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Old 02-05-2013, 02:57 AM   #1
jmcvay131
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Default Another airlock question

So just curious to as how crazy should my air lock be bubbling. It seems pretty slow but this is my first 5 gallon batch so I'm not sure. It's going about one bubble every 2 or 3 seconds, this is the second day of fermentation.

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:04 AM   #2
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It varies, but my last batch was around the same in airlock performance. Is your temp around the lower end of the range for the yeast? I have noticed that lower end temps will have slower airlock activity. I wouldn't worry, airlocks are a poor indicator of fermentation.

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:07 AM   #3
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Ok cool I have a white bucket so I can't see in it but I put a sure fire flash light on the lid and I could see what looked like foam or bubbles on top.

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:07 AM   #4
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Bubbling airlock means nothing more than your airlock is working. Try will bubble for any multitude of reasons. Weather, temperature, pressure, bumped the fermenter etc etc. it is not an indication of your fermentation. To ensure your fermentation is complete you will need to take a gravity sample with a hydrometer. That is the only way to tell when fermentation is over. It usually only takes a few days for the gravity to drop. Then the yeast need time to condition the beer. I usually wait till around day 10. Take a reading. Then again at 2weeks if they're the same reading then bottle/keg. If the differ check again in a few days and compare that with second reading. Repeat as necessary till readings are the same then you'll know fermentation is done and its safe to bottle/keg.

Foam on top means its still fermenting. Congrats welcome to the addiction. You've made beer!!!

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:10 AM   #5
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That's normal. Fermentation for average beers will be about 10-14 days. The main thing is to have patience and let the yeast in the beer do their thing. I'm assuming you're doing a kit. If so, just follow the instructions on it to keep things simple.

The first batch is always the hardest as you're anxious to taste that first beer you made. Stay the course and you'll be rewarded for it. Good luck!

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:12 AM   #6
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Sweeet lol that's such a good feeling. So do I need to worry about it contaminating when I pop the lid the take a reading or as long as I sanitize my hands and hydrometer will it be fine?

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:12 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilSwillBasementBrews View Post
Bubbling airlock means nothing more than your airlock is working. Try will bubble for any multitude of reasons. Weather, temperature, pressure, bumped the fermenter etc etc. it is not an indication of your fermentation.
I can make my airlock bubble on command this batch. I must have set my bucket at the perfect spot on the floor that when I walk past it, I can make it bubble by stepping in the right spot.

GilSwillBasementBrews is 100% correct. There are videos on youtube on using a hydrometer that are very good.
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmcvay131
Sweeet lol that's such a good feeling. So do I need to worry about it contaminating when I pop the lid the take a reading or as long as I sanitize my hands and hydrometer will it be fine?
Don't ever "worry" about your beer, it'll sense your fear and turn on you

Check out YouTube for videos on how to properly check gravity using your hydrometer. I use a bucket and check my gravity at least 2 times during fermentation - no infections here
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:28 AM   #9
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Alright well thanks guys appreciate the help. Ill probably be back later with another question lol till I get this down.

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Old 02-05-2013, 03:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmcvay131 View Post
Sweeet lol that's such a good feeling. So do I need to worry about it contaminating when I pop the lid the take a reading or as long as I sanitize my hands and hydrometer will it be fine?
I think as long as you sanitize whatever is going to come into contact with the beer, you'll be fine.


Me, I just "set and forget" for 2-3 weeks. From the time I pitch my yeast to the time I'm ready to bottle, I only check it twice. Once 2-3 weeks after pitching, then three days after that to make sure fermentation has ended. Besides those two readings, I don't touch it.
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