Beer kegs have been serving as the centerpiece of college parties and the backbone of many bars and taverns for decades. Typically available in a half or quarter barrel, the average keg can fill approximately 124 or 62 pints of beer, respectively. While it’s relatively simple to transport, store and use a keg around the home, there are some precautions to remember.
Typical Components of a Beer Keg
Despite the availability of different sizes, shapes and alternate materials, kegs are pretty standard around the world. As such, several components are found on nearly every keg.
- The keg itself is typically made of stainless steel. While quarter barrels contain 7.75 gallons of liquid, the larger half barrel boasts 15.5. Smaller kegs, which are sometimes available, contain 5 gallons.
- A coupler, sometimes referred to as a pump, is needed to withdraw beer out of the keg via the topmost valve.
- Gas, either in the form of carbon dioxide or nitrogen, is used to help the beer flow smoother and quicker. The coupler or pump is often used, especially at parties, although it’s not as effective as gas.
- Tubing is also required to transport the beer from the keg and into your cup. Commonly made of polyethylene or vinyl, some partygoers chill the tube for additional coldness.
- If you’d rather forego the manual-powered party pump, your other option is to outfit your keg with a faucet. This ensures consistency between beer pours, which can help keep your party going all night long.