Setup Instructions

How to setup your kegs and dispense equipment

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Setting up your draught beer system on your own

Components you will have

  • Water cooler - This is used to cool your drink by running it through a long coil in a bath of water that the cooler chills down to -2c and eventually turns into ice. It also circulates this cooled water up your drinks font to the tap to keep your product cool to point of dispense.
  • Gas bottle - The correct gas will be supplied to for your products. 60/40 mix for all beers apart from stouts which is 70/30 mix. Co2 for Prosecco. In some cases, 60/40 is substituted for Co2
  • Gas Regulator - You will be supplied one primary per type of gas required. For example, if you have 2 types of lager and 1 stout we will supply one gas regulator setup with a splitter for the lager running 60/40 mix and one gas regulator for the stout running 70/30 mix. This will also include secondary regulators.
  • Couplers - These are required to connect your keg to the system. There are 5 popular types used in the UK. We will supply the correct one to match the drink you need to dispense.
  • Draught Tap - Your drinks tap will have a product line per tap and 2 water recirculation lines that create a loop from you water cooler to the drinks taps. It may also have a spare product line which runs to the bottom of the tap which you can ignore. Your tap will come with a removable drip trap too.
  • Tap Transformer - This is used to light up your beer tap that’s uses low voltage 24v current for safety.
  • Keg - This contains your drink product. Kegs come in different shapes and sizes from 20L to 50L sizes either made of plastic or aluminium.
  • John guest push fit fittings - These are fittings that are used to connect each component of the drinks system together with the required drinks pipe.

Full step by step process to setup your system

This guide is intended to be used for your equipment hired or purchased from rent a keg, that is pre-set and has all associated safety certificates and checks. If you have hired a system from us for self-setup or are collecting from our warehouse steps in orange would have been completed for you. Due to the nature of the system we highly recommend setting up and testing your system well in advance of your event to allow for any trouble shooting that maybe required.

  1. Place Water Cooler under your bar/serving service. Please allow at least 100mm gaps all around the cooler to allow air to circulate. Please do not block the cooling radiator heat dump on the front of the cooler as the will stop the cooler from working and damage it.
  2. Fill up your water cooler reservoir with clean water (outside tap is fine) from the top of the cooler using the fill hole, until water flows out of the over flow on the front of the cooler. You will need to remove the rubber stop if there is one. The overflow is a black tube found below the products lines. We recommend using the drip tray provided with your tap to catch any excess water during this process. Once the water has stopped overflowing or is a small trickle, return the stop. Please note that the overflow may drip further when the cooler is in use due to the expansion of Ice in the coolers tank, the rubber stop prevents this.
  3. Connect your gas regulator setup to the bottle provided and hand tighten. If using a Co2 regulator secure gently using spanner provided only nip tightening. Over tightening can lead to equipment damage and failure. Please make sure the O-Ring provided is present on your regulator bottle connection as the gas will leak from the bottle if not. You do not need to adjust the PSI (Pressure) of the regulator as this is pre-set for you at the required pressure. 
  4. Connect the white 10mm gas line pipe provided to your regulator by pushing into the Push Fit fittings on the side regulator then connect the other end of the gas line pipe to your coupler on the side fitting marked gas inlet.
  5. Connect the clear 10mm drinks line pipe provided to the top of your coupler. Then connect the other end of your tube to the water cooler inlet. Shelf cooler inlets and outlets work from outside to in. For example, the first inlet on the left will come out of the last inlet on the right of the cooler.
  6. Connect your beer tap to your serving surface such as table, shelf or bar top using the C clamp on the tap. Make sure this is a tight fit otherwise the tap can fall off causing damage. Tip, make sure you use the rubber tap base provided for chrome single fonts. If your surface is too thin you can also fill out the gap using a piece of wood.
  7. Connect your beer tap product line to the cooler outlet. This will be either clear or clear with coloured striped pipe as well as being the longest tube showing from the end of the tap. If you are unsure blow down each tube, the one that you can’t blow down (blocked tube) is the one to connect to as the other will either be the water recirculation loop or a space product line.
  8. Connect the taps water recirculation pipes to the 2-water recirculation push fit fittings on the cooler. If unsure, blow down it to test it. If air comes out of another tube, this is the one with air coming out are the correct tubes. The fittings on the cooler will be the 2 on their own situated above all others. On larger coolers these will be coming out of the external water pump.
  9. Connect the electrical wires from your drinks taps to the drinks tap transformer. Black wire to the black connector and other colour wire to the red connector. Plug in the tap transformer and switch it on.
  10. Connect the keg coupler to your keg, you will need to make sure the coupler is fitted to the keg before pushing down on the handle. Check for any leaks in the system. If you can see any make sure your pipe is pushed into the Push Fit fitting correctly.
  11. Turn your gas bottle by turning anti clockwise. You only need to turn this once until the handle feels lose and free. Again, check for any leaks and noises, tightening fittings where necessary
  12. Pour beer through the system by using the beer tap until it comes through freely. This should be about ¼ pint.
  13. Plug in and turn on your cooler. Again, check for leaks as the water pump will now be pumping water around the beer tap. Allow the cooler to chill the product for at least 1 hour before using the system, but ideally 2 hours to be safe.
  14. Once your system has cooled pull through drink until it pours clear. You may need to adjust the flow control on the tap if your product is coming out too fast. The flow control can be found below the tap on the product line. You hold each end and twist to open or close the flow. To adjust from scratch, we recommend fully closing the flow control, opening the drinks taps then slowly open the flow control until a smooth pour speed is achieved. Flow controls are pre-set but often require adjustment once the system is setup due to changes of temperature between venues.

 

Keg setup diagram instructions

Keg setup diagram instructions



Things we recommend:

  • Do not leave the gas bottle on when the system is not in use in case there are any tiny leaks. Always follow gas safety instructions with in Rent a Keg safety kit sent with your signed delivery note.
  • Make sure you allow your cooler enough time to chill before your event, we recommend 2 hours. If you do not allow enough time for your cooler to chill down, this will result in frothy drinks and the system constantly trying to play catch up
  • Try and keep your kegs out of the shade in the coolest area you have to reduce any fobbing issues. Whilst our systems can cope with warm kegs, they can be overworked under extreme loads and temperatures leading to system failure.
  • Do not leave keg couplers uncoupler from kegs and this leaves a risk of them being left open discharging the gas bottle. 

How do I remove pipes from their fittings?

  1. Make sure the system is not under pressure. Turn off the gas, un-couple the keg, press the couple handle down in your hand to imitate coupling to keg to release the gas pressure. Open the beer tap to do the same for the remaining pressure in the cooler.
  2. To remove pipe from a fitting, push the dark grey plastic ring that around your pipe towards the fitting then pull the pipe out. They are often quite stiff so you need to push the grey ring in as tight as you can whilst pulling and or wiggling the pipe out.
  3. Beware that when removing drinks pipes from their fittings, drink will still be in the pipe! It will come out so we recommend having a bucket on stand by.

Setting up a Real Ale Cask System

Components you will have:

  • Water cooler - This is used to cool your cask jacket by running it through a long coil in a bath of water than the cooler chills down to -2c and eventually turns to ice.
  • Hand Pump – Also known as a beer engine, this connects to your cask tap via a pipe and is used to pump beer from the cask to the hand pumps spout.
  • Stillage – This holds your cask at a tilted angle to allow the beer to flow out of the cask.
  • Wooden Peg – Also known as a Spile. These are used to vent the cask to allow the fermentation process to complete
  • Cask Tap – This connects through the Keystone of the cask which is the round plastic opening on top of the cask. You can either poor directly from the cask tap or attach a handpump to it.
  • Cask - This contains your beer. They look like barrels and come typically in a 9-gallon size.
  • John guest push fit fittings - These are fittings that are used to connect each component of the drinks system together.

Full step by step process to setup your system

This guide is intended to be used for your equipment hired or purchased from rent a keg that is pre-set and has all associated safety certificates and checks. If you have hired a system from us for self-setup or are collecting from our warehouse steps in red would have been completed for you. Due to the nature of the system we highly recommend setting up and testing your system well in advance of your event to allow for any trouble shooting that maybe required.

  1. Place Water Cooler under your bar/serving service. Please allow at least 100mm gaps all around the cooler to allow air to circulate. Please do not block the cooling radiator heat dump on the front of the cooler as the will stop the cooler from working and damage it.
  2. Fill up your water cooler reservoir with clean water (outside tap is fine) from the top of the cooler using the fill hole, until water flows out of the over flow on the front of the cooler. You will need to remove the rubber stop if there is one. The overflow is a black tube found below the products lines. We recommend using the drip tray provided with your tap to catch any excess water during this process. Once the water has stopped overflowing or is a small trickle, return the stop. Please note that the overflow may drip further in use due to the expansion of Ice in the coolers tank if the stop is not returned.
  3. Place your stillage on a strong stable surface. If you intend not to use a hand pump and to pour directly from the cask, please consider placement of the cask on a higher surface such as a table making pouring easier. The stillage and cask weigh around 50kgs.
  4. Place cooling jacket over cask and connect both cooling jacket water pipes to the top 2 water recirculation pipe fittings on the water cooler, using clear 10mm drinks line pipe and the push fit fittings provided. You will not need to use any other connection on the water cooler as this is for draught keg products only.
  5. Turn on the cooler and check for any leaks. If leaks are found please push the pipes further into their fittings.
  6. Once your cask has been settled into the stillage for at least an hour, ideally 2, take the wooden peg and using a mallet tap the top of the cask (Top relating to how the cask is now positioned). This allows the fermentation process to complete and takes at least 12 hours, but ideally 24 hours where possible.
  7. Once the venting process is complete and you have left this as long as you can you can now tap the cask using the tap from the front of the cask. Using a mallet hit the tap into the cask through the plastic keystone hard, swift and sharply until it is firmly in place with no leaks. Do not over hit the tap as it can damage it.
  8. If using a handpump connect this to your serving surface such as a bar worktop, table or shelf using the clamps on the pump.
  9. Connect the handpump tube to the end of the cask tap using the lagged 10mm drinks line and cask tap fitting provided.
  10. When ready to serve remove the wooden peg to allow airflow through the cask.

Things we recommend:

  • Make sure you allow your cooler enough time to chill before your event, we recommend 2 hours. If you do not allow enough time for your cooler to chill down, this will result in frothy drinks and the system constantly trying to play catch up
  • Vent your cask for as long as possible, up to 48 hours to allow the beer to finish fermenting. The longer you leave it, the better the flavours. 

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