View Full Version : Heat sanitizing jacketed fermenters

03-04-2015, 05:34 AM
We got used to doing this with heat cycle with plastic conicals and now I'm wondering if it's ok to do with our new stainless jacketed conicals.

We take 190 degree water and cycle it through the spray ball until the ferm is heated up to sanitizing temps, then a little rest period we run our cold paracetic acid through to cool it down before beer goes in. I know metal is stressed slightly when heating and cooling but Is this harmful to the jackets in any other way? I assume the glycol in the jackets will expand and contract at different rates than the metal but I would think it could just freely move through the system instead of building any pressure within the jacket.


03-04-2015, 05:59 AM
If you're using PAA, that should be sufficient on it's own. That's all I have used for years.

03-04-2015, 06:34 AM
If you're using PAA, that should be sufficient on it's own. That's all I have used for years.

Yes this. We use heat sanitation in combination with chemical sanitation on things that we can't open up and inspect every time, like our HX, but on fermentation tanks if you do a good cleaning cycle and the tank interior isn't horribly scratched to hell or full of bad welds or threaded fittings or something then PAA will be all the sanitation you need IMO.

03-04-2015, 07:41 AM
As long as the jackets are open at the outlet (solenoid valve should be closed at the inlet for this reason) they should not be an issue.

A possible issue could be the insulation in the tanks. On our Letina tanks, I was told not to go above 150 degrees F.

As previously stated, PAA should be sufficient to sanitize a tank.

03-04-2015, 09:46 AM
The most common insulation on fermenters--at least those I've worked on--is Styrofoam, which isn't good for high heat. I'd go with the 150 max stated above just to be on the safe side. As far as the jackets, like stated above, just be sure the inlet is closed and the outlet open (which it should always be). We set our temperature controllers to 250+F when heat-sanitizing to keep the cooling system from running.

03-04-2015, 12:44 PM
Thanks all for the input. After a whole year relying on heat sanitizing with plastic fermenters it's tough to break that habit.

My Glycol runs are set up a little different, I have an individual supply run to each fermenter with aquarium pumps running each supply. For the outlet I have a single header that all the fermenters glycol dumps into. There is a check valve with about 1 psi cracking pressure installed in the outlet of each fermenter to prevent back flow from other fermenters. So with my system, the inlet is always open... In order for glycol to start flowing to a fermenter a pump needs to come on.
With the inlet always open and the pump off I suspect hot expanded glycol could just flow back up the inlet and through the pump

03-04-2015, 02:49 PM
A simple ball valve on the inlet of the jackets would prevent the hot ferm from heating the glycol to the others. We still heat-sanitize our ferms, followed by chemical sanitizing. Belt and suspenders.

I'd also advise moving that check valve from the outlet to the inlet. Maybe it's just superstition, or maybe I've welded a few too many leaking jackets, but we want as little constriction on the outlet as possible. On most of our ferms, the outlet line is about 1/2 again the size of the inlet.

03-04-2015, 03:57 PM
Yeah I get that logic but The check valve should be fine with a low cracking pressure of around 1 psi right?? Our aquarium pumps can only pump to a max pressure of about 5 psi so there should be no way the jacket is going to rupture. Our outlet header is 3/4, our inlet lines are 1/2.