draft beer faqs

Do all brands of beers use the same keg tapping equipment?

Not all brands of draft beer use the same type of valve in the keg. Each distinct "system" requires matching the appropriate keg coupler to the keg valve. In the U.S., there are eight different "systems" in use:

  1. "D" System (American Sankey): Most North American beers. Used by breweries such as: Budweiser, Coors, Miller, Labatt and Molson.
  2. "S" System (European Sankey): Many import beers. Used by breweries such as: Heineken, Becks, and Amstel Light
  3. "A" System (German Slider) : Many German beers. Used by breweries such as: Spaten, Warsteiner, and Paulaner.
  4. "M" System: Is recently introduced to the U.S. market. Body is the same as the German Slider, but the probe configuration is unique. Used by breweries such as: Schneider, Aventinus, and Einbecker.
  5. "G" System: This system gets its name from the English developer, Grundy. Used by breweries such as: Bass, Boddingtion’s, Caffrey’s and Anchor Steam. 
  6. "U" System: This system takes its name from the English manufacturer UEC. Used by breweries such as: Guinness and Harp.
  7. Twin Probe: Limited use by some craft breweries.  
  8. Home Brew: Ball lock fittings used for home brew tanks.

Please see to our comprehensive keg coupler cross reference listing for additional beers.

We at Micro Matic do try to maintain a database of brands of draft beer and the system of valve they use in their kegs. But, as there are literally tens of thousands of breweries and brands of beer available it's simply not possible to maintain a listing of every brand of beer.

For those brands of beer not covered in our listing, we recommend simply inquiring about the system of keg coupler with the company you are purchasing your kegs from. If they do not know, they can make a quick call to the beer distributor or brewery to find out this information for you.