Tag Info

Hot answers tagged

21

Cleaning is the process of removing material from the surface. Sanitizing is the process of reducing the number of organisms (in brewing, we're worried about bad bacteria, mainly - but others also like fungi and unwanted yeast). Sterilizing is like sanitizing, but removing ALL microorganisms (any living being - microscopic). If I remember right, ...


18

If I wash my hands regularly do I need to sanitize them as well? Do I even need to wash regularly, between touching everything? No. As long as you're not touching the insides of bottles, fermenters etc. you should be fine. Do I need to sanitize the rim of the mouths of bottles? Yes. Dipping the ends of the bottles into a container of your ...


17

Oxiclean isn't a sanitizer, it's a cleaner. You can see here for the difference (What is the difference between Clean, Sanitized and Sterilized?). If you're fairly clean it might not matter, but using oxiclean will not kill bacteria; it will only remove a fair amount of it. That being said, I believe you're close; the brewery cleaners and oxyclean (free) do ...


16

The amount of acid in a properly mixed batch of StarSan is less than in a bottle of Coke. I've been using it for years and find it extremely effective as a sanitizer. I never rinse and it has had no adverse effect on my beer. In fact, I've won several awards since I started using it. The commonly heard refrain is "Don't fear the foam!"


16

There is an infection risk any time you open up your fermenter and especially when you throw stuff into it. If you dry hop at the right time you reduce that risk. The alcohol built up protects against infection The hops already in the beer act as a preservative The pH is unfriendly to new growth Most of the easy to eat sugars are already consumed For ...


15

First off, Simon, your answer was spot-on in answering Jarrod's questions with logical, proven answers. Props. However, Jarrod is asking for anecdotal advice, so here's mine: In practicality, you can actually often get away with a lot of carelessness. The problem, though, is this: while the risk is low, the stakes are fairly high. I absolutely hate ...


14

I use vanilla quite a bit to make my Bourbon Vanilla Imperial Porter and I've never sanitized the beans, nor suffered any ill effects from not sanitizing them. By the time they get into the beer in secondary, the alcohol content and low pH of the beer make it pretty resistant to infection. And remember, the best part of the vanilla bean is the "gunk" ...


13

Following normal, reasonable sanitation practices (always sanitize containers and utensils immediately before use) usually keeps the risk of infection pretty low. The greatest risk of infection after containers and utensils is simply open air. Keep your containers covered while working, even if you're just turning away for a few minutes. Keep your empty ...


12

We soak ours in bourbon. Kicks the oak up a notch or two.


12

1) Can I just place my fermentation tank in this tub of water to counter the heat? Yes. This will work to a degree (ha, ha.) The water is slowly but constantly evaporating. The energy need to make liquid water into gas comes out of the water's temperature. This "evaporative cooling" will help cool your wort by a few degrees. 2) Will this method work during ...


11

When I did extract I tended to just go from the tap right into the fermentor with the wort. I can't say that I ever had a bad batch because of it. But it certainly can happen. If you have a way to boil water for 15 minutes, then store it in a sanitary and sealed contain while it cools back down to a useable temperature...that is the safer way to go. If ...


10

Cover it in vodka (as little as possible), and put both the vanilla pod and the vodka into the beer.


10

PBW + Sanitizer Process Cleaning Fill your bucket up with PBW Soak bottles 2-5 minutes Inspect bottles for cleanliness, using elbow grease to remove sediment Rinse & dry Go back to step 2 until all your bottles are clean This method is smoother if you put a dirty bottle in every time you take a clean one out. Gotta be able to keep track of your ...


10

If you're using normal caps, you can boil or sanitize. I wouldn't follow the advice of boiling them with the priming solution though, if only because the caps would get sugary and sticky. If you're uncertain about whether to boil or sanitize, why not handle them the same way that you handled your bottles. After all, the beer is going to be in greater ...


10

You should absolutely dilute with water. If you use a higher concentration of star-san than what is listed on the bottle, it will no longer be at a "no-rinse" safety level, and may harm you or your yeast if it spills into your fermentor.


10

After cleaning (I use PBW also, occasionally Oxiclean) I turn the keg upside down and let it dry overnight. Then I put the lid on and pressurize to 10 psi. That serves 2 purposes. First, the CO2 helps prevent things from growing in the keg. Second, when I'm ready to use the keg, I pull the pressure relief valve. If there's not still pressure on the keg, I ...


10

"You can't sanitize a turd" - George Fix If you can see it, feel it or smell it, you can't sanitize it. A little oil from old yeast or a plug of old hop trub wedged into a seam will never get sanitary from contact with a sanitizer. So clean first, then sanitize. Sure, a clean glass carboy looks pretty clean and will probably sanitize well, but how clean ...


10

I make a Bourbon Vanilla Imperial porter recipe that's pretty popular. When the primary fermentation is done, I split 2 vanilla beans lengthwise and scrape put all the "gunk" inside. I chop the pods themselves into 2-3 in. long pieces then add the "gunk" and pods to a secondary fermenter and rack the beer onto it. Start tasting it after about 5 days. ...


10

This method is sometimes referred to as a "swamp cooler", and is well known and used in homebrewing circles. Honestly, if the brew shop employee told you it wouldn't work then they are either (a) trying to sell you a brewing fridge, or (b) not that educated on homebrewing. Change out some ice packs in the water twice a day and you get get down to the low ...


10

Most likely not. But only time will tell. Obviously not sticking your arm in you beer is preferable to not doing that. But relax and have a homebrew. You can absolutely leave it in there because it is covered with the same yeast that you are brewing with and therefore is not going to add anything beyond the yeasties you want in there. However, say you want ...


10

B-Brite is an active-oxygen-based cleaner, and these do a good job of making the item sanitary. While they are not classified as sanitizers, that is mainly because of the formal requirements and certification procedures, but in practice they can do a good job of sanitizing. I know people that use only ChemPro, Oxiclean and other active oxygen based cleaners ...


9

I use a that scrubby cleaner thing with some cleanser and maybe half a gallon of water to get all the particulates loosened up and get the surface clean. Then I rinse it with water, and put in maybe a quarter gallon or less of sanitizing solution, just enough to make sure I touch every surface with it. The carboy doesn't need to be immersed in it, it just ...


9

When I did extract, we always used a jug spring water to top off the extra few gallons. You can sanitize the bottle mouth with some StarSan or other sanitizing solution, and then just pour the bottle in. You can also keep the jug in the fridge prior to use to cool your wort when you add it. This way you avoid boiling anything, but are still pretty safe from ...


9

For cleaning, I rinse bottles with hot water immediately after pouring them out into my glass. They don't need any sort of washing with soap at that point. I keep them off to the side until I have a whole bunch ready for de-labeling, which is an overnight soak in a sink full of PBW. Most labels just slide right off the next day. A quick rinse and the bottles ...


9

Just use water. The evaporating liquid does not need to be a sanitizer, per se.


9

I'd put my money on the wooden spoon. Legend is that in days of yore, brewers used to stir the wort with a "magic stick". If they didn't, it wouldn't ferment. The reason was the yeast imbedded in the wood. I've always been told not to use wooden spoons post boil. That makes sense to me.


8

This is specific to Iodophor, but the manufacturer states that you do not have to fill a carboy up to sanitize with it. As long as you slosh enough around to get all the surfaces wet, then the sanitizer will work. Star San would work the same way, just make sure the foam touches all parts of the carboy. No need to waste sanitizer and water by making more ...


7

Just after post the question I found the Tech Sheet on Five Star's website. It says that the sanitizer is good so long as the pH remains below 3. Since I'm keeping it in a spary bottle with distilled water it shouldn't ever get above 3.


7

More beer has a great guide on taking care of oak barrels which covers cleaning, sanitizing, etc. The overview is: keep it filled so that it doesn't dry out and use a sulfur-dioxide mixture to sanitize. The oak will soak up some of the beer over time, so brew a little extra and keep it on hand to refill as the level goes down. You should also remember that ...


7

In general, your beer will be pretty forgiving. I once dropped a strainer into my fermenter when it was late and I was tired. So I rolled up my sleeve and grabbed it bare handed. My hands were clean but my arm wasn't. The only bad thing that happened is my arm was really sticky. Also, to clean my bottles, I just put them in the dishwahser on that really ...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible