How do you clean plate chillers?

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Nosybear, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,368
    Likes Received:
    6,598
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    I have a plate chiller for my new brewery. As far as chilling the wort, love it! It's fast and doesn't waste a lot of water. But I have the nagging fear that gunk will get trapped in it, either plugging the chiller or contributing to off-flavors. I could bag my hops or use a hop spider but that seems to be defeating the point. Does anyone else use a plate chiller and how do you clean it?

    I have mine soaking in lye solution right now....
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    7,767
    Likes Received:
    3,976
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    IT Managment
    Location:
    The Ozark Mountains of Missouri
    run hot pbw 180F or higher through it for 10 minutes, then switch directions for another 10 then start with a clean solution and do it all over again, it took me about 4 tries this way to clean mine that had been sitting in the attic for a couple of years, yours won’t be this bad but I finally got it clean
     
  3. ChicoBrewer

    ChicoBrewer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    Messages:
    908
    Likes Received:
    912
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Healthcare IT Manager
    Location:
    Chico, CA
    I don't have one but I hear people put them in the oven to dry...
     
  4. uk_brewer

    uk_brewer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2013
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    396
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    West Dundee, IL
    Immediately backflush the chiller once you’ve finished. Then same as Ozark, recirculate pbw, followed by hot water rinse and then star San or saniclean.
     
  5. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2015
    Messages:
    830
    Likes Received:
    806
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Big Lake MN
    #5 HighVoltageMan!, Apr 23, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2019
    I have used them and your right about hops plugging them. Back flushing right away and PBW is the best, but I'm not sure PBW is needed every brew if you sanitize with boiling water or the hot wort itself.

    If you brew and it gets plugged in the middle of cooling your batch, I have removed them from the boil kettle and back flushed them with tap water. Once it's opened up again, circulate hot wort though it for a minute or so, returning the hot wort to the boil kettle. It's a fast way to sanitize on the fly.

    Edit: I forgot to mention that the cooling water needs to be off when sanitizing with hot wort.
     
  6. Hogarthe

    Hogarthe Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2014
    Messages:
    528
    Likes Received:
    264
    Trophy Points:
    63
    I would say pbw is needed every brew. Only time I wouldn't use it is if you were doing a second batch the same day, then you could just back flush with water. I wouldn't chance leaving crud on there to dry on.
     
  7. atoughram

    atoughram New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    Puyallup, Washington, USA
    I've got a wort strainer inline with mine and then I backflush it after I'm done. I'll run PBW every once in awhile and have tried recircing caustic through it too.
     

Share This Page

arrow_white