filtering - pad usage, clogging, time, and clearing sanitizer?

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nathan

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I got the plate filter with the round pads, uses two at once, and ran it.

I filled it with starsan, it had 2 medium pads on it, and then I pushed out the starsan with beer until it looked like yellow beer. I filled a sanitized keg, but it took about 1.5 hours. I hadn't carbonated the keg, perhaps in lagering it kept some dissolved co2, but it still foamed the lines up. I could watch the liquid move under the foam, and overall, it seemed to work (if really slow).

I ran a second keg, and after 2+ more hours, it has moved maybe a third of the keg over, presumably the pads were clogged.

These are loooong lagered beers so there shouldn't be much floating in them.

Also, there's a slight taste of starsan.

So I'm curious, exactly how (in excruciating detail, please) are any of you successfully using these filters and what has been your experience?


(and yeah, I don't need to hear the whole filter vs. not filter argument, I filter some because I'm exploring new things, and for reasons of my own, other things I don't filter -- to each his/her own)
 

Catt22

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I don't filter my beer often, but occasionally I will do it to meet a deadline with a presentable beer. The best way I have found is to use the coarse filters first and only go to the finer pads if the beer is still less clear than you desire. The pads will clog and the flow volume will dramatically decrease when this happens. You can either change out the pads for new ones or you can back flush the filter and get some more mileage out of it. Backflushing is a hassle and risky unless you are careful to use only water that has been boiled and cooled to reduce the risk of contamination. You need to waste some beer to clear the Star San out of the filter pads before racking. I'm not fond of that part of the process, but it's necessary. Done properly, you should not be able to detect the Star San at all. Filtering is time consuming and a hassle, but if done correctly with beer that doesn't have too much suspended yeast and stuff in it, it should take less than an hour to filter five gallons in one pass. Yes, carbonation can interfere with the filtering. I'm not sure why this would be, but that's what the filter instructions stated. Very low carbonation as in your lager should not be a problem IMO. A properly lagered beer should drop clear without the need for filtering. Not always, of course, but most of the time it will.
 
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nathan

nathan

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So I maybe could vent the keg that is to be filtered several times in the days right before filtering to be sure it has no extra pressure, so no carbonation besides dissolved CO2 because it is cold. Maybe I'll get a bit better flow rate then.

Any particular way of positioning the filters and kegs?

Do you taste the waste beer flow to see when it's done of starsan?

Has anyone tried putting a gallon or two of boiling water into a santized cornie, letting it cool (have to pressurize it so it doesn't suck-in when cooling), then using that to clear the starsan, then onto the beer?
 
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nathan

nathan

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Dang, that's essentially 3 in a row, coarse-medium-fine...

how many kegs do you get out of it before having to change pads?

I like the idea of draining the sanitizer out of the filter with co2 before pushing beer through. I just filled it, knocked out all the air, shook it for a while, etc., then left it sit for 10 minutes, then ran beer until it looked like all-beer (same color in as out). Was maybe 1/3 gallon, but still has small sanitizer taste left it it, so maybe 1/2 gallon and draining the filter of sanitizer first will work, or I can try draining, running cooled boiled water through, then draining, then running beer through.


Claudius, after draining sanitizer, how much beer do you generally lose to clear any flavor out of your beer?
 

ClaudiusB

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Claudius, after draining sanitizer, how much beer do you generally lose to clear any flavor out of your beer?
Less than 500ml.
I do account for filter losses and any other losses during the brewing process.

how many kegs do you get out of it before having to change pads?
Don't know.
Never done more than six.

I filter multiple batches at the same time, starting with the lightest beer color.
You need to fill the receiving tank with the same CO2 pressure as your dispensing tank to prevent out gassing, then you can lower the receiving tanks pressure to start the flow.
To filter a 5 gl tank takes around 15-20 min at 5 PSI, with gas in the lines and bubbling (foaming)through the pads can take 2 hr or more.

Cheers,
ClaudiusB
 
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nathan

nathan

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Okay, maybe I had a problem with pressures in the kegs as well, I'll have to equalize them with the co2 first when I try next time.
 
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nathan

nathan

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So now I'm thinking my process will be:

have kegs well aged and settled in conditioning freezer, do not move them prior to filtering.

Install medium pads in filter (I have a big pack of them to use).

Fill filter with sanitizer using sanitizer keg, work out all air bubbles, let sit for 10 minutes.

match pressure at 5psi in both the sending and receiving kegs.

using a sanitized keg that previously had 2 gallons of boiling water dumped in, then was sealed and chilled under pressure, first empty the sanitizer from filter using CO2, then flush a gallon of water through filter, then empty water from filter.

with matched keg pressures at 5psi, attached filter to sending keg, then receiving keg, then use relief valve to start letting of pressure in receiving keg. When flow is going, leave relief valve open for transfer.


Does that sound right?
 

ClaudiusB

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When flow is going, leave relief valve open for transfer.
No, alway fill with counter pressure (back pressure) to prevent out gassing.
Only a small pressure differential is required to push the beer through the filter.
Just watch the flow through the tube and open the relieve valve occasionally.

empty the sanitizer from filter using CO2, then flush a gallon of water through filter, then empty water from filter.
Use CO2 to empty the water out of the filter and reduce the O2 as much as possible.

Cheers,
ClaudiusB
 
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nathan

nathan

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ah, that might be my foaming issue there.
Would it be better to get some sort of valve that relieved at 5psi?
 
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