How to use sanitizer products?

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spiffystump76

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So I am getting into mead and wine making, I've done some mashes before and was not very thorough about sanitization and never had any issues. I was not to worried about it because the brew was going to be distilled but I would wash the tools and fermenting container with hot water and dawn dish soap. Could I just do the same with my mead supplies? Could I just use hot water and dawn dish soap? I am looking at a bottle of Star san acid sanitizer and a plastic container of five star PBW, I am guessing the five star PBW is a powder I need to mix with water, do I need both or do they both work the same? Do I wanna rinse the tools after soaking them in these sanitizer products or is it ok to just drip dry them and use them? will it add any off flavors or affect the yeast if I do not rinse the chemical off? Also what is the best way to label your jugs? I know using tap leaves a sticky film that is hard to remove and it holds bacteria, is there a type of marker I could use to just write on the jug and that will wash off east to be rewritten on?
 

IslandLizard

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Rule 1: Clean first, sanitize next.
"You can't sanitize dirt." (John Palmer, How to Brew)

PBW is a cleaner, not a sanitizer.
It's way overpriced in 1 (or 4) pound containers @$8-12 a pound.

Instead, you can use "Oxiclean," either the brand or some generic and you're mostly there. Look for the Percarbonate content. The remainder is common washing soda, also a decent cleaner, but without the oxygen.

For a little more cleaning oomph, make your own homemade PBW: 70% Oxiclean + 30% TSP/90.
Yes, it needs to be dissolved in water. A tablespoon per gallon of water is plenty for most of your equipment cleaning.

It needs to be rinsed off with clean water before you apply sanitizer.

Starsan is an excellent, no-rinse sanitizer. It's worth the money, IMO.
Clean surfaces remain sanitized while still wet with the working solution or covered with its foam.
It's recommended not to rinse off any clinging Starsan solution or foam before using your now sanitized equipment and tools. IOW, the clinging residue and foam is deemed to be safe.

A Starsan working solution can last weeks, months even. No need to make buckets full of it. 6 ml concentrate per gallon of water. For gauging and reference, 1/4 oz (7 ml) is slightly more than 6 ml. ;)
Fill a spray bottle, and maybe a small container with the working solution for mopping onto fermenter sides, lids, etc. with small, dedicated washcloth and for soaking smaller parts (spigots, keg and tap parts, etc.).
 
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spiffystump76

spiffystump76

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Rule 1: Clean first, sanitize next.
"You can't sanitize dirt." (John Palmer, How to Brew)

PBW is a cleaner, not a sanitizer.
It's way overpriced in 1 (or 4) pound containers @$8-12 a pound.

Instead, you can use "Oxiclean," either the brand or some generic and you're mostly there. Look for the Percarbonate content. The remainder is common washing soda, also a decent cleaner, but without the oxygen.

For a little more cleaning oomph, make your own homemade PBW: 70% Oxiclean + 30% TSP/90.
Yes, it needs to be dissolved in water. A tablespoon per gallon of water is plenty for most of your equipment cleaning.

It needs to be rinsed off with clean water before you apply sanitizer.

Starsan is an excellent, no-rinse sanitizer. It's worth the money, IMO.
Clean surfaces remain sanitized while still wet with the working solution or covered with its foam.
It's recommended not to rinse off any clinging Starsan solution or foam before using your now sanitized equipment and tools. IOW, the clinging residue and foam is deemed to be safe.

A Starsan working solution can last weeks, months even. No need to make buckets full of it. 6 ml concentrate per gallon of water. For gauging and reference, 1/4 oz (7 ml) is slightly more than 6 ml. ;)
Fill a spray bottle, and maybe a small container with the working solution for mopping onto fermenter sides, lids, etc. with small, dedicated washcloth and for soaking smaller parts (spigots, keg and tap parts, etc.).
so its ok to use tools with star san residue on them? it wont affect taste or yeast?
 

bracconiere

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i think most sanitizers just kill spores, when i was cloning mushrooms from the grocery store. i'd soak a piece to put on a plate in bleach water to sanitize it, grew just fine without contamination....
 

RufusBrewer

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PBW vs Oxyclean. I am in the camp of PBW is worth the extra expense. When I look at 50¢ per dose vs 25¢ per dose, the "twice as expensive" is not a factor for me. Plus I have had bad outcomes with Oxyclean and nothing but good results using PBW.

Many disagree with me. Many say that have used Oxyclean (and home made PBW) for years - no problems. Good for them.

Star San is a great product. I always have some available.

Do not overlook Iodophore. It kills more nasty critters than Star San. Also a constant in my brew house.

Often disregarded by Homebrewer's: bleach. Cheap, easy to aquire and very effective. It is NOT a no rinse product. You cannot use it alone. Expose something to bleach and it will be sanitized within seconds. Rinse well with tap water. Now your only concern is what might be lurking that rode in on your tap water. Follow up with a application tap water sanitized with Star San or Iodophors.

Just my 2¢ perspective.
 

IslandLizard

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so its ok to use tools with star san residue on them? it wont affect taste or yeast?
Yes, a little carryover is safe to us and won't harm yeast or taste. Volume-wise there's very little Starsan solution clinging to the surface, it's totally OK. Some of us have had Starsan suck back from their blow-off jar, back into their fermenter. No-one has claimed being able to detect it, not even the 5% dilution in more severe cases (1 quart suck back into a 5 gallon batch of beer).

The main killing vehicle in Starsan is a surfactant that reduces surface tension so the (Phosphoric) acid component can enter the microbes' surrounding membrane, killing them from the inside. It will kill yeasts too (wild or not) that way, although they're bit hardier. But we're not soaking or submerging our yeast in a working solution of Starsan.
 

IslandLizard

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Do not overlook Iodophore. It kills more nasty critters than Star San. Also a constant in my brew house.
Agreed, but not as easy to use in day to day usage (a Iodophor working solution won't last a day). I switch from Starsan to Iodophor from time to time to kill the "other half" of the bug spectrum.

Bleach will create havoc when it gets into beer, even in minute amounts (not sure about wine or meads). As long as you rinse it off well, definitely use it to your advantage to get rid of infections. Good brushes and boiling in PBW help too.

UV (exposure to direct, strong sunlight) is another efficient bug killer. I've left cleaned and bleached bucket fermenters in direct sun for a few days. They were better than new. ;)
 

IslandLizard

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PBW vs Oxyclean. I am in the camp of PBW is worth the extra expense. When I look at 50¢ per dose vs 25¢ per dose, the "twice as expensive" is not a factor for me.
Homemade PBW (ingredients listed previously) runs me about $2.50-3.00 a pound, a little lower than buying the real deal in a 50# pail, split over a few homebrewers.

When mixing myself I use a decent quality generic Oxiclean with a high Sodium PerCarbonate content (>60%) in a 3-4# tub plus a 4# bag of TSP/90.
 

Pils Brosnan

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There are instructions on the packaging of each product.

Read these well and use the substances accordingly.
 
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