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New Brewer article about DO and cleaning.

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  • New Brewer article about DO and cleaning.

    I just read an article in a recent issue (July/August '11) of New Brewer about cleaning bright tanks with cool solutions. It sounds like it has a lot of obvious advantages but I've worked in several breweries and never seen this done. The article seems to imply that this can be done without removing the CO2 pressure from the tanks. That is really the part thats blowing my mind a little. It gives a brief step by step but leaves much to the imagination. Is anyone out there doing this or has anyone read the article that might be able to explain it a little better? How do you purge the necessary solutions without losing all the pressure? It says something about mixing acid and detergent in the same cycle. Also a foreign concept to me. I would greatly appreciate anyone's help here.

  • #2
    Lots of brewers do this as a standard and it's not new to them.

    I think it's not popular in pub breweries because so many don't filter their beer. I'd be scared to do it if there is a solids load in the bright tank. (btw why do we call them brights if the beer is not "bright"?)

    Say your bright is cold (like 30F) and full of CO2 pressure (like 11psi) and you just kegged up the last of the beer out of it. Hook up your pump to the bottom and the sprayball and tee in a water line, a dump and a valve to add the chemical. Build up you water in the bright tank and isolate the pump. Once isolated, crack the dump to create a little negative pressure. Add the chemical to the the other empty valve and let'er rip. You can rinse the chemical out afterwards and keep the bright cold. You'll lose a little top pressure by dumping and rinsing, but not too bad.

    Bugs have a hard time living in an acidic, oxygen-free, freezing environment.

    Chuckanut Brewery


    • #3

      I know that this has been covered, but there are some things that I'd like to add.

      Cleaning under pressure relies on two principles:

      1) Low soil load that can be removed by cool or cold cleaning solutions, and
      2) Using a cleaner that will not be neutralized by carbonic acid.

      Basic gist, you can do it with beers that do not leave a high soil load with strong acids (my personal favorite is a the Five Star No. 5 - the nitric/phosphoric blend). The basic process is just what LongLiveLagers said, except that if you can run an acid cycle, you might as well add a sanitizer cycle. Just make sure you have the right sani for the job...I wouldn't use iodophor if you're worried that the acid did not remove all of the residual sugars. Try something low foaming with a short half life.

      Good luck,


      • #4
        i've cip'ed under pressure for a few years now, though not always cold. we would heat up our tank to above 100 for the acid cycle, with the theory being that the pressure in the tank would prevent the tank from collapsing when cooling down. kinda sketchy now that i look back on it. i've also done it cold, and we used a specially formulated acid blend that was heavier on nitric per Dana from Birko's suggestion. Acid #5 has worked fine for me as well. we checked the tanks several times while experimenting with this and there was no soil left in the tank. we also used sani-clean as a sanitizer as opposed to peracetic which we were previously using. as a result we saw a small drop in DO levels (we were already getting good numbers there), cip of bright tanks took half the time, and a whole lot less co2 was being used to purge tanks (200 bbl tanks and it previously would take about 2 hours with 3 high pressure lines hooked up to purge to a point we found acceptable). the process is exactly as kevin described and I would add that it is very hard to keep a pump primed with a typical dish bottom bright tank unless it is under 10 psi. definitely requires a bit of skill with the pump and valve flipping but anyone thats been running cip loops for a year or so should be able to do it. i've had trouble training brand new cellar people on this. another thing is i would advocate breaking the tank down and running caustic every three or so times. the last thing i would say is i'm a big advocate of cleaning brights under pressure.


        • #5
          I switched to cleaning our bright tanks under pressure about 3 years ago with Acid #5. Always cold. No need for heat. Love it. We have a mobile CIP brink, which makes it really easy. Fill the brink with Acid #5 solution, recirculate it in the brink, switch to tank sprayball, and then finally switch the pump suction to the tank bottom when the brink is empty. Takes less time, uses less CO2, less thermal energy (by keeping things cold and not paying for heat), and gets our tanks really clean. Even for "high" soil load beers like wheat. Just burst rinse a few times with cool water before you clean. Like the directions say. Really keeps beerstone formation down. We do a full alkaline wash every 5-7 times we use the tank. Mostly just to inspect and change out our carbonating stone for a fresh, clean one; and to thoroughly clean the gaskets & sample valve. I don't know why anyone else would do it differently. But there is more than one way.....
          Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--


          • #6
            I agree with above post's, but I prefer Acid No.6 over Acid No.5. I believe it was more designed for cold/CO2 environments and has more detergent qualities than No.5, I think. Don't quote me on that. Cheers!!!!


            • #7
              When I do it I use a 1/2 Bbl keg to add the Acid and sani. DOnt have a CIP brink or anything fancy so the keg option works well. Do the rinses with water from a hose bib. Ultraniter from Birko for the acid.
              Big Willey
              "You are what you is." FZ


              • #8

                Thanks to those who replied, that clears things up a bit. By the way, I work at a brewpub that does not filter and goes through beer pretty slowly and our SVs come quite clean with Acid 5 only.