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Why kegs do not need to fulfill ASME?

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  • Why kegs do not need to fulfill ASME?

    Hi everybody,
    Can somebody tell me why beer kegs are out of the scope of ASME?
    Where is this exemption written? Size and pressure are within the scope, so where could I find this info?

  • #2
    Kegs are serially produced, meaning they are made in an automated controlled manufacturing facility and not built one at a time by individual workers. Check out Thielman Portinox in Granada for further explanation.


    • #3
      I know that is the case in Australia according to the AS 2971-2007 “Serially produced pressure vessels”
      But have not found anything similar in the US...


      • #4
        Funny you should ask that. A virtually identical question was raised on the brewery engineering forum on LinkedIn. So, hopefully, John Cluett, who wrote these responses, will not mind me copying and pasting

        During 2017 and 2018, I communicated with BFBI in UK and US Brewers Association wrt legislation on beer kegs being considered a pressure vessel.
        Both organizations have detailed standards or guidelines on compliance with pressure equipment and vessels.
        In these documents references to BS and ASME are made.
        Only two countries have specific references to kegs being pressure vessels compliant with official pressure equipment regulations, these being South Africa and Australia. In South Africa kegs have to comply with DIN 6447-1.
        My suggestion is that you communicate with BFBI and US Brewers Association wrt to this issue.
        Through my correspondence with these organizations, the large major international brewing companies are aware of the focus South Africa placed on this matter.
        In the purchase and use of beer kegs they are aware of their responsibilities as they handle kegs and related gas cylinders.
        Best wishes on this critical aspect of the industry, it’s a risk factor that needs addressing. Compliance to ASME would be a great factor to mitigate the risks.


        during the period we addressed the issue of beer kegs, the craft brewers were also involved. Single use kegs were also discussed as these were been used to import beer into South Africa. Their use as pressure vessels was not finalized with the Department of Labour, who manage compliance across all pressure systems in South Africa.

        Not sure that specifically helps you, but at least you know the answer from one brewery engineer's perspective


        • #5
          Originally posted by agmaraver View Post
          Hi everybody,
          Can somebody tell me why beer kegs are out of the scope of ASME?
          Where is this exemption written? Size and pressure are within the scope, so where could I find this info?
          I believe that the need for a pressure vessel to be ASME rated is when it is 120 gallons or larger. Not sure of the exact volume, but kegs are smaller than whatever it is.
          Linus Hall
          Yazoo Brewing
          Nashville, TN


          • #6
            Hi Ihall,
            that was what I was expecting but the limitations in terms of size are:
            "vessels having an inside diameter, width, height, or cross section diagonal not exceeding 6 in (152 mm), with no limitation on length or pressure"

            Kegs are bigger than this!


            • #7
              PORTSMOUTH — Even before a fatal accident occurred at the Redhook Ale Brewery earlier this year, Tennessee brewer Chuck Skypeck began taking a close look at his supply of plastic beer kegs. Skypeck…
              Liam McKenna


              • #8
                This: 'The general specifications that cover stainless steel kegs are ASTM A-967, ASTM A-380,
                ASTM B-912, ASTM D5276-92, ASTM D4003-92, ASTM D4577, ASTM D642, ASTM 117, ASTM
                D880-92, ASTM D3332-92, ASTM F1115, and ASTM D3070-00.36 The general specifications for
                welding stainless steel are ASTM A372/ASME SA-312 and ASTM A-358.37'




                Liam McKenna


                • #9
                  I'm not sure if this is actually true or not, but I heard an interesting story about kegs, and why they're not individually rated.

                  Supposedly back in the 50's? when Sankey kegs were first being designed and tested before becoming common there were plans to require AMSE. Supposedly by showing AMSE and others that the rupture pressure for a stainless keg is around 600 psi or about 10x higher than what a keg is rated for, it was decided that there was a large enough safety margin and AMSE certification was not needed.