Disgusting old beer in tap lines

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specharka

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Okay, so I’m no stranger to carb levels falling off in old tap lines, but I’ve recently been experiencing something more severe and damning.

It seems like the first pour from one of my lighter beers (Kölsch) is downright disgusting. Butterscotch and papery flavors abound. As soon as I pour the next sample, that flavor completely vanishes and I’m reminded of what the beer is supposed to taste like. I recently replaced the subject line and made sure to clean it thoroughly prior to tapping this beer, so I really don’t think it’s dirty. FWIW, I’m using 3/16” x 5/16” vinyl lines, and the subject one is about 20 ft long. Looking to put a stop to this problem, and I understand new lines are probably part of the equation.

I just wanna know what the problem is and how I can go about solving it. Thanks!
 

GoeHaarden

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Does your system really require 20ft lines? I think it's something like 1/6th an ounce per foot of 3/16 tubing (could be wrong), so that's a little over 3 ounces sitting in your lines. Maybe that 3 ounces is picking up flavors from your tubing. Maybe try some of the non-vinyl tubings? I use the Ultra barrier silver tubing and have never had it impart any flavors as far as I can tell...
 

day_trippr

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Give that man a cigar :)
20' of 3/16" ID tubing will hold 3.65... ounces of beer. More than enough to mess up a pour.

By going with thin-wall pvc tubing I suspect the OP is experiencing major oxidation issues. Had the "normal" thick-wall (7/16" OD) pvc been used the rate of oxidation would be lower. An even better bet would be going with PET lined tubing such as Bev Seal Ultra Series 235 line...

Cheers!
 
OP
S

specharka

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Yep, that’s what I was fearing. Just wanted to confirm my suspicions prior to buying new beer lines. That ultra barrier stuff is 10x more expensive than what I’m using ($0.13/ft).

Thanks guys.
 

myndflyte

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Great price! If I got this line I would need one of each of the two JG connectors per line: 5/16" to 1/4" MFL, and 5/26" to 5/8" BSPP? Is this correct? (I read this off of Ritebrew. Just wanted to confirm)
Haven't used them myself but that sounds right. You need one of the 5/16" to 1/4" MFL adapters for your keg and one 5/26" to 5/8" BSPP that screws into the shank.
 

day_trippr

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So, a beer line that wears out. Interesting. Can't find any info about the base material, either.
If I was going to upgrade my plain ol' Bevlex-200 solid pvc tubing I'd go with the Ultra 235...

Cheers!
 

jcav

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That stuff is great. I use the Silver Ultra Barrier tubing and no off flavors at all. Also make sure you clean each line with line cleaner and flush and then sanitize before you hook up a new batch of beer to the line. I know I might be different than everyone else but for my system I only use 5 1/2 feet of tubing for each tap line on my kegerator and I also have no foam problems either.

John
 

PADave

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Yep, that’s what I was fearing. Just wanted to confirm my suspicions prior to buying new beer lines. That ultra barrier stuff is 10x more expensive than what I’m using ($0.13/ft).

Thanks guys.
You get what you pay for. I use that ultra barrier antimicrobial tubing and never had an off flavor even after sitting for a while.
 
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