Sep 062013

Anyone who has been brewing for any length of time has heard that nothing can wreck your beer faster than poor sanitation.  In order for chemical sanitizers to work however, your equipment needs to be clean.  Star San or BTF work great, but if they can’t make contact with the surface you are trying to sanitize they are mostly useless.

We’ve spent the last several months living with my wife’s family while trying to sell our house.  Consequently I’ve had to change up the way I do a few things in the brewing department. I’ve been storing my equipment in a full bath in the basement.  There isn’t a big sink down there so I had to adapt and use the bath tub instead.  It’s worked well.  Not only is it more roomy than the kitchen sink that I am used to using at our house I’ve also found that I can get things cleaned up much more quickly.

My system has worked like this…

I use two buckets and the bath tub.

Cleaning in the Bath Tub

Cleaning in the Bath Tub

One bucket gets put in the tub and is filled with cleaner.  I’ve been using dish soap from Seventh Generation for many years.  I know that some people don’t care for using dish soap on brewing equipment but this stuff rinses crazy clean.  It doesn’t contain any petroleum and I’ve never had any issues with residue or head retention.

I use the bath tub faucet for rinsing after I wash smaller items in the bucket.  It’s also easy to fill mash tuns, pots, and buckets scrub them right in the tub as well.

The second bucket sits outside the tub and gets filled with a Star San.  Once items are rinsed they go straight into that bucket and are good to go.

After I’m done with a transfer it’s very easy to give things a rinse in the tub, put them in the bucket of soapy water and start the process again.

The addition of a spray hose and a fitting to connect my bottle washer to would make things even better.  At this point however, the over-sized wash basin at floor level has been a vast improvement over using the kitchen sink.

Our house failed to sell so we’re back home now.  I’m working on redesigning the basement a bit to better accommodate my brewing equipment.  I want to take what I learned over the Summer and make a more ideal cleaning station.  That should at least get me out of the kitchen.

How have you had to adapt your brewing practices?

 Posted by at 7:27 am