Happy HolidaySs Giveaway - Winners Re-Re-Re-Re-Drawn - 24 hours to Claim!

Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Just got to ask about Infections
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-29-2011, 04:44 AM   #1
TastySalmon
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: N. Idaho/NW Washington
Posts: 104
Default Just got to ask about Infections

After tonight's browsing of threads, I realized something: People talk an awful lot about getting beer infected. It's not just newbies doing it, but people who I perceive as being experienced. It's not that it's just subtly mentioned every now and then, but it's brought up all the time.

So, I got to ask -- how many times has a fermenter of yours actually been infected with bacteria? The reason I ask is because in the 250+ batches of beer I've made, I've never gotten a bacterial infection before. I don't go overboard with sterilizing either. Fermenters get a quick splash of iodophor and a rinse. Airlocks get a quick boil. Hoses get a rinse and every now and then I give them an iodophor bath.

Is it unfounded paranoia for many people, or is it actually based on experience? Am I just lucky? I will admit that last winter a bottle of mine got some sort of a bug. It developed a haze while carbonating and smelled a little off.

__________________
TastySalmon is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 05:42 AM   #2
cvstrat
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 691
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

Infections are like train wrecks, they tend to attract a lot of attention, but they don't happen all that often. I guess since it's every brewer's worst nightmare people tend to check on infection threads, and newbs tend to think everything that materializes in the carboy is an infection.

I've brewed approximately 40 batches with no infections either. I'm not saying it couldn't happen and that it doesn't happen, but with proper precautions it should be rare

__________________
cvstrat is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 05:45 AM   #3
xeerohour
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Tulsa, OK
Posts: 167
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

I've only had one true infection in something like 20 batches. I got a phenolic infection when bottling an imperial stout. Likely something on the sugar or in the bucket.

__________________
Impudent Brewing
xeerohour is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 05:56 AM   #4
blizzard
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 18 reviews
 
blizzard's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,615
Liked 212 Times on 154 Posts
Likes Given: 102

Default

I just got an infection... lots of smoky phenolic flavors in a batch. I used a brand new BB, but I was in a hurry to transfer after cooling the wort and I didn't give it a proper wash because it was new.

__________________

Primary/Secondary/Bottles/Kegged: Delicious, delicious beer

blizzard is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 11:46 AM   #5
Nightbiker
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Nightbiker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Dover, FL
Posts: 561
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

I haven't had one yet, not in roughly 30-40 batches. But as was said up there -its the 'train-wreck' syndrome, and as was said -its every brewers' worst nightmare (even the 'big boys' sweat this sort of thing -after all, in OUR case its bad enough -it represents a bit of lost time and twenty or thirty (give or take) bucks worth of ingredients -they stand to lose a whole lot more.
Its only natural that we concern ourselves with fear of infections.
I confess that I should be more diligent with sanitizing, but I haven't had any issues and my sanitizing sounds a lot like yours (though I rinse and sanitize all the hoses and draw tubes immediately after use, and sanitize before use as well).
I have a brother who bottles and he has had a batch of a red ale that got infected. When we opened up some of the bottles, they fountained until literally half the beer had blown out of the bottles. The rest had a thin taste with some very interesting (but certainly not desireable) flavor profile. He sanitized the heck out of his equipment and hasn't had the problem since.
Lesson learned.

__________________

GOT BEER?
FERMENTING:
LAGERING/CONDITIONING:Simply Sweet Mead
Kegged: Big Bad Brown Ale (Brown Ale and Porter blend).
Bottled:

Plans: Oak-Smoked Porter, Honey Brown Ale.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaybird View Post
we do it for the love of beer! Not for the love of money! We can all make great BEER! Not so much when it comes to money!
Nightbiker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 12:22 PM   #6
sudndeth
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Charleston
Posts: 266
Liked 3 Times on 2 Posts

Default

Can you have a slight infection though? I've drank beers while a runner at a beer comp that tasted good, but were said to be infected. One of the experienced judges was telling me that many beers are infected, more than most people think. I guess you can get some slight smells and faint tastes from it.

__________________
sudndeth is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 02:08 PM   #7
badmajon
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Augusta, GA
Posts: 822
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 10

Default

I've had one real infection in my 15 batch brewing history, the one before the last one. Undrinkable plastic flavor, with sick looking yeast (barely any cake at the bottom of the carboy) and no it wasn't chlorine etc. One time I even "sanitized" with water, thinking it was starsan, and the beer was just fine. It seems to be totally random.

__________________
badmajon is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 02:16 PM   #8
two_hearted
Hold on to your butts
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 4 reviews
 
two_hearted's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Posts: 2,277
Liked 191 Times on 154 Posts
Likes Given: 42

Default

Not a one.

__________________
two_hearted is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 02:17 PM   #9
Bradinator
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 655
Liked 24 Times on 21 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sudndeth View Post
Can you have a slight infection though? I've drank beers while a runner at a beer comp that tasted good, but were said to be infected. One of the experienced judges was telling me that many beers are infected, more than most people think. I guess you can get some slight smells and faint tastes from it.
For some styles of beers (and I just learned this the other day) specific styles of infections are desirable. I mean isn't yeast just a cultivated mold to begin with? Or is it a bacteria... I am not sure. It just comes in little backs and stinks when wet. Maybe its dehydrated dog?
__________________
Bradinator is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-29-2011, 02:21 PM   #10
Yooper
Ale's What Cures You!
HBT_ADMIN.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Yooper's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Upper Michigan
Posts: 62,861
Liked 4939 Times on 3578 Posts
Likes Given: 995

Default

I had one, about batch #260 or so. I had lactobacillus. The beer tasted fine after a week in the fermenter, but when I went to rack it to the keg a week after that it was getting "thin" and there was a hint of sourness. I covered it back up to see if it would get better (and I didn't want to contaminate a keg if it WAS infected), and a week later it was terrible. It was obviously lacto- sour, thin, slimy.

I ditched my plastic and bleachbombed the glass. Everything else has been fine.

__________________
Broken Leg Brewery
Giving beer a leg to stand on since 2006

Find me on facebook: Lorena Evans
But I'm pretty boring so don't expect much!
https://www.facebook.com/lorena.t.evans
Yooper is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What have your infections been like? cheezydemon General Techniques 21 01-04-2008 06:04 PM
Infections or What? Help If U Can 5gBrewer General Techniques 5 04-17-2007 12:08 AM
Question about Infections. Reverend JC General Techniques 14 11-29-2006 07:34 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS