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Homemade PBW Recipe

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awoitte

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Amazon/Video claims not to use red devil tsp on glass.

Does this change because it is being diluted, or should it not be used in conjunction with the other two ingredients in glass carboys regardless?
 

piojo

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Amazon/Video claims not to use red devil sodium silicate on glass.

Does this change because it is being diluted, or should it not be used in conjunction with the other two ingredients in glass carboys regardless?
(Corrected.)

I believe the sodium carbonate lowers the pH enough that the glass won't be etched to any significant degree. Either way, I wouldn't worry about it on bottles. I accidentally etched a table once while trying to make sodium silicate, but that was mostly visible just because it was a shiny black surface.

It's also recommended to wash with PBW at merely warm to hot temperatures, both for safety and to keep the H₂O₂ from degrading. These safer temperatures also greatly slow glass dissolution. (I would not boil glass in sodium carbonate, and definitely not in sodium silicate.)
 
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awoitte

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(Corrected.)

I believe the sodium carbonate lowers the pH enough that the glass won't be etched to any significant degree. Either way, I wouldn't worry about it on bottles. I accidentally etched a table once while trying to make sodium silicate, but that was mostly visible just because it was a shiny black surface.

It's also recommended to wash with PBW at merely warm to hot temperatures, both for safety and to keep the H₂O₂ from degrading. These safer temperatures also greatly slow glass dissolution. (I would not boil glass in sodium carbonate, and definitely not in sodium silicate.)
Not sure if this is what I'm asking, or a valid correction.

I'm not asking about sodium silicate, I'm asking about red devil tsp (the product) as mentioned several times in this thread. I'm not worried about bottles, as my original question was inquiring about glass carboys.

To reiterate my question, with the most recent mixture of the three ingredients, is it safe to use on glass carboys, or should I exclude Red Devil #0261 Tsp from my mixture? The glass may not be etched to a significant degree the first or second time, but I reuse carboys a lot as most do.
 

RPh_Guy

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Not sure if this is what I'm asking, or a valid correction.

I'm not asking about sodium silicate, I'm asking about red devil tsp (the product) as mentioned several times in this thread. I'm not worried about bottles, as my original question was inquiring about glass carboys.

To reiterate my question, with the most recent mixture of the three ingredients, is it safe to use on glass carboys, or should I exclude Red Devil #0261 Tsp from my mixture? The glass may not be etched to a significant degree the first or second time, but I reuse carboys a lot as most do.
Yes, it's fine.

FYI Red Devil TSP/90 is sodium metasilicate.
 

piojo

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@awoitte If you are concerned about etching, there's another warning you need to know: don't leave anything soaking more than a day. Many of us have experienced a white mineral film that sticks to the things we've cleaned if we soaked for too long. It looks the same as etching. You won't get it off without a strong acid soak. It's possible that a strong chelating agent like EDTA can prevent this, but I haven't tried.
 
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awoitte

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@awoitte If you are concerned about etching, there's another warning you need to know: don't leave anything soaking more than a day. Many of us have experienced a white mineral film that sticks to the things we've cleaned if we soaked for too long. It looks the same as etching. You won't get it off without a strong acid soak. It's possible that a strong chelating agent like EDTA can prevent this, but I haven't tried.
Thanks for the heads up piojo. I'm far from a chemist, my ultimate goal is to find the strongest (most effective) manner in cleaning the gunk off all my brewing (and some other) equipment while at the same time causing no damage. The glass carboys are amongst some of the cheaper items I have that I need to make spotless, but on the flipside probably the most detrimental to personal safety if one were to fail while carrying/handling.

I appreciate the follow up, I'll continue to do more research as I look for the most updated/safest recipe for cleaning the brew equipment.
 

jimdkc

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A note about SDS or MSDS forms... Anybody can write them...

There was a bogus MSDS form linked here a while back, I believe from Menard's, for Red Devil TSP/90 which stated that it consisted of Sodium Carbonate and Sodium Percarbonate (the same as most "oxy" cleaners). This lead some people to believe that TSP/90 had changed. TSP/90, as far as I can tell, has ALWAYS been 100% Sodium Metasilicate.

If you have any doubts about such a form, try to find the one from the manufacturer! Here is the MSDS from the manufacturer for TSP/90:

https://content.interlinebrands.com/product/document/10135/441505_SDS_E.pdf

Also regarding MSDS forms: While they are a good source of information, they do not list ALL the ingredients in a product. They only have to mention the hazardous ones. And to maintain corporate secret formulas, they usually give a pretty wide range on the percentages of the ingredients.
 
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Does the 7th gen dishwashing powder not work for you? I have some, but I don't always use it. Only when the 65/35 oxy/tsp90 mix doesn't clean a better bottle in 24 hours.
 

Jayjay1976

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Recently finished my first batch made with oxi free, 7th gen, and DAP tsp. Bought a pound of real pbw in a pinch and thought it did a better job. Now I'd like to mix up a fresh batch of homemade but hopefully something closer to pbw, what's the latest recipe??
 

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Recently finished my first batch made with oxi free, 7th gen, and DAP tsp. Bought a pound of real pbw in a pinch and thought it did a better job. Now I'd like to mix up a fresh batch of homemade but hopefully something closer to pbw, what's the latest recipe??
I hope you get a reply. I asked the same question two months ago... Got several answers that this or that was "good enough." Like you, I'm not looking for good enough. I'm looking for as close to PBW as possible.
 

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I haven't finished my last batch, but have tbe ingredients. Sodium Percabonate 50%, 15% sodium carbonate, 30% TSP(original), 5% EDTA4NA.

Argument could be made that Sodium Percarbonate decomposes into sodium carbonate, but I wanted to have a decent amount of washing soda at the beginning for early cleaning. May not stay in my mix.

If you want a no foaming/loe sudsing mix, add equal parts sodium bicarb (baking soda) when you add to hot water
 

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Does the 7th gen dishwashing powder not work for you? I have some, but I don't always use it. Only when the 65/35 oxy/tsp90 mix doesn't clean a better bottle in 24 hours.
The 7th Gen works but it has a bunch of stuff I don't want.

I'm not looking for good enough. I'm looking for as close to PBW as possible.
PBW has 5 components:
Percarbonate
Metasilicate
A chelate
A surfactant
A gelling agent

The 7th Gen is a hack to provide the last 3 components. I'm looking to get them individually.
I'm having trouble finding a non-foaming surfactant and a powdered gelling agent.
 

RPh_Guy

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Anything particularly concerning, or just unnecessary?
For starters, we don't want the sodium chloride or citric acid.

The 7th Gen mixture creates a precipitate, and I think it's what rapidly corroded a steel screw on a hose clamp I had submerged.

When added directly to percarbonate and metasilicate solution you'll see it rapidly react from combining acid & base.
 
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Yeah, the 7th Gen has citric acid which is worse than useless in this application. I leave it out and have no complaints, but if anyone figures out good, cheap cheating agents and detergents, cool.
 

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I just used real brand name PBW for the first time in more than a year after exhausting the homemade stuff.

I conclude that that the real deal PBW does a better job.

I won't be making a knock off again anytime soon. Adios folks.
 

h22lude

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I just used real brand name PBW for the first time in more than a year after exhausting the homemade stuff.

I conclude that that the real deal PBW does a better job.

I won't be making a knock off again anytime soon. Adios folks.
Do you think PBW is worth 400% more? I lost my homemade PBW during my move and need to get more. I loved having a ton of "PBW" and not worry about using too much. I found it cleaned really well.
 

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I just used real brand name PBW for the first time in more than a year after exhausting the homemade stuff.
If your homemade stuff contained a fairly large percentage of NaCl, and some other dubious ingredients this thread promotes, I wouldn't be surprised you'd step away from it.

Maybe try the simpler compounding of ~25-30% TSP/90, 70-75% Percarbonate, plus a tiny amount of EDTA if need be. That's a lot closer to Five Stars' PBW.
 

schematix

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Do you think PBW is worth 400% more? I lost my homemade PBW during my move and need to get more. I loved having a ton of "PBW" and not worry about using too much. I found it cleaned really well.
The home mix set me back about $50 for 13lb. I bought the 50lb pail of PBW for $200 so that's about the same price per pound. For 4x the cost then yes i'd be happy with the homemade variety.


If your homemade stuff contained a fairly large percentage of NaCl, and some other dubious ingredients this thread promotes, I wouldn't be surprised you'd step away from it.

Maybe try the simpler compounding of ~25-30% TSP/90, 70-75% Percarbonate, plus a tiny amount of EDTA if need be. That's a lot closer to Five Stars' PBW.
I used the oxyclean free, tsp/90 and 7th gen stuff. Don't get me wrong it worked really well and i found a lot of misc uses for it. However, real PBW was always quicker and i never had to soak anything twice.

These homemade recipes definitely do work and if you had all the ingredients available locally it isn't a bad deal.
 

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I used the oxyclean free, tsp/90 and 7th gen stuff. Don't get me wrong it worked really well and i found a lot of misc uses for it. However, real PBW was always quicker and i never had to soak anything twice.
I think you missed the essence.

Five Stars' PBW and proper homemade PBW (as I listed in #702) are essentially the same, neither contains any of the 7th Generation stuff. That's why the former two work almost equally well, while the latter, the concoction with 7th Gen. stuff mixed in doesn't even compare. NaCl as a cleaner??? Citric Acid in the presence of an overabundance of Na2CO3? No wonder it's disappointing.
 

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If your homemade stuff contained a fairly large percentage of NaCl, and some other dubious ingredients this thread promotes, I wouldn't be surprised you'd step away from it.

Maybe try the simpler compounding of ~25-30% TSP/90, 70-75% Percarbonate, plus a tiny amount of EDTA if need be. That's a lot closer to Five Stars' PBW.
I haven't been following this thread that closely but what is EDTA and where can you buy it?
 

schematix

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I think you missed the essence.

Five Stars' PBW and proper homemade PBW (as I listed in #702) are essentially the same, neither contains any of the 7th Generation stuff. That's why the former two work almost equally well, while the latter, the concoction with 7th Gen. stuff mixed in doesn't even compare. NaCl as a cleaner??? Citric Acid in the presence of an overabundance of Na2CO3? No wonder it's disappointing.
I get it. Maybe when i'm done with this 50lbs of the real stuff i'll try the version without 7th gen.

Bottom line is that a lot of people on here talked about how great the formula with the 7th gen was so I did that. It worked really good. It's just that the genuine PBW works better than that.
 

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I haven't been following this thread that closely but what is EDTA and where can you buy it?
EDTA is a strong chelating agent. It binds metal ions and such, so they become ineffective. Over time, it can suck metals out of glass, so beware, don't store loose or dissolved in glass containers.

It's not absolutely necessary to use in PBW, but it helps dissolve scale deposits, probably oxalates too by binding the Ca++ ions. I've never added it.

I reckon you can get it on Amazon or a chemical supplier, it's a white powder. [Edit per @S-Met]You should get the tetrasodium variety for this application.
 
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S-Met

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I haven't been following this thread that closely but what is EDTA and where can you buy it?
Ethylenediaminetetraacetic or EDTA for short. Commonly available as disodium EDTA-2Na and Tetrasodium EDTA-4Na.

2Na is for acidic and 4Na is for basic formulas. Percarbonate and TSP are basic, be sure you get EDTA4Na or you may have an unintended reaction.

Can get it on Amazon.
 

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EDTA is a strong chelating agent. It binds metal ions and such, so they become ineffective. Over time, it can suck metals out of glass, so beware, don't store loose or dissolved in glass containers.

It's not absolutely necessary to use in PBW, but it helps dissolve scale deposits, probably oxalates too by binding the Ca++ ions. I've never added it.

I reckon you can get it on Amazon or a chemical supplier, it's a white powder. [Edit per @S-Met]You should get the tetrasodium variety for this application.
Sounds like it would be hard on aluminum kettles.
 

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Sounds like it would be hard on aluminum kettles.
It probably is, but anything acid or alkaline is already bad for aluminum (kettles), either will dissolve aluminum, with time. PBW is very alkaline, don't leave it on aluminum too long, although the gray oxide layer is somewhat resistant to alkaline activity.
 

S-Met

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Sounds like it would be hard on aluminum kettles.
No harder than pbw.

I don't discount that you can buy 50lb for $3.50/lb of pbw for about the same price as you can make it. But i don't want 50lb at a time. And if I wanted to spend 170 on 50lb pbw, I could spend that much on raw ingredients and make 80lb approx $2.10/lb.
 
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I use a mix of 2 scoops generic oxy clean free to 1 scoop red devil tsp90. This has never let me down. Overnight soak and you are good. Or maybe Bob is your uncle. On rare occasions, with a particularly hard stuck kreusen ring, I will squirt in a little free and clear liquid dish soap and shake up the carboy. One more day of soak and it's done. Easy peasy .. and cheap.
 

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I use a mix of 2 scoops generic oxy clean free to 1 scoop red devil tsp90. This has never let me down.
This is the route and mix I use for my carboys and corny kegs.
When either is empty, I rinse first with hot water to remove the heavy accumulation, then load into a dishwasher that I modded for cleaning carboys and kegs.

Select a short wash and sanitize cycle, and let it run..........'Cause I'm lazy.......:D
 
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I use a mix of 2 scoops generic oxy clean free to 1 scoop red devil tsp90. This has never let me down. Overnight soak and you are good. Or maybe Bob is your uncle. On rare occasions, with a particularly hard stuck kreusen ring, I will squirt in a little free and clear liquid dish soap and shake up the carboy. One more day of soak and it's done. Easy peasy .. and cheap.
I use this mixture as well. It works great.

This stuff will suck up moisture. Make sure you have a bucket with a lid that seals tight. Otherwise you'll end up with a lumpy mess.
 

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Long time lurker, first time poster. I'm a chemist that's been in the critical process cleaning industry for over 30 years (and a homebrewer even longer). I'd like to clear a few things up.

1. Can you effectively recreate PBW at home? Yeah, pretty much, based on their SDS. Sodium carbonate (washing soda) as the alkalinity source, sodium percarbonate (most of what oxy-clean is) as the oxidizer, and metasilicate (only if you're cleaning aluminum), and some surfactant (jet dry, unfragranced Dawn, whatever).

2. You're only going to need a chelant/sequestrant (EDTA/NTA/Phosphates) if your water is *really* hard, or if you see scale buildup in your kettle. A little won't hurt, but you can more effectively remove the scale with an acid.

3. PBW won't etch glass or stainless, but it can leave behind silicate scale that is sometimes perceived as etching. The only ways to get that off are abrasion and/or dangerous acids I won't mention here.

If PBW doesn't really work as well as you would like, there are some things you can do. If you have no aluminum in your process, skip the metasilicate, go 70:30 carbonate:percarbonate and add a squirt (just a squirt!) of either Jet Dry or unfragranced hand dish detergent (Dawn is really best). The Jet Dry will be non-foaming, the Dawn will foam -- your choice.

Heat will speed the cleaning process, especially in the presence of denatured proteins, fats/oils/greases (looking at you, cocoa nibs) and most sugars. If there is beerstone/hard water scale left behind, hit that with a hot solution of citric acid to clean it up.

Stay away from things with chlorides (sodium chloride, bleach) in them -- they're not friendly to stainless.

Yes, you will still need to brush/scrub from time to time. It's all part of cleaning. I'm not trying to start a firestorm, but PBW isn't magic, and it's not that hard to emulate at home.

What do I use? My company's knock-off of PBW (ours doesn't have metasilicate in it) for most things. For really bad cleaning jobs in my home brewery, I bring out the big dogs (the potassium hydroxide-based stuff).
 

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@bplipschitz
Agree, except for the Dawn/Jet Dry/dish detergent. Don't they contain head killing ingredients/surfactants?

In my earlier post I meant to say 30% Metasilicate and 70% Generic Oxiclean free. The latter contains a sizeable amount of washing soda (Sodium Carbonate) already.
 

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@bplipschitz
Agree, except for the Dawn/Jet Dry/dish detergent. Don't they contain head killing ingredients/surfactants?

In my earlier post I meant to say 30% Metasilicate and 70% Generic Oxiclean free. The latter contains a sizeable amount of washing soda (Sodium Carbonate) already.
They both contain surfactants, which are going to aid the cleaning process. Provided you rinse adequately, there shouldn't be enough left behind to affect head retention.
 

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They both contain surfactants, which are going to aid the cleaning process. Provided you rinse adequately, there shouldn't be enough left behind to affect head retention.
I wonder why brewing gurus like John Palmer vehemently warn against using dish detergents when cleaning brewing gear.
 

bplipschitz

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I wonder why brewing gurus like John Palmer vehemently warn against using dish detergents when cleaning brewing gear.
Because if your cleaning practices are mediocre, and you leave cleaning residue behind, you'll have problems.

I've helped pharmaceutical companies validate the fact that, when properly rinsed, their cleaning chemicals (containing surfactants) don't leave behind any residues above their thresholds. Their thresholds are *way* stricter than the brewing industry's. The main key to this is good rinsing.

Because home brewers work with such small systems, it is certainly within their capabilities to clean in such a way that this isn't an issue, and the surfactants will certainly make the cleaning process more effective.

You also should use processes you are comfortable with. If adding some surfactant is something you're not entirely comfortable with, don't do it -- things will still get clean.
 
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