Sanitizing Bottles What do you use (Poll)

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What do you use Star San or SO2


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dralarms

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I mix 3 tablespoons of kmeta and 3 tablespoons of citric acid in a gallon jug. Was told the critic acid reduces bottle shock.
 

Ajmassa

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I mix 3 tablespoons of kmeta and 3 tablespoons of citric acid in a gallon jug. Was told the critic acid reduces bottle shock.
maybe it’s me—- but i’ve never noticed this mysterious bottle shock i always read about. maybe my palate is not distinguished enough to notice. I will purposely open a bottle soon after bottling in an attempt to detect it.

BTW- as far as bottle prep goes— i would rinse w/ hot water, sanitize w kmeta, dry on tree, then have to wipe clean the kmeta residue. with multiple cases and working solo this got to be too much. i now fill right from box. felt guilty the 1st time i did it. —— i got over it.
 

CDrew

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maybe it’s me—- but i’ve never noticed this mysterious bottle shock i always read about. maybe my palate is not distinguished enough to notice. I will purposely open a bottle soon after bottling in an attempt to detect it.

BTW- as far as bottle prep goes— i would rinse w/ hot water, sanitize w kmeta, dry on tree, then have to wipe clean the kmeta residue. with multiple cases and working solo this got to be too much. i now fill right from box. felt guilty the 1st time i did it. —— i got over it.


You may be right about the "bottle shock" but I religiously wait at least 4 weeks before even tasting. UC Davis should employ some science here.

Bottling by yourself is tough. Even a little bit of help moving or sanitizing bottles, speeds things up tremendously.

Regarding Oxi-clean and one-step, lets get real. They are excellent cleaners. Maybe that's enough. But they are not sanitizers, and that's what you need.

I mix 3 tablespoons of kmeta and 3 tablespoons of citric acid in a gallon jug. Was told the critic acid reduces bottle shock.
I do not think that citric acid has any other role to play other than to lower the pH and make the sulfite solution more effective. And in fact, tartaric acid has the same effect, just not quite as efficiently. But it's more appropriate in wine. But 3 tablespoons of citric acid is way more than you need. Just measure the pH. Then you know where you are.
 
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dralarms

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You may be right about the "bottle shock" but I religiously wait at least 4 weeks before even tasting. UC Davis should employ some science here.

Bottling by yourself is tough. Even a little bit of help moving or sanitizing bottles, speeds things up tremendously.

Regarding Oxi-clean and one-step, lets get real. They are excellent cleaners. Maybe that's enough. But they are not sanitizers, and that's what you need.



I do not think that citric acid has any other role to play other than to lower the pH and make the sulfite solution more effective. And in fact, tartaric acid has the same effect, just not quite as efficiently. But it's more appropriate in wine. But 3 tablespoons of citric acid is way more than you need. Just measure the pH. Then you know where you are.
I was told to use equal parts of kmeta and citric acid. And there’s very little left to change the ph.
 
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As i understand it, the citric acid lowers the Ph, increasing the effectiveness of the kmeta. StarSan works by acidic vapors. Why not combine the two? Why not add some oxy to the mix? A bigger question: Is the whole sanitizing of bottles over rated? Air is full of airborne pathogens. So is our breath, should we mask up?. Operating room tables work under sterilizing UV lights. Yet wineries pull bottles directly from the factory boxes? Some, including myself, placing the wet top of a bottle on the bottom of a dark carboard box? Cardboard is cellulose, and absorbtive. A wet, dark sponge. Take away any sterilizing effect of UV sunlight and it's a great growth medium. Are we innoculating and cross contaminating each bottle every time we place it on a bottle tree? Perhaps I shouldn't have had that third cup of coffee, but as all are successful with what seem to be flawed methods, can it really be that important?
 

bstnh1

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As i understand it, the citric acid lowers the Ph, increasing the effectiveness of the kmeta. StarSan works by acidic vapors. Why not combine the two? Why not add some oxy to the mix? A bigger question: Is the whole sanitizing of bottles over rated? Air is full of airborne pathogens. So is our breath, should we mask up?. Operating room tables work under sterilizing UV lights. Yet wineries pull bottles directly from the factory boxes? Some, including myself, placing the wet top of a bottle on the bottom of a dark carboard box? Cardboard is cellulose, and absorbtive. A wet, dark sponge. Take away any sterilizing effect of UV sunlight and it's a great growth medium. Are we innoculating and cross contaminating each bottle every time we place it on a bottle tree? Perhaps I shouldn't have had that third cup of coffee, but as all are successful with what seem to be flawed methods, can it really be that important?
Are you willing to make a few batches with no sanitization and document the results? I'm not.
 

reeflections

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As i understand it, the citric acid lowers the Ph, increasing the effectiveness of the kmeta. StarSan works by acidic vapors. Why not combine the two? Why not add some oxy to the mix? A bigger question: Is the whole sanitizing of bottles over rated? Air is full of airborne pathogens. So is our breath, should we mask up?. Operating room tables work under sterilizing UV lights. Yet wineries pull bottles directly from the factory boxes? Some, including myself, placing the wet top of a bottle on the bottom of a dark carboard box? Cardboard is cellulose, and absorbtive. A wet, dark sponge. Take away any sterilizing effect of UV sunlight and it's a great growth medium. Are we innoculating and cross contaminating each bottle every time we place it on a bottle tree? Perhaps I shouldn't have had that third cup of coffee, but as all are successful with what seem to be flawed methods, can it really be that important?
Of course we aren't quite as concerned with our wine as we would be with exposed organs in surgery. We all can make our own choice about the tradeoffs between safety and extra cost or time. We make the choices and live with any consequences.

I find that rinsing used bottles of my own wine thoroughly and before the wine dries, then sanitizing with k-meta with a plunger along with the new bottles, feels like a proper tradeoff for me. Not too hard for the 5-15 gallons I usually bottle at a time, yet makes me feel safe.
 

mainshipfred

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As i understand it, the citric acid lowers the Ph, increasing the effectiveness of the kmeta. StarSan works by acidic vapors. Why not combine the two? Why not add some oxy to the mix? A bigger question: Is the whole sanitizing of bottles over rated? Air is full of airborne pathogens. So is our breath, should we mask up?. Operating room tables work under sterilizing UV lights. Yet wineries pull bottles directly from the factory boxes? Some, including myself, placing the wet top of a bottle on the bottom of a dark carboard box? Cardboard is cellulose, and absorbtive. A wet, dark sponge. Take away any sterilizing effect of UV sunlight and it's a great growth medium. Are we innoculating and cross contaminating each bottle every time we place it on a bottle tree? Perhaps I shouldn't have had that third cup of coffee, but as all are successful with what seem to be flawed methods, can it really be that important?
I'm not sure how many folks on the forum ever had a chance to work at a winery or even been exposed to the operation. Cleanliness isn't taken lightly but also isn't taken to the extremes we are taught to do. A T-bin that has been exposed to all the outside elements all summer long is simply hosed down then filled with either crushed grapes or pressed juice. The crusher and pressed are hosed down to remove any pulp, seeds or stem and that's it. As you said bottles, although they are always new in boxes, are just sent to the bottling line. Sometimes a little puff of nitrogen or argon is placed in the bottle to remove dust and some oxygen. I've been building and helping out at wineries for several years now and although I take a little more care in sanitation and cleanliness than they do I do keep it to a happy medium.
 

reeflections

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I'm not sure how many folks on the forum ever had a chance to work at a winery or even been exposed to the operation. {snip}
Never even been in a winery (past the sampling bar), but I did spend about 5 years at Miller Brewing Company - 50 years ago.

We filled a lot of new bottles out of the case there. But we also filled the returnable long necks that came back from bars and restaurants. They ran through some kind of acid that ate most of the labels and most of the mold and dead things inside. Those that still had labels were soaked in tubs of hot water and hand scrubbed to remove the labels and put back on the line.

They were then filled with beer and then they passed by a light where an "inspector" was supposed to watch for foreign matter in the sometimes clear and sometimes amber bottles as they sped past in front of the light. If they saw anything inside, their job was to pull the bottle and it would be emptied and taken back to the front of the line. This was a union job and many there did not really have much concern. I remember one woman in particular that was always doing her nails while the bottles whizzed by. I personally saw several bottles with some sort of gunk go right to the pasteurizer, where they would go next to the cases and then the warehouse. I even saw one with a dead mouse make it past the inspector. I just happened to be walking by so I was able to pull it.

Needless to say, I have never drank from a returnable bottle since. I also never drink from cans that don't come in enclosed cases. Another story.
 

wood1954

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I have been using starsan, but after dropping dropping a bottle because it was so slippery and because if I add too much starsan it takes forever to rinse it out, I don’t like the smell of starsan so I rinse till clear. From now on I’ll use kmeta just to rinse out any dust, pour a little in and drain it then fill with wine, should save a lot of time.
 

Sailor323

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I find Oxyclean very difficult to rinse completely. It just suds up way too much. I stick with One-Step. It may cost a few cents more, but it rinses easily.
I agree, I'd never use Oxyclean for this purpose. I sanitize with K-meta and when cleaning is necessary I use a detergent designed for cleaning dairy equipment, it has no odor and rinses easily and completely
 

Paulietivo

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Reading all of the comments was like a memory flashback for me. I think I have tried all of these methods for sanitizing. I started with dunking the entire bottles in buckets of sanitizer and then rinsing. Then I had the pressurized bottle washer attachment on the sink. Then I used to use the vinitor bottle squirter.

Now I'm all in on I'm all in on @vacuumpumpman and his Pressurized Bottle Washer / Sanitizer/ Transfer Pump. This thing is amazing.

It turns on automatically when you put a bottle on it and boom you have full flow sanitizer (SO2) cleaning the bottles for you. Then just put it on a clean sanitized bottle tree.

I realized that when I finish drinking a bottle of wine I wash it with soap and water. Then squirt some star san in it and store it on a bottle tree.
When its time to bottle my wine, I use SO2 in the pump and don't rinse it. Just pop it on the bottle tee.

After bottling I rinse my carboys out and clean them with the same pump and sanitizer I used for the bottles.

If you have the all in one wine pump, then you know bottling by yourself is a breeze. I cork one bottle as the other one is filling.
Salute!
 

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balatonwine

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The thread is wrong to only limit the question to only two options:

"What do you use Star San or SO2"

As if....... those are the only options in the world....

The world is more complex. A better question would be simply:

What do you use to sanitize your bottles before bottling?
 

Bossbaby

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The thread is wrong to only limit the question to only two options:

"What do you use Star San or SO2"

As if....... those are the only options in the world....

The world is more complex. A better question would be simply:

What do you use to sanitize your bottles before bottling?
what is your preferred method of sanitizing?
 

Mac60

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The thread is wrong to only limit the question to only two options:

"What do you use Star San or SO2"

As if....... those are the only options in the world....

The world is more complex. A better question would be simply:

What do you use to sanitize your bottles before bottling?
Well I created the thread to gain some insight on what % of fellow wine makers preferred Starsan or Kmeta, I use both but specifically for bottling I was looking for some insight. Which I got and I always appreciate the feedback
 
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