Soaking in Star Sanitizer

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Murph69

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Fellow Beer Mates, Question - is there a too long of a timeframe to soak equipment In Star Sanitizer ?

Does the sanitizer, not work after a while?
 

IslandLizard

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You mean StarSan (sanitizer)?
A working solution should remain active as long as the pH is under 3.0 (a pH of 2.7 is the target I think).

The instructions also say that it should be discarded when it gets cloudy, but that's not always true. As long as you're using soft or RO water to mix it, it seems to work just as fine when it gets a bit cloudy, at least in my experience.

I've kept (cloudy/hazy) working solutions for weeks, months even. They get crystal clear after a few months, leaving a white residue on the bottom of the bucket and all over the stuff that's in there. It washes or brushes off easily.

You can soak things in there for much longer than the 1 minute minimum contact time per their directions.

Except for mesh bags or so it won't sanitize much better or more thoroughly, but a 10-30 minutes soak is A-OK. Hours, days, weeks, months even, seem to be alright. Transparent plastics, such as vinyl tubing, may become hazy, milky, or even opaque after a few days to weeks. They'll become transparent again after they dry thoroughly.

Some materials will dissolve in it, it's an acid after all. So copper, brass, aluminum, etc. and anything else that get attacked by acids, should not be kept under Starsan for longer times. It can make your copper immersion chiller bright and looking like new with a few hour soak. Same for brass fittings.

Stainless gets a nice shine too with longer soaks (weeks, months).
 
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Murph69

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Thx - I fill up my syphon hose, then connect both ends and leave it hanging for weeks on end
 

day_trippr

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fwiw there have been repeated mentions of clear tubing becoming "white" and often accompanied by a "slimy" character when left in Star San for protracted periods. It's never made much sense to me why one would leave anything in prolonged contact with a sanitizer that works in literally seconds...

Cheers!
 

IslandLizard

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clear tubing becoming "white" and often accompanied by a "slimy" character when left in Star San for protracted periods.
I've notice the "slimy" character too, especially on (and inside) vinyl tubing, even after being submerged in Starsan for only a few days. For that reason I usually don't leave them in there anymore.
 

IslandLizard

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Thx - I fill up my syphon hose, then connect both ends and leave it hanging for weeks on end
You may notice a white powdery precipitate form inside, on the bottom of that loop.

When the tubing gets slimy or has that precipitate in them (leaving in the bucket for too long) I use a long narrow draw brush to scrub the inside in water with some oxyclean added. It comes out easily.
Then they get rinsed and re-sanitized before use or hung up to dry. Just drape them over a corner post of a storage rack, both ends pointing downward, so they can drip out.
 

Brewbuzzard

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fwiw there have been repeated mentions of clear tubing becoming "white" and often accompanied by a "slimy" character when left in Star San for protracted periods. It's never made much sense to me why one would leave anything in prolonged contact with a sanitizer that works in literally seconds...

Cheers!
This is true, I have noticed that clear plastic/vinyl tubing becomes very cloudy and slimy if left in StarSan for very long. I'll leave stainless in for a bit everything else I just give it a few seconds. I also keep it in a large bucket with lid for weeks or months. I do check the pH and I only put clean and rinsed items in it.
 

bwible

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i know if you leave things in PBW too long they can get damaged. It etches glass, for example. And I’ve had beer bottles that weren’t fully sumbersed come out with a solid white line on them that I have not found anything that will remove it.
 
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