Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Cleaning the Soda Fountain

In yesterday's post you could tell that this old dispenser was in need of some TLC.  To get it ready for my hand crafted concoctions I need it to be up to the task and as we all know sanitation is the utmost importance.  In a machine like this it means disassembly and attention to detail.  So here is my Day Two with the soda fountain.

First you will notice that these taps are a bit different from the ones brewers usually see.  The screw on the right side of each tap is an adjustment, it increases a gap inside.    

Pardon the picture, it shows some residue from the NeverDull that I hadn't wiped off yet.  That is good stuff for cleaning chrome surfaces.

Breaking down the tap we see a spring.  This is nice because it puts the tap back into the closed posistion when you let go of the handle.  Several times I have cause a little mess when cleaning lines due to leaving a tap partly open.  That shouldn't be a worry with this unit.

The spring is held in place by the cups and the screw clamps it all into the valve.

On the left side you see the adjustment screw.  The right tap has it comepletely removed.

There are two types of plastic grommets.  The white ones are used for the final short line between the metal fitting on the coils from the ice water tank and the back side of the taps.

The red grommet is slightly larger and goes on the liquid out side of the keg.

Notice how that nasty soda had stained the plastic over the years.  I had never heard of Teem soda until seeing this fountain.  There are removable badges like this on the customer facing side of the unit to show what is being served.

From this top down shot you can see the coils in the ice water tank.  It looks like there are more than 12 feet of tube for each tap.

I filled the tank with water and about 1/2 cup of bleach and let it sit for a few hours.  That took care of most cleaning, I still had to scrub the top edges due to the overflow port.  Obviously the overflow port keeps you from filling all the way to the top.

After all the cleaning was done it was time to get the system back together.  Here you can see I've replaced the short lines with new tubes (thanks to the guys at Rebel Brewer).  Doesn't that front look nice now.  ;)

I'll say at this point that the Cornelius company made this gear very easy to take apart.  It looks like I could have just removed a couple more screws and been able to take the coils out of the tank.  Every surface seems to drain in a logical way.  Notice the tube in the lower left - that will drain the water tank.  Anything that leaks in the area shown here will drain through the short pipe poking out from the middle behind the taps in this picture.  When it's all together that pipe is poking through the drip tray.  So the drip tray is really draining any area you can expect liquids to be.

Next I fliped the taps up and remounted them.  Only two screws and presto.  The dispenser is ready to fill with water and connect the lines to my kegs!

Notice that shiny surface now.

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