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Old 11-28-2010, 10:48 PM   #1
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Default How long to wait for bottle carbonation?

I've brewed a pumpkin ale (OG 1.060) and it's been sitting in the bottle for 6 weeks. I opened one today and it's still not carbonated fully. Over the past couple of weeks I've been trying one each week. When it's not carbonated, I've been rolling/shaking the bottles to stir up the yeast.

How long should I wait before I do something else? It's in a room that's about 69 degrees F. I only used one pack of liquid yeast when I brewed this.

Thanks
Todd

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Old 11-28-2010, 11:55 PM   #2
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I don't know if it is something about pumpkin ales, but mine took 3 months, yes THREE MONTHS to carbonate. How long did it sit in your fermenter/secondary before you bottled it? The longer it sat, the less yeast each bottle will likely have, slowing the carbing process. Also, does it have any yeast cake on the bottom of the bottle?

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Old 11-29-2010, 12:05 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Bottenbrew View Post
I don't know if it is something about pumpkin ales, but mine took 3 months, yes THREE MONTHS to carbonate.
Mine took a few months as well. It was over 2 months IIRC. Closer to three. I recall it wasn't ready by halloween but was by Thanksgiving.

The 3 weeks at 70 degrees, that we recommend is the minimum time it takes for average gravity beers to carbonate and condition. Higher grav beers take longer.

Stouts and porters have taken me between 6 and 8 weeks to carb up..I have a 1.090 Belgian strong that took three months to carb up.

Temp and gravity are the two factors that contribute to the time it takes to carb beer. But if a beer's not ready yet, or seems low carbed, and you added the right amount of sugar to it, then it's not stalled, it's just not time yet.

Everything you need to know about carbing and conditioning, can be found here Of Patience and Bottle Conditioning. With emphasis on the word, "patience."

Read the above blog, and come back to the beer in a couple more weeks.

If a beer isn't carbed by "x number of weeks" you just have to give them ore time. If you added your sugar, then the beer will carb up eventually, it's really a foolroof process. All beers will carb up eventually. A lot of new brewers think they have to "troubleshoot" a bottling issue, when there really is none, the beer knows how to carb itself. In fact if you run beersmiths carbing calculator, some lower grav beers don't even require additional sugar to reach their minimum level of carbonation. Just time.
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Old 11-29-2010, 12:08 AM   #4
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Maybe you should try warming it up a bit - low to mid 70s. I have a downstairs bathroom that, if I leave the door closed and the heat duct open, gets quite warm. I also have an upstairs closet that is warmer than other rooms.

If you can't find spaces like that in your home, it occurs to me that the process I use for making yogurt might help. Take a large cooler, put your bottles in it, and then a 1/2 gallon juice bottle filled with hot tap water. Close the lid.

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Old 11-29-2010, 12:10 AM   #5
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I agree with pappers about warming them up a bit. Also at this stage you could give each a little flip to re-rouse the yeast to get it working in the warmer environment.

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Old 11-29-2010, 09:55 PM   #6
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I checked out a few bottles and there is a good amount of sediment at the bottom of each bottle. More than I've seen on my other beers. I guess I'll have to keep waiting. I just don't like opening a bottle once a week and dumping it out. I would think there should be a better way to know your beer is carbonated before you start cracking them open.

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Old 01-09-2011, 09:20 PM   #7
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Ok, it's been 3 months now since I bottled. I opened a bottle yesterday and it was carbonated. I was so happy and it tasted so good. I tried another one today and it was flat.

Any suggestions on what I should do? One thing to note was when I was transferring to the bottling bucket, I forgot to add my sugar water right away. It was added when the bottling bucket was about 1/3 full. Could that be part of my issue?

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Old 10-27-2011, 05:15 PM   #8
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I'm not sure why your beer isn't carbed but I always add my sugar-water after the bottling bucket is full and then mix it in, so I don't think this is the issue.

I'm sure you don't want to hear it, but you probably just need more time.

I bottled a pumkin ale last weekend that I was hoping would be at least a little but carbed (drinkable) by Halloween, but from reading your post and the other responses I guess maybe I'll shoot for Thanksgiving.

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Old 11-02-2011, 03:02 AM   #9
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My pumpkin ale (8.2% ABV, 1.078 OG) has been in the bottle for a month and still hasn't carbed completely. I did a Belgian golden strong ale at 9.3% and it took around 2.5 months to carb and that was with adding champagne yeast at bottling. I've finally gotten to the point where of I'm questioning whether it's carbed I give it two more weeks. Mine will be ready by Thanksgiving and now you know for next year to stock up on pumpkin and brew it in July!

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Old 11-02-2011, 03:57 AM   #10
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I did one that was fully carbed after 4 days at about 23c. But saying that, it was only 5%.
If it's a big beer, then the yeast may just not be up to it. Or maybe there just wasn't enough yeast in the bottles to start with?

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