Get an auto siphon they said. It'll be easy they said.

Help Support The HomeBrew Forum:

pablobobo

New Member
Joined
May 11, 2021
Messages
8
Reaction score
5
Got myself an auto siphon for the bottling stage, seemed to be working grand if a bit pernickety. Sanitised it and the bottles etc, prepared the sugar water etc. boring stuff done.

As soon as I started using it to siphon to the bottling bucket...disaster. It wouldn't start, the main canister of the auto siphon kept filling up rather than the tube bit! Retried loads of times, no luck. So much beer would splash out of the siphon chamber over everywhere, I was afraid of oxygenating/contaminating it.

Thought I figured out the problem piece, stuck it back in, gave it a good few pumps before I realised it was just pumping air into the wort, unsettling the trub! Oh ****!

Took the siphon out and realised it had fallen to pieces in the wort, ah ****! Panicked and siphoned with the mouth sucking trick (I know) into the bottling bucket with the sugar water in there.

Trub was massive after the unsettling, lost a couple of litres, oxygenated, over carbed and potentially contaminated the beer but sure, look it...it's all a learning experience.
 

RoomWithABrew

Regular.
Joined
Apr 19, 2021
Messages
292
Reaction score
163
Location
Paremata New Zealand
Always good to have a little practice with new kit. Did that with a fermentasaurus, maybe a sixth sense as I'd just snagged it second hand. Put together all wrong, leaked etc, took the rest of the mash and boil time to sort it out.
I was lucky with my auto siphon seemed to work ok. I saw a recommendation to not store it assembled as it upset the valve on the plunge bit.
 

Clint

Forum jester...🏅🏆
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2016
Messages
13,645
Reaction score
9,323
Location
North Wales
I found the main issue with an auto syphon is the seal on the end of the transfer tube INSIDE the main syphon body,as you've noticed,if it's not right it will pull beer into the tube and not work correctly.
I found this helps....carefully remove the inside tube. You will see that the seal,usually soft black plastic, is shaped into a skirt or flare that pushes against the inner wall of the main tube to seal it. With your thumb GENTLY re-flare this plastic bit. It may now be a bit more difficult to get back into the syphon body...spray with starsan/sanitiser and try with the thin tube at 90 degrees to the main, carefully rotating them together.
If this doesn't solve the issue you may need a new seal. If the syphon is brand new ask the seller for a replacement.
Personally I think these plastic syphons aren't made to last and this reflects in the price.
I use mine for transfer from the fv to the bottling bucket then use the bottling wand on that to fill.
 

Hazelwood Brewery

Landlord.
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
5,364
Reaction score
7,933
Location
Kent
It may now be a bit more difficult to get back into the syphon body...spray with starsan/sanitiser and try with the thin tube at 90 degrees to the main, carefully rotating them together.
I don’t go in from the top, I pull the non-return valve off the bottom. This way you work with the flare and are less likely to damage it.
 

Hazelwood Brewery

Landlord.
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
5,364
Reaction score
7,933
Location
Kent
Got myself an auto siphon for the bottling stage, seemed to be working grand if a bit pernickety. Sanitised it and the bottles etc, prepared the sugar water etc. boring stuff done.

As soon as I started using it to siphon to the bottling bucket...disaster. It wouldn't start, the main canister of the auto siphon kept filling up rather than the tube bit! Retried loads of times, no luck. So much beer would splash out of the siphon chamber over everywhere, I was afraid of oxygenating/contaminating it.

Thought I figured out the problem piece, stuck it back in, gave it a good few pumps before I realised it was just pumping air into the wort, unsettling the trub! Oh ****!

Took the siphon out and realised it had fallen to pieces in the wort, ah ****! Panicked and siphoned with the mouth sucking trick (I know) into the bottling bucket with the sugar water in there.

Trub was massive after the unsettling, lost a couple of litres, oxygenated, over carbed and potentially contaminated the beer but sure, look it...it's all a learning experience.
It sounds like you had a faulty siphon. I’ve had one from Love Brewing that has lasted years and another that was crap from the start.

In my experience the ones that work best are not open at the top, they have a plastic cap the inner pipe slides through and facilitates a smoother action.
 

jayk34

Regular.
Joined
Aug 13, 2020
Messages
404
Reaction score
274
The issue I had with the auto Syphon was the right angle connector that joins the rigid plunger to the flexible tubing. It was not a good fit and was allowing air in. Removed it and attached flexible tubing directly to the inner plunger of Syphon. The only issue now is that the transfer is a bit slower as the flexible tube bends and slows down the transfer but not a major problem
 

moto748

Regular.
Joined
Jul 15, 2010
Messages
433
Reaction score
273
I have a length of plastic tubing. Attached to one end (with Gorilla tape! :laugh8: ) is the cap of a old pen, which acts as a 'stopper' to prevent the tube reaching into the sediment in the bottom of demijohns, etc. Cleaned and sterilised many times, this has fulfilled all my siphoning needs. I see no need for anything more hi-tech.
 
Last edited:

damienair

Regular.
Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2020
Messages
326
Reaction score
282
I had similar issues. So I bought a second tap and installed it on my Fermentation bucket. Now I have have a tap on each of my buckets. I removed the tubing from the Auto Siphon and now use it to transfer to the bottling bucket via the tap. It is incredibly easy and quick without disturbing the sediment. I then use a bottling wand to fill the bottles.
 

Attachments

jayk34

Regular.
Joined
Aug 13, 2020
Messages
404
Reaction score
274
I have one fermenter with a bottom tap and agree it's handy but have had 2 issues with leaks. The 2nd one shouldn't have happened but I took the tap off for cleaning and put it back on but didn't test for leaks and the inevitable happened on brew day.
 

Hazelwood Brewery

Landlord.
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
5,364
Reaction score
7,933
Location
Kent
I have one fermenter with a bottom tap and agree it's handy but have had 2 issues with leaks. The 2nd one shouldn't have happened but I took the tap off for cleaning and put it back on but didn't test for leaks and the inevitable happened on brew day.
#NeverTrustTaps
 

chopps

Landlord.
Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2020
Messages
654
Reaction score
562
Location
The People's Republic of Sandbach
I’ve tried autosyphons as they look so easy. All have been absolute rubbish. Leaky, won’t suck, stir up sediment, more stuff to clean. Tap and hose all the way. Long hose to get it in the bottling bucket or keg and a bottle length hose to touch the bottom of a bottle. Never had a leak.
 

JonathanMSE

Active Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2020
Messages
61
Reaction score
42
Don't like auto-siphons, they're a pain.

But so is a regular siphon. Getting them filled with liquid first is a pain.

My solution. Regular siphon, with a 100ml (something like this https://www.amazon.co.uk/Oasis-Syringe-100ml/dp/B0058HT812) (50ml would be fine) plastic syringe, stick the syringe into the end of the tubing, suck liquid in to fill the siphon up. place it over whatever I'm siphoning into. So easy, works every time.

Its great for drawing sanitiser into it too.
 

The-Engineer-That-Brews

Tinkering around
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2020
Messages
1,347
Reaction score
1,002
Location
St Albans, Herts
I have one fermenter with a bottom tap and agree it's handy but have had 2 issues with leaks. The 2nd one shouldn't have happened but I took the tap off for cleaning and put it back on but didn't test for leaks and the inevitable happened on brew day.
Just so as I know what to look out for, which part of the tap was the leak coming from please? Ta
 

jayk34

Regular.
Joined
Aug 13, 2020
Messages
404
Reaction score
274
Just so as I know what to look out for, which part of the tap was the leak coming from please? Ta
It's coming from the silicone washer on the outside of the fermenter (between the fermenter wall and washer). I Put a few extra turns of PTFE tape and tightened it a bit more and no leaks with a half fill in the fermenter. Might try it for the next brew this weekend
 

moto748

Regular.
Joined
Jul 15, 2010
Messages
433
Reaction score
273
My solution. Regular siphon, with a 100ml (something like this Syringe-100ml: Amazon.co.uk: Business, Industry & Science) (50ml would be fine) plastic syringe, stick the syringe into the end of the tubing, suck liquid in to fill the siphon up. place it over whatever I'm siphoning into. So easy, works every time.

Its great for drawing sanitiser into it too.

What happened to the old-fashioned method of "Just stick it in your gob and suck"? :laugh8:
 
Top