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What do you guys like to use to sanitize your equipment? I have been using the "no rinse" that comes w/ the refills, but I was wondering if there was something else out there I could use and get a lot more of.

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First, I 'clean' the LBK with a bleach based cleaner.  It's very important that it is truly 'bleach' and not some 'safe substitute'.

 

After thoroughly rinsing, I clean 'sanitize' it with the 'oxy-clean' stuff that comes from MB.

 

In an earlier life, I worked in nursing, and the concepts of 'infection control' come easy to me.

 

I've never had a problem with an infected batch doing it this way.

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..double post ... bad manners ...

 

...But, I actually clean my entire work surface with the bleach cleaner.  I saturate my kitchen sink (I set my LBK in the sink as I fill it), the counters and the proverbial 'whole nine yards'.  It may be a little extra work, but it will dramatically reduce the chances of a cross contamination from when my Alzheimer's kicks in and I set something down on one of those surfaces instead of my 'oxy-clean' bucket.

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Often discussed in the forums.  Most on the forums use the Mr. Beer supplied product, No Rinse sanitizer.  It's been discussed that this product, used stronger, can also clean your equipment but you should then rinse it (since you're removing dirt), and then sanitize.  It is not "oxy-clean" (sp).  Oxiclean FREE can be used to CLEAN your equipment, and must be well rinsed (it's laundry detergent).

 

Easy Clean and One-Step are both powdered sanitizers that you can buy.  A less expensive alternative, often discussed in the forums, is StarSan.  StarSan goes a long way, works in 30 seconds (instead of 10 minutes), and can be saved for many weeks (Easy Clean and One-Step could be saved in an air tight refrigerated container for about a week, if brought to room temp before using).  Many people make a big bucket of StarSan, throw a lid on it, and use it for a long time, checking it with PH strips to make sure it's still effective.  I make a gallon, use it to bottle and then brew, then use it again in three weeks to bottle and brew, then toss the gallon.  My cost is $.10 per gallon, no reason to buy PH strips to save that.

 

Using bleach requires very thorough rinsing, and if you use hot water you may bake the bleach flavor into the LBKs.  There is no reason to need bleach.  

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So the stuff that comes with MB is basically just OxyClean ? I thought about using bleach/water...but I didn't know if that was a good idea or not.

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So the stuff that comes with MB is basically just OxyClean ? I thought about using bleach/water...but I didn't know if that was a good idea or not.

 

No, it's not.  You posted this before I pointed out that this is incorrect.

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Thanks Rick, I figured this topic was discussed a lot, read your link about bottle cleaning...didn't see one about the LBK. I totally forgot about StarSan...buddy of mine uses it when he makes mead. Thanks for reminding me, I think that is what I might start using...one packet just isn't enough when u start using multiple LBKs.

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Right.  And you can save $1 by buying it without sanitizer.   :o   Under "Ingredients" tab.   ;)

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I use StarSan for equipment cleaning and OneStep for bottle cleaning unless I am doing both on the same day.  I prefer OneStep for bottles simply because I am a bit messy and StarSan is caustic so really dont want to wear gloves nor push my luck.

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I have used most of the major cleansers and sanitizers now, and I use whatever I happen to have on hand. If I have some of Mr. Beer's No Rinse Cleanser, I use it. If I happen to be low on it, I use StarSan, which I also like for its low contact time. I use PBW to clean all my equipment after its done fermenting. It is an alkali based cleaner that's safe for most everything and cleans even the most stuck on messes on the sides and tops of my LBKs and 1 gallon fermenting jugs. It's also great for removing bottle labels. I'll often soak some bottles in 1 tablespoon per gallon. And those labels peel off within 5 minutes. I then save the solution to put in my LBK, swirl it around some and it will remove anything with little to no scrubbing, depending on how long you let it sit. I will start using oxyclean once I use up my scented tub and next time I'll be sure to buy Oxyclean free. But as mentioned, I always like keeping some PBW and StarSan around in case I need it.

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I use the no-rinse until I run out.  Then I use my iodine-based sanitizer.

 

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Glad this topic came up again,

 

Searched some of the dollar stores and a couple grocery stores for oxy clean dish soap (doh), walked by the laundry soap version quite a few times.

 

The Iodine cleaner looks like a plus but I will have to weigh the cost. The no rinse has worked great so far plus I purchased a container of it suspecting a big mess when batching.

 

So far so good,

 

off topic

 

Harbor freight has a stainless kettle kit large enough to start 5 gallon batches of wort. Could not pass it up as it has several smaller kettles for hopping or yeast priming. 4 pieces with lids $25.00, I was holding some of our cookware hostage for brew only, now returned to the kitchen for cooking. (lol)

 

Cheers

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I tried to keep my 20qt for beer-only but my in-laws are in town and they want gumbo...

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Glad this topic came up again,

 

Searched some of the dollar stores and a couple grocery stores for oxy clean dish soap (doh), walked by the laundry soap version quite a few times.

 

The Iodine cleaner looks like a plus but I will have to weigh the cost. The no rinse has worked great so far plus I purchased a container of it suspecting a big mess when batching.

 

Quick correction. The iodine product, "Iodophor" isn't a cleaner, it's a sanitizer. Just to be clear, cleaners and sanitizers are 2 different things, though in some products, such as our No-Rinse, they can function as both (but using different steps). In almost every case, you can't sanitize with a cleaner, and you can't clean something with a sanitizer. Soaps and detergents are NOT sanitizers.

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I have to throw this out there, just because, even though I know I'm setting myself up for attack. I clean all my equipment, including LBK, bottles, hydrometer, whatever, with plain hot water (not too darn hot as to damage any plastics) and a soft sponge, and then dry and store them all. Immediately before using, I sanitize them all with powdered sanitizer, and I've had no problem at all in over 3 years. So, whatever you're doing beyond that, I'm pretty confident that it's more than enough.

(edit) - As an afterthought, in all fairness, there actually has been a very small numnnumber of times when the dried krausen ring on top of LBK was stubborn enough to where an upside down soak in warm water was used. Like 2 or 3 times out of 80.

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I wash my equipment with clear hand soap.  The LBKs I let sit over night (upside down, in the sink) with Oxyclean in it. Gets the dried krausen out, real easy to clean the next morning.

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I just started using Star San. I like it a lot, and will probably be sticking with it from now on. I always used bleach back in the day, mostly because it was cheap, but I got tired of having bleach spots all over my shirts. Plus it's nice to not have to rinse things.

 

Recently I was surprised to find out that B-Brite and One-Step, both of which are used as sanitizers (whether or not they should be), aren't classified as such by the FDA. The One-Step people said they didn't want to go through the hassle of being classified as one, or something like that.  I think B-Brite and One-step are pretty similar oxygen based cleansers. I would think Oxyclean is similar to them...?

 

Oxyclean is the best label remover I've ever used. 30 minute soak and they fall right off.

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oxiclean to wash.. rinse super well.

 

I started using iodophor. works great... not caustic.. but stains everything.

 

switched to star san.  works great... slightly caustic and can irritate skin. no stains... don't worry about the foam it makes staying in your hoses or equipment either. you can also whip up a bucket and reuse it for some time before it begins losing its strength. ive an almost 2 month batch that I'm still using that tests just below 3 on ph test strip still.  you can also put it in a spray bottle to use for contact surfaces, or sanitizing lid areas before removing etc...

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Recently I was surprised to find out that B-Brite and One-Step, both of which are used as sanitizers (whether or not they should be), aren't classified as such by the FDA. The One-Step people said they didn't want to go through the hassle of being classified as one, or something like that.  I think B-Brite and One-step are pretty similar oxygen based cleansers. I would think Oxyclean is similar to them...?

That's the same deal with our sanitizer, which is why it's labeled as "No-Rinse Cleanser". It does sanitize, but it's not officially certified as a sanitizer so they can't use the name. B-Brite, One-Step, and our No-Rinse are all very similar products chemically. Apparently, it's extremely expensive and there's a lot of red tape to get the certifications needed to legally call it a sanitizer on the package.

Oxyclean has similar ingredients. They are all oxygen-based, but oxyclean has an extra detergent added that can leave a carbonation/head killing residue. It doesn't make a very good sanitizer and, unlike our No-Rinse, it should be rinsed.

We are currently testing a number of cleaners/sanitizers as we may be expanding our selection soon. More to come.  

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That's the same deal with our sanitizer, which is why it's labeled as "No-Rinse Cleanser". It does sanitize, but it's not officially certified as a sanitizer so they can't use the name. B-Brite, One-Step, and our No-Rinse are all very similar products chemically. Apparently, it's extremely expensive and there's a lot of red tape to get the certifications needed to legally call it a sanitizer on the package.

Oxyclean has similar ingredients. They are all oxygen-based, but oxyclean has an extra detergent added that can leave a carbonation/head killing residue. It doesn't make a very good sanitizer and, unlike our No-Rinse, it should be rinsed.

We are currently testing a number of cleaners/sanitizers as we may be expanding our selection soon. More to come.  

I got my iodine cleaner from MrB years ago... lol

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What do you fellas think of this detergent, I found the oxi clean but not oxi free. It had a fragrance additive.

The All looked like what we are after, any thoughts?

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It should work for cleaning, but as with any detergent, be sure you RINSE WELL.

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Thanks, I plan a follow up rinse with the powdered sanitizer on the empty bottles, LBK and utensils. Pots etc...

Cheers

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There's no need to sanitize your pots since you boil with them.

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First of all, I'd like to say thanks for all the helpful advice in this forum, I'm a christmas of 2014 newbie and just put my 3rd batch into my LBK. I have been very impressed by how much this community helps beginners.

Before starting my third batch I ran by the local homebrew store and purchased some iodine sanitizer on the recommendation of a store employee.

The instructions say to drain then air dry, however I am concerned the residual iodine will degrade the beer.

I did a follow up rinse on my equipment for precaution, but would like to know if this is necessary.

Tia for the help!

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The follow-up rinse, in effect, negates the sanitation.  Use it as the instructions say if you want it to sanitize.  It will likely discolor plastic over time, and it requires 10 minutes like the Mr. Beer sanitizer, whereas StarSan requires only 30 seconds.

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Rick, thanks for the help!

Quick follow up question. Does the follow up rinse negate the sanitation because the drying is part of the sanitation process, or does the water itself contaminate the equipment?

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Rick, thanks for the help!

Quick follow up question. Does the follow up rinse negate the sanitation because the drying is part of the sanitation process, or does the water itself contaminate the equipment?

A little bit of both. The Iodophor iodine sanitizer has been used for many years with great effect. If it were to degrade the beer somehow, it wouldn't be used as a sanitizer. Follow the instructions given and your beer will be fine. Do NOT rinse sanitizers.

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Just wanted to throw my two cents in here as a representative from Craft Meister and National Chemicals, Inc.  We manufacture BTF Iodophor and the Craft Meister Brewery Wash products.

 

First off, cleaning and sanitizing are two distinct operations.  Cleaning means removing physical dirt and visible debris from a surface using appropriate detergents and scrubbing (if necessary).  After your surface is clean, rinse away the detergent and dirt so everything is clean to the eye. You cannot sanitize something that isn't clean!  After you have a clean surface, apply a no rinse sanitizer.  From my stand point, I suggest Craft Meister and BTF Iodophor as a great one-two punch for all of your brewery sanitation.

 

There are anumber of cleaning products/cleansers on the market for brewers.  Craft Meister, PBW, One Step, B Brite, Easy Clean, just to name a few.  These are suggested routes as these detergents have been designed with brewing in mind.  These products are formulated to break down organic materials and biomass, whereas most dish soaps and laundry detergents are not.  Frequently, but not always, dish soap and laundry detergents also have fragrances and do not rinse away easily.  Craft Meister products have been designed to dissolve quickly, act fast and rinse away with no films or chalky build up.

 

Suggested sanitizers are acid based or iodine based.  Bleach works, but there are more modern options.  BTF Iodophor is a potent, no-rinse, concentrated iodine sanitizer that works in low concentrations.  Only 1/4 oz (1/2 Tablespoon) in 2 1/2 gallons of cool water makes a sanitize strength solution.  Only 2 minutes, maximum, of contact time is required.  Drip dry until the solution is gone then use the surface as needed.  Acid sanitizers are very popular now, such as Star San.  Star San works at 1 oz per 5 gallons, but in its undiluted state is a hazardous and corrosive material.

 

People frequently look for lower cost alternatives to these products, such as OxiClean, dairy/agricultiral sanitizers and "home made" cleaners, but in the grand scheme of things, it has always been my philosophy to trust the critical operation of cleaning and sanitizing to proper, dedicated products.  Your overall spend on chemicals compared to ingredients is neglilgble per batch when you break it down.  Don't skimp or cut corners on cleaning!  Your beer will thank you for it in the long run.

 

Cheers!

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A word on MrB's No-Rinse: The 1st time I used it, I didn't read the directions carefully & used the whole package instead of 1/2 like the directions stated. I sanitized everything with the over-concentrated solution & brewed everything up without rinsing anything. After I had everything in my LBK with the lid on & set for fermentation, I re-read the instructions, realized what I'd done, & proceeded to freak out thinking I'd ruined my batch. I called the MrB support line in a panic & explained the situation & my concern. The calm voice of reason on the other end of the line told me not to worry, my beer would be fine. Well, she was right. 6 weeks later my beer poured great, good carbonation with no off flavors.

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Clean is our friend,

 

I have worked in food process and tissue paper manufacturing, there were evident bugs in both locations.

 

In the food process a bio caustic was utilized and in paper biocide and steam were successful in batching commercial tissue paper.

 

I always told the production members: Stop drinking all the biocide LOL.

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Liquid dish soap such as Ajax  is a terrific cleaner (chemically it is a detergent not a soap). I wash my equipment first with the Ajax, rinse well in warm water then I use One-Step to sanitize. I use a peroxide based cleaner (Lysol) to clean all surfaces, sink and stove top.Also, oxygen based cleaners need some "contact" time, that is they don't kill bacteria instantly. Spray or leave equipment soak a few minutes before wiping or using. BTW, regardless of what you use, don' wipe surfaces or equipment with your kitchen sponge! Use fresh pieces of paper towel. My wife loves brew day, the kitchen is spotless

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I stand corrected. That post from Craftmeister wasn't spam. Please continue with your unbiased discussion on cleaning and sanitation products. I'll be over here putting on my Hazmat suit so I can clean my sfuff with Star San.  :rolleyes:

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I stand corrected. That post from Craftmeister wasn't spam. Please continue with your unbiased discussion on cleaning and sanitation products. I'll be over here putting on my Hazmat suit so I can clean my sfuff with Star San.  :rolleyes:

Lol TLDR?

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Lol TLDR?

Nope, I read it. All the way down to the end, including the part that extolled the virtues of Iodophor while making some less-than-flattering remarks about Star San. It seemed like spam to me, until I was informed otherwise. The part I didn't read, until now, was the page on the Mr. Beer site that has Craftmeister products for sale. I'll refrain from commenting further on the matter.

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Oxyclean has one virtue not mentioned in Craftmister's spiel...price, it's a da*n site cheaper to rinse, rinse, rinse than buy anything like PBW(got to account for us fixed income folks).  Further, I've used iodine to purify water,  it leaves a less than desirable taste in the water...thanks, but no thanks.

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i started out using iodophor as a sanitizer. ran it through my lines and everything, then proceeded to carry on after a few minutes. didn't even air dry. never got any off flavors. mix it according to instructions.

 

iodophor is great but does stain stuff. my only complaint is that it rapidly degrades once mixed and used, as is evident by its changing color lighter and lighter with time. starsan can be mixed up , stored, reusued for quite some time....requires only an occasional ph test and if around 3 youre good to go even if it is getting milky looking. the bad thing with starsan is that it is acidic and some ppl are sensitive to it... skin contact that is.

 

I just discovered another use for iodophor. I have some really old iodophor so I mixed in a little rubbing alcohol. on a whim I mixed up some corn starch and water and dropped the io into it. voilla!  instant starch test for all grain brewing!  in sugar it stays orange / yellow.   if it goes black, the starch in the grain is not fully converted.

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Oxyclean has one virtue not mentioned in Craftmister's spiel...price, it's a da*n site cheaper to rinse, rinse, rinse than buy anything like PBW(got to account for us fixed income folks).  Further, I've used iodine to purify water,  it leaves a less than desirable taste in the water...thanks, but no thanks.

The iodine you use to purify water and Iodophor are 2 completely different things. Iodophor leaves no flavor or aroma behind at all. I've been using it for many years.

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I also use Iodophor when I've run out off all the No Rinse stuff that comes with my MrB recipes.

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The iodine you use to purify water and Iodophor are 2 completely different things. Iodophor leaves no flavor or aroma behind at all. I've been using it for many years.

iodine is iodine

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iodine is iodine

You should probably stop drinking milk or eating cheese then because it's used extensively in the dairy industry. It's also used by MANY breweries around the world with great success. I've been using it for close to 15 years and have never had iodine flavors in my beer or wine.

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Wikipedia says:

 

 Kits are available in camping stores that include an iodine pill and a second pill (vitamin C or ascorbic acid) that will remove the iodine taste from the water after it has been disinfected. The addition of vitamin C, in the form of a pill or in flavored drink powders, precipitates much of the iodine out of the solution, so it should not be added until the iodine has had sufficient time to work. 

 

Now you have a solution for your bad taste when you purify your water with iodine.

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So you'll drink it in water where you can taste it, but not in beer where you can't taste it?  :blink:

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BTW, Star San uses phosphoric acid which is corrosive and is used in higher concentrations to defeat rust... food grade versions are commonly found in colas...

 

 

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So you'll drink it in water where you can taste it, but not in beer where you can't taste it?  :blink:

You walk thru any jungle(or forest for that matter) you want. Just filling your canteen from streams without using one or 2 tablets, and see what happens. It's what we were issued. Never said it was a preference, why would you assume it was?  Further, I only have the word of folks who stand to profit from it, if I change, that it don't taste...pretty sure that's a conflict of interests.  Which leads us right into caveat emptor.

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You walk thru any jungle(or forest for that matter) you want. Just filling your canteen from streams without using one or 2 tablets, and see what happens. It's what we were issued. Never said it was a preference, why would you assume it was?  Further, I only have the word of folks who stand to profit from it, if I change, that it don't taste...pretty sure that's a conflict of interests.  Which leads us right into caveat emptor.

I don't profit from anything since this isn't a commission based job. This is based on personal experience of over 15 years. I've only been with Mr. Beer for 3 months. Besides, we don't even sell Iodophor here.

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I refer you back to comment #37 this thread, no body said y'all didn't then. I didn't necessarily mean personal profit, so I'll amend it. If you work for a company who stands to profit...(do I really need to type all that again?)

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I refer you back to comment #37 this thread, no body said y'all didn't then. I didn't necessarily mean personal profit, so I'll amend it. If you work for a company who stands to profit...(do I really need to type all that again?)

Again, we don't even sell that product.

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Again, we don't even sell that product.

You(Mr.B ) used to sell it and that's how I got my original bottle.  I pick it up from my LHBS now.

 

 

On a separate but equal note, Cooper sells its own brand of sanitizer, why doesn't MrB?

 

2014-12-11_1653.png

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You(Mr.B ) used to sell it and that's how I got my original bottle.  I pick it up from my LHBS now.

 

 

On a separate but equal note, Cooper sells its own brand of sanitizer, why doesn't MrB?

 

 

Starting this summer, we will be selling a chlorine-based sanitizer. I've done some testing with it and it works great.

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Additionally, because Star San uses phosphoric acid, you're not supposed to use it on bottling/keg lines because it will (not can) deteriorate them over time.  Iodine is safe to use in all types of vinyl, pvc, and metallic tubing.

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Starting this summer, we will be selling a chlorine-based sanitizer. I've done some testing with it and it works great.

Can you use it on stainless steel?  Like the Noble line.

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Can you use it on stainless steel?  Like the Noble line.

Yes, this sanitizer is completely safe and effective on stainless steel.

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Is it just me or does One Step leave a white discoloration on stainless steel?

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I am going to guess about the white stain - I believe that it is residue from the "bulking" agent used with powders. A woman I work with was an industrial chemist. I'll see her on Monday and ask her opinion. Most likely it is totally inert.

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Additionally, because Star San uses phosphoric acid, you're not supposed to use it on bottling/keg lines because it will (not can) deteriorate them over time.  Iodine is safe to use in all types of vinyl, pvc, and metallic tubing.

well we'll be testing this hypothesis. been using star san in kegs for over a year now...

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You walk thru any jungle(or forest for that matter) you want. Just filling your canteen from streams without using one or 2 tablets, and see what happens. It's what we were issued. Never said it was a preference, why would you assume it was?  Further, I only have the word of folks who stand to profit from it, if I change, that it don't taste...pretty sure that's a conflict of interests.  Which leads us right into caveat emptor.

 

I can't say I know how you feel, never having been in that particular situation, but I get where you're coming from. Can't say I blame ya either.

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I imagine they got better water pure tabs now (hell I got better stuff in my "emergency" packs)

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