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Glycol Loop opinions/suggestions

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  • Glycol Loop opinions/suggestions

    Hey all,

    We are in the process of finishing up our build out for our new brewery in Huntersville, NC and are self installing the glycol loop so want to make sure we aren't missing anything important. We have (5) 7bbl conicals, (1) 7bbl brite tank, (1) and (1) 15bbl CLT that will be on the loop. We are using a 5HP chillstar chiller from Pro Chiller which has a 1hp centrifugal pump. Our manufacturer at DBT stated the to plan for a flow rate for the tanks to be 50GPM. The loop itself would be about 135' of header. So here is what I have planned so far.
    • 2" Uponer PEX-A for the headers with 1/2" Armaflex insulation (our budget is a little tighter with the rapid inflation since our original SBA loan underwriting)
    • 3/4" PEX drops with 1/2" armaflex insulation and ball valve at the supply and return of each tank as well as prior to the solenoid valve to isolate.
    • 3/4" Pressure bypass valve at meeting of supply and return with thermometer and pressure gauge mounted just before the pressure valve on the supply.
    • Y-strainer with 20 mesh screen
    • Will likely later upgrade the solenoid valves provided by DBT to actuated ball valves.
    Does all this sound right? Should the 2" diameter header be sufficient or do I need to go larger?

    I attached a rough drawing with my thoughts on the layout.

    Thanks in advance,


    Attached Files

  • #2
    Hi Mike,

    That drawing is a great representation of a first in, last out, reverse return piping system. 2” is going to work great and so will everything else you listed. Remember to clean the y-strainer after you flush the piping. Then check and clean it again after a few days. Then check it after 2 weeks and then a month after that. Then on the quarter moving forward.
    You are off to a great start! Take care.

    G&D Chillers, Inc

    G&D Chillers, Inc.
    760 Bailey Hill Road
    Eugene OR 97402
    541-345-3903 / 800-555-0973
    Fax: 541/345-9141


    • #3
      Be sure and remember to install ball valve to isolate the Y strainer so that you don't lose a bunch of glycol mix. I've set up 3 breweries where this was forgotten after the whole header was pumped full. You should go to motorized ball valves right away if at all possible.
      Marc Martin (Northwest Brewery Advisors)


      • The_irish_hammer
        The_irish_hammer commented
        Editing a comment
        Would that be putting the ball valve before or after the y strainer or putting one on each side?

      • Alpha King
        Alpha King commented
        Editing a comment
        Some people put one on both sides but you definitely need one on the side returning from the header to prevent header drain back.
        Cheers, Marc