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Old 06-25-2010, 04:58 PM   #1
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Default primary fermentation bucket not bubbling

I recent brewed a batch of Brewer’s Best Vienna Lager. I'm very excited to taste the results. I'm still relatively new to homebrewing. I'm brewing this at ale temperatures, more specifically the temperature range of the brew bucket has ranged from 68 - 74 degrees. The instructions said that "the included yeast will perform well when fermented as an ale. When fermenting as an ale (between 64o - 72oF) try to keep the beer on the cooler end of the temperature range and allow for some additional time for the lager yeast to ferment down to the FG." My airlock on my primary fermentation bucket started bubbling within a day to day-and-a-half. It bubbled for about two days and now all activity has ceased. Should I be concerned? Does the fermentation period typically last longer? I'm debating if I should take any action and when I should transfer to my secondary. Any guidance would be much appreciated. Thanks!

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Old 06-25-2010, 05:01 PM   #2
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I don't see anything here that tells me necessarily that your beer isn't fermenting still, only that the airlock isn't bubbling. That is NOT the same thing.

Fermentation time for any beer is not set in stone, a beer is finished when the GRAVITY is stable for 3 consequtive days. An airlock is a valve, a vent to release excess Co2 and keep beer off the ceiling. It is not a magic fermentation gauge. It only bubbles when it needs to release co2, but that doesn't mean that if it isn't bubbling fermentation is finished, the yeast are still often working, but not producing a ton of EXCESS co2. Or that if it's bubbling fermentation is still going on, there could simply be a temp shift or a change int atmosphereic pressure causing it to bubble.

The most important tool you can use is a hydrometer. It's the only way you will truly know when your beer is ready...airlock bubbles and other things are faulty.

The only way to truly know what is going on in your fermenter is with your hydrometer. Like I said here in my blog, which I encourage you to read, Think evaluation before action you sure as HELL wouldn't want a doctor to start cutting on you unless he used the proper diagnostic instuments like x-rays first, right? You wouldn't want him to just take a look in your eyes briefly and say "I'm cutting into your chest first thing in the morning." You would want them to use the right diagnostic tools before the slice and dice, right? You'd cry malpractice, I would hope, if they didn't say they were sending you for an MRI and other things before going in....

Thinking about "doing anything" without taking a hydrometer reading is tantamount to the doctor deciding to cut you open without running any diagnostic tests....Taking one look at you and saying, "Yeah I'm going in." You would really want the doctor to use all means to properly diagnose what's going on?

I recommend that new brewers wait a minimum of 10 days before even considering taking their first grav reading. If I take a grav reading I usually just wait til the 14th day.

So take a reading and then you will KNOW if it's fermenting or not.....

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Old 06-25-2010, 05:06 PM   #3
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If the gravity remains the same for a couple days in a row, then it's reached it's final gravity? Is that correct?

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Old 06-25-2010, 08:49 PM   #4
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Thanks!

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