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Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by pweis909, Apr 2, 2013.
10 lb CO2 tank drained in ~2 weeks.
Been there. I feel your pain.
Bummer. Those are the worst kind because the leak is so slow it makes it a bitch to find where it is.
You can check the kegs with some star san spray. Bubbles will show the leak.
I have had leaks at the regulator to keg interface, and at all of the regulator connections. Tighten those if in doubt.
Anything that can be put under water to look for bubbles should be.
I live my life in perpetual fear of keg leaks.
This happened to me (5 lb tank) with my very first tank. Turned out to be a brand spanking new leaking regulator. After that, I bought micromatic regulators and everything has been good.
This is one solution.
I'll definitely tighten anything that can be tightened. I'll probably just mix up some soap solution for the leak test. Putting the kegs underwater would be the follow up step, I guess.
I'm betting this leak is on a keg, as the regulator has held before. I'll consider the micromatic if I need to get a new regulator. The one I have ( http://www.midwestsupplies.com/double-co2-regulator.html ) seems pretty cheaply made compared to the ones I've used in research. And yet, at $130, it is maybe the most expensive piece of homebrew equipment I have ever bought.
Time to go exchange my tank
If by any chance it is a regulator problem I would recommend kegconnection.com
They worked with me to assemble a custom regulator at what I found to be a decent price fwiw.
I've had the same issue recently, and it was the regulator... but definitely do the soap solution test to see where you may be leaking
I've found the best way to check for leaks is to crank the pressure up to, say, 50 psi. Even the tiniest leaks will announce themselves with an audible hiss at this pressure. Tighten or repair anything that makes noise. Then spray with StarSan to find any that you can't hear (actually, anything that doesn't hiss at this pressure likely won't leak at serving pressure, but why ask for trouble?)
FWIW, space considerations notwithstanding, this is the only advantage of a smal CO2 tank over a bigger one. With a full 5# tank, your loss is limited to about $20. With a 20# tank, you can lose as much as $25!!! (obviously, this varies with your supplier)
When a molecule of CO2 leaves my tank until it escapes from my tap there are 14 connections. Multiply that by 5 lines and the trauma of finding a leak is pretty serious.
I am in the middle of a keezer build. Here's my home-made solution for checking the integrity of connections:
This is a spare gauge for about 10 bucks, threaded into a 1/4" female npt fitting with a 1/4" MFL output (Home Depot, $2). A short length of gas line is clamped onto two swivel nuts. I leave it hooked up to a spare gas quick disconnect.
Whenever I pressurize any new connections/fittings, I apply the test gauge, shut off or isolate the main tank, and leave it for at least 48 hours. This shows if you have a leak and gives you a starting point.
Problem solved? Fingers crossed.
I used mikehartigan's approach and cranked the pressure up.
Easy to hear and feel leaks at high pressure. Gas expansion cooling apparently can be detected by skin even in a 35 deg F cooler. There were two leaks at the regulator-gas-out connection: the threaded connection that attaches the hose barb to the regulator and the hose clamp both needed to be tightened.After tightening, no audible hisses, and the repair seemed to pass the soap test.
Perhaps I inadvertently bumped the regulator and lossened the connections? Maybe there is some value to those regulator cage thingees?
check check and recheck