PET care, or how not to scratch your Better Bottle

Tue, Aug 13, 2013
Since I originally posted this in 2009 I've added a handful of glass carboys to my toolset.  In many ways, including cleaning, I prefer the glass carboys.  However, glass bottles still scare the crap out of me whenever they're full and need to be moved - that's when glass carboys turn into beer grenades.  So I still use plastic bottles frequently, especially when I'm brewing on the road and know I'll be moving the carboy full of wort around.   

(Originally posted elsewhere on May 17, 2009) 

My fermentation vessel of choice is the Better Bottle, a PET plastic carboy.  I have several 5 and 6 gallon versions of this product and I've been very pleased.  After losing a batch of beer today I noticed that the BB I'd fermented in had scratches around the top of the carboy from my carboy brush.  While I don't believe this was the sole cause of the bad beer I can't rule it out as a possibility.  It occurred to me that perhaps these plastic carboys need a special brush (seeing as my regular ol' carboy brush had done me a disservice), so I went to the BB website looking for a info on special cleaning equipment.  As it turns out they recommend against using stiff brushes and suggest that the best method of cleaning is simply to rinse/wash/sanitize with no mechanical scrubbing.  Here's a link to the washing/care instructions.  I'm afraid I may have ruined this carboy, oh well- live and learn.