What will happen if keg beer lines are not cleaned every 7 days?

Answered by Kyle Floyd

As an expert sommelier and brewer, I can tell you that neglecting to clean keg lines regularly can have detrimental effects on the quality and taste of the beer. The main concern when beer lines are not cleaned every 7 days is the growth of bacteria.

Bacteria, specifically beer-spoiling bacteria, can quickly multiply and thrive in the warm and moist environment of beer lines. These microorganisms may not pose a direct health risk, but they can certainly ruin the flavor and aroma of the beer. Nobody wants to drink a beer that tastes and smells unpleasant!

One of the common off-flavors caused by these bacteria is diacetyl. Diacetyl imparts a buttery taste and aroma to the beer, which is highly undesirable. Imagine taking a sip of your favorite beer and being greeted with a strong butter-like flavor instead of the crisp and refreshing taste you were expecting. It can be quite disappointing.

Another off-flavor that can arise from neglected beer lines is acetic acid. This gives the beer a sour and vinegary taste, reminiscent of spoiled or . Again, this is not a desirable characteristic in a beer, and it can completely ruin the experience of enjoying a pint.

Regular cleaning of beer lines is crucial in preventing the growth of these bacteria and the development of off-flavors. By adhering to a strict cleaning schedule, typically every 7 days, you can ensure that your beer lines remain clean and free from any unwanted microorganisms.

Cleaning beer lines involves flushing them with a cleaning solution that is specifically designed for this purpose. This solution helps to break down any buildup of , bacteria, and other organic material that may be present in the lines. It is important to thoroughly flush the lines with clean after using the cleaning solution to remove any residues.

In my own experiences as a brewer, I have seen firsthand the effects of neglecting to clean beer lines regularly. I once visited a bar where the beer lines had not been cleaned in several weeks. The beers I ordered had a noticeable off-flavor, which I later identified as diacetyl. It was disappointing to see such a great selection of beers being served with a subpar taste due to improper maintenance.

To summarize, neglecting to clean keg beer lines every 7 days can lead to the growth of bacteria, resulting in off-flavors such as diacetyl and acetic acid. Regular cleaning is essential to maintain the quality and taste of the beer, ensuring that it lives up to its full potential. So, if you want to enjoy the best beer experience possible, make sure those beer lines are properly cleaned on a regular basis!