How to reduce foam with CO2 pressure settings?

The Kegerator Guy
'The Kegerator Guy,' Chief Kegerator Officer Christian Lavender
The Kegerator Guy, Christian Lavender, is a kegerator expert and answers readers' questions about kegerators and draft beer issues.

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Question for the expert

Dear Kegerator Guy,
What pressure setting should your CO2 tank be set to in order to dispense keg beer without tons of foam? I want to make sure that my CO2 pressure setting is optimal. I've heard that high levels of CO2 are best and others talk of low and slow methods. Some insight on best practices would be appreciated.

-- Jason from Jersey

Answer for the expert

Dear Jason in Jersey,
This can be tricky because the pressure needed to push your beer can change depending on your altitude, the heaviness of the beer, and the diameter of your beer lines. Ideally, the beer should fall freely from your spigot, and not be forced out. I recommend starting at 6 PSI and adjusting slowly up from there. Most kegerators do fine at 8 PSI or so, and 10 PSI to 11 PSI is really a bit on the high side, but can enhance the head of the beer you are pouring, if you think it needs help. Guinness is a special consideration, as the nitrogen tap requires 28-30 PSI to flow properly with the right head.

See related: CO2 Tank Guide, Keg Dispensing Facts, Using a Carbonation Table Pressure Chart

Christian Lavender is the CKO (Chief Kegerator Officer) for in Austin, TX. has been an online destination for draft beer related information since 1998.

The Kegerator Guy answers a question about a kegerator or draft beer issue from a reader each week. Send your question to The Kegerator Guy.