Why no spigot on primary?

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Well-Known Member
Mar 9, 2009
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Hi all,

I'm looking for a starter kit to help me jump into the world of homebrewing. It seems like all the 2-bucket systems I have seen only have a spigot on the bottling bucket. Why is there no spigot on the primary fermenter?

I have read "Homebrewing for Dummies" and the author recommends using this simple setup to get going. He references connecting a hose from the primary fermenter's spigot to transfer the beer into the bottling bucket.

Has anyone seen a kit online that has spigots on both buckets?

Thanks for being kind to noobs. :)

El Jefe
The reason there is not a spigot on the primary is because that is where all the trub is. If you open the spigot you will get all that crud into your secondary/bottling bucket. It is better to siphon from your primary.

There are also a lot of nooks and crannies on the spigot which is a good place for bacteria to hide and infect your beer.
Spigots can also leak. Many of them drip slightly - not a big problem during the bottling process but during a 2-3 week fermentation it sure could be.
I think Williams Brewing sells bucket fermenters with spigots.
I use a Better Bottle with spigot for a primary and have had no problems. In fact its absolutely great at pulling every last drop of beer out with no trub :)
I have one on my better bottle but I don't use it honestly. It's just as easy to use the auto siphon and I'm scared of infections, I'll use it as a secondary from now on and use my buckets as primaries.
Both my buckets have spigots, and I wish one of them didn't. It's a major pain to clean the trub out of the spigot having sat there for 2-4 weeks, and you really don't want to use the spigot to move from primary to bottling/secondary because you want to leave that junk behind.

So, spigot on primary == extra work, no real benefit.
I'm planning on using my better bottle/tubing/keg completely purged with Co2 prior to transfer. Use the spigot as a racking arm and pull as much beer as I can get.
I put a spigot on mine , it cost like 3$, works great and no infections.
(knock on wood) , I fill it full of oxyclean after I rack - let it sit overnight,
Clean as a whistle.

Remember to remove your airlock before racking to secondary or it will suck the fluid from it into your beer.
Hoptech sells a beer making kit that has a spigot on the primary. I believe they've set them up in a way to avoid sucking the trub over into the bottling bucket. I can't really say if it works. I've got one of their dark ale's conditioning in the fermenter, but I didn't get my equipment kit from them.
I've used them with and without and it doesn't make much difference to me if you have an autosiphon. The autosiphon is a fantastic tool as long as you don't use it in your hot wort.
Got my starter from Williams Brewing and both the fermenter and the bottling bucket have spigots. They aren't a problem to clean and 95% of the time, the trub isn't a big deal. Since I keg, if it looks like there will be a trub problem, I just fill a 1L plastic bottle until it runs clean.
I am somewhat new to the hobby but I think I can answer your question.

The bucket with the spigot acts as your primary fermentor. After you are done boiling you place the "wort" into the bucket with the spigot (primary fermentor) You let that sit for about a week or so (or when you see consistent readings on your hydrometer). That means that fermentation is done. You then transfer or "rack" all of the wort into the other bucket (the one without a spigot aka secondary fermentor). This is called conditioning. Basically in a secondary fermentor the beer will become clear. After about a week or so in the secondary fermentor you will transfer back into the bucket with the spigot. You put it back into the primary fermentor because now you are going to bottle it. You need the spigot to do this.

I hope I answered your question. Let me know if you have other questions.