Clean That Wort Chiller!

For the simple reason I share ‘some’ of my private reserve of ‘West Canyon’ Brewery #organic #homebrew #beer with other people, I am what some would call an ‘over-the-top’ clean freak.

As a matter of fact,  I schedule my ‘pre-brew’ day(s) cleaning just like it was a #brewday event.

One major thing some home brewers don’t seem to clean are their wort chillers.

wort chiller

My chiller (photo above) was rinsed thoroughly after the last brew day I brewed an organic molasses porter.  To the eye, it looked clean.  However, after brush cleaning it with 5 Star PBW cleaner…


…it left clean ‘soapy’ water looking pretty grimy (as shown above).

Anyone, please correct me if I’m wrong but,  the way I hear it, the people at ‘Star San’ recommend that after you have ‘properly’ cleaned your wort chiller submerge your chiller in sanitizer for a number of minutes (15min?), 24 or so hours just BEFORE your brew day.  Then take the chiller out of the sanitizer, DO NOT RINSE.  Allow 24 hours or so for the wort chiller to sit and air dry.

Go to ‘Beer Smith’ podcast look for the interview with Jon Herskovits of Five Star Chemicals.  If you’re a serious organic home brewer, it would definitely be worth the listen for sure.


Just a couple of quick notes.

When I schedule a ‘deep clean’ day for my equipment, it means that I’m going to be taking things apart.  One of the things I ‘deep clean’ is my boil keg piping.


A bottle brush is too large to fit through piping so, I use a tube (or pipe fitting) brush.


I also take the piping apart when I clean.  A it turned out, there was hop peddles stuck in the elbow of my brew kettle ‘feed tube’. By taking the inner tubing out I can also inspect the boil keg’s gaskets.


Brewers get a bit ticked off when they see one of there Kegs in a photo online all chopped up.  Some people don’t realize that they do NOT own the keg they ‘rented’ from the liquor store for whatever event they needed a keg of beer for.

People after the event, usually unwittingly, need to get rid of the keg at some point and either put it out for trash or try to sell it online.

The ‘proper’ method for purchasing 16 gallon Kegs to be converted for home brewing is to go to ‘any’ brewery and ask to purchase a Keg from them that no longer is functional.  If they do not have any they will put you on a list for when they become available.  I’m told the wait in not too terribly long.

From the AHA

5 Homebrew Tips from a Dogfish Head Quality Technician

Great article however, water should have been included. #1 NO! NO! for me is municipal tap water with 150 – 300 different chemicals (from China) added to it, all ‘hiding’ under the names of ‘fluoride’ / ‘chloride’.