# Why is caustic soda (NaOH) used to clean beer bottles?

I see in many blogs in the internet that cleaning bottles with $\ce{NaOH}$ is very effective. I also realize that industries use caustic soda to clean bottles. Why is caustic soda very effective at cleaning bottles? What makes it so special from other solvents which made it preferable for cleaning?

• Most organic chemistry lab use $\ce{KOH + i-PrOH}$ to clean dirty glassware. – Mathew Mahindaratne Apr 2 '18 at 21:14

Caustics such as $\ce{NaOH}$ and $\ce{KOH}$ are effective in converting insoluble fatty acids in organic fats and oils into soluble soaps in a proccess called saponification. The caustics also react with cell membranes, DNA and RNA, destroying undesired yeasts, bacteria and other microorganisms.
• Did you mean "Caustics such as $\ce{NaOH}$ and $\ce{KOH}$ are effective" instead of "Caustics such as $\ce{NaOH}$ and $\ce{NaOH}$ are effective" ? – Avnish Kabaj Apr 3 '18 at 3:31