Category Archives: Tips

Fix It! Repairing Loose Cornelius Keg Handles and Bases

Pictured: Loose Handle/Bottom Ball Lock Keg via Adventures in Homebrewing

Part of Our Homebrew Tips and Tricks Series.  Check out the complete list – Homebrewing Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts! This is a Top Post! See: All Top Posts

A loose corny keg handle or base can be an annoyance.  If your keg is in otherwise good shape, it may make sense to repair a loose handle or base.


Finding Loose Handle Kegs, How-To Continues Below:

Why would you want to find a loose handle or base keg. The answer is… they can be a great deal!

Adventures in Homebrewing is the one shop I know of that periodically sells loose handle or base kegs.

  • Availability of these is touch and go.
  • When they’re available available, these are generally one of the best Ball Lock keg deals around.
  • If you’re interested, based on past experience, I’d suggest picking these up sooner rather than later.

Loose Handle/Bottom Ball Lock keg w/PRV Lid


This technique comes via Facebook friend Jason Connect with HBF on Facebook].  Thank you Jason!

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Avery 5410 – 600 x 1″ Round Printable Labels – Great size for labeling beer caps

Avery 1″ Round Multi Use Labels.  600 total labels.

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • Labels stick, stay and remove cleanly without leaving a residue
  • Ideal for drawers, containers, boxes, shelves and other smooth surfaces
  • Pack of 600 Labels

 

1″ round labels work really well for labeling beer caps.  Labeling caps works especially well if you’re planning to reuse the bottle.  There is no work involved in removing old labels before next use.

 

What are others saying?  Search this product’s Amazon reviews for “caps” – may include reviews for other sizes or variations

These are printable labels so you can create some nice looking labels.  Avery offers free templates for popular software including Microsoft Word as well as free online design and print tool.

Avery Self-Adhesive Removable Labels, 1-Inch Diameter, White, Pack of 600 (5410) – note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

Also: GrogTag Deals and Coupons – GrogTag prints your design onto professionally printed, reusable labels

The “Gift Basket” of Homebrewing… Putting Together a Brew Day Box

brew day box

Part of Our Homebrew Tips and Tricks Series.  Check out the complete list – Homebrewing Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts! This is a Top Post! See: All Top Posts


Why a Brew Day Box?

Over the years I’ve homebrewed, I’ve utilized a number of storage and organization strategies.  Some could be defined less as strategies and more as “piles”.  These strategies have ranged from, cardboard boxes, to big totes that I threw everything under the sun into to using smaller shoe box size containers and breaking everything out into categories.  The shoe box size organization method has worked well and other than a few large totes for bigger items, it’s what I’ve settled on.  At some point after going to that, I realized that when brew day rolled around, I had to collect items from a number of these containers.  I usually forgot something and had to look around, multiple times per brew day trying to find whatever I needed.  That evolved into putting together a container just for brew days.  I cleverly 🙂 call that my “Brew Day Box”.  This container houses nearly all the small odds and ends that I use when brewing.  I’ve also tried to make sure those things don’t really need removed at other times.  For example I use a refractometer regularly, not just on brew day, so… I bought another refractometer.  Everything that’s in my Brew Day Box generally… stay in my Brew Day Box.  This keeps everything in one place and I’m not wasting time trying to find stuff when I should be brewing.

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Homebrew Tubing Tips… Cleaning, Drying, Re-Shaping, Storing & More

homebrew tubing

Part of Our Homebrew Tips and Tricks Series.  Check out the complete list – Homebrewing Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts! This is a Top Post! See: All Top Posts


Tubing!  Homebrewers use a variety of sizes and styles of tubing for siphoning, beer transfer, wort and water transfer on brew day, keg to keg transfers, kegerator beer and gas lines and more.

Cleaning:  After using (depending on what I’ve used the tubing for), I’ll give the tubing a rinse to get the majority of stuff off and to keep my cleaning solution as clean as possible.  Next is a soak in hot PBW solution.  I’d say 5 to 10 minutes is typical for me.  Followed by a thorough rinse.

Reducing Water Spots: If you have a problem with water spots on your tubing, make your last step a rinse in a diluted mixture of Star San.  Not only will you get some sanitizing benefits, the Star San acts as a surfactant that helps fight water spots.

Keep Reading – Loads More Tubing Tips!

Avery 5410 – 600 x 1″ Round Printable Labels – Great size for labeling beer caps

Avery 1″ Round Multi Use Labels.  600 total labels.

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • Labels stick, stay and remove cleanly without leaving a residue
  • Ideal for drawers, containers, boxes, shelves and other smooth surfaces
  • Pack of 600 Labels

 

1″ round labels work really well for labeling beer caps.  Labeling caps works especially well if you’re planning to reuse the bottle.  There is no work involved in removing old labels before next use.

 

What are others saying?  Search this product’s Amazon reviews for “caps” – may include reviews for other sizes or variations

These are printable labels so you can create some nice looking labels.  Avery offers free templates for popular software including Microsoft Word as well as free online design and print tool.

Avery Self-Adhesive Removable Labels, 1-Inch Diameter, White, Pack of 600 (5410) – note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

Also: GrogTag Deals and Coupons – GrogTag prints your design onto professionally printed, reusable labels

Checking for Draft System CO2 Leaks – Using The Pressure Gauge Method

check for co2 leaks

For the most part, checking for keg liquid and CO2 leaks is pretty straightforward.  Is beer leaking?  Then you’ve got a liquid leak.  Is there six inches of beer in your kegerator?  That one’s really easy to spot.  If beer is shooting out like a geyser, you’ve got a… fast leak. 🙂

For kegerator CO2 leaks, it’s a generally a little more work, but still pretty easy… spray everything with Star San solution (diluted of course) and look for bubbles.

A problem spot.  There is one place on the CO2 side that the soak-everything-with-Star-San method doesn’t really work…. the keg’s gas post.  Testing at this point using the spray bottle method is impossible (or at the very least difficult and messy).  Unless your poppet is messed up, leaks will only surface here when a gas QD is actually engaged.  The problem is, you can’t easily see that spot when a QD on.  Stated more simply, you need a QD on to see if it’s leaking, but you can’t see it if a QD is on.

Enter what I call the “pressure gauge method”.  The pressure gauge method can check the entire keg including gas QD connection and any connected tubing without soaking everything and the resulting clean up.

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Tip: Using Undiluted PBW to Help with Bottle Label Removal

beer bottle label removal

Part of Our Homebrew Tips and Tricks Series.  Check out the complete list – Homebrewing Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts!


  • Soaking your bottles in hot PBW is not a new technique.  It works well and I would venture a guess that a lot of homebrewers do this.
  • Here’s the tip… If you have a label or bits of adhesive that are being stubborn,   Put a little bit of PBW right on a label or adhesive that’s giving you problems and scrub.  The grittiness of the PBW combined with it’s full strength application generally dissolves the label and adhesive in short order.
  • PBW can be rough on your hands when diluted.  That’s even more true when it’s undiluted.  I recommend using protective gloves when dealing with PBW.
  • Search Amazon for “elbow length cleaning gloves”
  • Search Amazon for “PBW Cleaner”
  • Search Amazon for “scrub pads”
  • Search MoreBeer for “PBW”
  • Related Categories: BottlingCleaning

My PBW Quick Pick!

Quick Pick!

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. rpu:tips#24

Color Code Keg Posts for Quick Identification

Valuebrew has an exclusive color coded option for keg post o-rings.  Blue and Green.  These are sized for ball lock kegs (although there is a workaround for pin lock kegs, see pin lock section below).  You can use these however you’d like, but the idea is to color code you keg posts for easy identification.  They recommend Blue for Beer and Green for Gas.

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