How to Clean a Corny Keg

To clean a corny keg, rinse it with hot water and then soak it in a cleaning solution for 20 minutes. Next, scrub the keg with a keg brush, paying special attention to the dip tube, posts, and rubber parts.

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Finally, rinse the keg with hot water and allow it to air dry. Cleaning a corny keg is an essential step in maintaining its performance and ensuring the quality of your beer. By following these simple steps, you can keep your keg in great condition, ready for your next batch of homebrew.

Choosing The Right Cleaning Solution

Cleaning your corny keg is an important step to ensure your homebrewed beer stays fresh and free from any contaminants. When it comes to selecting a cleaning solution, there are several factors to consider. In this article, we will explore different cleaning solutions and their effectiveness, as well as the factors you should keep in mind when choosing the right cleaning solution for your corny keg.

Different Cleaning Solutions And Their Effectiveness

There are various cleaning solutions available in the market, each with its own effectiveness in removing dirt, stubborn residue, and sanitizing your corny keg. Let’s take a look at some common cleaning solutions and how they work:

1. Chemical Cleaners

Chemical cleaners, such as PBW (Powdered Brewery Wash) and B-Brite, are popular choices among homebrewers. These cleaners are specifically formulated to break down organic matter, remove beer stone, and eliminate bacteria and infection-causing agents. They are highly effective and offer a thorough cleaning solution for your corny keg.

2. Vinegar Solution

Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent that can be used to clean your corny keg. It has acidic properties that help dissolve mineral deposits and remove stubborn stains. However, vinegar may not be as effective in completely sanitizing your keg compared to chemical cleaners. It is best suited for regular maintenance rather than deep cleaning.

3. Oxiclean

Oxiclean, commonly used as a laundry detergent, can also be utilized to clean corny kegs. It contains oxygen-based bleach that aids in breaking down organic matter and removing stains. While Oxiclean is effective, it is essential to thoroughly rinse the keg afterward to avoid any residue that may affect the taste of your beer.

Factors To Consider When Selecting A Cleaning Solution

While different cleaning solutions offer varying degrees of effectiveness, it is crucial to consider certain factors when selecting the most suitable cleaning solution for your corny keg. Here are some important factors to keep in mind:

  1. Sanitizing Power: Check whether the cleaning solution has the ability to effectively sanitize your keg and eliminate any potential bacteria or contaminants.
  2. Compatibility: Ensure that the cleaning solution is compatible with the material of your corny keg. Some solutions may cause corrosion or damage if not specifically designed for the keg’s material.
  3. Ease of Use: Consider the convenience of using the cleaning solution. Is it easy to mix? Does it require any additional equipment? A user-friendly cleaning solution will simplify the maintenance process.
  4. Residue-Free: Look for a cleaning solution that does not leave behind any residue after rinsing. Residue can impact the flavor of your beer, affecting its quality.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision and choose the most appropriate cleaning solution for your corny keg. Remember, regular cleaning and maintenance will ensure that your homebrewed beer remains fresh, delicious, and free from any potential contaminants.

Disassembling The Corny Keg

When it comes to cleaning a Corny keg, disassembling the keg is an important step that allows for a thorough cleaning of all its parts. Disassembling the keg requires careful attention to detail to ensure each component is properly cleaned. In this section, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of disassembling a Corny keg and provide you with some tips to make the disassembly process easier while preventing any damage to the keg.

Step-by-step Process Of Disassembling The Keg

Follow these simple steps to disassemble a Corny keg:

  1. 1. Begin by relieving the pressure in the keg. This can be done by slowly turning the pressure relief valve on top of the keg, ensuring any remaining pressure is released before proceeding.
  2. 2. Once the pressure is released, remove the keg’s lid by unscrewing it in a counterclockwise direction. Make sure to handle the lid carefully to avoid any damage.
  3. 3. With the lid removed, locate the keg’s dip tube. This is a cylindrical tube that extends into the keg and is responsible for drawing the liquid out. Gently wiggle the dip tube from side to side while pulling it upwards to remove it from the keg.
  4. 4. After removing the dip tube, the keg’s gas tube can be detached using a similar technique. Wiggle the gas tube while pulling it upwards to separate it from the keg.
  5. 5. Next, locate the keg’s O-rings. These are rubber seals that ensure a tight seal between the keg’s various components. Carefully remove the O-rings from their grooves using a flathead screwdriver or a similar tool.
  6. 6. Finally, remove the keg’s posts, which are the metal fittings on the top and bottom of the keg. Unscrew the posts using a wrench or a specifically designed keg wrench.

Tips For Easy Disassembly And Prevention Of Damage

To make the disassembly process easier and ensure no damage is caused to the keg, consider the following tips:

  • • Before starting the disassembly, thoroughly clean the keg’s exterior to avoid any dirt or debris from entering the keg during the process.
  • • Use caution and gentle force when removing the dip tube and gas tube to avoid any bending or warping of these fragile components.
  • • When removing the O-rings, be careful not to damage them, as they play a crucial role in maintaining a tight seal.
  • • After disassembling the keg, keep the components organized and clean them individually using appropriate cleaning agents and tools.
  • • When reassembling the keg, ensure each component is securely tightened, but avoid over-tightening, as it can lead to leaks or damage.

By following these steps and tips, you can easily disassemble a Corny keg and ensure it is thoroughly cleaned for your next batch of delicious homebrew.

Cleaning The Individual Parts

Cleaning the individual parts of a corny keg is an essential step in maintaining its hygiene. By disassembling, scrubbing, and sanitizing each component separately, you ensure a thorough and effective cleaning process, resulting in a fresh and bacteria-free keg.

How To Clean The Keg Body

Cleaning the keg body is an essential step in maintaining the freshness and quality of your beer. It helps remove any residual beer, dirt, or bacteria that may have accumulated over time. To clean the keg body, follow these simple steps:
  1. Start by disassembling the keg. Remove the lid, o-rings, and any other detachable parts.
  2. Fill a sink or large container with hot water and add a gentle cleaning solution. Avoid using harsh chemicals that could leave behind unwanted residues.
  3. Use a soft brush or sponge to scrub the inside of the keg body thoroughly. Pay attention to the areas around the keg posts and dip tube, as they are common spots for buildup.
  4. Rinse the keg body with clean water until all traces of the cleaning solution are gone.
  5. Pat dry the keg body with a clean towel or allow it to air dry completely before reassembling.

Cleaning The Dip Tube, Posts, And Poppets

The dip tube, posts, and poppets are crucial components of a corny keg that require regular cleaning. Neglecting these parts can lead to clogs, off-flavors, and an overall poor beer-drinking experience. Here’s how you can clean them:
  1. Remove the dip tube, posts, and poppets from the keg body.
  2. Place them in a container filled with hot water and cleaning solution.
  3. Allow the parts to soak for about 15-30 minutes to loosen any residue.
  4. Use a small brush or cloth to scrub the dip tube, posts, and poppets to remove any stubborn buildup.
  5. Rinse the parts thoroughly with clean water to remove any cleaning solution.
  6. Dry the dip tube, posts, and poppets completely before reassembling the keg.

Ensuring Thorough Cleaning Of The Gas And Liquid Tubes

The gas and liquid tubes play a vital role in the carbonation and dispensing of your beer. Properly cleaning these tubes is essential to prevent contamination and maintain the quality of your brew. Here’s how you can ensure thorough cleaning:
  1. Detach the gas and liquid tubes from the keg body.
  2. Fill a container with hot water and cleaning solution.
  3. Place both tubes into the container and let them soak for about 15-30 minutes.
  4. Use a brush or cloth to clean the inside and outside of the tubes, removing any residue or debris.
  5. Rinse the tubes with clean water until they are completely free from any cleaning solution.
  6. Dry the gas and liquid tubes thoroughly before reattaching them to the keg body.
Remember, a clean corny keg is essential for enjoying your homebrewed beer to the fullest. By following these steps to clean the individual parts, you can ensure that your keg remains in top condition, allowing you to savor every sip of your favorite brew.

Soaking And Rinsing The Keg

When it comes to cleaning a corny keg, soaking and rinsing are crucial steps in maintaining its hygiene and ensuring the quality of your homebrew. In this section, we will discuss the importance of soaking the keg, the recommended soaking duration and techniques, and the proper rinsing process to remove any residue.

Importance Of Soaking The Keg

Soaking the keg is an essential step in cleaning as it helps to loosen and remove any stubborn residue or buildup that may be present inside the keg. By allowing the cleaning solution to penetrate and dissolve deposits, soaking ensures thorough cleaning and helps to eliminate any off-flavors or contaminants that could impact the taste and quality of your beer.

Recommended Soaking Duration And Techniques

For optimal results, it is recommended to soak the keg for a minimum of 15 to 30 minutes. However, if the keg has significant buildup or is not cleaned regularly, extending the soaking time to one hour can be beneficial. This extra duration allows the cleaning solution to work more effectively, ensuring a deep clean.

There are different techniques you can use for soaking the keg, depending on your preference and available resources. One popular method is to fill the keg with a cleaning solution made from a mixture of hot water and a non-abrasive cleaner, such as a brewery-approved keg cleaner or a homemade solution of water and baking soda or vinegar. The keg should be filled to the brim, ensuring that the entire interior is exposed to the cleaning solution.

Alternatively, if you have a keg cleaning kit, you can use a keg-sized cleaning brush attached to a keg cleaning pump. This method allows you to circulate the cleaning solution throughout the keg, thoroughly reaching all corners and surfaces. When using a keg cleaning pump, make sure to carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions for optimal results.

Proper Rinsing To Remove Any Residue

After soaking, it is crucial to properly rinse the keg to remove any residue or cleaning solution that may remain. Failure to do so can result in off-flavors or contamination in your beer. To ensure thorough rinsing, follow these steps:

  1. Empty the cleaning solution from the keg.
  2. Rinse the keg with hot water multiple times, ensuring all surfaces and components are thoroughly flushed.
  3. Inspect the keg for any remaining residue or particles. If necessary, repeat the rinsing process until the keg is clean and free of any debris.
  4. Finally, sanitize the keg using a food-grade sanitizer to kill any remaining bacteria or microorganisms that may be present.

By following these soaking and rinsing steps, you can ensure that your corny keg is thoroughly cleaned and ready for your next batch of homebrew. Remember, proper cleaning and maintenance are key to preserving the taste, quality, and longevity of your keg.

Assembling And Sanitizing The Keg

After thoroughly cleaning your corny keg, the next crucial step is to assemble it and sanitize it before using it again. Properly assembling and sanitizing the keg helps ensure the quality and safety of your homebrewed beer or other beverages. In this section, we will guide you through the steps to reassemble the keg after cleaning and emphasize the importance of sanitizing the keg before use. We will also recommend sanitizing solutions and techniques that you can apply for effective cleaning.

Steps To Reassemble The Keg After Cleaning

  1. Begin by ensuring that all the keg components are clean and dry.
  2. Next, locate the keg lid, which consists of a lid ring, pressure relief valve, and lid o-ring.
  3. Place the lid o-ring onto the keg lid, making sure it fits securely in its groove.
  4. Align the keg lid over the keg opening and press down firmly, ensuring a tight seal.
  5. Attach the lid ring to the keg by twisting it onto the keg threads in a clockwise direction. Make sure it is tightened securely.
  6. Finally, check the pressure relief valve by pressing on it to make sure it moves freely and is not stuck.

By following these simple steps, you can reassemble your corny keg and prepare it for the sanitization process.

Importance Of Sanitizing The Keg Before Use

Sanitizing the keg is a crucial step in the homebrewing process. It eliminates any potential bacteria, yeast, or other contaminants that could negatively impact the taste, quality, and safety of your beer. Proper sanitization helps prevent off-flavors and unexpected fermentation, ensuring that your beer turns out delicious and satisfying.

Even if your keg appears clean, it is essential to understand that harmful microorganisms can still be present. By taking the time to sanitize your keg, you reduce the risk of spoilage and improve the overall brewing experience.

Recommended Sanitizing Solutions And Techniques

When it comes to sanitizing solutions, there are various options available. Popular choices among homebrewers include:

Solution Recommended Technique
Sanitizing Solution A Dilute according to the manufacturer’s instructions and soak keg components for the recommended contact time.
Sanitizing Solution B Prepare a mixture as instructed, then use a spray bottle to thoroughly coat the keg’s interior and exterior surfaces.
Sanitizing Solution C Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines, ensuring that the solution covers all parts of the keg.

Regardless of the sanitizing solution you choose, ensure that you adhere to the recommended contact time and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Never rush the sanitization process, as it is essential to give the solution enough time to eliminate any potential contaminants effectively.

By following these steps to reassemble the keg after cleaning, understanding the importance of sanitizing the keg, and using the recommended sanitizing solutions and techniques, you can ensure that your corny keg is in perfect condition for your next batch of homebrewed beer.

How To Clean A Corny Keg


Frequently Asked Questions For How To Clean A Corny Keg

How Often Should I Clean My Corny Keg?

It is recommended to clean your corny keg after each use to maintain its freshness and prevent any potential build-up of residue or bacteria. Cleaning your keg regularly will ensure that your beverages taste their best and prolong the life of your keg.

What Should I Use To Clean My Corny Keg?

To clean your corny keg, you can use a mixture of warm water and a mild cleaning solution, such as PBW (Powdered Brewery Wash) or a similar product. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that can damage the keg’s interior or exterior surfaces.

Can I Clean My Corny Keg In The Dishwasher?

No, it is not recommended to clean your corny keg in the dishwasher. The high temperatures and harsh detergents used in dishwashers can cause damage to the keg’s rubber components and potentially affect its seal. It is best to hand clean your keg using the proper cleaning solution and tools.

How Do I Clean The Keg’s Dip Tube And Posts?

To clean the keg’s dip tube and posts, you can soak them in the cleaning solution for a few minutes, then use a brush or a small cleaning utensil to scrub away any residue or buildup. Rinse thoroughly with clean water afterward to ensure all traces of the cleaning solution are removed.


Cleaning a corny keg is crucial for maintaining its quality and ensuring a great tasting brew every time. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can easily clean your keg and eliminate any leftover residue or contaminants.

Regular cleaning will contribute to the longevity of your keg and the overall enjoyment of your homebrew. So, don’t hesitate to give your corny keg the attention it deserves and enjoy the benefits of a clean and fresh pour. Cheers!

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