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Old 01-31-2012, 11:54 PM   #1
LucaBrasi
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Default Look at my airlock- What (if anything) should I do?

I'm hoping for advice on any steps I should take based on the condition of my airlock. I'm about 48 hours into fermentation. It started quick and airlock activity has been vigorous. But at this point it looks like the airlock is filled with mostly yeast and wort, rather than the sanitizing solution I put in there. All airlock activity has stopped at this point. Also of note is that the bucket lid is flexing way out. I'm not thrilled about the idea of trying to do anything if I don't need to.

All opionions appreciated.

airlock.jpg  
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Old 01-31-2012, 11:56 PM   #2
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Stick one end of a wide piece of hose over the out tube of the airlock. Put the other end of the tube submerged in StarSan or similar product. It's a blowoff tube and will save your walls, furniture, clothes, carpet, dog, cat, wife, etc., from the volcanic wrath of a frenzied yeast god!

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Old 01-31-2012, 11:57 PM   #3
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Take it off and install a blow off tube!

At least clean it out, sanitize then re-install. But, be prepared to repeat every hour for the next couple of days.

It sounds like the airlock is plugged. If the top is bulging you may have enough pressure to blow it off. If it does you will be washing your ceiling!

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:01 AM   #4
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Yeah blow off tube before you have your first blow out... if you are too late take pictures.

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:09 AM   #5
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I was afraid of that.- So when I take off the airlock, how do I avoid either having the bucket lid fly off, or a geyser of fermenting wort from exploding through the hole?

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:14 AM   #6
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Don't take off the airlock. Just take off the lid and the cone/cap thing or whatever you call it. Leave the big piece in the grommet. Affix the tube to the top of the large piece and run it into a cup/jar/bottle of sanitizer.

And probably give everything a nice spritz of sanitizer. That's what I've always done in your situation and come out fine.

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:15 AM   #7
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The lid won't fly off. As you slowly twist the airlock out, it will bleed off any pressure stored. Don't wear your white shirt just in case.

It shouldn't be that bad. As you bleed it off, you may get foam mixed with air.

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phenry View Post
Don't take off the airlock. Just take off the lid and the cone/cap thing or whatever you call it. Leave the big piece in the grommet. Affix the tube to the top of the large piece and run it into a cup/jar/bottle of sanitizer.

And probably give everything a nice spritz of sanitizer. That's what I've always done in your situation and come out fine.

If the airlock is plugged, as it sounds from the description, this will not work. The airlock will need to be cleaned.
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Old 02-01-2012, 12:19 AM   #9
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First of all, it looks like you have your airlock shoved way too far into the grommet. All you need is the small, tapered part of the airlock stem pushed into the hole. That will create a seal.

Right now, (and if the lid is bulging like you say, I mean RIGHT NOW) wiggle that airlock out. As you wiggle it, you will probably release pressure a little bit at a time. If you can't get it to come out, take the cap off of the airlock and stick something sanitized down through the stem to release pressure). Then stick one end of a siphon tube either in the grommet, or over the stem of the airlock, and put the other end in a bucket of sanitizer or water. The bucket should be lower then the top of the bucket. That's a blowoff tube and should allow the pressure to blow out safely.

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Old 02-01-2012, 12:47 AM   #10
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Ok- thanks guys. I got it out of there, cleaned it up, santized, and re-installed the airlock. My tubing is upstairs packed away, so I'm going to keep an eye on it and make sure it doesn't happen again.

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