What Can I Use~Besides Starsan ????

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by Larry82052, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. Larry82052

    Larry82052 Initiate (129) Feb 17, 2017 Texas

    I know Star San does a good job,my problem with it ,it makes glass very slick,I have dropped a few bottles because of that.What product can I switch to that is more USER friendly?? I use to use 2 ozs bleach to 5 gallons of water and rinsed well and never had problems,thought about that,but Rinsing is very well is needed where that is used,It might be 1 oz of bleach would be ok because I thin k I read somewhere water to bleach ration is 25 parts per million,sounds like a lot of water and still have protection,,thought? I know I will change,just not sure to what tho. Using Bleach cause you to handle bottlers twice as well.
     
  2. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (8,653) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I'm simply going to point out that I'm against using bleach for several reasons:
    • When mixed with ammonia, bleach creates a deadly gas and even an explosive.
    • Benzoyl peroxide, used in some acne products, tooth whitening and hair dye, is a potential carcinogen banned in Europe.
    • Chlorine dioxide, used primarily to bleach wood pulp, is also used to bleach flour and to disinfect water. It is banned in Europe and Australia.
    • Not that we plan on drinking it as who could get passed the fumes, but ingestion of bleach causes corrosive damage to the tissues of the gastrointestinal tract,.
    • Chlorination of drinking water can oxidize organic contaminants that are carcinogenic.
    • Chlorine, a gas at room temperature, makes breathing in bleach very plausible in most homes. In this form, chlorine can create dioxins, a known cancer-causing compound also related to birth defects, miscarriage, infertility, diabetes, and immune disorders.
    • Many paper products in the United States are bleached with chlorine gas or chlorine derivatives. These chlorine chemicals are known to create dioxins as a by-product of the bleaching process, which is toxic.
    • Smelling bleach increases asthma and allergy symptoms because of the likelihood of inhalation. It can also cause wheezing, bronchospasm and even pulmonary edema, a lung condition that prevents enough oxygen from entering the blood.
    • Pets and birds are especially vulnerable to the effects of chlorine as their smaller air capacity could allow their lungs to fill with the vapors.
    • Bleach is highly corrosive to the skin, lungs and eyes, as well as other materials.
     
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  3. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    I have been brewing for over 20 years and I have been sanitizing with bleach and water over that entire time. When I first started homebrewing I do not think that StarSan was available then; if it was I was unaware of it.

    I always rinse with very hot water. I personally would never consider not rinsing.

    I recognize that there is a very long list against using bleach in the above post but as with almost anything the devil is in the details. Do not overuse bleach and take appropriate steps; for example I wear rubber gloves when 'working' with the bleach.

    Cheers!
     
  4. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    Honestly, PBW/Oxiclean makes glass much more slick/slippery than StarSan. I've never had an issue with StarSan causing me to drop anything. What kind of glass are you dropping? How are you sanitizing said glass?
     
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  5. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    Justin, he posted above:

    "I have dropped a few bottles because of that."

    Cheers!
     
  6. WV_Charles_Homebrew

    WV_Charles_Homebrew Initiate (129) May 17, 2017 West Virginia

    I got my start in homebrewing with a Mr. Beer kit, and while their ingredients are over priced and not the best in quality, the no rinse powdered sanitize they sell on their site is pretty good and is my go-to for cleaning/sanitizing. I buy it in bulk from their site and get the rest of my brew supplies elsewhere.
     
  7. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    So then, @Larry82052 how are you sanitizing your bottles that makes them slippery?
     
  8. Granitebeard

    Granitebeard Initiate (149) Aug 24, 2016 Maine

    I like bleach based on the price point. Not much better then that I have found.

    I have started to used Starsan though because I am lazy. I used to clean my bottles then sanitize them so twice as long in front of the sink/tub... With Starsan, I clean once then let dry then spray with Starsan, and fill with beer. I was filling a unused bucket with 5 or 6 gallons of water and the needed amount of Starsan, but after 3 or 4 uses, it looked gross and grey so I would dump it and in a couple months was looking at buying more. Since buying a good sized spray bottle, I have been using less and and it is much easier. I think a spray bottle gets me 3 batches, start to bottle, and I am still on the "medium" sized bottle of starsan I bought in October of last year.
     
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  9. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    I would stay away from Bleach because when it is mixed with fermentation it causes nasty chlorophenols, so you have to rinse well. The rinse water isn't sanitized unless it is boiled and then chilled in a sealed environment. Rinsing with any type of tap water reintroduces bacteria.
     
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  10. Witherby

    Witherby Aspirant (240) Jan 5, 2011 Massachusetts
    Subscriber

    I used Iodophor for a long time before switching to starsan. It is no rinse and safe to use. And I also use it to do an iodine starch test on my mash.
     
  11. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

  12. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    The hot water in my hot water tank is fairly well sanitized.

    Cheers!
     
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  13. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (152) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    I use StarSan most of the time, but I use bleach once in a while, just to mix things up a bit and help assure that any critters are dead. Reason being, StarSan is acidic, bleach is caustic. As a general rule, caustic is more effective at killing stuff. Bleach has to be rinsed off very well, whereas StarSan is no-rinse... but also less effective based on what I *think* I know. I'm not much of a chemical engineer anymore but I used to play one in college. :slight_smile:
     
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  14. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    Is it constantly above 175?
     
  15. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    The water in my hot water heater has:
    • Chloramine
    • It is hot but not at 175 degrees F
    The water is by no means sterile but it is sanitary.

    I have been rinsing my homebrewing equipment in this manner for over 20 years (I will be homebrewing batch number 398 in a few days).

    I am confident in stating this works.

    Cheers!
     
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  16. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    Chloramine can also cause chlorophenols in fermentation. Not saying you don't make good beer this way, or that you're lying. Personally, I don't invest the time, money, and effort on a batch of beer and then add a compound to it that is known to cause off flavors. StarSan isn't that expensive, and works in minimal amounts, and can be stored for periods of time, and doesn't require rinsing.
     
  17. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (4,265) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Subscriber

    For sanitizing my carboys and other equipment, I use Star San .

    For the batches I bottle, I find the foaming is a pain so for sanitizing bottles I use Iodophor for that. It's no-rinse, 1oz for 5 gallons of water.
    http://www.keystonehomebrew.com/shop/iodophor-no-rinse-sanitizer-1-liter.html
     
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  18. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    Thanks! I appreciate not being called a liar.
    Cloramine will only cause perceptible chlorophenols if it is present in sufficient amounts. Rinsing off the equipment does not cause this issue.

    Now, if somebody used water which has chloramine as their brewing water, then chlorophenols could possibly be an issue.

    In homebrewing there is a fine line between being cautious and being paranoid.

    Cheers!
     
  19. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (152) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    FWIW, I've used chlorine bleach dozens of times over many years, and never experienced chlorophenol, prolly because I'm smart enough to rinse it off very very thoroughly. If you do a half-ass rinse, then beware. When in doubt, rinse twice as much as you think you should, and you'll be fine.
     
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  20. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (8,653) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    Does no one use iodophor anymore?
     
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  21. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (152) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Is it cheaper than bleach? No? No. Plus I hear it causes staining, which might not be a big deal but is also sort of silly given the other alternatives. IMO.
     
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  22. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (1,081) Aug 25, 2009 Oregon
    Subscriber

    I do on occasion. Usually when cleaning my taps. I prefer StarSan as you only need to foam to contact the surface and you can keep it as longs as the pH is in range. Iodophor you have to mix up an entire fermenter worth (15.5 gals for me) and let is sit, then dump it.
     
  23. mikehartigan

    mikehartigan Aspirant (295) Apr 9, 2007 Illinois

    Why are you sanitizing the outside of the bottles?
    Judging from some of the comments above, lots of people are wasting an awful lot of StarSan. I fill a 32 oz spray bottle with a dilution of StarSan and RO water (distilled would work fine) and simply spray the surfaces I need to be bug free. I use, literally, drops of product per batch, which costs pennies. An 8 oz bottle can last years when used this way. I've been brewing for 10 years and I'm only on my 3rd 8oz bottle. The previous two I discarded when thy were half full because the cap broke.
     
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  24. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,593) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Supporter Subscriber

    Try iodophor if you think Starsan could be the cause of your butter fingers. Bleach would work too, and while I am unconcerned about health side effects, bleach is a pain to use. because it requires extra rinsing and care. I agree with @JackHorzempa that bleach as a sanitizer is fundamentally viable, but you can't lapse or you will have bleach stained clothes or other potential impacts that add to the cost of your brewday. I'm the type who is likely to lapse, and by the sounds of that broken glass, you are too.
     
  25. MostlyNorwegian

    MostlyNorwegian Devotee (493) Feb 5, 2013 Illinois

    Bleach. Just make very sure that you rinse every thing it comes into contact with extremely well.
    It has its way of finding your shirts in weird spots.
     
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  26. Larry82052

    Larry82052 Initiate (129) Feb 17, 2017 Texas

    I read something up above that caught my eye,,Star San just inside the bottles,the whole bottle doesn't have to be sanitized,,great idea,my buddy just called and said I agree Star san is slippery on Bottles,,thanks everyone!!
     
  27. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Aspirant (267) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Chlorine disinfects and cleans beer related tool, bottles and other accessories. Starsan does not clean and using hot water for rinsing chlorine treated items will wash off chlorine and chlorine by products.

    Remember without chlorine a lot of public drinking water would have harmful bacteria present and would be subject to oil water notices for as long as choloform is present. Not to mention other harmful pathogens.
     
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  28. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    As I posted previously: "...as with almost anything the devil is in the details." I made mention earlier that I wear rubber gloves when dealing with bleach. The other thing I do is wear old clothes when I sanitize with bleach. For those of you who do not own old clothes maybe Star San is the choice for you?:astonished:

    Cheers!
     
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  29. corbmoster

    corbmoster Aspirant (253) Dec 15, 2014 Texas
    Beer Trader

    I'm sure it's been mentioned but, well... That's what happens when glass bottles get wet Larry. They are more slippery. Bottles that are wet with star San are not more slippery as opposed to just water, if you diluted the star san according to the directions. Bottles that are wet with PDW are more slippery that just water or star San though. So be really careful then. But, if you think star San is a problem, you can try iodaphore. Just make sure you follow the directions when you dilute it.
     
  30. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,593) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Supporter Subscriber

    After a few lapses with bleach, all my clothes were old clothes. Problem solved. Still not no-rinse, though.

    I find it funny how we all back different approaches that others might question and question approaches that others find viable. Plenty of room for everyone here. Well, as long as everyone rehydrates their dry yeast and skips transfers to secondary fermenters.
     
  31. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    As head brewers of our own breweries we all get to decide.

    For the record I never posted in this thread that a homebrewer should never use Star San. I did post that I use bleach and rinse with hot water and I have never experienced an issue using that method.

    Cheers!
     
  32. mikehartigan

    mikehartigan Aspirant (295) Apr 9, 2007 Illinois

    Sorry, I'm not biting today :stuck_out_tongue:
     
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  33. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,274) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    I use it.
     
  34. scottakelly

    scottakelly Devotee (477) May 9, 2007 Ohio

    I still use iodophor. Why? Because that's what was recommended years ago when I started and it's just habit at this point. Plus I've had the same container for several years now and this container will likely last me many years more. At that point, though, I will likely switch to StarSan. The only down side to me of iodophor is the two minute wait time to sanitize. I've never had discoloration issues.
     
  35. Jaguar10301

    Jaguar10301 Initiate (148) Mar 1, 2010 Maine

    I sanitize bottles in my dishwasher, because I got tired of making up a big batch of starsan. I prefer to use use my spray bottle of it for most things...
     
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  36. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    You might save a minute using Star San?

    Below is from the Five Star website concerning Star San:

    “GENERAL USE DIRECTIONS

    All surfaces should be cleaned and rinsed before sanitizing with STAR SAN.

    Directions: A dilution of 1 ounce to 5 gallons of water, STAR SAN will provide 300 ppm of dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid. After 1 to 2 minutes contact time, drain sanitizing solution equipment thoroughly. Do not rinse. If using Star San in CIP, proper water balance must be maintained or your pump may cavitate. If used at a rate of more than 300 ppm, a potable rinse is required”

    Cheers!
     
  37. Jaguar10301

    Jaguar10301 Initiate (148) Mar 1, 2010 Maine

    Odd I've always read it is pretty instant. I definitely don't use 1-2 minutes, I spreay my equipment, I guess they might stay wet for a minute or two, I've never had any infection problems...

    Edit:

    A post from another board, says the owner has said you only need 30 seconds, the 1-2 minutes is a "legal thing"

    http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=12336
     
  38. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (2,973) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Supporter

    One of the posts from the homebrewtalk thread:

    "Charley Talley is a really great guy. He responded to an email that I sent him on this very subject 2 minutes after I sent it! He confirmed to me what Dude stated above. That Five Star Chemicals must state the longest contact time required, for legal purposes.

    What I mean by that, and what he stated to me in the email was that when something is totally submerged in a Star-San solution, that the contact time is 30 seconds. If it is applied as a film, such as, being sprayed on, or for example, a small amount in a carboy and swirled around to "wet" the entire inner surface of the carboy, then the contact time is between 1-2 minutes."

    I am not a lawyer so I do not understand the whole "legal thing" aspect.

    As you can read in the above post it appears that the contact time is application specific:
    • 30 seconds if the item is totally submerged
    • A longer contact time is needed if you just "wet" the item
    Cheers!
     
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  39. scottakelly

    scottakelly Devotee (477) May 9, 2007 Ohio

    @JackHorzempa @Jaguar10301 So I wonder if the iodophor recommendation of 2 minutes is likely not necessary as well? I know there have been plenty of times I have not waited two minutes (plus its not like I am starting a timer or something) and have never noticed a problem doing so.
     
  40. Jaguar10301

    Jaguar10301 Initiate (148) Mar 1, 2010 Maine

    Yeah I read further down after I posted. Who knows, I know my process has never caused an infection knock on wood. I'm sure plenty of times I spray and let it sit for a minute or two anyways. But i'm also sure I've sprayed a hydrometer or thermometer and put it straight in too...
     
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