Regular beer line cleaning may seem a hassle but it's a vital part of pouring the perfect pint and keeping happy customers returning to your establishment. Whether it’s beer or real ale you’re pouring, looking after your beer lines will make sure every drink makes it to the customer tasting as perfect as possible.
Why you must keep beer lines clean
Simply put, cleaning beer lines keeps beer tasting great. It also prevents the build up of bacteria and solid deposits. Without cleaning beer lines properly, the taste can be tainted and ‘beer stones’ may appear as residue in customers’ pints.
How often should you clean beer lines?
Don’t wait until beer lines clearly need cleaning, or for complaints to come rolling in. Beer lines should be cleaned weekly, forming a regular part of your bar’s maintenance routine and keeping your pint pouring on point.
Manual vs. automated beer line cleaning
There are two options when it comes to types of beer line cleaning; manual and automated.
Manual beer line cleaning can be reasonably time consuming, and requires teaching staff how to do this effectively. The process includes rinsing lines with water, soaking in cleaning fluid for around half an hour and then rinsing with clean water before use. Manual line cleaning costs less to set up than automating the process, however you do have to dispose of any beer which is in the lines in order to clean them, which can impact profit margins.
Automated beer line cleaning costs more to initially set up, however it makes it easy for any member of staff to do the job. With the ability to select specific cleaning programs and run them remotely, it can save time and also keep the process consistent with the same strength of cleaning solution and options for various cleaning cycles. Automated beer line cleaning also reduces wasted beer during the process, saving money in the long run.
Food for thought
Use the correct strength of cleaning solution to avoid impairing the taste of the beer. It must be strong enough to clean the lines thoroughly, but not strong enough to leave a lingering taste
Don’t forget to clean the beer nozzles as well, as these can also contaminate your beer