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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2005 * Archive through March 25, 2005 * Sanitizers < Previous Next >

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Buford Peek
New Member
Username: Villageidiot

Post Number: 2
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 06:58 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

What sanitizer do you all recommend? I am currently using bleach and it is working fine. I am just rinsing like crazy and I rather spend my time on something else.
 

Denny Conn
Senior Member
Username: Denny

Post Number: 4350
Registered: 01-2001
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 07:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I use and recommend both Iodophor and StarSan.
LIfe begins at 60...1.060, that is.
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2667
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 07:11 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Two excellent sanitizers are Iodophor and Star San. Both are no-rinse when mixed in the proper concentration, but Star San is a little more forgiving about overmixing. It is, however, more expensive. Star San also foams; some people are put off by the foam but it actually makes it more effective by allowing it to permeate tiny spaces more easily. Undiluted Iodophor will stain surfaces, and undiluted Star San is acidic enough to cause problems with some materials, so a little caution is in order when mixing them.
 

stephen weiss
Junior Member
Username: Emeroid

Post Number: 27
Registered: 09-2003
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 07:16 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I like a steam cleaner to blow through hoses, valves, keg fittings etc.
 

Buford Peek
New Member
Username: Villageidiot

Post Number: 3
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 07:43 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

thanks a lot. I will try the Star San and Iodophor.
 

Belly Buster Bob
Senior Member
Username: Canman

Post Number: 2219
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 08:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

make sure your water Ph is correct first. If your Ph is of Starsan wont work...(my dilemma) I have to buy RO water for sanitizer
Bellybuster Bob
www.bellybuster.netfirms.com
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2670
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 09:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

In order for Star San to be effective the pH of the sanitizer solution must be 4.0 or below. The solution will turn cloudy if the pH is too high. If your water is very alkaline you may need to add acid to the solution or use RO-filtered water.
 

Belly Buster Bob
Senior Member
Username: Canman

Post Number: 2221
Registered: 02-2003
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 09:10 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

what kind of acid do you suggest Bill? Cheaper than RO water?? I am no water guy...it comes out of the tap...I drink it
Bellybuster Bob
www.bellybuster.netfirms.com
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2672
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2005 - 09:14 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

As a practical matter, any relatively strong acid would do. The active acid in StarSan is phosphoric acid.
 

Wortgames
Junior Member
Username: Wortgames

Post Number: 64
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 12:32 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I use:

1. Bleach for soaking items that haven't been used recently (it's cheap and merciless)
2. Iodophor for sanitizing clean items on brewday (cheap, food-safe, no-rinse and colour indicates efficacy)
3. Brew-Shield* for spraying down surfaces, hands etc whenever I feel like it (won't stain, acts fast (apparently)).

*Brew-Shield (Australian brand) is a no-rinse, odourless, colourless, non-foaming sanitizer containing hydrogen peroxide & silver ions - not sure what it would be known as elsewhere.

I have a tip that helps me to make brewday pretty painless. I bought a couple of large, plastic storage bins which I have on a bench nearby on brewday. One is filled with really hot water, and the other with lukewarm iodophor solution.

Everything I will (or even may) use during the day goes in the iodophor for storage / sanitizing (thermometers, hydrometers, beakers, bungs, lids, o-rings, airlocks etc). After using a spoon, thermometer etc, it gets a good dunk in the hot water a couple of times to clean off any wort, then it goes back into the iodophor.

This way, I know exactly where everything is - it's in the iodophor - so there's no hunting around for thermometers, spoons etc. There's also no sticky spots on the bench from putting these things down, and no chance of infection. The lukewarm iodophor (apart from being nicer to put your hands in than cold) means that glass won't shock and thermometers respond quicker.
Wortgames is an independent home brewer, and has no commercial interests in the brewing arena. In fact, brewing is largely a gadget-based obsession that places a significant burden on his resources.
 

Marlon Lang
Intermediate Member
Username: Marlonlang

Post Number: 453
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 12:35 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bob and Bill,
Let us return to Buford's original post. If bleach is "working fine" but he is "rinsing like crazy", then I would ask about his water, mixture, and procedure. A bleach solution in reasonable water (read: not Chicago) should drain and air-dry without leaving Cl residue. I use 1/4 cup bleach in 5 gallons of water, 45 minutes, drain, air-dry 30 minutes, and my water is very "soft". All that you say about Star San is true, but I would like to know why he is "rinsing like crazy"
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2675
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 01:52 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

If I read Buford's post correctly, he is not complaining about off-flavors or aromas in his beer. He is tired of having to "rinse like crazy" after using bleach as a sanitizer.

I occasionally use bleach myself (and yes, I "rinse like crazy" when I do). However, I greatly prefer the no-rinse sanitizers because they are less work. They require less water, too, although that's not a big issue for me.
 

Scott Folsom
Junior Member
Username: Sfolsom

Post Number: 52
Registered: 03-2004
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 05:03 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Wow...
I do the exact same thing as Wortgames, except I use Star-san. I keep it in my old bottling bucket that has a spigot, so I can easily sanitize hoses. A couple minutes in the bucket and your good to go. Yes it's a bit more expensive, but at 1oz to 5gallons it lasts a loooooong time.

I did use bleach back in the mid/late 80's when I brewed in a tiny studio apartment and cleaned/sanitized in the bathtub.
 

Tom
Junior Member
Username: Benchbrew

Post Number: 75
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 08:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Soaking keg in starsan; good idea or no. Just concerned about the acidity.
 

Richard Nye
Advanced Member
Username: Yeasty_boy

Post Number: 603
Registered: 01-2004
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 11:20 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Tom, I've been storing my clean empties with Starsan in them for years. Haven't seen any negative effects, but would like to hear what others say.
 

Wayne Faris
Junior Member
Username: Bugeaterbrewing

Post Number: 93
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 01:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

When I clean kegs, I give them a quick rinse in StarSan and seal them up. I also keg one keg about half full of StarSan. When I am ready to fill a keg, I invert my sanitizer keg to freshly wet the top half and then use CO2 to force it into one of the empty kegs. This way I always have a freshly sanitized keg that has been purged of air. Never a bit of problem with keeping the sanitizer in the kegs this way.
 

Milan Bartolec
Member
Username: Littlebro

Post Number: 121
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 04:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I too store my StarSan in kegs for weeks at a time and have noticed no ill affects. The only problem I encounter with the StarSan is if I soak brass fittings in them too long - they begin to turn a blackish color.
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 1498
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2005 - 04:55 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Marlon, can you elaborate on why you don't need to rinse bleach solution?
 

Marlon Lang
Intermediate Member
Username: Marlonlang

Post Number: 458
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 01:31 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bill and Vance,
As I said, I air-dry/drain the carboys for about a hour in a home-made carboy upside-down holder. No rinse. My local BJCPs, other beer club members, and myself have never detected Chlorine problems. I'm sorry guys, but I still don't see the rinse problem. Help me here! This old, fat, grey headed fart needs to be set straignt!
OTOH, I have had problems with Star San, vis a vis usage of solution older that a few days. So, although Star San is really good stuff with some really neat features like no-rinse, I use it only as a spray-on surface sanitizer and let bleach do the long-term soaking.}
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2702
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 01:34 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

The taste threshold for chlorophenols is only a few parts per billion. That's a tiny amount of residual bleach sanitizer that could cause a problem. You may be right, Lang, but I'd rather not take the risk, so I rinse twice after sanitizing with bleach.
 

Marlon Lang
Intermediate Member
Username: Marlonlang

Post Number: 461
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 01:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

O.K. Bill,
Calf rope!
 

J. Steinhauer
Advanced Member
Username: Jstein6870

Post Number: 588
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 03:12 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have the same 16 ounce bottle of StarSan I bought 1.5 brew-years ago, and it is still nearly 3/4 full. I use 1.125cc/20 ounce spray bottle. I spray the inside of kegs, carboys (air dried or just drained upside down in clean kegs), hoses, etc. I keep a keg of iodophor solution around for soaking porous things like stoppers and airstones, and I usually soak racking canes - they always have microfractures.

I don't think it's really the pH of the solution you have to worry about in kegs (within reason) but the reactivity of the acid. Beer (especially sour beer) and soda are pretty acidic, and are no problem.

I've never had a StarSan solution with distilled water go bad on me, and given the relative cost and how long the 16 ounce bottle has lasted, it is far cheaper than using bleach.
 

Brandon Dachel
Senior Member
Username: Brandon

Post Number: 1437
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 04:16 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

> A bleach solution in reasonable water (read:
> not Chicago)

What's wrong with Chicago (read: Lake Michigan) water? It's fantastic for brewing nearly any style.
 

ScottDeW
Intermediate Member
Username: Scott

Post Number: 262
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 01:33 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have to throw rocks at my water to break it in chunks for brewing. StarSan is great but turns cloudy in hours. As a result, I do my bulk cleaning with Iodophor and, using distilled water, keep handy a spray bottle full of StarSan.

As far as the bleach stuff goes...

If you've used a reasonable concentration and allowed time for items to dry, what's the problem?
Scott
http://texanbrew.com
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 1504
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 04:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I use clorox for initial sanitization after cleaning a fermentor but then use StarSan prior to putting the wort in it. I've read about the taste that chlorophenols "can" cause and have always rinsed because of that. I've always been suspicious of the "no rinse" claim of C-Brite as it uses chloirne also. Lots of my club buddies use it no rinse but I've always just gone with Iodophore and now StarSan for final sanitizing.

Sooo, I don't have any experiance with off flavors from chlorophenols because I've always avoided chlorine in the final steps. With Marlon's personal experince, I say if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
 

Bill Moore
Intermediate Member
Username: Bill_beerman

Post Number: 289
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:25 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I use StarSan. I have city water which runs about 7.2 from the tap. I checked the pH of the mixture and I was 4 or below so I just mix up batches as I need them.