Review: Fermtech Auto Siphon
The Fermtech auto siphon is one of the easiest ways to transfer your wort from vessel to vessel. All it takes is a few good pumps and it will transfer as much fluid as it can before it hits the air. The fast flow large comes in at 1/2 inch and the small is 3/8 inch. The large works for beyond six gallon carboys and the small works for one gallon jugs. Both have performed equally well for me for the most part.
The auto siphon is made of three separate plastic pieces. The three separate pieces are nice for cleaning but beware of the cap as losing it in the wort is not fun. I knocked it off inside my 5 gallon carboy on a batch with a lot of sediment. I was in the process of bottling so I had to wing it and ended up with a quarter inch of sediment in each bottle. Luckily that batch was drinkable with a careful pour.
You won’t win any speed contests as it takes a fair bit of time to transfer a full five gallon carboy. The auto siphon does do a great job of transferring the wort without disturbing any sediment. It will transfer a warm fluid without issues but hot fluids will destroy it. Remember to err on the side of caution when buying a hose for your siphon as you really don’t want to deal with one that is too short. I bought my auto siphon on my first brew online so I originally only had enough hose to transfer on my kitchen table to a chair. I recommend getting 7 to 10 feet of hose to be safe. The fast flow large uses 7/16 inch ID hose while the regular large and mini use 5/16 inch ID hose.
A long hose and gravity help the auto siphon do its job without much fuss. I’ve seen several bad reviews on Amazon and other places where it was obvious the person didn’t understand how a siphon works. Make sure to have the first container with the liquid above the other empty container ( Fluid container on the table and empty on the ground ) as you will never get a smooth transfer without gravity. Even Issac Newton was ready for some hard cider! Here’s a YouTube video from a local homebrew store on how to properly use the auto siphon.
I can’t really compare this to a racking cane as I’ve never used one but I’ve cleaned many fish tanks in my time. There is nothing worse than trying to start a manual gravel vacuum. It requires a rapid up and down motion that disturbs everything. I’m satisfied and will buy another if I manage to wear these out. One final note is to make sure you buy the fast flow large over the regular large as it’s only slightly more expensive and there is really no need for slower flow.
- Breaks down for easy cleanup
- Transfers wort without disturbing the sediment
- Can be started with just a few pumps
- Cap can fall off if hit just right
- Hot liquid will warp the plastic.
- Will need a small and large if you use gallon jugs and larger carboys
Verdict: A Fermtech auto siphon is an effective way to transfer wort from vessel to vessel without an infection or oxidation.