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Sanitizing a Small Keg Operation

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bergstud140

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How does everyone clean/sanitize their corny kegs? What kind of sanitizer and equipment is needed? I would appreciate it if someone could guide me in the right direction.
 

wild

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I follow a simple 3-step method because, well I'm lazy. I use lye to eliminate organics, acid to eliminate stone then sanitize. First, line a garbage can with a heavy-duty bag and put in everything you want cleaned including kegs, parts, equipment, and bottles. Fill with water and mix in lye. (This must be done in a well ventilated area). Wait 24 hours. Empty solution into drains to keep them clean or reuse. Rinse off kegs, parts, etc. Second, line a garbage can with a heavy-duty bag and put in everything you want cleaned including kegs, parts, equipment, and bottles. Fill with water and mix in acid. I use phosphoric acid. (This must be done in a well ventilated area and be careful because it will etch your concrete). Wait 24 hours. Empty solution into drains to keep them clean or reuse. Rinse off kegs, parts, etc. Third, soak in Iodaphor solution for 20 minutes then use. Now everything looks brand new, shiny and clean without one brush stroke. Hope that helps. Good luck.

Wild
 

vtfan99

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When I first got the keg I soaked it overnight in a water/PBW solution....disassembled of course. I also replaced the O-rings. After that I rinsed thoroughly and then used Star San to sanitize. Now, for every subsequent use I jut rinse thoroughly with warm warm, give a quick scrub with a toilet brush and sanitize. I really could care less about how the outside looks, so I don't ever mess with that. Im not into pretty....just functional. No one ever sees the kegs anyway as they are in the fridge. :D
 

wild

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vtfan99 said:
I really could care less about how the outside looks, so I don't ever mess with that. Im not into pretty....just functional. No one ever sees the kegs anyway as they are in the fridge. :D
I don't have it so lucky. My kegs are seen by the public and what's worse, club members. I donate beer to all of our festivals throughout the state and also bring a keg or two to each of the meetings. So pretty ends up being a great benefit from no scrubbing and the ease of knowledge that I'll never get an infection from that equipment.

Wild
 

DeRoux's Broux

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bergstud140 said:
How does everyone clean/sanitize their corny kegs? What kind of sanitizer and equipment is needed? I would appreciate it if someone could guide me in the right direction.

try www.defalcos.com. they have a draft beer primer on their web page, left column, that goes through their process for kegging (includes cleaning/sanitizing). that's local my HBS, and the way i've always done it.

i just wash real good w/ my carboy brush, rinse well, pressure up to get the p-u tube filled and let it soak a bit. then release pressure, rinse well, pressure up, drain. then i fill it up with iodaphor/water solution, pressure up to fill the p-u tube, and let sit for 15-20 minutes. release pressure, drain it, let it dry, then add my brew. i change the gaskets about every other batch. i usually wash and sanitize them while i wash/sanitize.
 

jimmer

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I bought a $40 pump from Harbor Freight and hooked it up to Corny connectors. A spray head came with the pump. I take a 5 gal bucket, insert pump, add 2 gal hot water & PBW. Invert the keg over the spray head with connectors attached. Turn on the pump and come bck in 15 minutes.

For sanitizing, same drill with StarSan.

Air dry.

The lids, hoses, QDs, etc. get disassembled and soaked in the bucket while the kegs are getting sprayed. The process is called CIP, for Clean In Place, and does away with the need for lots of scrubbing.
 

John Eberly

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I have learned to take my kegs down after every use.

I use 1 Step for a cleaner/sanitizer.

Soak ball lock male ends, lid, and inlet tube in cleaner/sanitizer.

Fill the keg with hot sanitizer, soak the dip tube in it.

Run a brush through the dip tube.

Scrub the keg with a carboy brush.

Rinse everything with hot water.

Put it back together with new O-rings as necessary.

Always replace O-rings if the keg was used for soda pop, root beer and grape flavors never leave the rubber and easily contaminate the next product you put in.
 
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