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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2004 * Januray 20, 2004 * Bleach and contact time < Previous Next >

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Greg Nolan (12.10.148.126)
Posted on Thursday, January 01, 2004 - 01:43 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have read where bleach is a contact sanitizer and I have also read where you should have a 15 minute contact time. What gives? If it is a contact sanitizer it seems it could be used on stainless without much worry and that a 15 minute contact time would be overkill. I remember many years ago when I was a kid/potwasher for a restaurant, the last rinse contained clorox and we simply dipped the pots in the chlorinated water and put them on the shelf sanitized. I believe that was all the health department required. So my question is will a clorox/water rinse be enough to sanitize brewing equipment assuming it is clean to start with?
 

grant curtis (216.249.85.106)
Posted on Thursday, January 01, 2004 - 01:46 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Great question.

I have read that it would take 15 minutes of soaking so I don't know about just a rinse. Just in thinking about it it would seem fine as the solution would be on the surface for the required time before it dried, however I am no expert.
 

Bill Pierce (24.141.63.119)
Posted on Thursday, January 01, 2004 - 04:37 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bleach will react with stainless and cause pitting over time. It's not that 15 minutes will do any real harm; it's the accumulated contact time over many applications of sanitizer. Go ahead and use bleach if you wish, but Star San or iodophor are more effective, require no rinsing at the proper concentration and do not harm stainless in any way.
 

Greg Nolan (12.10.148.126)
Posted on Thursday, January 01, 2004 - 02:28 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I agree Bill, for stainless it would probably be better to be safe than sorry, particularly on expensive stainless items. But I am still curious about contact time. A lot of brewery stuff is not stainless and the cost and convenience of bleach is hard to beat.
 

Gary Muehe (205.188.208.75)
Posted on Thursday, January 01, 2004 - 04:16 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I mentioned using bleach to one of the "Two Brothers" in Warrenville, Il. once. He asked why I would use an unstable product for sanitizing. His opinion was that as the headspace in the bleach container increases the bleach looses effectiveness. The chlorine dissipates.

I also believe I once ruined a batch of IPA because I did not RINSE properly and the beer ended up with a nasty off flavor. Chlorine has a very low flavor threshold. Just a few ppm will rear it's ugly head. Just another reason to use a no rinse sanitizer.

The only time I use bleach now is to soak "just emptied" beer bottles. Rinse them good, put them on the bottle tree, good to go.
 

Marlon Lang (68.18.96.211)
Posted on Friday, January 02, 2004 - 01:22 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Dr. Phil Elzer (LSU Vet Science) recommends 30 minute soaking time for bleach solution (1 cup in 5 gallons water). Generally, you can then drain and air-dry for about an hour. At this concentration and exposure time, you need not worry about damage to stainless.

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