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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Gusher Question
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Old 02-22-2013, 03:57 AM   #1
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So my not-so-hoppy pale ale took another crap turn. Opened up a bottle today and it was ridiculously over carbonated. It didn't shoot out, but eventually about half of the bottle came out as foam.

I've read up on a lot of the existing threads about the topic so I'm aware it can be quite a few different things. Right now I'm leaning towards an infection or incomplete fermentation.

BUT I do have a question: do gusher bugs ALWAYS cause an off flavor? If so, how quickly can I expect it to set in? The beer has been in the bottle for 3 weeks.

Thanks!

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Old 02-22-2013, 01:32 PM   #2
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I would guess that incomplete fermentation or too much priming sugar are the cause. I have had it suggested that it takes longer than 3 weeks for an infection to cause gushers but I don't have direct experience to know.


How did you determine how much priming sugar to use? I started with a kit that contained 5 ounces of sugar for 5 gallons. Then when I started to see how much overcarbonated my beers were I went lower, down to 4.3 ounces. Still overcarbonated so I found a calculator that let me know that for my beers at the temperature I bottled at needed only 3.2 ounces. You should be using a calculator for your beer.

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Old 02-22-2013, 04:50 PM   #3
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I used Brewers Friend to calculate the priming sugar needed. I guess I'll keep waiting for off flavors. No big deal but it would be nice to pin this on a bug or not before I bottle my next brew

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Old 02-22-2013, 07:42 PM   #4
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How long has this beer been in the bottle? Sometimes if it hasn't been sitting long enough there will be yeast suspended in the bottle and this yeast can be a nucleation site for the CO2 to come out of suspension. I first learned of how the nucleation sites will cause gushing when I made a spiced ale and the first bottle gushed on opening. Those bottles that sat longer did not gush and the reason the first one did was the particles of spices still suspended in the beer.

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Old 02-22-2013, 07:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RM-MN View Post
How long has this beer been in the bottle? Sometimes if it hasn't been sitting long enough there will be yeast suspended in the bottle and this yeast can be a nucleation site for the CO2 to come out of suspension. I first learned of how the nucleation sites will cause gushing when I made a spiced ale and the first bottle gushed on opening. Those bottles that sat longer did not gush and the reason the first one did was the particles of spices still suspended in the beer.
2 days off of 3 weeks. I understand it could be a number of things. I'm just wondering what the particular symptoms of an infection are because I'm brewing this weekend and bottling the next. So, I'm not sure if I need to go ape-sh!t and clean like I have OCD, throw out hoses, etc. I'll probably just clean everything anyways to be sure.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:30 PM   #6
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I had a gusher the other day from a batch that hadn't gushed before. My brother was over and I asked him if anything had "happened" when he got a beer for himself earlier. He responded that one of the big bottles (liters) had fallen out of the fridge and almost hit the floor. I bet that's enough to put a bunch of yeast back into suspension.

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Old 02-22-2013, 08:54 PM   #7
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I'd have to say they don't always cause bad flavors. My oatmeal stout recently had a gusher infection (whole batch, not over primed or underattenuated) and they tasted fine, if a little thin. Still, it was like old faithful opening one up, so down the drain they went.

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Old 02-22-2013, 09:25 PM   #8
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If it's only been 2 days it could be that the C02 hasn't gone into solution, which would give you an overly foamy, flat beer. There's a video on HBT I think Revvu posted about it. Leave the bottle for 2 more weeks (not days, weeks), then try them and see what's what. In the meantime, just in case, place them in a safe, tucked away area (about 70F if you can), and check the caps periodically for bulging. Bulging caps is a sure sign that you either overprimed, didn't let fermentation complete, or have an infection.

The biggest point there is patience. Wait it out, give it a few weeks, and then see. In the meantime you can distract yourself by planning that next batch .

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Old 02-23-2013, 03:44 AM   #9
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If it's only been 2 days it could be that the C02 hasn't gone into solution, which would give you an overly foamy, flat beer. There's a video on HBT I think Revvu posted about it. Leave the bottle for 2 more weeks (not days, weeks), then try them and see what's what. In the meantime, just in case, place them in a safe, tucked away area (about 70F if you can), and check the caps periodically for bulging. Bulging caps is a sure sign that you either overprimed, didn't let fermentation complete, or have an infection.

The biggest point there is patience. Wait it out, give it a few weeks, and then see. In the meantime you can distract yourself by planning that next batch .
Nah, you misread my post. It was 2 days away from 3 weeks. I'm going to be going nuts trying to figure out what went wrong. It's got to be either in my bottling bucket or auto siphon. I guess I'll be bottling from a carboy the next few times to avoid the potential contaminated bucket. I wish my auto siphon was glass so I could just toss it in the oven!
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Old 02-23-2013, 05:07 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheHairyHop
Nah, you misread my post. It was 2 days away from 3 weeks. I'm going to be going nuts trying to figure out what went wrong. It's got to be either in my bottling bucket or auto siphon. I guess I'll be bottling from a carboy the next few times to avoid the potential contaminated bucket. I wish my auto siphon was glass so I could just toss it in the oven!
Before you go nuts, stick a bottle in the fridge and wait a week. Then see if you are having the same issue.
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