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Thread: Brite Tanks not holding pressure

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Keokuk,IA,Lee
    Posts
    26

    Brite Tanks not holding pressure

    We have 5bbl Psycho Brew brite tanks in a walk in cooler. Our biggest issue has been carbonation. We recently bought a Zahm Nagel which has helped. I’ve noticed our tanks do not hold CO2 pressure once we get it to the proper level on the pressure gauge. To remedy this we have been kegging the entire batch once it is carbonated correctly. I’ve put clamps on all possible places where there might be leaks. Wondering if anyone out there has had these same issues and how to remedy them. We have some difficulty with keg management and I’d like to be able to store our beer in the brite tanks and not lose carbonation.

    Any advice is greatly appreciated!

    Sam Fisk
    Head Brewer
    V’s Restaurant & Brewpub
    Keokuk, Iowa


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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palau
    Posts
    2,026

    Should be an easy task

    Spray soap water on the relief valve. You've obviously got a CO2 leak, and since there's only a bit of that above the liquid line....... Should be an easy task to find it.
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Location
    Lenexa, KS, USA
    Posts
    27
    Can I ask - what pressure was the gauge showing before & after the leak (over how long? & did it stop then?)
    & did you check the CO2 with your Z&N before & after too? (if so, what did it show?)
    I think I’ve seen a slight drop on the BBT gauge drop, but v. little change in actual beer CO2 level.


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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    34
    I use an older psychobrew unitank as a brite tank, and a few years ago I had trouble with the tank not holding pressure. This only happened 2-3 times, but the top manway was not quite sealing tight enough until I really wrenched down on the nuts. I literally had to use a plumbers wrench to get it snug enough that it didn't show bubbles when I sprayed it with a soapy solution, I couldn't get it tight enough by hand. Perhaps I didn't have the gasket seated right, not sure what happened, but it hasn't happened in a few years, and only happened a few times then.

    Anyway, check the top manway seal, might be up there. Assuming that psychobrew still uses top manways on their tanks.

    Good luck.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Keokuk,IA,Lee
    Posts
    26
    mic_mac

    The gauge usually is up to 11-12 and if the CO2 is turn off it goes down a couple point in 24 hours. I have not checked CO2 levels with the ZN since we have been kegging the whole batch after we get the carbonation right. I put clamps on carb stone and sight glass hose. I’ll have to do some more CO2 testing after volume goes down. I did notice that our pressure release/vacuum valve was “clicking” below 15psi. We crank the hell out of the lid but will wrench them next time.

    Thanks to all.


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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,962
    Instead of getting out the 4' wrench and just tightening the hell out of everything, get a spray bottle of soapy water and find the leak. Obviously, it's not below the liquid level or you'd see it.

    Shotgun approach to problems just makes a mess and may cause more problems down the line. Find the actual problem and fix that.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Keokuk,IA,Lee
    Posts
    26
    We’ve got a spray bottle with the soapy water and will start there for sure. I haven’t noticed carbonation scrubbing of our beer so I’m lucky in that aspect. The Zahm Nagel has been a lifesaver. Carbonation still alludes me at times. I also think our carb stones are cheapos and might have been damaged.

    Thanks for the good information


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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palau
    Posts
    2,026

    Wait a minute....

    If this is with uncarbonated/undercarbonated beer then a high headspace pressure will lessen over time. The beer will tend toward equilibrium and it is normal for headspace pressure to decrease during carbonation by a few points due to CO2 takeup by undercarbonated beer. Especially over longer times like overnight/next day. Especially with low headspace volume "freeboard". Especially with very cold beer. Especially with unspunded product. This is a good reason to have a carbonation panel with two pressure gauges; one for the flowmeter/carbonation stone and one for the headspace.
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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