Kegerator In Basement With One Tap - Second Tap In The Kitchen

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tjordan06

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Hello!

I am currently refinishing my basement and plan to have an under counter Kegerator (smaller, sixth barrel size) with a tap in the basement countertop. I am wanting to run a line up to my kitchen with a second tap from the same keg available in the kitchen (a 20' total run). I am looking for input on the overall plan. Here is what I have so far:
Specific questions that I have are:
  • Are there any issues with t-ing off one keg to run two taps with that Kegerator unit?
  • Any thoughts on how to get cold air out of the Kegerator into the 2" PVC to keep the line cool?
  • Other than temperature, are there any other issues with the 20' supply line run?
I am a layman actively working on increasing my knowledge in this area. I am open to any and all comments and feedback!

Thank you so much,

Tim from Colorado.
 

matt_m

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I don't think you'll be able to keep the PVC sufficiently cool, and if you do its going to sweat which isn't good either. You really need to run a glycol loop along with the beer line, then heavily insulate that. Then you need a way to keep the glycol cold and the physics of a small kegerator and a glycol line don't work, so you'd also need a chiller.
 

Velnerj

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Maybe look into python beer lines (or something similar) and a cooling system... But not sure what kind of budget you're looking at...
 

Transamguy77

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This is super helpful!

Lines like these @ $10/ft - 4 Beer Line | 2 Glycol Line Trunk Line 3/8

Do you have any recommendations for a small cooling system?

Depending on how big your fridge is going to be but you could put a reservoir of cooling liquid and use a pump to circulate that around your line.

Edit: also not sure how it will work having that long line and short line because you will need to have the pressure higher to push your beer that far.
 
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tjordan06

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Depending on how big your fridge is going to be but you could put a reservoir of cooling liquid and use a pump to circulate that around your line.

Edit: also not sure how it will work having that long line and short line because you will need to have the pressure higher to push your beer that far.

That makes a ton of sense. This makes me think I should buy a little larger Kegerator and put the coolant reservoir inside of it along with the beer. That would probably mean coring the side of the Kegerator to get the feed and return lines for the Glycol lines through it but that is doable.
 

day_trippr

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Not sure what that meant.
Two issues at play: first, having a local and a remote faucet sharing the same keg. The notion of putting the same amount of tubing in both paths is apt - though with the advent of EVABarrier tubing there are extra options available - specifically, 4, 5 and 6 mm ID. One could work out a run to the distant faucet using one combination of IDs while the local faucet could use a shorter, tighter ID run.

The other issue is thermodynamics: a 20 something foot run means forget air cooling and go straight to a liquid cooled trunk line. That in turn will require a glycol chiller, and there are plenty of those to choose a capacity match...

Cheers!
 

Tom R

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I am open to ideas! How would I keep the line cold?
Using the trunk line as mentioned, but circulating chilled water, not glycol.

I can't guess how well a maybe 36F kegerator circulating water will be at cooling the trunk line, but if it isn't up to it, for about $250 you can DIY a glycol chiller. That will get you circulating 25F glycol, and probably even colder if necessary.
 

ITV

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A glycol chiller would keep the 20' beer line cold provided you use the appropriate beer/glycol lines. Unfortunately the glycol setup will be expensive to keep only 1 beer line cold.

Aside from keeping the beer line cold, I don't recall that I have seen a beer manifold to allow two different taps from the same keg.

Maybe consider walking to the basement when you need a refill or fill a pitcher to bring back upstairs?
 

day_trippr

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Assuming no requirement to support simultaneous pouring, it's really a simple thing to support a local and distant faucet. There's no magic, just break each run down to use the appropriate ID/length tubing...

Cheers!
 
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tjordan06

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Using the trunk line as mentioned, but circulating chilled water, not glycol.

I can't guess how well a maybe 36F kegerator circulating water will be at cooling the trunk line, but if it isn't up to it, for about $250 you can DIY a glycol chiller. That will get you circulating 25F glycol, and probably even colder if necessary.

Love it. Thanks for the the good ideas. I would think 36 degree water would do the job but it is a risk.
 

day_trippr

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Don't know where "36 degree water" happened but don't assume a fridge or freezer will keep up with thermal losses over 20 feet.
One could give it a try but be prepared to accept the more capable alternative...

Cheers!
 

day_trippr

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It could - but doesn't need to be at that distance, which can be solved with "unassisted technology": eg: it turns out that 20.6 feet of 6mm ID tubing with a 10 foot rise (typical floor spacing in the USA) at 12 psi is a perfect match...

Cheers!
 

bracconiere

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It could - but doesn't need to be at that distance, which can be solved with "unassisted technology": eg: it turns out that 20.6 feet of 6mm ID tubing with a 10 foot rise (typical floor spacing in the USA) at 12 psi is a perfect match...

Cheers!

so 6mm for the kitchen tap and 4mm for the basement?
 
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tjordan06

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A glycol chiller would keep the 20' beer line cold provided you use the appropriate beer/glycol lines. Unfortunately the glycol setup will be expensive to keep only 1 beer line cold.

Aside from keeping the beer line cold, I don't recall that I have seen a beer manifold to allow two different taps from the same keg.

Maybe consider walking to the basement when you need a refill or fill a pitcher to bring back upstairs?

Thank you for the comment. I guess I assumed that the line could be t'ed after the Kegerator and go to each tap. Is that not the case?
 

matt_m

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The problem with a liquid reservoir in your kegerator is you 40' loop is going to end up being a kegerator warmer as much or maybe even more then a beer chiller. Best case it'll keep up by working the refrigeration system beyond its intended use. The copper isn't going to be cheap either. 60' of 1/4" copper is closing in on $100 now and I'm not sure a typical submersible pond-style pump is going to push liquid through 40' of 1/4" line.
 
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tjordan06

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Using the trunk line as mentioned, but circulating chilled water, not glycol.

I can't guess how well a maybe 36F kegerator circulating water will be at cooling the trunk line, but if it isn't up to it, for about $250 you can DIY a glycol chiller. That will get you circulating 25F glycol, and probably even colder if necessary.

Thanks for the info. That makes sense. Is this the setup you are referring to: https://homebrewacademy.com/diy-glycol-chiller/
 

duncan.brown

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If you're only running one tap, it might be cheaper to build your own trunk line. I have a post here explaining how to do this:


I did a rough cost estimate vs pre-built line in this thread:


The most important thing is to make sure everything is wrapped and air/water tight to prevent condensation. Any exposed 28F tubing will be a source of drips.

As for splitting the tap, just make sure both lines are balanced making sure to account for line length, pressure, and lift. You'll probably get this with 4mm ID/8mm OD EVABarrier in the keezer and 5/16" OD, 3/16" ID BevSeal Ultra 235 to the upstairs tap as @day_trippr suggests. Definitely go EVABarrier or BevSeal Ultra for a long draw system, otherwise the beer sat in the line will taste of plastic.

Use John Guest for your fittings and then use one of these to split the flow:


I suspect that the hardest part to find will be a part that gets you from 8mm OD EVABarrier to 5/16" OD BevSeal, but if you peruse the John Guest web site, you might find one. Otherwise, you can look at



and go 8mm to 5/16" via male to female NPT fittings.

You'll also need a glycol loop as others have said. Chilled water from the keezer won't give enough of a temperature differential to keep the beer cool and as @matt_m says, most kegerators won't have enough cooling capacity to chill a long-draw loop anyway.

Make sure you cool the upstairs tap by wrapping copper around the shank and running glycol through it. You don't want your cold beer turning to foam when it hits a warm tap. And make sure the back of the tap is well insulated.
 
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