Take the 2-minute tour ×
Homebrewing Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for dedicated home brewers and serious enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I was given a pair of Virgils kegs with root beer still in them, and I've been wanting to use them for homebrewing. I was at a brewery tour a little while ago and I was told that it's nearly impossible to get the taste of root beer out of the keg, and that it wouldn't be a good idea to use them for brewing. Is this the case? Is there a way to clean all the flavor and junk out from the root beer keg?

The kegs are in very good condition, I just don't want to put my beer inside something that's going to mess with the flavor.

Thanks!

share|improve this question
1  
Could you describe what kind of kegs they are? Standard Sanke kegs or Corny kegs (soda keg) or plastic kegs or what? Also, what are they made of, are they stainless steel or are they plastic....some details and we can probably answer the question. –  TinCoyote May 26 '11 at 18:37
2  
They are 5 gallon sanke kegs, made of stainless steel. –  dankest May 26 '11 at 18:42
add comment

2 Answers 2

up vote 9 down vote accepted

I think I would replace all of the seals and soak the kegs in hot Oxyclean Free or PBW for a few days. Maybe rinse and refill with that a couple of times. Then I'd just use them with strong flavored beers, or beers that would go well with the root-beer flavor for a couple of batches. If you don't notice any off-flavors, move to more subtle brews. If you do, soak them in cleaner some more, rinse, repeat. Or just use them for christmas ales & spice beers.

caveat: I haven't actually dealt with this problem, I'm just skeptical of the claim that those flavors can't be removed.

share|improve this answer
2  
Baka's got this one. If they are Sanke kegs, an overnight soak in PBW will make them whistle-clean. Upvoted. –  TinCoyote May 26 '11 at 19:36
1  
Cool, thanks! I tried oxyclean, but the smell came back. I'm going to soak them overnight, and then try PBW. –  dankest Aug 20 '11 at 17:43
    
@dankest Did you also replace the seals? I'm sure that you can get the smell out of stainless, but any soft parts will probably be a lost cause. –  Dustin Rasener Aug 27 '11 at 14:16
add comment

A strong, hot solution of baking soda and water is very effective at removing odors. Rubber parts should be replaced.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.