Recently I decided that it might be fun to write about my experience brewing my own beer using the popular Cooper’s Home Brewing kit. This is the second part in our series for The Brew Club!
If you recall in the first post of our Brewing Beer at Home With the Coopers Home Brew Kit series, we basically got the kit, opened it up and checked the inventory. Everything that was on the contents list was in the box, so its safe to move on to step two!
Step two is cleaning. Its critically important to make sure that any item of equipment that is going to come into contact with your beer is sterilized, otherwise you risk contamination of your beer and a waste of a lot of time and effort. Kinda boring, but really important!
So, how do you sterilize sanitize, and what parts need to be sanitized?
Well, thankfully this can be pretty easy and there are some options as you will see. The easiest way to sterilize is to take the Cooper’s fermenter (big white jug) and add 1/2 cup of unscented bleach into the fermenter. Don’t use any orange smelling or floral smelling bleach! Just plain ‘ol bleach please! Also, you do not want to use any type of detergent or soap. Just plain bleach and water. Easy! (See the comment section below for alternatives to bleach)
Next, fill the fermenter with cool water being careful not to splash bleach around. Also remember that this fermenter is going to be heavy when full, so set it up in a way that you can leave it sit. You don’t want to have to move it after its full! (A gallon of water weighs more than 8 pounds!)
Once the Cooper’s fermenter is filled with your water and bleach mixture, place all of the other kit items like the airlock, spoon, tap, and ‘little bottler’ thing in there, and let everything soak for at least 30 minutes. The lid of the fermenter won’t fit inside, so just give it a good rinse with clean water.
The bottles will need to be cleaned eventually, but not now, and not by soaking in the bleach. We’ll cover the bottles when we come to that point later in the process. Remember, it takes awhile before the beer is ready to be bottled anyway. (Somewhere between 4 and 7 days).
After your home brewing equipment has been soaking for at least 30 minutes in the fermenter, you’ll just need to rinse everything well with hot water until there is no longer any smell of bleach and that’s about it! (I decided not to take any pictures of this step because I had to set this up in the basement sink, but I’m sure you can imagine what a six gallon jug filled with water looks like!)
After its been sanitized, try not to contaminate your equipment because one of the biggest reasons home brews don’t work out is contamination of some kind or another. Just a little bacteria hiding in the equipment can ruin a batch!
Once all of your home brewing equipment is sanitized, we’ll be ready to move on to the next step, which is starting to get into the fun stuff of actually making beer at home!
Why not buy a Cooper’s Home Brew kit now and try brewing beer at home yourself? As you have seen, its pretty easy to do so far! We would really appreciate it if you considered purchasing one through The Brew Club and you can do that by clicking on the link below now!
Don’t forget to check back for the third step in our Brewing Beer with the Cooper’s Home Brew Kit!