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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Can you bottle your brew into growlers?
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:29 PM   #1
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Default Can you bottle your brew into growlers?

I've heard both sides I was wondering if I could bottle my brew into growlers? some say it's too much carbonation??

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Old 04-07-2012, 11:31 PM   #2
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Carbonating beer and carbonated beer are not the same. A growler is meant for CARBONATED beer, like from a tap, not beer that is bottle conditioning.

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Originally Posted by Lechien View Post
This is direct from northern brewer website:
Standard issue 64 oz liquid libation transport vessel for the Civilian Brewing Division. This growler features a blank white space for adding in details on the beer inside and date bottled; using a dry-erase marker allows you to change it at any time. Takes a #6 stopper or a 38 mm screw cap. Pressure capable to 2.4 volumes of co2, not recommended for highly carbonated beers. Avoid bottle carbonating or priming with these growlers, as an unintentionally high level of carbonation could cause the glass to break.
Civilian Brewing Division Growler : Northern Brewer

I would hate to see you have a mess.
There's always a few who say they have no problem, but folks also have sex without condoms- Or still smoke, despite knowing its risks.

To carb a beer whether or not is is done naturally or with co2 you are forcing the gas into the solution. The pressure builds up, then there's a point where either the bottle fails or the co2, seeking the path of least resistance, forces itself into solution. You could call it a peak point, where there is a lot of pressure in the bottle, both already in solution and in the headspace trying to go into the solution, eventually it balances out and the beer is carbed.

Beer bottles, champagne bottles and kegs are rated with a higher psi/volume of co2 than wine bottles and growlers.

Already carbed and kegged beer is at a stable volume of co2 which is below the volume that growlers and winebottles are rated at. The FORCING of the co2 already happened. Why do you think kegs are made of metal and very very strong? To handle the pressure.

Our Buddy Rukus

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Originally Posted by RukusDM View Post
This is because during carbing, the pressure can go above 30 or 40 PSI. I have a thread in the cider forum where I did several tests bottle carbing sweet hard cider. There is allot of data there if your interested.

I have a bottle with a pressure gauge on it. I recorded pressures during the carbing process. This is how the data was generated. I also recorded pressures while pasteurizing the cider.

I recently bottled some lager I made. I also filled my gauge bottle and my lower pressure gauge bottle pegged at 35 PSI as that was the limit of the gauge. It probably ended up in the 40's, but no way to tell for sure.


When we bottle condition beer, we are really simulating force carbing like the keg folks do. We cause a ferment by adding sugar. This creates a high pressure in the bottle. CO2 doesn't like to dissolve in a warm liquid. We then put some bottles in the fridge. The temperature of the liquid drops and the CO2 then begins to dissolve in the liquid.

It seems to take several days at fridge temperatures for the CO2 to fully saturate the liquid for a maximum saturation for that liquid temperature.

While the CO2 is moving into the liquid, the pressure slowly drops. I've monitored this process as well with the pressure gauge.

Pressures go way higher than folks think while bottle conditioning. In the following data, I carbed sweet hard cider and stopped the carbing and then pasteurized the cider when the bottle was at 22 PSI. My Lager went above 35 PSI. The data doesn't show the extremes the pressure rises with beer as I stopped the cider at 22 PSI, but it would have continued if i hadn't stopped it.

The gauge bottle has a nice side effect, it tells you when your bottles are conditioned as the pressure rise stops. I then throw them in the Fridge to cold condition for several days before I open. The gauge also tells you when they are carbed as the pressure drop stops. Pretty basic really.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/bott...review-205862/

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Originally Posted by RukusDM View Post
No, when you bottle condition, the slight fermentation we cause by adding priming sugar just builds pressure up in the bottle. The pressures seem to go up into the 30's and 40's PSI from what I've seen.

The CO2 doesn't really move into the liquid until the temperature drops. Some CO2 may, but not the majority of it. CO2 doesn't dissolve into solution until a lower temperature.

This is really what we do when we force carb in a keg. We raise the pressure up when the beer is cold. The CO2 moves into the solution. The tap pressure is lowered for proper delivery and the beer either sets for cold aging, or it is consumed at that time.

What you would see with the pressure gauge (if you use one bigger than my first bottle had. Should use a 100 PSI Gauge) is that the pressure climbs over time and will level off.

Once the pressure levels off, that means all of the priming sugar has been used up by the yeast. Next, you put them into the fridge. You will see the pressure drop over several days. Eventually, it also will level off. I like to let them sit for a few more days after that, but really if the pressure stops dropping, all of the CO2 that can be dissolved at that temperature has been achieved.
.
I think it goes down to this.....is it worth playing Russian Roulette with your money and the time you spent bringing your brew along from grain to bottling day???

For every guy that says they do it, we have 2-3 guys who posts threads like "Growler goes Boom"
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:40 PM   #3
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Don't do it. I used to and had a couple explode.

The fancy growlers with the metal handle and grisly style cap are fine to use. But the plain old screw cap growlers won't hold the pressure.

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Old 04-28-2012, 03:47 AM   #4
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I've used one of those "fancy" style growlers but only once so I probably got lucky. I'm not gonna try it again.

I've been eyeing 1liter swing top bottles of sparkling apple juice i saw at World Market though. Think they'd handle carbing pressures? They look just like ones I see for sale on home brew websites, but cheaper per bottle. I have no idea of glass thickness so that could be an issue.

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Old 04-28-2012, 02:01 PM   #5
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I love the cut and paste responses. Rather comical and broken record esque. I know it's because you feel you guys are fending off any other questions but come on! It's so authoritarian and annoying.

Anyhow it really depends on the beer. If you're putting in a real low carb english beer I don't see how it's a problem. I've used it for cask style ales when I have parties coming up. I filled three up last time and they were all lightly carbonated and none broke. I'll keep doing it too just because I I feel confident they won't break. I won't be putting a saison at 4 volumes in there but I'll toss in a ESB at 1.3 volumes any day. Just keep them somewhere for the first week where if they should break it's not a big deal. I think the naysayers have really done a number to the sheeple on this board though. I'm here to try and turn the tables on that "growler goes boom" ratio. If you're not a jackoff, can accurately bottle condition, and keep it to a max of 2 vol I say give it a shot. Just don't sleep with it under your pillow.

In fact the standard 12oz long neck bottles most of us use to bottle condition beers in weight 210grams on average. The "fancy" flip top growlers that I use for bottle conditioning cask style beers in weight 1.5kg. So if you take the weight of the bottle and divide it by the volume in mL you get .59 for the 12oz long neck. That is a straight percentage saying that the glass mass is 59% of the container volume. The 2L growler has a 75% glass mass to container volume. So while it's not "designed" for pressure the guideline I use for carbing beers in certain bottles to 3.0+ is coming in to play here also. I would even wager that I can bottle condition a beer between 2 and 3 volumes in one of these fliptops and may just do so on a few occasions to prove the naysayers wrong. Of course in normal fashion once I produce the results the same copy and paste will continue because they don't want anyone thinking for themselves. Come on in the Koolaide is great.

You are a unique snowflake and you can think for yourself. So I say give it a shot and be smart about how you do it. Based on the information I gave you make your own educated decision rather than anecdotal information based on assumptions.

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Old 04-28-2012, 04:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokinghole
I love the cut and paste responses. Rather comical and broken record esque. I know it's because you feel you guys are fending off any other questions but come on! It's so authoritarian and annoying.
That's Revy for you.

Truth is I used them for about a year with no issues. Then had 2 explode on separate occasions. Beer everywhere. What a mess.
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Old 04-28-2012, 06:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokinghole
I love the cut and paste responses. Rather comical and broken record esque. I know it's because you feel you guys are fending off any other questions but come on! It's so authoritarian and annoying.

Anyhow it really depends on the beer. If you're putting in a real low carb english beer I don't see how it's a problem. I've used it for cask style ales when I have parties coming up. I filled three up last time and they were all lightly carbonated and none broke. I'll keep doing it too just because I I feel confident they won't break. I won't be putting a saison at 4 volumes in there but I'll toss in a ESB at 1.3 volumes any day. Just keep them somewhere for the first week where if they should break it's not a big deal. I think the naysayers have really done a number to the sheeple on this board though. I'm here to try and turn the tables on that "growler goes boom" ratio. If you're not a jackoff, can accurately bottle condition, and keep it to a max of 2 vol I say give it a shot. Just don't sleep with it under your pillow.

In fact the standard 12oz long neck bottles most of us use to bottle condition beers in weight 210grams on average. The "fancy" flip top growlers that I use for bottle conditioning cask style beers in weight 1.5kg. So if you take the weight of the bottle and divide it by the volume in mL you get .59 for the 12oz long neck. That is a straight percentage saying that the glass mass is 59% of the container volume. The 2L growler has a 75% glass mass to container volume. So while it's not "designed" for pressure the guideline I use for carbing beers in certain bottles to 3.0+ is coming in to play here also. I would even wager that I can bottle condition a beer between 2 and 3 volumes in one of these fliptops and may just do so on a few occasions to prove the naysayers wrong. Of course in normal fashion once I produce the results the same copy and paste will continue because they don't want anyone thinking for themselves. Come on in the Koolaide is great.
Interesting. I think the copy pasting is meant to inform someone that this information is out there, and HBT isn't Google. There are so many repeating questions on this board its insane. You pretty much have 3 options, ignore (which is rude, and what I do) point out their ignorance blatantly and tell them to search, or do what Revvy did, copy and paste information. The question asked gets his/her answer and is subtlety reminded that this information is out there.


As far as the Growler question goes, just because you CAN, doesn't mean you should, the vessel in question is not meant to do what you are asking it to do. As well, just because you've been told you shouldn't, doesn't mean you can't. You are human, it is in your existence to learn and explore
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