One line foams, the other is perfect

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One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby caselas » Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:31 pm

So I have a dual-tap kegerator. My own kegs of homebrew always pour nicely, even on the first pour of the day. On my other tap, I always keep a keg (from BevMo) of something different, currently Anchor Steam, previously Racer 5.

Though my homebrew pours nicely, my other kegs are always quite foamy, on every single pour. I'm guessing it isn't a tower cooling issue, since it only happens to one line. My dual pressure gauge reads 10 psi on both kegs, which I believe is the proper pressure for a commercial keg. I should also note, the commercial keg has been sitting in the fridge (at 40F) for a couple weeks now, so it's not like it was freshly rolled around or anything.

Any ideas what could be causing this?
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby pclemon » Mon Feb 16, 2015 7:12 am

caselas wrote:So I have a dual-tap kegerator. My own kegs of homebrew always pour nicely, even on the first pour of the day. On my other tap, I always keep a keg (from BevMo) of something different, currently Anchor Steam, previously Racer 5.

Though my homebrew pours nicely, my other kegs are always quite foamy, on every single pour. I'm guessing it isn't a tower cooling issue, since it only happens to one line. My dual pressure gauge reads 10 psi on both kegs, which I believe is the proper pressure for a commercial keg. I should also note, the commercial keg has been sitting in the fridge (at 40F) for a couple weeks now, so it's not like it was freshly rolled around or anything.

Any ideas what could be causing this?


Swap the taps and see if the commercial keg foams off the other tap as well. That will at least help you isolate if it's a faucet issue.

The other consideration is that although your regulator is set for 10PSI, the commercial kegs could well have been carbonated at something above that. For example, if the commercial keg were at 15PSI, when you connect it to your regulator at 10PSI, the keg does NOT equalize out to 10PSI, it stays at 15. If there is a CO2 shut off valve you can turn off for that line I would suggest doing so and see if the foaming issue gets better over a little time. As the keg empties the pressure will lessen and the beer will flow slower.
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby Brewtime » Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:41 pm

pclemon wrote:
caselas wrote:So I have a dual-tap kegerator. My own kegs of homebrew always pour nicely, even on the first pour of the day. On my other tap, I always keep a keg (from BevMo) of something different, currently Anchor Steam, previously Racer 5.

Though my homebrew pours nicely, my other kegs are always quite foamy, on every single pour. I'm guessing it isn't a tower cooling issue, since it only happens to one line. My dual pressure gauge reads 10 psi on both kegs, which I believe is the proper pressure for a commercial keg. I should also note, the commercial keg has been sitting in the fridge (at 40F) for a couple weeks now, so it's not like it was freshly rolled around or anything.

Any ideas what could be causing this?


Swap the taps and see if the commercial keg foams off the other tap as well. That will at least help you isolate if it's a faucet issue.

The other consideration is that although your regulator is set for 10PSI, the commercial kegs could well have been carbonated at something above that. For example, if the commercial keg were at 15PSI, when you connect it to your regulator at 10PSI, the keg does NOT equalize out to 10PSI, it stays at 15. If there is a CO2 shut off valve you can turn off for that line I would suggest doing so and see if the foaming issue gets better over a little time. As the keg empties the pressure will lessen and the beer will flow slower.


most likely you will need to bleed the commecial keg
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby tookalisten » Mon Feb 16, 2015 4:22 pm

I have a buddy at work who has this exact same problem this past week. He bled off the commercial keg, shook it, bled it off some more - then reconnected it back to his system. This resolved his problem; so the commercial keg was over-carb'd
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby Brewtime » Tue Feb 17, 2015 6:55 am

tookalisten wrote:I have a buddy at work who has this exact same problem this past week. He bled off the commercial keg, shook it, bled it off some more - then reconnected it back to his system. This resolved his problem; so the commercial keg was over-carb'd


that is my experience that the commercial kegs are over carbed
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby pclemon » Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:26 pm

Brewtime wrote:
tookalisten wrote:I have a buddy at work who has this exact same problem this past week. He bled off the commercial keg, shook it, bled it off some more - then reconnected it back to his system. This resolved his problem; so the commercial keg was over-carb'd


that is my experience that the commercial kegs are over carbed


So if he's consistently serving 1 commercial keg and one homebrew keg one option is to have to de-gas the commerical keg each time you switch it out but another is to set up your system with longer serving lines and carbonate your homebrew to the same level .
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby Brewtime » Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:06 am

I found that you need just enough CO2 to push the beer on a commercial keg I have seen where it set at 12 PSI after time the keg get overcharged and foamy. longer line may help. Grant you I have seen this on a friends kegerator who does not brew.
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Re: One line foams, the other is perfect

Postby BrewBum » Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:19 am

Find out from the manufacture/brewery what the carb level was when you got it and tune your system to that. They should be able to give you a pretty good volume range.

I would say longer lines, lower the pressure, get both kegs leveled out and go from there.

Line length would be the easiest thing you could do thought. Generally commercial beer is kegged higher than homebrew because generally homebrew is not carbed enough to avoid the foaming issue.

Carb calculators are a huge help with this. Balancing a system isn't easy but on yours it shouldn't be too bad as it is just a small fridge. In a system like yours line length and ID will make the most difference.
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