem that's allowing CO2 to be injected into the beer stream. Do you have another coupler you can try?

Cheers!
 
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BoitAHL

BoitAHL

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What temperature and CO2 pressure have you been using? Looks like almost 11 psi at the gauge, which might mean 10 psi at the keg.
Too low a pressure can actually cause foamy pours - although tbh that pour looks so foamy I'd look for a mechanical problem that's allowing CO2 to be injected into the beer stream. Do you have another coupler you can try?

Cheers!
Day-trippr,

Kegerator temp at 40 degrees. I have not changed the CO2 pressure since installing the keg. 10-11 PSI too low? I do not have another coupler to try.

Thanks.
 

wepeeler

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I just purchased that same regulator (except mine is a double) from NB, and it's horrible. Super fickle and just the slightest turn of the knobs and the psi goes crazy. Purge the keg, release the pressure from the regulator and try again SLOWLY. (I was going to purchase another Taprite one, but I had a bad experience with one of the knobs stripping within a year and no help from customer service.) 10-11 psi should be fine for pouring, depending on your liquid line length. Mine is 7ft 5/16ID and at 10-11psi I get a decent amount of foam, but nothing like what you're experiencing.
 

day_trippr

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Blue Moon is a wheat beer, a style classically carbonated about a half-volume higher than most other ale styles. So if you don't maintain the temperature/pressure combination to support the original carbonation level, the "excess" CO2 in the beer will break-out of solution. And as bubbles beget bubbles, you get a foamy pour. Hence my question about temperature and pressure.

"Called Coors at 800-642-6116, the girl had no idea what CO2 volume is, but did tell me they recommend 16PSI @ 38F, sea level."

I found that quote on this page: C02 Volume of Blue Moon - Dispense Forum | Discuss Keg Beer, Kegerators, Wine On Tap, and more!
And according to our favorite carbonation table, that combination would result in a 2.94 volume carbonation level.

That said, again the volume of foam suggests there might be another explanation. If the keg was a typical ball lock I would suggest a defective or missing O-ring under the beer dispensing dip tube which would allow CO2 in the head space to be injected into the beer stream at the Out post. There is a similar paradigm for Sanke couplers - there's an O-ring that is supposed to keep the CO2 out of the beer...

Cheers!
 
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BoitAHL

BoitAHL

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Just an FYI the heavy foam comes out for the first 5-6 second and then there is mainly clear beer. But when I try it again say 20 minutes later it's the same 5 seconds of foam.

Purge the keg, release the pressure from the regulator and try again SLOWLY
I will give this a try.

Mine is 7ft 5/16ID
My liquid line is about 4.5 ft and 3/16.

Sanke couplers - there's an O-ring that is supposed to keep the CO2 out of the beer...
Certainly a possibility as wepeeler stated the coupler is bad.

they recommend 16PSI @ 38F
I do have a multi valve CO2 manifold providing CO2 to my 3 kegs. I suppose I can adjust to get the 16PSI to the Blue Moon and pull back on my other two which are Stouts. Unfortunately, I don't have any gauges connected to the output of the valves for any precise readings.

Thanks for your help so far.
 

wsmith1625

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If you let the keg sit for a couple hours without pouring any beers, are you getting co2 in the beer line? Or, if you look at the beer line directly after pouring a pint, do you see tiny co2 bubbles coming from the coupler?
 
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BoitAHL

BoitAHL

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If you let the keg sit for a couple hours without pouring any beers, are you getting co2 in the beer line?

Yes. The foaming starts again after about 10 minutes and gets worse the longer between pours.

Or, if you look at the beer line directly after pouring a pint, do you see tiny co2 bubbles coming from the coupler?

Yes. After pouring I see tiny bubbles working their way up the beer line towards the tap. After 15 minutes or so there are actually some pockets of air.
 

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wepeeler

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Just an FYI the heavy foam comes out for the first 5-6 second and then there is mainly clear beer. But when I try it again say 20 minutes later it's the same 5 seconds of foam.


I will give this a try.


My liquid line is about 4.5 ft and 3/16.


Certainly a possibility as wepeeler stated the coupler is bad.


I do have a multi valve CO2 manifold providing CO2 to my 3 kegs. I suppose I can adjust to get the 16PSI to the Blue Moon and pull back on my other two which are Stouts. Unfortunately, I don't have any gauges connected to the output of the valves for any precise readings.

Thanks for your help so far.
So I think you're lines are definitely too short. You could switch out to 10ft to see if that helps your current situation. Then maybe adjust/shorten accordingly. I recently switched out to Evabarrier 5/32" ID, and I use about 7.5ft of tubing at 10-12psi.

I'm banking on that regulator being faulty. I hate mine, and I'm thinking about returning it and going back to a Taprite.
 

DuncB

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Using this calculator

If you were at 16 psi you'd need a beer line of your inner diameter and a 10 second pour of 13 feet.

You are much shorter and also with a lower pressure so as @day_trippr says the excess gas will try and balance. This added to a warmed tap will all help with nucleation and foam production. I'd try a longer tube.
 

wsmith1625

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Yes. The foaming starts again after about 10 minutes and gets worse the longer between pours.



Yes. After pouring I see tiny bubbles working their way up the beer line towards the tap. After 15 minutes or so there are actually some pockets of air.
As @day_trippr already mentioned, it sounds like your co2 pressure is too low. The bubbles coming up the beer line from the coupler is co2 escaping from your beer. Raise the psi until you pour a beer and no longer see bubbles in the line. Once you get there, you may still pour foamy beer because your lines are too short and not creating enough residence for a good pour. A lot of folks go 10' or more, but I always did okay with 6' of 3/16 ID beer line.
 
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BoitAHL

BoitAHL

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As @day_trippr already mentioned, it sounds like your co2 pressure is too low. The bubbles coming up the beer line from the coupler is co2 escaping from your beer. Raise the psi until you pour a beer and no longer see bubbles in the line. Once you get there, you may still pour foamy beer because your lines are too short and not creating enough residence for a good pour. A lot of folks go 10' or more, but I always did okay with 6' of 3/16 ID beer line.

Thanks to everyone for their advice. I will try increasing the pressure first and if I still have severe foaming will increase the line length.
 

50calshooter

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99.9% of the time foamy pours are a temperature issue. Blue Moon is a Coors product. Coors Products like to be kept at 34-36 degrees.
 
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