CO2 system leaks are frustrating!
Leak-Down Test to figure out IF you have a leak and isolate the source of the
Regulator to tank, close the regulator output valve, open tank valve, set
pressure to 40psi exactly, close the tank valve.
10 minutes and observe the gauge. If it is still at 40psi exactly, you’re
regulator is not leaking. Move on to the next test. If it has drifted down from
40psi, you know you have a leak somewhere between the tank and regulator or
within the regulator itself. How far down from 40psi is a good indication of
how bad the leak is. If your regulator
has a tank connection oring, inspect it. If it does not have a built in oring,
did you forget to use a fiber washer? Put a dab of soapy water on all the
regulator threaded connections and look for growing bubbles.
DOWNSTREAM PLUMBING PROBLEMS:
1. If the next device in the plumbing is
a manifold/splitter, shut off each of the output valves but open the one on the
regulator so that the manifold is pressurized. Again, set the pressure to 40psi
and shut off the tank valve.
2. 10 minutes later, is the pressure
still holding at 40? If so, move on. If not, check to make sure your hose
clamps are all tight and any swivel flare connections are tight and have the
appropriate nylon cone washers installed (on any metal to metal flare
connections). You can also submerge a manifold into a tub of water to look for
3. Next, with any keg connectors and/or
couplers removed or untapped from the kegs, pressurize each one (one at a time
in the case of a distributed multi-keg system). Again, each time you pressurize
a new leg of the system, ensure the gauge reads 40psi and then close the tank
valve to starve the system for any new gas.
If the leak
down test does not exhibit any issues at any stage of your gas distribution
system but you still suspect you have a leak, the next logical place to look is
the keg itself. In a Sanke system, the most likely issue is with the bottom
gasket on the coupler. Inspect for nicks, tears and dry rot. In a corny soda
keg, it’s likely a gasket problem. Replace all the gaskets with a light coating
of keg lubricant applied. Pressurize the keg to 15psi and spray it down with