Sunday, September 2, 2012

How to build your own beer line cleaning system! It's inexpensive and easy!

I have a hard time with the idea of having an extra keg around just to clean my kegerator beer lines;  I knew there had to be a better way. After some research, I came across this awesome DIY beer line cleaning system at the Homebrewers Association's "Pimp My Rig" page (original link here), so I decided to build it. I have detailed the process below with pictures. This system only cost me about $21, which is a lot less than the $45-60 pre-made systems that you can purchase at your local brew store. I purchased everything at Home Depot, except for the Firestone ball-lock liquid post, which I got from my local brew store. To build this system, you will need:
  • Flo-Master 56HD Hand Pump Sprayer ($6.97)
  • Watts A-176 3/8 Flare to 3/8 FIP coupling ($2.80)
  • Teflon pipe tape ($1.18) - for a great video on how to use teflon tape, click here
  • Firestone ball-lock liquid post ($10.00). It is very important you get a Firestone post, or else the threading wont be the right size.
1) First, you need to unscrew the green nozzle on the end of the sprayer:
2) Next, you need to wrap the male threaded end of the sprayer with around 8-10 layers of teflon tape. Be sure to wrap the tape in the same direction that you'd screw something onto it! Otherwise, the tape will loosen when you screw on the next fitting.
3) Screw the coupling onto the newly taped nozzle:
4) Now, tape the end of the coupling with 8-10 layers of teflon tape as well (we want to be sure that the unit will be completely water-tight):
5) Screw on the Firestone quick disconnect:
6) Viola! You now have your beer line cleaning pump!
7) Simply fill the Flo-Master with warm water, cleaning solution, or sanitizer, and then connect the cleaning pump to your beer line:

8) Pump the Flo-Master up to pressurize the container

9) Open the tap and let the cleaning solution run through the system!

10) Repeat as necessary with other lines!