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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > First Batch - In Primary and Airlock bubbles....
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Old 02-01-2010, 02:32 PM   #1
brewagentjay
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Default First Batch - In Primary and Airlock bubbles....

So my first batch was put in the primary Saturday Night....Sunday Morning I got Air bubbles coming up out of Airlock every 2 seconds...Now Monday I have air bubbles less than a second a part.

Is this normal? Primary is a bucket so can't see what's going on two well.

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Old 02-01-2010, 02:45 PM   #2
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Yes it's normal...Fermentation is slowing down, the co2 doesn't need to vent as much now. That's job, it'sa vent, a valve to release excess co2, NOT a fermentation gauge.

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Old 02-01-2010, 02:53 PM   #3
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Thanks...It would seem that fermintation is speeding up in my case since the time between bubbles is getting smaller...

Am I right? More Frequent bubbles means fermintation is speeding up?

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Old 02-01-2010, 02:55 PM   #4
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Also my temp is steady at 63 degrees according to outside of bucket. Is this an okay temp?

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Old 02-01-2010, 02:57 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by brewagentjay View Post
Thanks...It would seem that fermintation is speeding up in my case since the time between bubbles is getting smaller...

Am I right? More Frequent bubbles means fermintation is speeding up?
Actually it means absolutely nothing.....Airlock bubbles mean very little, and shouldn't be used or thought of as any form of gauge.

"Bubbling action" is not a good way to tell if anything is happening, plenty of beers ferment without a single bubble from the airlock.

Fermentation is not always "dynamic," just because you don't SEE anything happening, doesn't mean that any-thing's wrong,, and also doesn't mean that the yeast are still not working diligently away, doing what they've been doing for over 4,000 years..

Your airlock is not a fermentation gauge, it is a VALVE to release excess co2. And the peak of fermentation has already wound down, so there's simply no need to vent off any excess co2.

The bubbling just means that it is venting excess CO2, nothing more. If it's not bubbling, that only means that it is not producing enough co2 to need to vent.

If your airlock was bubbling and stopped---It doesn't mean fermentation has stopped.

If you airlock isn't bubbling, it doesn't mean your fermentation hasn't started....

If your airlock starts bubbling, it really doesn't matter.

If your airlock NEVER bubbles, it doesn't mean anything is wrong or right.

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....

You'll be much happier if you get out of the habit of connecting anything to airlock bubbling....you will find that fermentations rarely don't take off, or just Stop...In fact I've never had a beer not ferment. BUT half of my fermentations, spread out across 9 different fermenters, never blip once in the airlock.
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Old 02-01-2010, 03:04 PM   #6
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I understand that the Airlock can't really let you know what is going on truly with the fermentation, however I'm knew and looking for a good sign that something is taking place. I'm assuming since CO2 is being release that a chemical reaction is happening so it can't be mean nothing...... I don't want to bother it with another hydro reading since I only put in primary on Saturday evening. I need to wait at least a week I'm assuming or two before transfering to secondary @ that time could I take a hydro reading?

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Old 02-01-2010, 03:05 PM   #7
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Bubbles just mean CO2 is escaping through your airlock, which is fine. Its not an accurate guage as to if fermentation is speeding up/slowing down... for all you know you could have a leak in the lid or something which the CO2 is escaping as well.

Your Hyrdometer is the only way to accurately tell what is going on (lower # when you take your Hydrometer compared to your OG will tell you fermentation is occuring.) But you don't need to mess with taking readings unless you're concerned it hasn't started. Since it sounds like yours has, just leave it alone

Also, 63 for an ale is fine... I think its like 60-70F is where ales should be. Since yours sounds like it has started, no need to worry.

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Old 02-01-2010, 03:08 PM   #8
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I understand that the Airlock can't really let you know what is going on truly with the fermentation, however I'm knew and looking for a good sign that something is taking place.
That's what your hydrometer is for.....

Because often airlocks don't bubble. And yet if you look at the "my fermentation is stuck" threads, the minute the person takes our advice and takes a grav reading, then they find out that yes indeed, fermentation was happening happily.

I have 9 fermenters, buckets, carboys, better bottles, etc. And in only about half of the beers I have made over the yeasts, only about half has there actually been bubbling airclocks....But I've had 100% fermentation.

Taking grav readings is not "bothering it."
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Old 02-01-2010, 03:24 PM   #9
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Thanks. I took one before pitching yeast. When should I take another?

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Old 02-01-2010, 03:35 PM   #10
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Thanks. I took one before pitching yeast. When should I take another?
I'd wait until Thursday at the earliest. In the meantime, focus on temperature control. As long as you make things comfortable for the yeast, they'll know what to do. Keep the temps steady for the first three or four days or so, then slowly ramp them up by a degree or two a day to maximize attenuation.
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