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Sanitizing beer lines...recommendations please

I have 4 cornys, one drinking now, and three have beer either conditioning or lagering. one of those should be ready this weekend. so, what’s the best way to sanitize the beer line and tap/shank before serving?

the one I’m drinking from has a picnic tap on it, but I’m now ready to hook them up to the “real” taps but obviously want them sanitized first.

Can I connect a hose and “gravity” feed starsan thru the lines/taps? or is there an even easier way?

:cheers:

I run PBW through aq corni keg to the lines the flush out with a gallon of hot water then run star san through the lines after that. this works really well if you have to clean some kegs out at the same time. the process takes about 10 minutes. hope that helps,

I don’t see the need, theres nothing in them that would feed a microbe and little likelihood of anything drifting into the hoses. But a little starsan won’t hurt anything. Once you start using them, occasionally cleaning with Beer Line Cleaner (NB sells this) is a good idea.

typo? not sure what you’re saying. are you pumping it thru with co2, hand pump, gravity?

Mix up sanitizer (about a pint per 5-10’ line) in a corny. Hook up corny to CO2 and line. Open the faucet and let run until it flows clear. Wait a minute to sanitize, then run sani through for a few more seconds. Repeat for other lines.

I also have one of these

, and it works well, but using a keg is so much easier. No need to remove the faucet.

[quote=“a10t2”]
Mix up sanitizer (about a pint per 5-10’ line) in a corny. Hook up corny to CO2 and line. Open the faucet and let run until it flows clear. Wait a minute to sanitize, then run sani through for a few more seconds. Repeat for other lines.[/quote]
+1 works great. Shouldn’t need to run the PBW through everytime. I have also seen some people convert a 1gal pump up sprayer to run sanitizer through lines.

I never sanitize mine. I figure the beer moves through there pretty regular and nothing can live in beer that would hurt you. I used to flush my lines out after each keg but now I don’t even mess with that. Once every 12-18 months, I toss the lines and replace with new. A 100’ roll of beer line only costs about $44 and I get 10 lines from it. Much easier than screwing around cleaning the lines.

although I agree with the “no cleaning” idea; I currently use two taps and there is often no ready beer to take it’s place. when a keg goes dry, I clean it with PBW and just drop the lines in for the soak; that doesn’t take too much effort for me.

i do make a small bowl of PBW and soak the faucet as well, but i’m sure that rinsing in hot water for a few seconds would be sufficient for my comfort.

[quote=“darthmorgoth”]although I agree with the “no cleaning” idea; I currently use two taps and there is often no ready beer to take it’s place. when a keg goes dry, I clean it with PBW and just drop the lines in for the soak; that doesn’t take too much effort for me.

i do make a small bowl of PBW and soak the faucet as well, but i’m sure that rinsing in hot water for a few seconds would be sufficient for my comfort.[/quote]

I made a beer line cleaner using a 56oz hand pump sprayer from Home Depot, the Flo-Master Model 56HD. When one of my two taps is dry it may sit a bit until I get the next brew up and pouring.

I will send some Star San through the line and push out the old beer. I let it sit a few minutes then flush it with tap water. There it will sit until I hook up my next beer.

i use BLC once a year just to get the beerstone out of the lines.

But a. beer is not sterile, and b. stuff can live in beer that can hurt your beer.

[quote=“TG”]But a. beer is not sterile, and b. stuff can live in beer that can hurt your beer.[/quote]Sterile is a funny word … usually interchanged with sanitary or sanitized.

Agreed, but my lines are clean when I get them and immediatlely after replacing them, I blast some Iodaphor solution through then before initial use. We move a lot of beer here and beer never sits in any line for more than 24 hours.

Although PBW and StarSan is good for their intended purposes, it is best to use products designed for what you are trying to do. They might work in a pinch but there are products designed for better serving line cleaning and a better overall result for your beer…

Beer Line Cleaner (BLC) is best for general cleaning and flushing between kegs or on a regular basis, whatever your “regular” is and that’s up to you. Not sure what the industry standard is but I’d suggest after every keg or series of kegs of the same product. More frequent cleaning prevents buildups that are more difficult to clean.

Acid Line Cleaner (ALC) for a deeper clean in combination with BLC when needed for buildups. Not a solution in itself, but a nice tool to add.

If we only have a hammer, every problem starts to look like a nail, so properly equip your toolbox with the proper tools for the job. I think it’s natural for us to try and use the first things we learn about in cleaning and sanitation when doing new things, but in many cases there are better things to use that will give the proper benefits.

Ha, this is like asking for the time and being told how to build a clock…

My original question about best method for cleaning lines when all cornys are full of beer. Then, obviously you can’t put cleaning solution in a corny and pump it thru…so, what’s the next best method.

cheers.

[quote=“StormyBrew”]Ha, this is like asking for the time and being told how to build a clock…

[/quote]

Yes, we will do that! :slight_smile:

As it doesn’t need to be under pressure, you can rig up anything to get the solution into the lines and use gravity to let it flow in from a bucket or container. Some folks have used 2-liter soda bottles held above the tap, connected by some pieces of hose. I’ve seen those same soda bottles with a carbonator cap held above the system and squeezed to force the solution into the lines through the normal disconnect on the end of the line connected to the carbonator cap on the bottle. As someone else said, garden sprayers can pump the solution in as well. Any rig will work even though it may not be pretty.

[quote=“StormyBrew”]Ha, this is like asking for the time and being told how to build a clock…

My original question about best method for cleaning lines when all cornys are full of beer. Then, obviously you can’t put cleaning solution in a corny and pump it thru…so, what’s the next best method.

cheers.[/quote]

  1. Hook up corny.
  2. Drink beer.
  3. Clean corny with PBW (or the cleaner of your choice).
  4. Push PBW (or cleaner of your choice) from corny through the lines.
  5. Sanitize corny with Starsan (or sanitizer of your choice)
  6. Push sanitizer (of your choice) from corny through the lines.
  7. Repeat steps 1 & 2.

:cheers:

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