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Thread: Root Beer spitting at the tap

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hyattsville,MD
    Posts
    284

    Root Beer spitting at the tap

    So I have decided to try to reclaim a 10bbl serving tank that's been used for root beer to have an extra conditioning tank for beer.

    So I've switched over to making it in smaller batches and filling 5 gallon soda kegs. The problem I'm having seems to be the root beer will spit at the tap even when the keg is still full/or has plenty of root beer still in it. I've adjusted the pressure into the keg but I can't seem to find that balance and I can see air gaps in the soda line itself. There was never an issue coming out of a tank before but now there's little to no consistency. The root beer line when connected to the tank was inside a glycol trunk line, which I then swung into an opening in a walk in cooler and ran an extension to the keg itself.

    I'm without my Micromatic trouble shooting book so any helpful suggestions/ideas would be greatly appreciated.
    Cheers,
    Mike Roy
    Brewer
    Franklins Restaurant,Brewery & General Store
    Hyattsville,MD

    Franklinsbrewery.com
    @franklinsbrwry
    facebook.com/franklinsbrewery
    Franklinsbrewery.blogspot.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Ex-Germany / California
    Posts
    601
    Check fittings and tap head. It's probably "pulling air" for lack of a better (technical) term. Could also be the stem in the keg pulling CO2 and root beer. I do not think it is a pressure/temperature issue.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    814
    Definitely sounds like a connection problem.

    Replace tapping head if possible. If not, check the base gasket (gasket at bottom of tapping head assembly that contacts top of keg) and inspect for cracks or nicks.

    Also inspect the top of the keg spear. The visible gasket should also be free of nicks/tears. Also check line connections and especially the non-returns within the tapping head (gas and product). On the product side, it's generally a little ball valve non return. On the gas side it's a one-way little bladder thing. both are essential to proper dispense.

    Good luck.

    Pax.

    Liam

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    993
    As far as I've seen there are no check, back-flow, or other valves in a soda keg set-up. Add a check valve on the outflow side.
    Cheers & I'm out!
    David R. Pierce
    NABC & Bank Street Brewhouse
    POB 343
    New Albany, IN 47151

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    618

    Line size

    Most likley you are now going from smaller to larger line size now. A big No-no for draft service. The dip tube and corny connectors are alot smaller than standard beer line. Replacing the service line with smaller ID would do the trick. If too $$ or difficult mayby try a restrictor tap (stout tap), but im not sure that will help.
    Also corny connectors leak- make sure they are not sucking air.
    Or IMHO- buy some bottols of Stewerts or IBC and concentrate on whats important---Beer!!
    Operations Director, Tin Roof BC
    ted@tinroofbeer.com
    "Your results may vary"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hyattsville,MD
    Posts
    284
    Thanks for the input everyone.

    I forgot all about the difference in line size, I wonder if I replace the extended piece with the same size running through the glycol and added a check valve coming out of the product if that will help.

    Any thoughts that this might solve it or just make my headache worse?
    Cheers,
    Mike Roy
    Brewer
    Franklins Restaurant,Brewery & General Store
    Hyattsville,MD

    Franklinsbrewery.com
    @franklinsbrwry
    facebook.com/franklinsbrewery
    Franklinsbrewery.blogspot.com

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