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SpanishCastleAle 02-04-2009 03:24 PM

Aerating your wort
Some folks go through a bit of extra work/time to ensure they have aerated their wort while I imagine some others just give it a good shake and go. Of course, both make beer.:)

How important do you think it is?
How effective do you think most methods are? Read below on my take on air stones...if I'm wrong please tell me so.:)

I do know this but I'm not sure how much it applies to beer:
Those air stones in aquariums don't really aerate the water very much...almost all the oxygen in the water gets there from surface agitation (which of course the air stones cause...but those tiny bubbles are not what's doing the heavy lifting regarding oxygenating the water...it's almost all at the surface). So I'm not sure how much more effective an air stone is than just bubbling air out of PVC tubing.

So with that in mind...my method of aeration has always been to take a wire whisk and boil it to sanitize it...then whip the **** out of the cooled wort (never warm or hot). It gets very foamy but it goes straight into the carboy after aeration. This always gets me fast starts (within hours) and almost always blowoffs (within a half-day). That wasn't the case before I aerated 'excessively'. Anybody see any flaw in this method? I try to keep the area/room calm with little activity (dog is def outside) so as to reduce airborne dusts/etc.

So what's your take on aerating your wort? Mine is that you CAN'T over-do it but you could easily under-do it and the yeast really like/need it.

Bigbens6 02-04-2009 03:39 PM

I always pitch my yeast then give it a good 10-15 second stir with a sanitized spoon, normally get lift off in 12-18 hours...

reim0027 02-04-2009 03:40 PM

I use an agitator rod to aerate my wort.

The Stainless Steel Mix Stir :: Midwest Supplies Homebrewing and Winemaking Supplies

It works well. I just have to be careful to not scratch my bucket.

g_rath 02-04-2009 03:41 PM

I will just pour my wort into the fermenter and top it off with the sink sprayer of cold water. Never had a stuck fermentation or an infection.

hopsalot 02-04-2009 03:43 PM

I pour vigoursly into fermenter and then stir with spoon until I get tired basically. Why bring up air stones?

flyangler18 02-04-2009 03:46 PM

Oxygen is extremely important for yeast health and growth, so you most certainly need to aerate your wort effectively in whatever manner you deem appropriate. I use a Venturi tube at the bottom of my siphon, which is nothing more than a piece of plastic tubing with holes drilled into it. This pulls air into the wort column as it passes, introducing oxygen.

It is in fact possible to over-oxygenate; however, it's rather difficult to do!

BioBeing 02-04-2009 03:48 PM

I'm just a noob who is looking for answers to this too. Seems to me that aerating with an air stone and an aquarium pump takes time - various places say 5 mins to 1 hour. Given my experience in the lab aerating media for bacteria, I'd think the latter end of that would be needed for 5 gallons. Bubbling with O2 seems better to me.

The air stone (2 micron) breaks the stream of gas down into tiny bubbles, increasing the surface area, speeding up diffusion of the oxygen into the liquid vs just bubbling in from a tube with no stone.

Whisking might be a pretty good option - its a great way to get air into cream or egg whites... seems like to get the whole 5 gallons aerated it would take quite a while though? Do you have to shake it up once in a while too as you whisk?

Anyone ever taken a dissolved oxygen tension meter home to check on the efficiencies of the various methods? ;)

BierMuncher 02-04-2009 03:52 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Since my IC is already in the wort...that's my #1 tool for frothing up the wort:

This 1.116 Barley Wine got down to 1.029. 75% attenuation on a 1116 beer is good by me. :D

Attachment 9593

Attachment 9594

njnear76 02-04-2009 03:56 PM


Originally Posted by BierMuncher (Post 1111848)
Since my IC is already in the wort...that's my #1 tool for frothing up the wort:

This 1.116 Barley Wine got down to 1.029. 75% attenuation on a 1116 beer is good by me. :D

Interesting idea. How do you this exactly? Just stir it up like crazy?

ArcaneXor 02-04-2009 03:56 PM

I shake the hell out of my Better Bottle before and after pitching the yeast. While I've had some slow starts, I have yet to have a stuck fermentation.

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