Different cultures from all over the world come together over their love of beer, especially cold draft beer. But how can you enjoy this chilled beverage in the comfort of your home? One word, kegerator. In this post, we’ll take a closer look at a keg refrigerator and its features and review some of the best available in the market.
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What Is A Kegerator
A kegerator, though it appears similar to a mini refrigerator, is much more specialized. It is used to chill and dispense draft beer from a keg. But what is a keg?
Kegs are small barrels, typically made of high-strength stainless steel. Although they come in different sizes, the standard size is 11 gallons, equivalent to 50 liters or 88 pints.
Though kegs mainly store draft beer, they are also suitable for other non-alcoholic, carbonated, or non-carbonated beverages.
A keg fridge makes it easy to store ice-cold draft beer and dispense it from a tap, providing an efficient way of serving guests. Kegerators are available in different designs and sizes with various features to meet specific needs.
The design for a refrigerator for a keg has a hollow inner cavity where you store the keg. It also contains a sealing door or standard latching and a dispensing tower at the top.
Your keg beer dispenser can keep beer fresh longer when you dispense your draft beer with carbon dioxide while maintaining the ideal pressure and temperature. It can store pasteurized beer for 120 days and non-pasteurized draft beer for 60 days.
Best Kegerators For Home
Types Of Beer Kegerators
Kegerators come in a variety of shapes and sizes. You’ll find a single tap, dual taps, as well as taps for both indoors and out. Knowing which is the right type for you is a matter of personal preference. How often you entertain, how much space you have, and how much beer you drink will all factor in.
Indoor kegerators are ideal for home use, bars, restaurants, and indoor events. You’ll find indoor kegerators come in two designs; a freestanding under-counter or a built-in kegerator.
An outdoor kegerator is designed to work in harsher environments than indoor kegerators. Outdoor kegerators are great for outdoor parties and events, patios, and decks. Owners of outdoor kegerators usually have some sort of weather-proof shelter to store their units in. This will prevent damage and rusting.
Best Kegerators For Home
Like many, I find shopping for the right home appliance, not fun. Between all the brands, recommendations from friends, and trying to keep within our budget, it’s just not fun. That said, we really hope you find the information below helpful. There are numerous options available when it comes to getting the best kegerator for home use. Here is our list of the best kegerators for home.
Best Kegerators For Home Entertaining
Edgestar Kegerator Dual Tap Kegerator & Draft Beer Dispenser
The Edgestar dual tap kegerator allows you to set up a commercial or home brewing system and serve draft beer using a dispenser. It can maintain low temperatures and is one of the coldest keg refrigerators on the market.
Though it is four inches shorter in width than a full-size kegerator, it is large enough to store a full-size keg. It has an external air tank mount that allows you to install a gas tank.
Danby Kegerator Single Tap Keg Cooler
This Danby kegerator is bright and modern with a spotless steel finish similar to real stainless steel. The keg fridge is large, with a capacity of 153 liters.
The Danby Single Tap Kegerator features a great freestanding design with a chrome guard and drip tray. It is versatile and features a reversible door hinge for left and right-hand opening, a scratch-resistant worktop, and open swivel wheels for portability.
Kegco Kegerator Dual Tap Keg Dispenser
This keg dispenser has a reversible door, a carbon dioxide tank with a regulator, beer, and gas lines, and a removable guardrail.
Intuitive controls with a digital LED display make setting and verifying the keg refrigerator’s internal temperature simple. A simple press of a button can either increase or reduce the temperature.
You can also buy a Kegco homebrew kegerator kit that adds the functionality of this keg dispenser.
EdgeStar Full-Size Dual Tap Undercounter Kegerator
This EdgeStar dual tap kegerator enables you to serve cold draft beer to your guests in the comfort of your home. It has a thoughtful design with front ventilation and quality components. The front ventilation allows you to use it as either a freestanding or a built-in under-counter kegerator.
It comes with various components, including a 5-pound Co2 tank, a dual-gauge regulator, two Sankey couplers, and a stainless steel beer tower with two stainless steel faucets.
Homecraft Black Stainless Steel 5-Liter Mini Kegerator
This mini kegerator is compatible with most five-liter non-pressurized and pressurized gravity kegs. A stylish black stainless steel design gives it a sleek look making it the perfect fit for any home bar.
This small kegerator is compatible with standard carbon dioxide and nitrogen cartridges. An easy tap handle with an easy pull and release dispenser serves consistent draft beer every time.
HCK 24-inch Outdoor Kegerator
The HCK outdoor kegerator has a spacious interior with three shelves that can hold a full-size keg, two-quarter beer barrels, and three five-gallon kegs. Guest can serve their favorite beverage from the three faucets available.
It has a highly efficient and powerful compressor with precise temperature control that always keeps your beverages cold.
If you feel you are spending way more on bottled and canned beer, it is time to get a kegerator for your home. Please choose one of the best options from our list.
Is A Kegerator Worth It?
If you spend more than you would like on cans or bottled beer, you should invest in a kegerator. Though drinking at home is cheaper, you cannot get the bar experience without tap beer.
Getting a keg beer dispenser gives you that bar experience, and not having to deal with crowds and drive afterward is the best part. You can enjoy a beer in the comfort of your home while watching your favorite show.
Other Uses Of A Kegerator
Kegerators are not just for beer; it lets you enjoy other chilled beverages. These appliances can dispense cold brew coffee, carbonated water, cocktails, and even kombucha.
A keg refrigerator is a perfect way to entertain if you like hosting parties and having company. This appliance will let you serve a near-endless flow of beverages in a great self-serving way that minimizes your hosting duties. With a triple or dual tap kegerator, you can serve different drinks simultaneously to your guests.
If you are into home brewing, there is no better way to enjoy your results than with a kegerator. It will deliver the best flavor and keep your homebrew fresh for long-term consumption. If you have a beer lover at home, a kegerator could be the ultimate beer gift.
Features To Look For In A Kegerator
If you love draft beer like we do, owning a kegerator is a great way to save money. That said, there are several factors to consider when selecting a keg fridge. Here’s a look at a few features to consider before buying.
Temperature And Pressure Consistency
A change in temperature or pressure can cause too much foam. Excessive beer foaming is the most significant challenge you will face with your keg for home.
Gasses, like nitrogen and carbon dioxide, dissolve more easily in cold beverages. Therefore, ensuring that your draft beer is cold is paramount; a thermometer will help you monitor it.
You should also set the pressure between five and ten PSI. Typically, the narrower and longer the tubing is from the faucet to the keg, the less foaming you will get. However, ensure that the draft beer remains cold as it moves from the keg to the faucet.
Keg Size Compatibility
Before choosing your keg refrigerator, ensure it is compatible with the size of keg you want to get. Keg size does not only mean capacity; it includes both the keg’s height and base. Some brands have specific keg sizes that don’t work with all kegerators.
Number Of Taps
Kegerators often come with one to three taps. However, a triple and dual tap kegerator is costlier than a single tap. The more taps, the more types of draft beers or other beverages you can serve at once. Additionally, the more taps you have the more maintenance and potentially more issues you might encounter.
On the flip side, single-tap kegerators are more affordable and easier to find. Single-tap kegerators are ideal for those beer lovers who stick with one beer. If you want to serve a different draft beer, you’ll need to change out the kegs each and every time.
A freestanding kegerator is portable and easy to install, but it needs some clearance to ventilate. You can easily move freestanding kegerators from one room to another. Or you can move them from indoors to outdoors. With all kegerators, much like refrigerators, proper ventilation is important.
On the other side, a built-in refrigerator for the keg has more limits. Once it’s installed, it’s installed. Built-in kegerators have front ventilation. The area where they are installed must be open and unobstructed. If not, there’s the possibility of overheating.
On average, properly stored beer in a kegerator will last 3-6 months. This is the approximate storage time for pasteurized beers like Budweiser, Coors, or Miller. For unpasteurized beers, the average storage time is around 60 days.
If you want your kegerator to pour cold, fresh beer, then yes you are going to need a CO2 air tank. The CO2 is the source that pushes the beer from the keg, through the lines, and out the tap. CO2 has made dispensing beer much easier and faster than traditional hand-draw taps (think English pub).
This comes down to personal preference and of course, how much beer you drink. Thankfully, kegerators come in a wide range of sizes—everything from 5L tabletop kegs to full-sized dual tap versions. If you entertain often, a larger unit would be appropriate.
CO2 is a vital component in operating an at-home kegerator. A typical kegerator is going to require a 5 lb CO2 tank. With “normal” use, this size tank will allow you to go through 5-7 half barrels of beer. Of course, the more quickly you are using the kegerator, the more quickly you’ll go through the CO2 tank.
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