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Old 02-18-2013, 12:26 AM   #1
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Default Fermenting with dry yeast

I have been using dry yeast. Fermenting for 2 weeks in the primary and a week in the secondary. What I've noticed is the airlock only has activity the first day. I understand you really should monitor the beers gravity level, but I haven't got a thief to take a sample and don't really feel I need to. I guess what I'm confused on is the side of my bucket states that some dry yeast ferments in 2 days. So should I really let my beer ferment that fast?

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Old 02-18-2013, 12:30 AM   #2
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I have been using dry yeast. Fermenting for 2 weeks in the primary and a week in the secondary. What I've noticed is the airlock only has activity the first day. I understand you really should monitor the beers gravity level, but I haven't got a thief to take a sample and don't really feel I need to. I guess what I'm confused on is the side of my bucket states that some dry yeast ferments in 2 days. So should I really let my beer ferment that fast?
I've had fermentations happen overnight, but that's pretty rare.

You can "let it ferment that fast" (you don't really have a choice!) IF you make sure the cause of the super active fermentation is not due to pitching the yeast at a too-high temperature and let the temperature get too hot.

If you add the yeast before the wort is cool enough, you will have a too-hot explosive fermentation.

Make sure you cool the wort to the low to mid 60s before adding the yeast, and then keep the fermenter cool, and below 68 degrees.
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Old 02-18-2013, 03:31 PM   #3
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The instructions on the kit told me to start the yeast at between 90 to 100 degrees. Then pitch it in the beer that was cooled to 80 degrees

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Old 02-18-2013, 04:51 PM   #4
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I really just would like to know without having to take a gravity reading if it hurts anything to let it ferment for 2 weeks in the first stage then a week in the second stage fermenter.

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Old 02-18-2013, 04:59 PM   #5
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Most people recommend leaving it in the primary for two to three weeks. You likely don't need to rack to a secondary.

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Old 02-18-2013, 05:05 PM   #6
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The instructions on the kit told me to start the yeast at between 90 to 100 degrees. Then pitch it in the beer that was cooled to 80 degrees
Throw out those instructions fast, for ale yeast it is typically best to ferment in the sixty degree range...pitching into the beer at 80 degrees is way to hot IMO.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:38 PM   #7
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Throw out those instructions fast, for ale yeast it is typically best to ferment in the sixty degree range...pitching into the beer at 80 degrees is way to hot IMO.
Yeah, now you know why it went so fast!

Next time, cool the wort to less than 65 degrees, and add the yeast, and keep the fermenter no higher than 68 degrees. They have stick-on thermometers, like aquarium thermometers, that you can put on the outside of the fermenter to see the temperature.

Since fermentation itself produces heat, an active fermentation can be up to 10 degrees higher than room temperature, even if you start it at 62 degrees!

If yours started fermenting at 80 degrees, you will probably have some off-flavors like fruity flavors (called esters) and/or fusel alcohols (a "hot" smell or taste).
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:41 PM   #8
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Fermenting too warm is the most common new brewer mistake!

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Old 02-19-2013, 12:22 AM   #9
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So if you do ferment too warm is the only repercussion a sweet tasting beer? And what if you just let it ferment longer?

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Old 02-19-2013, 12:27 AM   #10
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So if you do ferment too warm is the only repercussion a sweet tasting beer? And what if you just let it ferment longer?
You'll get a bunch of fusel alcohol that'll give you splitting headaches.

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