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Auto Siphon or just pour?

After cooling your wort, how many just pour straight into your fermentation vessel? How many use an auto siphon, strain/filter or some other method?

I’ve been using an auto siphon and trying to avoid the leftover hops in the bottom of my kettle when tranfering to my fermentor. But now that I’m doing larger batches I’ve been rethinking. The auto siphon takes a while on 10 gals and it seems I’m leaving a lot of wort behind by avoiding hops. In the meantime, I’ve seen guys:

  1. Pour all of their wort into their feremtation vessel - hops and all.

  2. Pour their wort into their fermentation vessel but try and leave behind the boiled hops.

  3. Use a stainless pitcher to transfer wort into their fermentation vessel.

  4. Pour their wort through a strainer to try and remove hops.

  5. Use an auto siphon.

So what do you do and what do you suggest? Is there an advantage to leaving behind the hops before fermentation or am i wasting good wort?


I bought 5 gal paint strainer bags, this leaves plenty of room to roll the hop ball around in the bag to get out all the wort you can. What is still left in the hop mass I put the bag in a funnel and let drain for my next starter. It’s been working pretty good for me! Seems to get most of the break material too.

Makes the yeast easier to harvest also.

I use a nylon bag for my hops. That way I can just dump in with no worries.

If you are doing 10 gallon batches, install a valve on your pot. I can’t imagine how long it would take to siphon that out, plus I don’t think you’ll be lifting that kind of weight to pour into fermenters.
You won’t regret a valve on your pot. Trust me.

I use hop bags during the boil. Then when cooled, I siphon the wort into a funnel with a screen to keep as much cold break behind as I can. I like to collect and rinse yeast, so I try to keep as much ‘stuff’ behind as possible.

+1 And put a pickup tube inside so you can suck all the wort out without tilting the kettle.

I just dump it right in the bucket, then I don’t have to sanitize/clean my siphon, plus, its help aerate the wort. When I start to get to the bottom of the BK I try to avoid dumping the trub in, but sometimes a little makes it in. Never noticed off flavors if too much gets poured in.

If I have a batch with a large amount of hops I’ll strain it the best I can using paint strainer bags.

On the stovetop, I pour through a sanitized strainer. Really helps to aerate plus filter out some trub.
In my keggle, I drain out of the ball valve either through the false bottom or I whirpool.

Those of you with a valve, does it not get clogged? Im thinking about jumping up to 20 gallon batches and I wont be able to pour anymore obviously. But I was just wondering how you use the vlve without it clogging.

Option 2 for me. I do 4 gallon batches (so I end up with 3 or so in the keg) on the stovetop and pour all but the last quart or so into the funnel going into my 5 gallon carboy. Works well enough.

you install a pickup tube, which can be stainless steel or copper (most common). You crimp the end, and then drill some small holes on the side that will be away from the hops and break in the bottom. Do a quick search on the forum or the web. You’ll see what I mean. Very easy to make one once you get a valve installed near the bottom of the kettle.

[quote=“Adam20”]Those of you with a valve, does it not get clogged?[/quote]I have 1/2" OD copper for a pickup tube and use pellet hops - nothing to clog. When I use whole hops, I put them in mesh bags.

I use the same setup. The end of my pickup tube is slightly smashed.

do you smash the end to keep whole hops out, or so it sucks less trub in, or what???

edit: I guess in even in contact with fine particle trub, hopefully on the edge of a cone of it, it would be less likely to hoover it up thru the smaller aperture.

I boil in a converted keg with a valve welded near the bottom. I use a copper pickup tube that picks up on the bottom edge where the curve in the bottom of the keg goes from horizontal to vertical. I give the wort a good stir with a spoon at flameout. This allows me to leave the trub and hop cone in the center of the keg when I drain. I have never once clogged my valve using this method.

I also plan all of my recipes to account for 6 gallons into the primary so I end up with at least 5 gallons of final product. I usually end up with less than a quart in the kettle and anything that won’t fit into the secondary gets transferred to a large growler to complete fermentation and then I use those for experiments like adding vanilla or cinnamon sticks, etc.

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