Quantcast

Star San V Chlorine

Aussie Home Brewer

Help Support Aussie Home Brewer:

DarrenTheDrunk

Well-Known Member
Joined
14/12/16
Messages
113
Reaction score
42
Location
Geelong
I just noticed that the post I put up has been locked and not open for further comment which I really don’t understand why and in fact if admin could explain this that would be much appreciated. I was asked a question about my post and felt a sense of duty to reply but clearly I couldn’t as it was locked. So I have started this new post just out of respect for all those who provided their input.


Well, thank you everybody for your input into this post and as I previously mentioned, it clearly turned out to be rather emotive. Whilst I say emotive, I do not detract from the point that much of it was factual.

As requested by “Paulyg” and in fairness to everybody, I will tell you where I’m at this particular stage with the following HUGE qualification. I am but an amateur brewer, have at times tried to learn too much too quick and as a result made many many mistakes. But for the help of GRMBLZ at the start and now DAZGORE, who clearly is nothing short of a scientist when it comes to homebrewing and it is entirely up to him, but he did send me some photos of his brew set up only because I asked I must say, and when you see this, you will understand what I mean about the term scientist. I forwarded these photos onto a friend who is not on the forum because I would not have forwarded them without his permission, and the friend was absolutely awestruck and whilst he never had an interest in homebrewing or at least what I was doing in that regard, because of these photos, I think he now is starting to get a little bit excited about the prospect. I did warn him however, to have a set up like DAZGORE, he would need a second or third mortgage to build such a system. It is just bloody amazing to say the least.

I still use chlorine, that is not bleach but in fact straight pool chlorine in a Granule formula to rinse my plastic fermenters but I now use it at a much much lower dose rate. I am very scientific in how I do this in that I I use a device called a “nose” only just barely want to smell chlorine once the fermenter is full and I leave it to sit for generally about an hour. This seems to be working very well indeed.

Many of you have pointed out the risks of using chlorine in stainless steel kegs and I am here to tell you that you are spot on. One of my old kegs that I purchased second hand recently managed to develop rust and some sort of white gunk around the joins and I’m not exactly sure whether there is anything I can do to recover that keg or I need to assign it to the scrapheap. If anybody has any suggestions on saving the keg, that would be appreciated. Also, is it still okay to use the keg in this state?

I now use star San for all future kegs and beer lines and it was through the advice of people on this site that I now understand that the cost is in fact not that high. You see I read on the star san bottle that surfaces must be exposed to it for a minute or two and therefore was thinking that everything needed to be full to the top and left sit for one minute. I now know that the surface just needs to be wet for one minute.

For my beer bottling, I get a bit lazy… Or is it pissed… And forget to rinse the bottles so clearly the bottom of the bottles become a petri dish of organisms. I rinse up a reasonably strong batch of chlorine and soak the bottles generally for an hour or two and the chlorine absolutely gets rid of all those organisms in the bottles.

I have posted a question privately to the scientist, who I now call the professor only today about transferring beer from my kegerator to bottles and then putting a cap on them if I want to take beer to a party or something. The question was, will this work and I opened this question up to the rest of this group to if I may.

So in conclusion, through the process of learning and deciphering wisdom from the posts, at this point in time I still use chlorine as well as star san. I think I also mentioned in some previous post that sodium metabisulphite which was once “the go” to sanitise for homebrewing many years ago is also a no rinse sanitiser and I can get a 20 kg bag of that for $50. That would last even a heavy brewer a life time and all for only $50.
 

butisitart

Well-Known Member
Joined
15/3/14
Messages
571
Reaction score
249
Location
brisbane
So in conclusion, through the process of learning and deciphering wisdom from the posts, at this point in time I still use chlorine as well as star san. I think I also mentioned in some previous post that sodium metabisulphite which was once “the go” to sanitise for homebrewing many years ago is also a no rinse sanitiser and I can get a 20 kg bag of that for $50. That would last even a heavy brewer a life time and all for only $50.
so if you buy a little thing of starsan, i'll bet a bottle of my finest that you'll ditch the chlorine after about 2 brews :drinkingbeer:
ultimately, if nothing else, it'll be less hassle
 

MHB

Well-Known Member
Joined
1/10/05
Messages
6,006
Reaction score
3,446
Location
Newcastle
Chlorine is a very effective steriliser. There are two down sides when it comes to brewing.
One is it will destroy Stainless steel equipment, it wont matter how you use it its bad for stainless.
Second it combines with naturally occurring Phenols in beer forming Chlorophenols, these taste bad at parts per Billion.
Chlorine will pernitrate many plastics, then come back into solution (and react in the beer) so its probably not ideal for sanatising fermenters, cubes or the like.
It is safe and effective to use on glass, provided you remove all of it after, so clearly not a no rinse option.

Personally I'm a little leery of the whole no rinse concept, preferring to wash everything off with freshly boiled water.
The closest I would come to trusting a no rinse would be peroxide based rinse, the breakdown products being O2 and H2O. I don't want any industrial detergent or even acid added to my beer so wouldn't regard any of the acid/detergent products as no rinse.

Metabisulfite must be one of the least well understood products ever sold to home brewers.
First up it isn't a sanatiser, it wont kill bugs (well not at the concentrations we use it) what it does is it stops them reproducing, they are still there and active just cant make babies.
Second is that to work at all it has to dry, as the solution dries it decomposes producing Sulphur Dioxide and it's the SO2 that does the job. If you are trying to use Met you must use it as a no rinse and allow it to fully air dry or it wont help you at all. It also has no cleaning properties, so you will need another product to remove soil.

At home I use BBW like PBW but made locally (at work its Hot Caustic) it contains a very powerful cleaner (Sodium Metasilicate) and Sodium Percarbonate which cleans and also provides O2 sanitisation, followed by either a peroxide based or boiled water rinse.

By the time you look at the time and money invested in making a batch of beer I don't see worrying about spending a little money to make sure the brewhouse all your lines and the packaging is clean and sanitary and the beer stays good. Well it makes more sense than puckering up so tight you could sharpen a pencil in you arse.
Mark
 

RRising

Well-Known Member
Joined
11/7/18
Messages
153
Reaction score
19
Location
Adelaide
What about Milton's solution? i know that is chlorine based but a lot of mothers use it to steralise baby bottles.

I used to use it and found it worked really well for getting rid of odors but i found i needed to do a full rinse, with a 25L Coopers DIY fermenter it meant using a total of about 50L of water.

I don't use it anymore as i use PBW and Stellarsan.
 

kadmium

Well-Known Member
Joined
12/3/07
Messages
677
Reaction score
439
Is there really going to be a third discussion on Bleach vs StarSan?¿?

People go to great lengths to get chlorine out of their water, and then soak their HDPE fermenter in it.

Why leave it to soak for an hour in chlorine? Just use StarSan.

I have just done a whole brew day and used 2L of starsan water, that's 3ml or 9c worth of sanitiser. Jesus.
 

GrumpyPaul

Moderator
Staff member
Moderating
Pro
Joined
14/4/10
Messages
2,076
Reaction score
1,291
Location
Melbourne
Is there really going to be a third discussion on Bleach vs StarSan?¿?

People go to great lengths to get chlorine out of their water, and then soak their HDPE fermenter in it.

Why leave it to soak for an hour in chlorine? Just use StarSan.

I have just done a whole brew day and used 2L of starsan water, that's 3ml or 9c worth of sanitiser. Jesus.
@kadmium I think the other thread got locked down because it was just getting a bit narky. Let's not have this one go down that path.

I'm pretty sure we can all accept that there are always going to be different views about just about everything. Just because other views differ from yours or mine doesn't mean it's any less valid.

This thread has already had some quality posts in particular the post above by @MHB.

If the posts stay on track and add value like that one I don't see why this thread shouldn't be here.

Its the narky " everyone that uses bleach is a fool" themed posts that will end up with it being locked again.
 

kadmium

Well-Known Member
Joined
12/3/07
Messages
677
Reaction score
439
@kadmium I think the other thread got locked down because it was just getting a bit narky. Let's not have this one go down that path.

I'm pretty sure we can all accept that there are always going to be different views about just about everything. Just because other views differ from yours or mine doesn't mean it's any less valid.

This thread has already had some quality posts in particular the post above by @MHB.

If the posts stay on track and add value like that one I don't see why this thread shouldn't be here.

Its the narky " everyone that uses bleach is a fool" themed posts that will end up with it being locked again.
Noted. Definitely not saying people who use bleach are fools, but this is now the third post by the same OP regarding sanitising kegs / bleach vs starsan, that's all.

Of course everyone is entitled to their own opinions, and their own process. If you remember, it was me who was accused of BS, misleading people and I can't remember what else regarding my view on using starsan over bleach.

I know it's not an easy job being a moderator, but I wasn't having a go at anyone, more just incredulous that it's the third post on the same topic by the same person, is all. I understand the last one was locked before OP could respond, it just seems excessive is all.
 

Grmblz

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/6/17
Messages
692
Reaction score
460
Location
Far South Coast NSW
One of my old kegs that I purchased second hand recently managed to develop rust and some sort of white gunk around the joins and I’m not exactly sure whether there is anything I can do to recover that keg or I need to assign it to the scrapheap. If anybody has any suggestions on saving the keg, that would be appreciated. Also, is it still okay to use the keg in this state?
Hi Darren, good to see your journey is progressing.
re: your keg, first job is to get it clean, remove any and all soil.
Start with a nylon scrubby, the heavy duty ones from Bunnings are better than the supermarket ones designed for dishes, under no circumstances use steel wool scrubbies, even stainless ones. Scrub with a bit of dishwashing detergent until it looks spotless, and then scrub some more, if there's a bit of rusty pitting try scrubbing with some phosphoric acid (starsan) try a tooth brush to get into any little pits.
Now give it a good rinse, and fill it with hot (50c) water and PBW (Oxyclean/Napisan) leave it for a couple of hours to get rid of any organic/oily soil, you could use caustic soda but it's nasty stuff and has the potential to really hurt you (imho its danger is very underrated)
Rinse well then coat the inside of the keg with undiluted starsan, use gloves and a cloth/sponge, this will passivate the stainless, allow to dry naturally.
Keep an eye on it for any recurring rust spots, and treat with starsan if any occurs.
It's a fair bit of effort, but at $100 for a new one probably worth it.
 

GalBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
10/11/10
Messages
1,765
Reaction score
521
Location
Eastern Melbourne
If you are going to use Starsan for some of your sanitising it makes zero sense to persist with chlorine for plastics. One day you will post on here wondering what the medicinal/band-aid off flavour in your beer is. Save yourself the trouble and ditch the chlorine. As Mark said it will penetrate plastics so I find this one is quite a strange hill to die on.
 

Grmblz

Well-Known Member
Joined
19/6/17
Messages
692
Reaction score
460
Location
Far South Coast NSW
^ I don't want to stoke any fires here but chlorine/bleach is a tricky one, most of the chemicals we use have pro's and con's, and are suited to a greater or lesser extent to the task at hand.
For neglected bottles with a biological experiment growing in the bottom, an overnight soak in a bleach solution followed by a hot rinse then starsan is my go to solution, cheap, safe, and very effective. Without the bleach soak PBW/starsan doesn't come close, caustic may do the job but as stated previously I consider it too dangerous for general use.
Mopping the floor, washing down walls, again bleach is cheap, safe, and very effective.
I have used it on rare occasions to nuke a plastic fermenter, but would have to agree with GalBrew and Mark it's a last resort and fraught with danger.
That's 2 1/2 pro's, the con's? Too many to mention, all that has been said before plus a few more, for example it eats duo-tights, so certainly does something to some plastics, and probably effects most plastics in one way or another.
Those that contend bleach has no place in a brewing scenario are entitled to their opinions, for me it's about knowing what to use, when to use it, and how it's used.
There may be better solutions (pun intended) to accomplish what I use bleach for, but I haven't discovered them yet.
 

GalBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
10/11/10
Messages
1,765
Reaction score
521
Location
Eastern Melbourne
^ I don't want to stoke any fires here but chlorine/bleach is a tricky one, most of the chemicals we use have pro's and con's, and are suited to a greater or lesser extent to the task at hand.
For neglected bottles with a biological experiment growing in the bottom, an overnight soak in a bleach solution followed by a hot rinse then starsan is my go to solution, cheap, safe, and very effective. Without the bleach soak PBW/starsan doesn't come close, caustic may do the job but as stated previously I consider it too dangerous for general use.
Mopping the floor, washing down walls, again bleach is cheap, safe, and very effective.
I have used it on rare occasions to nuke a plastic fermenter, but would have to agree with GalBrew and Mark it's a last resort and fraught with danger.
That's 2 1/2 pro's, the con's? Too many to mention, all that has been said before plus a few more, for example it eats duo-tights, so certainly does something to some plastics, and probably effects most plastics in one way or another.
Those that contend bleach has no place in a brewing scenario are entitled to their opinions, for me it's about knowing what to use, when to use it, and how it's used.
There may be better solutions (pun intended) to accomplish what I use bleach for, but I haven't discovered them yet.
Agree, there are always ifs and buts with everything in life. Back in my lab days, bleach was a very common sight in the tissue culture labs, it's very effective but nearly everything in those labs are disposable so no need to worry about equipment damage or seepage into plastics. For me though, if a bottle was that gross I'd throw it in the recycling. 😂
 

Nullnvoid

Well-Known Member
Joined
26/12/13
Messages
1,858
Reaction score
1,207
Location
Your mum's house
Agree, there are always ifs and buts with everything in life. Back in my lab days, bleach was a very common sight in the tissue culture labs, it's very effective but nearly everything in those labs are disposable so no need to worry about equipment damage or seepage into plastics. For me though, if a bottle was that gross I'd throw it in the recycling. 😂
Agree, I work in a store that services labs, and the amount of bleach we go through is mindblowing. However, everything is disposable so it's not an issue.
 

DarrenTheDrunk

Well-Known Member
Joined
14/12/16
Messages
113
Reaction score
42
Location
Geelong
Okay. I am sorry that I raised this topic again and in doing so, that upset somebody again I’m sorry. I would however like to say that I could not agree more with the moderator that providing responses are kept polite, I think this is the very purpose of having such a forum so people can express their opinions. All these various opinions whilst have confused the living shite out of me at times, I think there is so much to be learned by reading everybody’s experiences. That’s just my opinion. The other thing I learned by putting this post up the second time was that OP means me … The person who put up the post. Thank you very much for your input and great to hear from my dear mate GRMBLZ and his valuable input.

Literally as I type this, I am draining a 60 L and a 30 L fermenter which was soaking in chlorine. That is to say, thanks to this forum, I am sold on the idea that there probably is no advantage in using chlorine. Once these have drained I’m going to put them outside in the sun because I know from my years in the aquarium trade and the fact that the chlorine I use is not stabilised, I am confident that exposure to the sun will negate any impact of residual chlorine in the plastic. I will consign my tub of chlorine granules for use in mopping the floor and other such uses. I learned a lot from putting up this post and again, thank everybody for their input.
 

philrob

Moderator
Staff member
Moderating
Joined
17/2/18
Messages
244
Reaction score
178
Location
NSW
I only locked the previous thread to make the point to keep the debate on topic and civil. More good comments in this new thread, so all good.
 

butisitart

Well-Known Member
Joined
15/3/14
Messages
571
Reaction score
249
Location
brisbane
Agree with above everyone has their preference, mine is proxitane, costs a bit more but I wouldn't expect everyone to go down that path. What ever each individual uses and are happy with is fair enough.
i prefer petrol. 150ml soak in plastic fermenter with 100ml chlorine crystals, then get a friend to drop a match in it. guaranteed to get rid of bacteria that might do bad things to your brew, along with neighbours, nearby birds nests and the occasional postie.
then gently sponge black bits back to shiny plastic, patch any holes in the fermenter with sterilised bandage webbing and seal with bicycle patches.
you'll never complain about yeast infections again.
 

philrob

Moderator
Staff member
Moderating
Joined
17/2/18
Messages
244
Reaction score
178
Location
NSW
i prefer petrol. 150ml soak in plastic fermenter with 100ml chlorine crystals, then get a friend to drop a match in it. guaranteed to get rid of bacteria that might do bad things to your brew, along with neighbours, nearby birds nests and the occasional postie.
then gently sponge black bits back to shiny plastic, patch any holes in the fermenter with sterilised bandage webbing and seal with bicycle patches.
you'll never complain about yeast infections again.
That'd make a tasty brew! And very economical too. No need to add dark malts with this one. Savings all round. :bowdown::bowdown::bowdown::bowdown:
 

camNZ

Active Member
Joined
9/12/18
Messages
38
Reaction score
13
Location
AU
Not sure if someone has mentioned this already. But if you're going to use both for different purposes that's cool, but don't mix them up! Acid chlorine reaction will create chlorine gas.
 

DarrenTheDrunk

Well-Known Member
Joined
14/12/16
Messages
113
Reaction score
42
Location
Geelong
i prefer petrol. 150ml soak in plastic fermenter with 100ml chlorine crystals, then get a friend to drop a match in it. guaranteed to get rid of bacteria that might do bad things to your brew, along with neighbours, nearby birds nests and the occasional postie.
then gently sponge black bits back to shiny plastic, patch any holes in the fermenter with sterilised bandage webbing and seal with bicycle patches.
you'll never complain about yeast infections again.

Well now this goes to the top of the list in terms of useful information...!!!
 
Top