Moldy Wet Keezer SolutionSunday, December 12th, 2010
Here’s quick tip for your keezer if you are having moisture or mold problems. Purchase a moisture absorbing product like DampRid or DryRid and drop it in your keezer (clean your keezer first if it is moldy). You can find DampRid or a similar product at your local hardware store next to the cleaning products. I spent about $10 on this and I’m very pleased. My keezer is now bone dry and the mold has not returned.
Freezers are designed to operate below freezing. They naturally collect condensation on the interior walls. Normally the condensation freezes and builds up a thin layer of ice. When a freezer is hooked up to a temperature controller set between 34-50F, the moisture is kept inside the keezer. The higher temperature and humidity creates a breeding ground for bacteria and mold. When beer is spilled it gets even worse. Every drop of spilled beer can turn into a mini breeding colony in a matter of days. Do not try keeping a towel in the bottom, it will just trap moisture and make it worse.
My moisture problem eventually led me to completely clean out my keezer. I let it dry out for about a week after cleaning it. I caulked the interior joints where water would seep into. When the caulk was dry I used an exterior primer paint to coat the surfaces to hide scrapes and rust spots that had developed. Two coats did the trick. It looks brand new inside. With the damp rid bucket in the keezer, it is now completely dry when in operation. I’m not sure how long the bucket will last me. It cost about $10. I set the Damp Rid on the hump so it is not taking up valuable storage space for kegs.
There are other products out there besides DampRid. I looked into buying reusable crystals that you microwave when they change color. There are also electronic devices that you can plug-in every so often to purge moisture. After reading reviews I decided I didn’t want to spend the money for a large unit, and choose to ignore the cheapo units. The cheapo units would require plugging in every one or two weeks, and that would be a hassle. The smaller products are designed for gun safes or closets. An environment like a kezzer where moisture is constantly collecting requires a stronger solution. I also wanted a hands off solution, so the bucket did the trick.
For my setup, I am using a picnic tap to dispense beer from my corny kegs. It takes extra care to keep beer from spilling. I keep a rag inside the keezer to set the picnic tap on so it absorbs any beer left in the spout of the tap. The rag is also handy to wipe up spills.
It might be possible to purchase moisture absorbing crystals in bulk. I believe it is just Calcium Chloride. Maybe one of our readers knows more about this?
13 Responses to “Moldy Wet Keezer Solution”
I have been keeping a small towel folded up and placed on one of the corners of my freezer to keep the lid propped up about 1″. I just open the lid, set a small towel on one of the corners and then close the lid on top of the towel leaving a small gap between the lid and the freezer. The freezer still remains at the temperature that I set it to and the small gap in the lid allows the moisture to escape without causing mold. I have been doing this for the past couple of weeks and the inside of the freezer has remained dry with no signs of mold anymore.
By Garry Spencer on Dec 15, 2010
That is good news and worth a try if there is no space or access to a moisture absorber. I would wonder how much extra power it uses, and it might only be effective in certain climates.
By Larry on Dec 21, 2010
I am sure the lid propping would only be a reasonable solution in certain areas. I forgot to mention that my freezer is located in a closet inside my house so it isn’t exposed to extreme temperature changes. I actually liked your idea better and purchased the smaller 10oz container of DampRid for around $3 at Home Depot. My freezer has also stayed bone dry even with the 10oz size. My freezer looks to be about the same size that you are using based on your picture.
By Garry Spencer on Dec 22, 2010
question about the painting you said you did you’re talking about the inside? was it a spray paint, or did you use a brush? was that difficult?
By Tim on Dec 28, 2010
I painted the inside, with a brush. It took about two minutes per coat. Did two coats. Compared to painting a bedroom, very easy.
By Larry on Dec 28, 2010
I use DampRid too. But for the big jobs (due to condensation) I’ll pull out the kegs and use a mop.
A towel on the floor of the keezer works well too. You can just pull it out and wring it out, replace it with a clean, dry towel and wash the one you just removed.
By Bill on Jun 14, 2011
For those little spills you get when disconnecting the QD’s, just keep a couple of wash cloths or paper towels handy to clean those up.
By Bill on Jun 14, 2011
Absolutely, don’t rely on damp rid for an actual spill. Just use it to keep moisture from building up naturally in the keezer. Its been six months and I’m still on the same bucket of damp rid, keezer is bone dry.
If you leave a towel in there too long without damp rid or similar chemical dehumidifier, the towel will get moldy.
By Larry on Jun 15, 2011
Well, that bucket of damp rid finally gave out. For the price of $10 it only lasted about 10 months. I switched to a cheaper system, which uses Calcium Chloride beads and a drip tray. My local hardware store sells bags of the CaCl for about $5 so we’ll see how long a bag lasts.
By Larry on Oct 22, 2011
This remains a pertinent topic. I just pulled out an empty keg and found the towel I’d been using was covered in little mold colonies (I’d be willing to bet they were all areas where beer had dripped previously). I will be going to the hardware store tomorrow to pick some of this up. It’s going to be more important now, as I’ll be dual-purposing my keezer to ferment lagers soon. I’m glad I found this article when I did. Perfect timing…
By SailorTodd on Jun 17, 2012
Just cleaned out my keezer after making two keg batches over the summer (busier summer than expected so couldn’t make more). The wife and I left for a month but told the housemates to drink the keg. I came back to about a 1/2 inch of liquid and bacterial film at the base. I’m looking to grab the damp rid, but notice in the picture you have it sitting on the upper level of the keezer. This is where my co2 tank is located (encased by a diy box to prevent it from falling).
Just wondering if the damp rid can sit at the base level and still provide the preventitive moisture intake or does it need to be elevated?
Cheers from a newbie keezer user – so glad to be away from bottling!
Ps. I should mention we live in Montreal, QC. Temps fluctuate significantly and i currently have the keezer outside. Highly doubtful we will have it running in the winter as no space inside… but we do have quails that live outside, so maybe i could shovel a path if folks in a similar climate/scenario have been successful to have a keezer running in negative temps outside…
By Calvin on Sep 18, 2021