Many bar owners don’t want their draft beer system cleaned as often as the Brewers Association recommends because of the product loss caused by cleaning. However, experienced bar owners know how profitable a good, fresh draft beer can be. The truth is, regularly cleaning draft beer lines is an essential part of running a successful bar business.
If you serve draft beer, consider the cleaning process as important as cleaning pots and pans in the kitchen. Customers will notice the effects of dirty beer lines in the taste and quality of the beer. Word will spread, and you could find business going downhill. Better to lose a little bit of beer during the cleaning process, than to drive away customers with poor-tasting beer.
Cleaning the draft beer system involves draining the draft beer lines to pass chemicals and water through them and eliminate funky tasting beer, beer stone, and molds. The FOBs, faucets, shanks and all other parts of a draft beer system need cleaning as well.
If you don’t clean your full system, the draft beer won’t be served as fresh as the brewmaster intended it to be served. You WILL lose sales if you are serving bad-tasting or skunky draft beer. Most customers won’t realize that the draft beer quality is being negatively impacted by unclean beer lines and equipment. They’ll just decide that they don’t like the taste of your beer and won’t order another one. They might order a bottled beer that has a lower ROI on your bottom line, or just leave and not return.
Generally, all the beer that is in the lines during cleaning is wasted. The longer the beer line from the keg to the faucet, the more waste there will be. For this reason, we prefer to install through the wall draft beer systems instead of long draw systems. However, space constraints often prevent us from installing through the wall draft beer systems.
If you have any questions about this and any other draft beer equipment, we’d love to hear from you!