Convert Your Mark II Keg & Carboy Washer to a Recirculating Draft Line Cleaning Pump!

Mark’s Keg and Carboy is Awesome

The Mark II Keg and Carboy Washer can clean a lot of your homebrewing gear.  Kegs, Carboys, Speidel Fermenters, Tubing, Small Parts & Pieces, Buckets, Keggles and lots more.

Hands On Review: Mark’s Keg and Carboy Washer

Mark’s Keg & Carboy Washer can be found at…

An Easy Upgrade Converts it to a Line Cleaner

A small hardware purchase can convert your Keg and Carboy Washer over to an efficient ball lock draft line cleaning pump.

Cue drumroll.  And… It’s this thing…

Free shipping Stainless steel Carbonation Cap w/ 5/16" Barb, Ball Lock Type, fit soft drink PET bottles, Homebrew Kegging
Stainless steel Carbonation Cap w/ 5/16″ Barb, Ball Lock Type, fit soft drink PET bottles, Homebrew Kegging

This is a stainless steel ball lock carbonator cap that is typically intended to use with 1L and 2L PET (soda type) bottles for force carbing and transporting beer (soda, etc).  Why does it include a barb?  I have no idea, but it comes in really handy for this purpose.


Finding a Compatible Carbonation Cap

The fitting that I originally used for my conversion no longer works with BOTH liquid and gas ball lock QDs.  That is an important feature for this project.  I have since un-linked the original fitting.  Photos of the original fitting, are shown throughout this build.

The good news is that many options are available.

Specifications Can Change: Check product descriptions for current description and specifications to make sure these are designed to work with both liquid and gas QDs.

cln_img_9641A photo of just the carbonator capcln_img_9644A carbonator cap would typically work with a gas QD and this does.cln_img_9642However, it also works (easily) with a liquid QD.  Not sure why it’s designed like this, but it is and this is another important feature.cln_img_9646To adapt the Keg and Carboy Cleaner for Ball Lock draft lines just attach the stainless carbonator cap to a length of 1/4″ ID tubing (the shorter the better).  Attach the unused end to the smaller of the two included barbs (intended for cleaning tubing) and whammo… you’ve got a line cleaner.  I didn’t use any clamps.  Things held together fine and disassemble for easy cleaning.cln_img_9654I use a piece of 1/2″ ID silicone tubing over my faucets to return cleaning, rinsing and sanitizing solution back to the Keg and Carboy Cleaner’s basin.  Recirculating means you can run this for a long time (according to your cleaner’s recommendations).  You may also save money by using less cleaner and sanitizer.

This has the advantage of cleaning everything in your draft system.  It cleans the faucet, the shank, the quick disconnect and the tubing.  Some line cleaning pump designs I’ve seen have you removing the beer nut and placing the hand pump apparatus directly on the shank.  That’s some work disassembling and reassembling and it also skips the line and quick disconnect.

cln_img_9657Here is a photo that should hopefully give you an idea about flow rate.  If you look at my original Draft Line Cleaning Pump Build, you’ll see that I don’t believe you need a gushing fire hose-like flow rate.  The important thing, in my book, is touching all parts and constant flow.  Along those lines, if you’re looking for your draft cleaning pump to resemble a pressure washer, I’d suggest looking for something different.  I spent no time on trying to increase flow for this build.  It’s going to depend on your line length and where you place the Keg and Carboy Washer in relation to the top of your shank.

cln_img_9660A look at the 1/2″ ID tubing over my Perlick faucetcln_img_9666The Keg and Carboy Washer can be a bit unwieldy to pick up when full.  You can drain a good bit of liquid off by redirecting the discharge tubing to a bucket.cln_img_9649I have added this switch to my Keg and Carboy Washer setup.  It allows me to easily turn the pump on and off without plugging and unplugging it.  This switch appears to be similar although not the exact same part number… [GE 52149 Handy Switch Grounded White].  You may want to add a GFCI Adapter and for safety, always read and follow manufacturer’s warnings.1312Alternative for Pin Lock, Sankey and Ball Lock Systems.  I know of no similar Pin Lock style carbonator cap.  You get nearly the same benefit by replacing that with a 1/4″ Male Flare to 1/4″ Barb Fitting.  Remove your MFL Pin Lock QDs and attach to this fitting.  The only thing you’re missing is including the Pin Lock QDs in the cleaning process.  This would also work for Sankey and ball lock setups, you just need to have 1/4″ MFL lines.

Prior to getting a Keg and Carboy Washer myself, I consistently heard great things about it.  I can confirm the praise.  This is a great piece of equipment that saves me time.  The additional ability to clean lines with little additional expense sweetens the deal further.

Mark’s Keg & Carboy Washer can be found at…

Carbonation Caps

Specifications Can Change: Check product descriptions for current description and specifications to make sure these are designed to work with both liquid and gas QDs.

Upgrades and Mods

Also Consider – Ball Lock QD Jumper

ball lock jumperAllows you to connect multiple ball lock runs to clean multiple lines and taps at the same time. Works with both liquid and gas QDs.  Stainless Steel Ball Lock Jumper – via Valuebrew

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Make sure the components you use are compatible and rated for your intended application.  Contact manufacturer with questions about suitability or a specific application.  Always read and follow manufacturer directions. toppost:markkegcarboyrecirc tag:tpr rs:4

12 thoughts on “Convert Your Mark II Keg & Carboy Washer to a Recirculating Draft Line Cleaning Pump!

  1. Kris

    Has anyone else had to take the “guts” (post and spring) out of the quick disconnect to actually achieve flow to the beer lines?

  2. Rick

    I have modified my recirculating draft clean setup to flow backwards (the opposite of the flow of beer when you’re pouring). The reason for this is that it allows me to flow from larger tubing to smaller tubing, which more adequately cleans the faucet. If you flow the normal way, it is very likely that your cleaning fluid of choice doesn’t hit all the spots on the faucet because the vessel the fluid is traveling through essentially widens from 3/16″ to 1/2″ or so. It also appears to increase pressure which some people are worried about, but rest assured the chemicals just require movement, not super-speed movement.

    To do it, I simply bought a cheap $2-$3 plastic half inch NPT fitting from my LHBS to attach the piece of silicon tubing too just like in this guide. I still use the 5/16″ barbed QD to attach to the keg’s “beer out” post, it just doesn’t connect to the pump anymore.

  3. Rick

    I can’t imagine that’s really a 5/16″ barb, right? I know that’s what AliExpress says but if a 1/4″ piece of tubing fits over it, it’s got to be much smaller than that, right? I’m thinking it’s the same size as a beer QD barb…

  4. bricklayer67

    Yes my pump died too, need suggestions for a replacement? Mine lasted 4 years, so not really complaining, but would rather just buy the pump instead of all the plastic accessories

  5. EchoTony

    I need a replacement pump for my MarkII as well. My impeller lost a fin and it gets wonky… it can work, but it takes a lot of effort to get it spinning…. and then it’s noisy. A new pump is needed….

    Help! Any suggestions? I tried to ask the manufacturer, but no help there… never replies to emails.

  6. Angel

    This! I have a similar set up using the pump of the Mark Keg Washer but I place it inside a bucket as it uses less cleaner in the sense that the volume of the solution needed is less to keep the pump submerged. Also, I’ve created a split in the line and have THREE of these awesome carbonator caps which allows me to clean all my lines at the same time. My lines are 8ft long and the pressure from the pump is pretty good. Check out my setup in action:

    Also, this is why the barb is included and why it’s awesome that you can connect both gas a liquid ball locks


  7. chris

    I liked my Mark II until the pump broke, then when I got it fixed the impeller started coming loose every time I used it. The pump is garbage and can easily be replicated with a trip to amazon.


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