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Old 11-04-2012, 03:04 PM   #1
willrope
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Default fermenting very hot and fast

WOW! I just brewed my 2nd all grain batch yesterday (pale ale) and the airlock is literally bubbling 5-6 times a second! its also very warm @ 79 degrees. i have it in my converted chest freezer with a temp controller and even that isnt cooling it down. I just turned it down some more to try and cool the wort. the whole room smells sweet like bananas and when i stuck my head down in the freezer to look at the temp, m nose started burning.

I've brewed 2 other batches that didnt take off like this one has. Is this usual? how bad will 12ish hours at a high fermenting temp affect the flavor?

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Old 11-04-2012, 03:05 PM   #2
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shoot. I meant to submit this in beginners section. Sorry.

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Old 11-04-2012, 03:10 PM   #3
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Is the thermometer on the carboy/bucket or is it recording the temp inside the freezer?

Also, if your freezer can't keep the temp down, it might be broken.

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Old 11-04-2012, 03:11 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by willrope View Post
WOW! I just brewed my 2nd all grain batch yesterday (pale ale) and the airlock is literally bubbling 5-6 times a second! its also very warm @ 79 degrees. i have it in my converted chest freezer with a temp controller and even that isnt cooling it down. I just turned it down some more to try and cool the wort. the whole room smells sweet like bananas and when i stuck my head down in the freezer to look at the temp, m nose started burning.

I've brewed 2 other batches that didnt take off like this one has. Is this usual? how bad will 12ish hours at a high fermenting temp affect the flavor?
The early hours are important for flavors, you're obviously smelling the banana already (typical of high temp). For future batches, chill the wort down to 65-66F before pitching the yeast. Those high temp flavors will be out of style for a pale ale.
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:15 PM   #5
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What yeast are you using?? It's not uncommon to get very different results from the same yeast fermenting at different temperatures.

Personally, for ale yeasts (which is all I use) I aim to chill to the low end of the yeasts temperature range, or even lower. I've pitched yeast into 54F wort that had a range of 60-70F. It fermented in the lower 60's and gave me a great brew in glass. Any time I have a batch creep up into the uppper 1/3-1/4 of it's range, I take steps to cool it back down.

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Old 11-04-2012, 03:19 PM   #6
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Is the thermometer on the carboy/bucket or is it recording the temp inside the freezer?

Also, if your freezer can't keep the temp down, it might be broken.
Yes its on the side of the carboy. Im pretty sure the freezer is good, I just needed to crank the knob on the freezer (not the temp controller) down a little to get it to cool down more. the batch i did last month didnt get this hot so the original setting worked.

thank you,
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:23 PM   #7
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The early hours are important for flavors, you're obviously smelling the banana already (typical of high temp). For future batches, chill the wort down to 65-66F before pitching the yeast. Those high temp flavors will be out of style for a pale ale.
Will leaving it in primary a week or two longer help with the high temp flavors?

I cooled this batch down pretty well, so I thought. I built a wort chiller and it dropped the temp down to the 70's in about 10-15 minutes!

thank you,

bill
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:27 PM   #8
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Will leaving it in primary a week or two longer help with the high temp flavors?

I cooled this batch down pretty well, so I thought. I built a wort chiller and it dropped the temp down to the 70's in about 10-15 minutes!
Only time will tell how long it will take to get rid of the off flavors, IF it can at all.

IMO/IME, in the 70's is far too warm to pitch ale yeasts. All the ones I use max out at somewhere between 70 and 75F for a fermentation temperature. Pitch temperature should be 5-10F lower than your desired fermentation temperature.

I would focus on getting your chilling method dialed-in so that you can reach the temperatures needed. Or do additional chilling in fermenter (swamp cooler, chamber, etc.) BEFORE you pitch the yeast. You'll get MUCH better beer if you do.
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:33 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Golddiggie View Post
What yeast are you using?? It's not uncommon to get very different results from the same yeast fermenting at different temperatures.

Personally, for ale yeasts (which is all I use) I aim to chill to the low end of the yeasts temperature range, or even lower. I've pitched yeast into 54F wort that had a range of 60-70F. It fermented in the lower 60's and gave me a great brew in glass. Any time I have a batch creep up into the uppper 1/3-1/4 of it's range, I take steps to cool it back down.
I used Nottingham on this batch.

After I pitched (mid-low 70's) I put it right in the cooler thinking the temp would drop even further before fermentation got into full swing! I guess not.

Will the fermentation temp still run away if pitched at a lower temp or does the yeast have a harder time, so to speak, and won't have a chance to get too high? does that question make sense?
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:38 PM   #10
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Only time will tell how long it will take to get rid of the off flavors, IF it can at all.

IMO/IME, in the 70's is far too warm to pitch ale yeasts. All the ones I use max out at somewhere between 70 and 75F for a fermentation temperature. Pitch temperature should be 5-10F lower than your desired fermentation temperature.

I would focus on getting your chilling method dialed-in so that you can reach the temperatures needed. Or do additional chilling in fermenter (swamp cooler, chamber, etc.) BEFORE you pitch the yeast. You'll get MUCH better beer if you do.
Noted, and thank you!

I'm thinking/hoping that it'll still be a decent beer by the time all is said and done.

thanks again,

Bill
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