Alkaline vs. Oxygen Cleaners

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rustbucket

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I have decided that One Step No Rinse Cleaner works better for cleaning plastic carboys than Craft Meister Alkaline Brewery Wash. I bought the Alkaline cleaner recently to replace a jar of One Step that had only a few ounces of the cleaner remaining. Homebrew Supply's description for the Craft Meister Alkaline cleaner states that it removes calcium carbonates that oxygen cleaners leave behind.

One Step is an oxygen cleaner. While I was satisfied with One Step, Homebrew's product description led me to think that I was perhaps not doing an adequate job cleaning my carboys, even though they looked clean to me.

This week I had two dirty carboys that had been used for clearing and stabilizing two different batches of wine. One carboy I cleaned with One Step and the other I cleaned with the Alkaline cleaner. Both Better Bottle 6 gallon carboys were filled with 2 gallons of properly constituted cleaner from each of the 2 products. From what I've read, you should not scrub plastic carboys with carboy brushes as it leaves scratches in the surface that can capture bacteria.

My cleaning method for these carboys was to vigorously shake the stoppered carboy with cleaner solution and then allow it to sit on its side. After 6 hours, the shaking was repeated, the carboy rotated 90 degrees, and again laid on its side. This was repeated until each quarter of the two bottles were allowed to sit giving the soaking solutions time to complete their chemical cleansing action. The bottles were then fully rinsed with hot water using a faucet attached bottle sprayer, placed upside down to drain, and then allowed to dry.

At first, I noticed no difference between the two bottles. A closer inspection the next day while holding the bottles in front of a sun filled window, I noticed a slight haze on the bottom, and on the sloped top leading to the neck, of the bottle cleaned with the alkaline cleaner. This led me to reconsider my decision to move away from oxygen cleaners.

Another observation when working with the two products, the alkaline cleaner requires a lot of rinsing to get rid of the detergent feeling residue on the bottles and on washed wine making equipment. The One Step requires no rinsing, although I do rinse, and leaves no detergent feeling residue on your equipment if you decide not to rinse.

This comparison was limited; and I don't propose that everyone switch to oxygenating cleaners. However, based in this experience, I will be switching back to oxygenating cleaners like One Step and Easy Clean when I run out of the alkaline cleaner.
 

sour_grapes

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Another observation when working with the two products, the alkaline cleaner requires a lot of rinsing to get rid of the detergent feeling residue on the bottles and on washed wine making equipment. The One Step requires no rinsing, although I do rinse, and leaves no detergent feeling residue on your equipment if you decide not to rinse.
I don't dispute your findings. I am not sure which of these products I prefer myself. However, I just wanted to note that you shouldn't place toooo much stock in that "detergent feeling" from the brewery wash. What is happening is that the alkaline solution converts the oils on your skin into a soap-like compound. (This is called "saponification," and is how your great-great-grandmother made soap, from lye and lard, or the like.) So, a little alkaline solution makes everything feel soapy for a long time.

Lately, I find I use brewery wash more in the kitchen than in the winery! It is wonderful for baked-on messes.
 

GreginND

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One step is mainly sodium percarbonate - the same ingredient in oxiclean.
 

GreginND

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You can find sodium percarbonate on amazon easily. The kosher one is only $15 for 5 pounds.
 
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