Confused about Kegging and carbonation.

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

loyalbuff

New Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
A friend just gave me all his kegging equipment so I'm getting ready to make the switch. But I don't understand some of the fundamentals....specifically carbonation. With bottling, I add corn sugar immediately prior and all of the carbonation takes place in the bottle over subsequent weeks. Why doesn't it work this way with kegging?

The book I read recommended adding corn sugar to the fermenter, then moving the fermenter into a fridge for a few weeks of conditioning. Then transfer the beer to keg and pump in CO2 until it's properly carbonated. What's different about kegs to require all this?
 

BierMuncher

...My Junk is Ugly...
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 17, 2007
Messages
12,443
Reaction score
934
Location
St. Louis, MO
loyalbuff said:
...The book I read recommended adding corn sugar to the fermenter, then moving the fermenter into a fridge for a few weeks of conditioning. Then transfer the beer to keg and pump in CO2 until it's properly carbonated. What's different about kegs to require all this?
Either re-read that book, or throw it away... :D

Two fundamental ways to carbonate a keg (with several variations on each). Regardless of which method you use, make sure to purge the O2 out of the keg with a blast of CO2...burping the relief valve several times.

Process A, Natural Priming:
1) Add 1/2 cup of priming (corn) sugar to the keg right after you rack from the secondary (or primary).
2) SEt keg somewhere where it's at least 70 degrees and wait three weeks. (Sound familiar?).
3) CHill keg and serve at around 8 PSI.

Process B, Force Carbing:
1) Rack your beer from secondary to keg and place in your chiller.
2) Hook up gas and set PSI to 12 and count to 864,000. That's 10 days.
3) Serve betweem 8-10 and enjoy.

Process B-1, Force Carbing in a Hurry:
Replace step #2 above with this:
Set PSI to 35 and wait 36 hours. (Most likely will be completely carb'd)
Reduce PSI to 8, bleed excess pressure from keg and taste test.
If necessary, return PSI to 30-35 and test every 2-3 hours.
 

spaceyaquarius

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2013
Messages
414
Reaction score
16
Location
Oklahoma City
Still though, this doesn't account for different styles of beer which require different levels of carbonation (L/L). Not every beer style will work with 1/2 cup of corn sugar.
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
Wow Great info BierMuncher. I have a wonderful SWMBO that got me a wort chiller and a Kegerator Conversion kit for Christmas. So I too am wondering on how to Carb the kegs. Seems easy enough with your 3 step program. Can't wait to get some HB in the keg and have it on tap!!!!
 

MeBrew2

Active Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2012
Messages
44
Reaction score
6
Location
Los Angeles
Co2 level is totally calculate-able. Although experience with a certain recipe cannot be beat.

Pick a beer style

then Google "_____ (beer style) volumes of co2". You will find a range of recommendations (I.e 1.9 to 4.5).

Then figure out which priming sugar you want to use (many styles prefer one).

From there you are one calculation away from knowing how much of whatever sugar you are using to add in order to achieve the desired volumes of co2.

Cris

The keg is just a big bottle that can handle force carbonation.
 
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
7
Reaction score
5
Question here...once I keg and carbonate the beer how long will the beer last before going bad...I know it sounds silly to some but if I actually have two or three styles legged I know it will take me well over two months to drink it all if I am lucky.
 

Newsman

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
2,988
Reaction score
433
Location
Cohutta
Question here...once I keg and carbonate the beer how long will the beer last before going bad...I know it sounds silly to some but if I actually have two or three styles legged I know it will take me well over two months to drink it all if I am lucky.
It should be fine over that short period. As long as you keep it chilled and replace as much of the oxygenated air with CO2 as possible, your beer should last a good long time.
 

FB12

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2013
Messages
113
Reaction score
19
Location
Jefferson
Soon to be kegger here chiming in! What is the preferred method for carbing, assuming time is not an issue? Natural or force carb? I wanted to quote BierMuncher's post, but can't figure out how to do that!! Someone please explain how- sorry!:mug:
 

FB12

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2013
Messages
113
Reaction score
19
Location
Jefferson
Either re-read that book, or throw it away... :D

Two fundamental ways to carbonate a keg (with several variations on each). Regardless of which method you use, make sure to purge the O2 out of the keg with a blast of CO2...burping the relief valve several times.

Process A, Natural Priming:
1) Add 1/2 cup of priming (corn) sugar to the keg right after you rack from the secondary (or primary).
2) SEt keg somewhere where it's at least 70 degrees and wait three weeks. (Sound familiar?).
3) CHill keg and serve at around 8 PSI.

Process B, Force Carbing:
1) Rack your beer from secondary to keg and place in your chiller.
2) Hook up gas and set PSI to 12 and count to 864,000. That's 10 days.
3) Serve betweem 8-10 and enjoy.

Process B-1, Force Carbing in a Hurry:
Replace step #2 above with this:
Set PSI to 35 and wait 36 hours. (Most likely will be completely carb'd)
Reduce PSI to 8, bleed excess pressure from keg and taste test.
If necessary, return PSI to 30-35 and test every 2-3 hours.
OK. i figured out the quote thing:D Same question as previous. Do you guys prefer any one if time doesn't matter? Thanks!
 

MeBrew2

Active Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2012
Messages
44
Reaction score
6
Location
Los Angeles
Preferred method is probably based on your knowledge experience and the circumstances.

I mean, hey sometimes the party is in two days so you force carb.

The question that occurs to me with force carbing is, is the beer ready? Next question is the party in two days? If two no's then there's no rush. And if there's no rush why not err towards natural is my take

now I consider either sugar priming or natural conditioning. Which does your style prefer? Now that's an easier question to answer perhaps.

Another reality is you really should stash away at least a 12 oz or 2 of each brew to try a year and two years from now for example. So now you're going to do BOTH because the Party is in two days so you force the keg and sugar or corn syrup the bottles. Then your second batch is done but you don't want to tap that yet and can't force carbonate because you only have one co2 tank and can't force carbonate your ale2 at the same psi you need in order to dispense at the party. So you use corn syrup on that one because that style of beer prefers that.

Later on you may even get into krausenbier as a priming agent if you make a lot of beer
 

OG_IBU_Bunghole

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 3, 2012
Messages
56
Reaction score
13
I prefer to natural carb (usu 1/3c). When a keg goes out that tap is back in business the next day.
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
Okay so I just got my Tap and lines installed. The Co2 tank is here and I have a btach ready to go in the keg. First things first should I run some Sanitizer through the lines and keg first. (Im thinking that may be best practice) and if so at what preassure do I set it to?
 

brandonhagen1

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2011
Messages
804
Reaction score
44
Location
springfield
Okay so I just got my Tap and lines installed. The Co2 tank is here and I have a btach ready to go in the keg. First things first should I run some Sanitizer through the lines and keg first. (Im thinking that may be best practice) and if so at what preassure do I set it to?
Yes sanitize first and you should be good with 10-12 psi

"I feel wonderful drinking beer in a blissful mood with joy in my heart and a happy liver"_sumerian inscription 3000 BCE
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
Yup got that bad boy dialed in. Going with the force carb method b-2 because I am impatient and want to have my beer on tap for this weekend!!! Can't wait.

I did a flush with starsan worked great.
Found out that one of the gauges on doesnt work :( It's okay though its the tank fill gauge so from what the LHBS said I sould be able to run 7-8 kegs with a 5lb tank so no worries I'll get a new one soon.

Thanks a bunch guys for all this easy to the point info.
 

Jacinthebox

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 24, 2013
Messages
220
Reaction score
45
Location
Halifax
I set my 1st keg of lager at 12.5psi for 10 days (keg temp is 34F)..., and then set the pressure to 8psi to serve like my beersmith suggested/read on the interwebs...and it was way over carb'd...had to keep bleeding the pressure from the keg to get a foam free pour.

Then I carb'd my 2nd lager @ 8psi for 10 days (keg temp is 34F)...great flow/no foam

I think I will use the 2nd way.....found the numbers I needed here (bottom of the page)

http://www.iancrockett.com/brewing/info/forcecarb.shtml
 

OG_IBU_Bunghole

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 3, 2012
Messages
56
Reaction score
13
The length of your dispensing line makes a big difference (too short from keg to faucet and you get foam).
 

tgkraushar

New Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2014
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Try force carbonating at 40 psi for 15 hour then reducing the pressure to 8 psi for serving. Works great for getting a keg carbonated in a pinch.


Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew
 

Jupapabear

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2013
Messages
534
Reaction score
81
Location
Houston
Try force carbonating at 40 psi for 15 hour then reducing the pressure to 8 psi for serving. Works great for getting a keg carbonated in a pinch.


Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew
That's all I do. Works great!

Sent from my SM-T217S using Home Brew mobile app
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
So far so Good. I used BierMunchers B-1 method and all seems well. Only thing I have noticed is that and this is my best guess. That as the keg is used the Pressure is lowered from the CO2 tank so I need to continually adjust it to keep Pressure and the tap flowing. I am assuming this is normal or is it?
 

Jim_Holmes

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2013
Messages
277
Reaction score
31
Location
Shelbyville
So far so Good. I used BierMunchers B-1 method and all seems well. Only thing I have noticed is that and this is my best guess. That as the keg is used the Pressure is lowered from the CO2 tank so I need to continually adjust it to keep Pressure and the tap flowing. I am assuming this is normal or is it?
once you set the pressure on your regulator and get it dialed in the pressure should remain the same you shouldnt need to adjust it constantly. not sure what you have going on there maybe a leak??
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
Well good news is I haven't had to adjust it since pouring the first few pours so maybe it was just workin itself out. But all seems right with it now.



Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew
 

Wingnutt73

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
501
Reaction score
87
Location
Murfreesboro
So update the Keg kicked about a week ago, because of Little league coaching and what not I just got to it to clean it out.
I put 2 gallons of warm Starsan water in it and ran it through the lines. Unhooked the Co2 line and let the pressure out of the keg. I was wondering if it is fine to just leave it in the fridge as is? I would assume so it is still sealed has the left over Starsan water in it. I should be good right? Just want to know how you store yours?
 

Latest posts

Top