Starsan removes ink from printed bottles (Corona, etc.) in just 2 hours

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Dec 7, 2007
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Inspired from Ed's Post:

I thought this was info worthy of a new thread since the other thread is about soaking them for weeks. Plus, I thought it fit in the bottling forum.


This is after a 2 hour soak in 1oz per 1gal Starsan. Used a brush to wash dishes on the Corona bottle, but I think it would wipe off with your fingers because that's what the Arrogant bottle is dong. I have ink all over my thumb. No need to let dry or flake, it's just wiping right off. I bet it would wash right off in the sink or bathtub.



Tried washing off with water - this made it harder to wipe off. Just let it soak and immediately wash off with a dish scrubber while the bottle is still wet with Starsan.
Wow, I'm dumbfounded that no one has noticed that before. I had heard specifically (here I think) that those bottles were essentially colored glass that was melted on (like a laser printer) and therefore unremovable by any means other than abrasion. This may be my final impetus for me to switch to starsan.

PS. that bastard bottle looks familiar;)
That was, indeed, your beer :D Are you currently using iodophor?

I'm noticing that the Stone IPA red ink is going to take a little longer soak - the gold rubbed right off, though.

PS - about no one noticing before:
There is a thread about soaking them for weeks in a Starsan solution, but the mixture I used is 5x as strong as recommended for sanitizing. I just wanted to see how fast I could get the ink off, and I have to say it is a success.
To make sure I understand correctly, this is at 5x concentration, right? Normal is 1oz per 5 gal?

Very cool, thank you for the update - I have a bunch of Red Stripe to try this on!
chriso said:
To make sure I understand correctly, this is at 5x concentration, right? Normal is 1oz per 5 gal? Very cool, thank you for the update - I have a bunch of Red Stripe to try this on!
Correct. I edited the above post as well.
yeah, been using iodophor for the full 12 years of brewing. I was planning on switching anyway when I finish the big bottle I have now, but that will probably be pretty late this year. Along with learning about starsan here, I also learned that you don't have to completely fill every vessel you sanitize, so now my stuff lasts much longer.
Is that a higher concentration than normal?
Good find.
I just read the older thread. If there isn't already, there should be a link to it and this one on the "What Sanitizer" sticky.
Yes, very high concentration to remove the ink that fast. 1oz in 5gal is recommended for sanitizing. I used 2oz in 2gal.

For what it's worth... Another thing I tested based on what I read here was the taste of leftover iodophor and starsan. The iodophor left its smell inside my carboys, but I obviously don't know what effect this might have, if any, on a brew since I'm so new - I just wanted to taste and see. The taste of the iodophor was dry and maybe a tiny bit bitter. The starsan left no smell, the water had a tiny hint of sweet and bitter, and the bubbles/foam have no taste or smell at all. Comparisons were made with the recommended mixtures on the bottles. I'd consider myself a starsan guy, all the way.
I gotta wonder if it is the pH or a specific solvent quality? If it's just pH/ acid strength, could we do it with a 30 sec. dip in Muriatic acid? A google search turned up a post on realbeer but the poster did not state any timeframe.
Check this out... it has now been ~6 hours or so... and now the Coronas are NOT coming off as easily. The white comes off with some scrubbing, but the blue is a PITA.

Someone help me figure that out.
Quick Noob question....

Ive never used Star San...Is it a liquid? And is it made by "five star"
I figured I'd chime in this 5 year old thread. I used 1oz Starstan to ~12oz water. I put the mix into a 2qt container slightly wider than the bottle and tall enough to cover the ink label. When I put the bottle (filled with water to keep weighted down) in the container the mix came to just below the top of the container and fully covering the label. It LITERALLY took 5 minutes before I could simply take a sponge to it and the ink came right off. This would be a great way to strip numerous bottles in a short period of time, Otherwise, it's kinda wasting Starstan. [STONE BREWERY- RUSSIAN IMPERIAL STOUT 2011 BOTTLE. GRAY AND BLUE INK]
If I made some of this concentrated star san solution, maybe a gal or 2 in one of those Home Depot painters/storage buckets and weighted down however many bottles i can fit, can I keep reusing this same solution? I have 50 or so corona bottles I'd like to clean up.
For anyone doing this I used one of the homer orange buckets from Home Depot, added 1 gal of water with 1 oz Star San & then 12 bottles full of water. After 24hrs most of the paint came off with a scrub, another 24hrs and another scrub later all the paint is gone and you have only the "shadow" of what was originally there. Started another 12 today, will see how long the Star San remains potent. Looking forward to adding my 5 month Apfelwine once I have enough bottles scrubbed :)

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