Kegging Keezer Noob Problem

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
I've looked around online and tried to find a solution to my problem, but have come up short everywhere I look. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I've been brewing and bottling beer for several years and decided to make the leap to keg system. I bought everything I needed to get going for kegging and then was going to build a keezer, but I found a used one online that was a good price. So, I decided to buy it. I've kegged 2 different beers and haven't been able to get the kegs to hold the carbonation at all to where the beer ends up being flat. It seems okay at first, but quickly CO2 seems to go out of solution.
My setup is as follows: Keezer is set to 39 degrees (ranges in temp from 35-39 degrees)
Using a 15 lb CO2 tank that the regulator goes to a dual distributor. This goes to the two ball lock corny kegs that I have with my beer in them and then out 3/16" line to a draft tower on top of the keezer.
I used the normal chart for the volumes of CO2 that I wanted, hooked the CO2 up to the IN post on my tank, set the regulator to 11 PSI, purging the head space a couple times to get the air out, and then let it sit for two weeks. Then, I purge the head space again and hook it up to my serving pressure of 8 PSI. The carbonation might last for a week or two at best, but always seems to go flat. My tank still has plenty of CO2 in it so I don't think there is a leak. Though, I have tried spraying things down with soapy water and even submerging things. I'm at a loss.

I only drink the beer on the weekends and a keg should last me anywhere from a month and a half to two months. Should I maybe unhook the beer lines from the kegs while not in use?
The CO2 doesn't seem to be coming out of solution too badly as my beers pour rather nicely. I know that some CO2 is expected to come out of solution with having a lower serving pressure than the beer would have absorbed, but this seems excessive. Any ideas on what might be the problem?
 

GoeHaarden

The best advice is unsolicited
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 1, 2017
Messages
1,200
Reaction score
663
Can you tighten up the temperature swings? Five degree swings seems like it might cause problems, and thats the temps you are seeing on your controller. Who knows what the beer actually is!?

Also, may I ask why you carb at 11psi for two weeks and then drop to 8 for serving? Since you are waiting 2 weeks, why not just set to serving pressure and leave it?

I know everyone has their preferences, but I carb at 12.5psi and my temps range is 38-40. I'd try just turning your psi up some and leaving it since you don't think you have a leak...

FWIW, If I don't pour a beer for a week or so the first one usually comes out a little low carb'd and the rest are fine.
 
Last edited:

brew703

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2015
Messages
2,206
Reaction score
469
Location
Outside of Nola
I carb my beers to 2.5-2.6 vol. These are usually APA's, NEIPA, Blondes.
I have my temp controller set at 35 with a 3 degree swing. In order to get the proper carbonation level, i need to set my regulator to almost 15 psi.
If you are aiming for 2.5-2.6 vol, your PSI is too low. JMO.
Try increasing to 14-15 PSI and see what happens.
 
OP
OP
L

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
Can you tighten up the temperature swings? Five degree swings seems like it might cause problems, and thats the temps you are seeing on your controller. Who knows what the beer actually is!?

Also, may I ask why you carb at 11psi for two weeks and then drop to 8 for serving? Since you are waiting 2 weeks, why not just set to serving pressure and leave it?

I know everyone has their preferences, but I carb at 12.5psi and my temps range is 38-40. I'd try just turning your psi up some and leaving it since you don't think you have a leak...

FWIW, If I don't pour a beer for a week or so the first one usually comes out a little low carb'd and the rest are fine.
I didn't think a 5 degree swing would make much of a difference. I just didn't want the freezer to run any more often than it had to try to keep the compressor lasting longer. I will try to shorten the time between cycles to get the temp a little more consistent and see if anything changes.
I've had my serving pressure set at 11 before and it ends up having more head than I want with my serving line length.
Thanks for the info and advice!
 
OP
OP
L

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
I carb my beers to 2.5-2.6 vol. These are usually APA's, NEIPA, Blondes.
I have my temp controller set at 35 with a 3 degree swing. In order to get the proper carbonation level, i need to set my regulator to almost 15 psi.
If you are aiming for 2.5-2.6 vol, your PSI is too low. JMO.
Try increasing to 14-15 PSI and see what happens.
I'll try this and also getting the temp swings down as well on the keezer. Thank you for the input. I'll post my results after I try these things.
 

GoeHaarden

The best advice is unsolicited
HBT Supporter
Joined
Feb 1, 2017
Messages
1,200
Reaction score
663
I've had my serving pressure set at 11 before and it ends up having more head than I want with my serving line length.

I was kind of figuring this was the reason. What length is your serving line? You should balance your lines and be in control of what psi you want, and not let short lines hinder your system.

Use this: www.mikesoltys.com

My lines are 12ft...
 
OP
OP
L

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
I was kind of figuring this was the reason. What length is your serving line? You should balance your lines and be in control of what psi you want, and not let short lines hinder your system.

Use this: www.mikesoltys.com

My lines are 12ft...
Yeah that's actually what I used when I replaced the lines. The guy I bought it off of was using 1/4" lines and I was getting a ton a foam in the beginning (I feel like this was the reason that he sold it in the first place). I swapped it out for the proper line size and length. I am using 8 feet of serving line, and it's good for up to 10 PSI with my setup. At 11 PSI it wasn't a ton of head. It was just more than I really wanted.
 

Diver_Alan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2014
Messages
88
Reaction score
15
Is your beer going totally flat after 2 weeks or is just not as carbonated as you would like? As soon as you drop the pressure from 11 psi to 8 psi the carbonation level of the beer will start dropping. Is it possible you simply like the carbonation level better at 2.5 vol than you do at 2.3 vol ?
 

day_trippr

"This Space For Rent"
Joined
May 31, 2011
Messages
38,198
Reaction score
21,241
Location
Stow, MA
You really should tune your system for the CO2 pressure required to maintain your desired carbonation level at your preferred serving temperature. Compromising the pressure because your lines are too short just means your keg will start outgassing CO2 from being carbonated at the higher pressure. And CO2 breakout begets even more foam...

Cheers!
 
OP
OP
L

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
Is your beer going totally flat after 2 weeks or is just not as carbonated as you would like? As soon as you drop the pressure from 11 psi to 8 psi the carbonation level of the beer will start dropping. Is it possible you simply like the carbonation level better at 2.5 vol than you do at 2.3 vol ?
I guess it's not totally flat, but it's gotta be under 1.0 vols. The difference from 11 to 8 shouldn't be impacting it that much, obviously, but I'm certainly at a loss. :(
 

brew703

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2015
Messages
2,206
Reaction score
469
Location
Outside of Nola
Did you increase your PSI? if so did it help? Might want to spray all connections and the keg lid with starsan to check for leaks.

Using the carbonation table, and using 40 degrees as the beer temp, you would need to set your regulator to 13 psi to get 2.56 vol.

Next time you pour a beer check the beer temp. I bet the actual temp is higher than 39 degrees. if so, you may have to increase the psi more to obtain the desired level of carbonation.

As mentioned above, dont disconnect your co2. Always leave connected and set at your determined co2 level. Dont purge and re-adjust to 8psi as you mentioned in your initial post.

if you have no leaks and you balance your system then you should have good pours for the entire keg.

Also, after 12-24 hrs of no pours i always pour off a few ounces as the beer in the line is always warmer than the beer in the keg and will cause foaming issues.

Also, you should probably be using 12' lines min. at least that's what the Mike's calculator shows.
 

Sailingeric

Beer. Now there's a temporary solution
Joined
Oct 30, 2014
Messages
2,004
Reaction score
2,470
Location
Aloha, Oregon
I have about 10 foot beer lines and this is my procedure when putting in a new keg. My keezer is at 36 degrees, I put the keg in, once I am sure I am leak free I turn the gas up to 30 or so PSI for a couple of days. Vent it off and see how it is carbing, then down to 11-12 PSI and let it sit for another couple of days. After that it is close to being at the right carb level and if needed to my taste I will adjust up or down a little.
 
OP
OP
L

lane7505

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2018
Messages
16
Reaction score
9
It's been a long time since I've logged in and responded (I'm a slacker sometimes), but I increased my PSI for carbing and serving by 2-3 PSI and that seems to have fixed my problem. Still doesn't make the most sense to me, but I'm certainly happy that it did. Thanks for all of the advice. This is a great community!
 
Top