Do I need to rinse bottles sanitized with Potassium Metabisulfite?

Hi, I made a solution of Potassium Metabisulfite 3 tbsp to a gallon of water for sanitizing my wine equipment and bottles. Can I let the bottles drip dry before filling with wine or do i have to rinse the bottles with water first?

This is my third season of making kits and I AM BY NO MEANS an expert. I always let them drip dry and do not rinse. I asked the same question in the beginning and some one told me that little bit of Kmeta will actually be good for the wine to age in. It has never failed me yet making 8 kits per season for the last 3 years. Also, I wash and sanitize a couple of hours before I bottle. Hope this helps!


Let them drip dry is the standard recommended practice. If I am in a hurry and don’t have time to let them dry first, I’ll usually rinse, which is kind of silly because the amount of sulfite that would be added if I didn’t rinse is well below anything that would be an issue…

I have been busy. With two carboys of red wine and 6 one gallon meads soon to be bottled. I had to be sure of this when bottling time arrives. I would hate to have messed up the wines with too much K- meta. I have read too much K meta can be corrected…peroxide or dilute with another wine? I have ordered another accuvin So4 kit for bottling time. I hope the wine is at a 25-35ppm level. How much higher can a wine free so4 go before it becomes an issue?

Thank you for the replies


Thank you for the replies.

Get a bottle tree and sanitize and let drip dry prior to bottling. It works for me!

As long as you let them drip for three minutes, the residual sulphite from retained volume of a 1250 PPM FSO2 solution will be under 2-3 PPM–not a thing to worry about. I’ve made approximately ten thousand gallons of wine in the last 25 years and I’ve never rinsed the sulphite out of a single bottle.

There’s a very useful sulfite FAQ and calculator [here][1].

How much FSO2 your wine needs is a matter of pH. To quote my friend Daniel,

A wine’s pH affects the free SO2 concentration and must therefore be accounted for when adding sulfite. Specifically, at high pH (low acidity), SO2 effectiveness is greatly reduced and the wine is therefore not as well protected against oxidative effects or microbial organisms which could spoil the wine.

To compensate for the high pH, as a rule of thumb, you should target a free SO2 concentration of approximately 25 percent higher for every 0.1 pH increase above 3.2 (for sweet wines), 3.4 (for white wines) and 3.6 (for red wines). For example, if a free SO2 concentration of 50 mg/L is desired when sulfiting a dry white wine with a pH of 3.8, add sulfite to achieve a free SO2 concentration of 100 mg/L: (3.8-3.4)x10x25%=100% more. Remember to compensate for any free SO2 already present.

Hope that helps out.
[1]: Sulfite Calculator -

Hi Everyone,

Thank you for all the help. The S04 calc and FAQ is a big help, I booked marked it for future reference.


You’re welcome! Happy winemaking.