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Electric Heating Elements for Boiling and Cleaning

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  • Electric Heating Elements for Boiling and Cleaning

    For those of you using electric heating elements for boiling, have you found any "easy" method for cleaning them? We have to put nearly 40 gallons of water to cover our elements and that requires a ridiculous amount of caustic. The problem is that they attract trub like a magnet. If we go 2 brews without scrubbing them, they will start to char and burn. We have been removing them and scrubbing with a green scrubbie. Today, we covered the elements with water and added 2% lerapur 283 caustic and boiled. This actually worked pretty well. However, this required nearly 80 ounces of caustic, which gets really expensive. Also, how often do yall acid rinse after caustic on the boil kettle? Thanks.
    Nick Tanner
    Head Brewer/Founder
    Cherry Street Brewing Cooperative
    Cumming, GA

  • #2

    I have one of the Stout 3 BBL systems with the Brewmation electric set up. 4 kettle elements and 1 in a RIMS tube. Right after knock out, I open the center dump valve and use 185 degree F water to spray out as much material as possible. This generally does a good job of getting the kettle itself free of organic material, and I focus a bit more on the elements and ports, however water alone doesn't do much for the elements. I then use about an ounce of PBW/Gallon of 170 degree F water (about 6 gallons does the trick for my system) in the kettle. I then rig up a loop to CIP the kettle and RIMS tube so kettle>pump>RIMS>spray ball on kettle. I run this loop with the RIMS active and allow the temp to push up to 180 F. It takes about 30 minutes to cycle, but after a quick rinse with 185 degree F water from the hose to remove the residue, all of my elements are spotless! Occasionally I'll run a loop with Acid # 6 (I know, kegs and brites, but it's what I have on hand). I'd be interested to hear what everyone else does, but this regimen does the trick for me.
    Aaren M. Simoncini
    The Beer'd Brewing Co. LLC
    22 Bayview Ave. Unit # 15
    Stonington, CT. 06378


    • #3
      I climb in the kettle with about a gallon of cleaner and use a black pad which is way more aggressive than a green, and clean it off. its a pain in the ass but its better than replacing elements all the time.
      Tim Eichinger
      Visit our website


      • #4
        I've had good results using an acid cleaner (5 Star #5) at about 1/3 strength for a kettle CIP loop. You don't even need to submerge the element if you have good coverage from the sprayball. Halfway through the cycle, once everything is saturated, get in there with a scrubbie for the stubborn spots. Every fifth brew, give or take, I switch out the acid for caustic.
        Sent from my Microsoft Bob

        Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own. |


        • #5
          Peracetic Acid

          We soak our elements in Peracetic Acid... works like a charm