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Sanitation - Again

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PostModern

Iron Wolf Brewery
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I generally use iodophor for sanitation and it's great. Odourless, rinse free only 20 mins contact required, etc... but it has it's drawbacks. If plastic things are left soaking in it, they turn yellow. I've even read a case of someone using it in their wet-towel cooler and getting stains in their fermentation cupboard when the solution evaporated... my biggest concern tho is super-bugs developing that are iodine tolerant, at least at the low concentrations we brewers use.

So I have a solution. Every third or fourth batch, I sterilise my fermenters and bottles with diluted bleach - I soak bottles for 10 mins in the laundry sink in batches then rinse thoroughly two or three times (third rinse water becomes first rinse for the next batch, etc). Then I splash about some 50:50 diluted methylated spirits, then rinse again twice. I figure if a bug survives iodophor, it probably won't also survive bleach. The alcohol rinse will clean up anything left behind after that and hopefully blow away any scents or stray non-water-soluble compounds from the bleach as well.

I realise that I might be a bit paranoid and there is the potential that I'm creating a new superbug in the process, but I reckon if there's a bacteria floating around that is tolerant to all of iodine, bleach and alcohol, it'd have shown itself by now. Also, I only go thru this routine every so often, as it does take a fair amount of time and uses heaps of water, although I recycle a lot of it within the process and toss bucket loads of third rinse water onto the plants and lawn.

So, does anyone else have weird or zealous sterlisation practices? Or should I seek professional help? :D
 

Justin

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I used to bake my bottles to sterilize. I was very strict about keeping everything as clean and as close to sterile as possible. But I have toned back a bit now, I just use sanitizers. I used to use brewshield but when that ran out and while waiting for a cheap source of Iodophor to present itself I started using bleach.

**My warning on Bleach-rinse, rinse, RINSE and RINSE** is that clear enough?

I have a batch of Bavarian Dunkel weizen with a strange medicinal kind of taste that has been identified as residual bleach in my bottles and fermenter. It was my first use of bleach for sterilizing and I only rinsed once with boiling water-NOT ENOUGH!

I have now sourced my cheap Iodophor and will be using this in future. I also splash around generous amounts of 70% ethanol.

This is my story. My names Friday. And I'm a cop.

JD
 

Batz

Batz Brewery...Hand crafted beers from the 'Batcav
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I uses one shot , or did till I discovered that we have phosphoric in our labs at work !
But still wash the fermenters with bleach first , remove the tap and scrub with a tooth brush ,yes I know paranoid like PostModern , well I had an infected brew once
Can't be too clean hey PostModern?
 

Murray

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I bake my bottles, purely for saving time on bottling day. I still use quite a bit of brewshield for fermentors etc, mostly because it cleans well. I always use it to clean the fermentors immediately after I have racked the beer out of them which saves much labour later on. After sanitising with it before using the equipment I spray and wipe with 70%methylated spirits.
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Don't just remove the tap, pull apart, rinse and dunk into buckeet of sanitiser

I use Terminator, same as One Shot (but 65cents cheaper , heheheh) Terminator/OneShot are very alkaline contain detergents etc and yes phosphoric acid.

Jovial Monk
 

PostModern

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Taps are a buck each at Bunnings. I grab a stockpile and toss em out every couple of brews.
 

PostModern

Iron Wolf Brewery
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I'm also starting to label my various bits of equipment with numbers. That way I know that if Batch X was fermented in Fermenter Y, racked to Cube Z with taps a,b and c respectively and batch D was fermented in Fermenter E also racked to cube Z and taps g,h and i and if both batch X and D have, say, a lactobacillus taste, I can point straight to Cube Z and either retire it or sterilise it with something nasty.

Labelling is also handy just so you can know at a glance which is the oldest tap or airlock that should be retired or given away to a new brewer or something.

Batz said:
Can't be too clean hey PostModern?
I've had one batch lost to infection and it annoyed the hell out of me. I'm also trying to eliminate a faint "sour" taste that my beers seem to develop after about a month in the bottle. I suspect lactobacillus somewhere in my system.
 

deebee

The Bludgeon Brewery
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Best sanitizing tip anyone ever gave me was to take apart your taps, like JM says.

Stick a wooden spoon handle, chopstick or phil head up the end that screws into the fermenter and rap it down firmly on something solid. It pops apart and there is usually a fair bit of crap in there. Clean, soak and reassemble.
 

Trough Lolly

"Drink, Feck, Arse, Girls"!
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PostModern said:
I'm also starting to label my various bits of equipment with numbers. That way I know that if Batch X was fermented in Fermenter Y, racked to Cube Z with taps a,b and c respectively and batch D was fermented in Fermenter E also racked to cube Z and taps g,h and i and if both batch X and D have, say, a lactobacillus taste, I can point straight to Cube Z and either retire it or sterilise it with something nasty.

<snip>

I've had one batch lost to infection and it annoyed the hell out of me. I'm also trying to eliminate a faint "sour" taste that my beers seem to develop after about a month in the bottle. I suspect lactobacillus somewhere in my system.
Holy Crap PoMo! You have to seek professional guidance! ;) :lol:

I would have never thought of doing that - I thought I was wacko just alternating between sterilisers in each batch but you have an audit trail happening on your brewing kit! Are you sure that your faint "sour" taste is not the permanent marker pen ink from labelling everything! :p

Man, I just wash, flash scald and prey and so far no probs since 1995! And yes, any nook and cranny, such as the insides of the tap assembly are the ideal bacterial holding grounds.

I get some sulphuric acid and put on my full length rubber catsuit and....er, you better make an appointment for me too! :ph34r:

Cheers,
TL :chug:
 

Gout

Bentleigh Brau Haus
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I use phos acid as a wash in one brew then swap to alkaline for the next, that way it keeps the little bugegrs guessing and they cant become tolorent to the acid etc.

When on a brew tour and yep they had the same thing in a 25Lt bottle.

I am told Pos acid only needs 30sec contact time :) sweet, add a slight "soap" to the mix so it wets the surface well and your laughing. I use pos acid and "Labs Acid" a for of soap, one drop in a bottle mix is enough to cause good foam.


Killed a cocoroach in less than a min in watered down form!!!! thats gotta be good cos they live through anything :)
 

Batz

Batz Brewery...Hand crafted beers from the 'Batcav
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I use those green flip up taps on all my fermenters and CC containers , screw apart really easy to clean as well.
I like the way the don't turn in the fermenters like the original one can when racking etc
 

Jazman

Fishweide BrauHaus
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oneshot /terminator is the go works well and havent had an infected brew and i use it sometimes to clean my beer glasses
 

Barry

To thine own self brew
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I use iodophor before use (eg fermenter) and use bleach after use and rinse with boiling water before use regardless. I use iodophor on metal bits and pieces. After use I put the taps in a jar of fairly strong bleach solution ove night. Buy new syphon hoses each year and a couple of new taps every so often.
 
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