Installing the Glycol System

With the fermenters and the glycol chiller in place and our glycol system design approved, we went to work installing the glycol pipes. You may remember, back when we designed the glycol system there was some discussion on what pipe to use. We decided Schedule 80 PVC.

First up was installing the unistrut wall mounts. Joined by the Chief’s brother, Peter Nascenzi, we got to work cutting them to the right size to mount on the wall.

cutting the wall struts

Next up, after laying all the pipe out, we began mounting it on the wall. This would have been seamless except we mounted one of the struts too close to a pipe already on the wall. So we had to remove it, remount it and try again. There may or may not be three extra holes in our wall that we need to fill.

mounting the glycol pipe

With all the piping installed, we decided to go ahead and hook it up to the chiller.

At this point, let’s take a break from this install story. We hadn’t made a large mistake in along time. In fact not since we accidentally turned the water on while installing the bathroom sink and water sprayed everywhere. We were due.

Though not a water pipe caliber mistake, it was a good one. We glued all the PVC pipes into the glycol system, and just when we thought we were ready to go to bed, we realized we connected the chiller supply line to the return line port. We could have gone to bed and fixed in the morning, but we were afraid of piping nightmares. So we sawed off the offending pipes and re-glued everything together then and there.

sawing pipe

With the pipe correctly installed, we pressure tested the system by hooking up our CO2 tank and pressurizing the line. No leaks and we were good to put on the insulation.

brewery glycol piping insulation

And so completed the glycol system installation.

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