Keezer vs Kegerator

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby UndeadFred » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:05 pm

The comments on Keezer versus kegerator... Modern cheap controls, like the Inkbird have cycle control, so that is a trivial issue now. Moisture control? I'm on my first bucket of Damp Rid. I started doing it in July.. prior to that I wiped it mostly out with a bathroom towel 1-2x a week. It's not really an issue here in winter, anyway but it sure is in the summer. So I'm looking at like $8 worth of Damp Rid a year. It's not worth buying one of those rechargeable type dehumidifiers for that price. Keezers ARE cheap to builde. I used a brand new chest freezer and it cost $170 for 4 kegs plus a lot of bottle space inside sized freezer. You don't have to drill through anything with a collar and I like not having to worry.

I rigged up a matrix of eye-bolts to a wood frame I built and dropped the bolts down to the level of about 1" above my suspended ceiling in the basement room I have it in. I can completely hide it with the ceiling tiles. I use a rope tie down just like I do for my BIAB bag to lift the kegs in (empty I don't generally bother). That helps quite a bit. So you can rig stuff like a homemade crane or whatever to help with this.. but this is the biggest PITA with a Keezer.

For a kegerator, well if you happen on a later model (like 5 years old or less) small fridge cheap, by all means modify the hell out of it. If it's older, you'll end up paying for that cheap fridge in electricity. Same case for used chest freezers, even more so. The ones built in the last two years or so are like 2x the efficiency of one built 5 years ago which is like 3x the ones previous.

As for a tank inside or out. I'll be VERY biased here. Out. Just do it. Why?:

1. Steel tanks will rust at the top of the tank where the High Pressure valve stem goes into the tank from condensation on the valve. Even with Damp Rid or a frost free fridge. I suppose Aluminum ones wouldn't, but...
2. The worthless High Pressure Gauge on the regulator will be even more worthless. *
3. It takes up space for BEER.

So my two cents worth here. You would be happy with either, honestly.

* The HP Gauge is useful for verifying changes to a system and detecting slow leaks. It's not really useful for telling you when the tank is empty. For the leak check, when you change something major in a system (except for a keg you are force carbonating, obviously), leave the system open to that point, shut off the HP valve. if that gauge doesn't move overnight you are good. If it does-- even a little, you have a leak, and start closing valves upstream until it stops doing it (and yes you can charge the kegs and serve in the 2-3 day process it takes to do this. But if you know you have a leak shut off the HP valve and you will save the tank when you don't need serving pressure.) The low pressure regulator gauge takes a LOT longer to go to zero in this case. It's saved my ass more than once, including last weekend when I made my monster ghetto hybrid Tap-Rite/Chudnow dual regulator... I had a hair or a brass shaving that was hair sized in the O-ring of the stem valve from the new Taprite. (I lost it before I did a proper analysis!) It did not bubble, even with the pro leak check stuff. I would have drained the tank if I wouldn't have caught that. The Chudnow used a crush washer and that same foreign object was likely in the tank high pressure valve for the last year.. but it didn't matter with the crush washer. Sometime simpler really is better.. The Chudnow is easier to adjust as well. So I guess I am weird and prefer the cheaper regulator... But you can hook the two together on the high pressure side with a L-R thread adapter...it works...
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby Matt F » Thu Dec 15, 2016 8:18 am

As noted, pretty much all the fridges and freezers work. I would keep your eyes open for free ones. That will have the biggest impact to your bottom line. My main kegerator was free from my mom when she remodeled her kitchen. I got a free one from my cousin that is my fermentation chamber. I gave a free one to Daryl that I got free from Lee. Tough to beat free.
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby Calaeb » Wed Dec 21, 2016 8:01 pm

I currently use a 7cuft chest freezer, wanted forever to find a free or dirt cheap freezer but one never popped up so i just purchased new. Overall im happy with it, currently fighting the moisture issue, and that fact that i have to bend down to pour a pint is a bit annoying. But it works well in my basement. Thinking i need to add something to the wood collar to help slow down the moisture issue. Have a small pc fan running in there but not convinced its doing much. Also didnt help that when i built the collar the boards weren't very straight.
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby czubak » Wed Jan 18, 2017 12:51 pm

Worst part about a keezer is the insides get downright filthy! Controlling moisture is next to impossible. I have a dehumidifier (too small) and a 110V 4" fan going 24/7. I have given up and now that it's in my brew room and I have direct access to hot water and a hose I plan to just hose the bastard out regularly and put tubing in the drain hole to my floor drain.

Honestly considered buying a canner and canning off a keg with a dedicated free fridge for storage. Not practical at all, but that is how much I am beginning to dislike owning a large multi-tap keezer.

Found this larger, yet compact dehumidifier and may give it a go. I have the smallest eva-dry 333 and it's just too small for a 15CF keezer. This one is much larger, but can sit on the hump and not hog any space. $40 is worth a shot. They sell a 2200 that would fit, but I think is overkill and $95

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby Matt F » Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:24 pm

In a fridge, no humidity issue. That's the way to go.
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Slappy Brewing North

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby karl » Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:28 pm

I agree. Humidity control in a keezer is problematic. Go with a fridge if possible.

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby czubak » Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:32 pm

Matt F wrote:In a fridge, no humidity issue. That's the way to go.


karl wrote:I agree. Humidity control in a keezer is problematic. Go with a fridge if possible.

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Sounds great in theory, but I can't fit one 10 gallon and six other 5 gallon cornies in a fridge. First world probs I know. :P
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby UndeadFred » Wed Jan 18, 2017 2:47 pm

I've been known to use a bucket of hot soapy water and a shop vac set to wet to clean mine up, but only 2-3 times a year. I still am only sticking to the damp rid, it's cheap, and I add more in the summer. Actually I'll need to look. It's probably time to change it. That and dry hop with some froot loops... ;)
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby daryl » Wed Jan 18, 2017 2:53 pm

I've only had my keezer for a year or so.

Sure, I get some ice in there due to humidity, but it's all clean.

I didn't think of using the shop vac to get water out of the bottom...clean-up just got easier for me and might save me the embarrassment of falling head first into my keezer :shock: :oops:
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby Matt F » Wed Jan 18, 2017 2:58 pm

czubak wrote:
Matt F wrote:In a fridge, no humidity issue. That's the way to go.


karl wrote:I agree. Humidity control in a keezer is problematic. Go with a fridge if possible.

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Sounds great in theory, but I can't fit one 10 gallon and six other 5 gallon cornies in a fridge. First world probs I know. :P


You just need a bigger fridge. I bet you could fir that in the fermenting fridge I use, but I am not giving it up.
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Saison
Matt Damon in my Mouth

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NE Pale Ale

Up Next:
Belgian Dubbel
Coffee Chocolate Latte Stout
Peanut Butter Cup Stout
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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby czubak » Wed Jan 18, 2017 5:33 pm

Matt F wrote:
czubak wrote:
Matt F wrote:In a fridge, no humidity issue. That's the way to go.


karl wrote:I agree. Humidity control in a keezer is problematic. Go with a fridge if possible.

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Sounds great in theory, but I can't fit one 10 gallon and six other 5 gallon cornies in a fridge. First world probs I know. :P


You just need a bigger fridge. I bet you could fir that in the fermenting fridge I use, but I am not giving it up.


I honestly don't see how. That 10gal is a monster


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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby whitedj » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:28 pm

I oddly don't have moisture issues in my keezer. Maybe mine is gasketed better?

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby czubak » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:18 am

Hope this solves all my issues with moisture and mold/mildew. I also have a 110V fan on 24/7 Image


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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby karl » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:35 am

Please let us know how well it works. I have two of the rechargeable pellet EvaDry units and a fan in my keezer and still have condensation problems.

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Re: Keezer vs Kegerator

Postby czubak » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:35 am

This is the big one, has a larger storage tray. Hoping I can attach tubing to the unit and run it out through the drain hole and never worry about it anymore
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