Brew Haven DIY Series: Four Port Keg Line Cleaner

From Michael Davies…

I built a four port keezer line cleaner modeled after a suggestion from my good friend Pierre Margraff. After buying a ⅕ HP sump pump, I tried to pump cleaning fluid through the four faucet lines in series to clean them all at once. It was apparent that it wasn’t going to work as I anticipated due to the accumulated resistance of 40’ of tubing plus all the small openings of the quick disconnects. By the time the liquid came out the last faucet, it was barely a trickle; I wanted a more robust flow to recirculate the cleaner. Pierre suggested running the lines in parallel instead of in series such that a manifold provided each faucet its own dedicated port and service line. This would greatly reduce the overall resistance and increase flow to each faucet. He described a cleaning manifold he created for a local brewery with great success and suggested a similar design using a PVC 4-port manifold from an online hot tub supply store and finishing it from parts found at Home Depot. I started thinking about building this manifold from parts I could find locally but couldn’t really find the proper pieces. By chance I was meandering down the gardening aisle when I spotted exactly what I needed to use to go onto the pump: a 4-port garden hose splitter, each with its own built in ball valve. This screwed on the top of the pump, all I needed to finish it up was to attach garden hose barbs to the ports.

I used 4 female ⅝” garden hose mending kits and attached four pieces of ½” silicone tubing to them and onto the nozzles of my Intertap faucets.

Everything fit right but would it work as I envisioned or would I be disappointed yet again? I put the pump into a bucket of water, connected all the pieces together, put the ends of all the lines (minus the QD’s) in an empty bucket, and turned it on. Amazingly it worked and worked well!

The water was pumped into the faucets and came out of all the tubing in a very robust manner with no leaks anywhere. I emptied about 3 gallons of water in 30 seconds, more or less. I then poured beer line cleaner into the pump bucket and recirculated it for 15 minutes. Another rinsing run and I recirculated starsan through the system for another 15 minutes. A final rinse and then blew the lines out with CO2 and it was done. I reconnected the QD’s and poured a homebrew to celebrate. The whole process took an hour and a half but it can definitely be shortened as this was my learning curve trial. Thank you Pierre! Here is the list of parts:

⅕ HP sump pump- $43 Amazon Prime
4 way garden hose splitter manifold- $16 Home Depot
4- ⅝” female garden hose mending kits- $8
Approx 3’ of ½” silicone tubing cut into 4 short pieces- $6  or so @ LHBS
Some of these parts can be found for cheaper if you look around but the pump is the cheapest I could find so definitely consider it.

 

 

Please follow and like us:
No comments yet.

Leave a Reply