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I have a 50' copper coil immersion chiller. To drain it before storing, I hang it upside-down next to the bath tub over night, but I've noticed that this doesn't get all the water out. This causes a problem: when I go to sanitize it by putting it into my kettle of boiling wort about 15 min before the end, the remaining water in the coil heats up and starts coming out of the chiller and dripping all over the stove. The water is at or near boiling temp and sometimes shoots out. I have been catching it with towels and bowls, but it's pretty dangerous.

Is there a trick to getting the coil really dried out?

I don't have any pumps, though I'm guessing that could be one way.

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4 Answers 4

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Do you really need to dry it out?

I just hook my "exhaust" hose up and let it do whatever it does when that water comes out.

When I brewed in the kitchen, I used a piece of garden hose for exhaust (If I were doing this again, I'd cut a piece long enough to reach the sink) and captured the hot water that you're speaking of in a half-gallon container. As I recall, it doesn't all come out at once, so there's time to dump that container and refill, if necessary.

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This is a good idea. I was worried the hoses might get too hot or something, but that doesn't make so much sense since they're getting the hot water coming out anyway. I'm using two 3' washing machine hoses, which can handle hot water, so this could work. –  paul Aug 14 '12 at 23:03
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Drying it out is a good idea to prevent mold growing in there. –  mdma Aug 15 '12 at 17:44
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I hadn't thought about that, but it's also not something I'm particularly worried about. I figure boiling for 15-20 minutes and then flushing for 20-50 minutes once or twice a month will keep anything from getting too much of a foothold in there. –  baka Aug 15 '12 at 18:54

Turn the coil on its side, so that the coil is now horizontal rather than vertical, and then rotate in the direction of the coil, the water will eventually come out at the top.

The water wants to fall to the lowest point, and so follows the path of the coil as you rotate it, eventually coming out the exit.

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Yea, I've tried this, but it's 50', so it will take a lot of rotations to get this to work. Was looking for something easier :) –  paul Aug 14 '12 at 23:00
    
It will take as many rotations as you have coils. I don't think there is an easier way. Even with a pump you can still have standing water left behind. The only other alternative is to use warm air and evaporate off the water, but that's not easy nor energy efficient. –  mdma Aug 15 '12 at 9:12

I hold it upside down for a few seconds and roll it around (the direction the water would flow naturally) which sounds just like what you do! But when I add the wort chiller to the boil kettle the hose is hooked up and the out-flow is pointed in the direction I want the water to go (sink, bucket, ext (i brew outside so the lawn) this could eliminate your problem. I also put the chiller in and turn the hose on, it should have plenty of time to sanitize before the temp drops into the "danger Zone". Good luck! I love seeing questions like this It's what the forums are most useful for, i find myself missing little things that sometimes seem to be common knowledge and I dont feel dumb asking them here. +1 for the question by the way.

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If you really want to get the water out, just blow in one end (careful not to pass out though!)

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Ya I agree, blowing in one end will eventually work..... a shot from an air compressor would be a little easier. –  David PGB Aug 15 '12 at 14:16
    
heh, would not sit there blowing in it, it's 50' of coil, I don't think that would work very well. But I do have an old air compressor for pumping bike tires and basketballs and stuff. Maybe that is another option. –  paul Aug 15 '12 at 18:04

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