Priming sugar question...more than 5 ozs

Hi all,

I have a bavarien hefeweizen ready for conditioning.

I’ve decided to rack this one to my other new keg instead of bottling. The calulator on this site says roughly 7 ozs for this style.

I’ve never used that mush in my limited experience so looking for some seasoned advice.

Should I use that much if I’m putting into a keg? It will sit for a few weeks before I get all my co2 parts together.

The style calls for something like 3vol of CO2, although in my experience the standard additon of 5oz is generous enough. If you’re kegging go for it, you can always let a little off and let it re-equilibrate if its too foamy.

Very bad idea, IMHO. You’ll never have any problem whatsoever getting a hefeweizen with plenty of carbonation and foam with just 4 oz per 5 gallons. Definitely don’t do 7 oz or you could have bombs on your hands.

It’s not just this site. All of the priming calculators seem to recommend 3.5 - 4.0 vols for hefeweizen. I brewed a 2 gallon batch some weeks back and ended up following the calculators and added something like 2.9 ounces of priming sugar. I didn’t get bottle bombs (fingers crossed, I bottled a little more than four weeks ago) but the beer has a lot more carbonation than I am used to. Next batch (this is my favorite style of beer so there will be many more) I will use something like 2 ounces instead.

Now wait just a minute… my recommendation was for priming bottles, but now I see that he’s priming a keg! You need to prime a keg much less to get the same carbonation. I wouldn’t use any more than 2 oz for a 5-gallon keg. 7 oz in a keg would be downright 100% foam!! But… priming a keg only works for a few pints. After that you need to push with more CO2 obviously. The priming just establishes initial carbonation.

Thanks all,

I had a very small window to get it done and already kegged it to the specs for the style on the calculator…somewhat.

I did however only have about 6 ozs of priming sugar so that is all I used.

I “checked” the keg last night by depressing the gas in poppet and it hissed at me more than I expected.

This is supposed to sit a couple weeks but now I’m wondering if I should bleed off some of the co2 being produced inside from time to time.

I ordered my disconnects and stuff last night and will be filling the co2 tank this weekend or sometime next week.

Right now, the keg is sitting in my den for the warmth. Would a move to a colder location perhaps to slow things down? Any suggestions?

I think a keg can withstand 100psi, and the poppet will open if it gets to 50psi (I think thats what they are set to). So I would let it go for the time being, and maybe bleed off when you want to serve. You’ll need gas for that anyway, the pressure in the head space of a full keg won’t last long.

I’d let it stay in the warm, it helps it get done faster it doens’t change the final level a bit.

I’ve never seen a calculator that showed the need for 4-6vol of CO2, we aren’t speaking about the same measurement maybe.

Dave, I’ve heard it takes less priming sugar for kegs but I’ve never understood why. I always assumed the sugar got completely used up in a bottle, so why would a kegged beer need less?

Good question. I think it has to do with how high an average joe fills a keg versus a bottle. If you add up all the air space in 50 bottles and compare that with the air space in a filled 5-gallon keg, it must be a lot more so you need more priming sugar for bottles than with a keg. But if you were to leave your keg several inches less than full, then you would need the same priming sugar. And vice-versa – if you fill your bottles up to the tippy top, you should need less priming sugar. That’s my theory, anyway.