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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Possible Reasons for Overcarbonation
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:10 AM   #1
fatmike1968
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Default Possible Reasons for Overcarbonation

My friend and I have been brewing bottles that are way too overcarbonated. We add the correct amount of corn sugar/dried malt extract (to the whole batch not per bottle). The temperature is within the range. We let the beer sit in the primary for 1 week before transferring to the secondary, and bottle within 1-2 weeks. We read the balling percentage (or something like that) and wait for 2 or 3consistent readings.

Perhaps we lose some beer through: 1) not tipping our primary fermenter before transfer, 2) run-off due to violent fermentation. And as a result we add too much bottling sugar for the actual amount of beer left.

Any suggestions or possible remedies?

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Old 11-03-2007, 04:32 AM   #2
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How much dextrose are you adding? I go by weight but I think 3/4 of a cup seems to be the usual for most guys when bottling 5 US gallons. What temperature are you bottle conditioning at? The temperature and amount of fermentable sugar you add is what determines the CO2 level in the bottle.

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Old 11-03-2007, 04:37 AM   #3
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We use Dried Malt Extract and use 1.25 C. of it, as recommended. The bottles stay in the house at "room temperature".

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Old 11-03-2007, 04:39 AM   #4
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Ya but what is room temperature?

1.25 cups sounds about right for DME. You will get higher carbonation at 65F than you will at 73F because the beer will absorb more of the CO2 at lower temperatures. I would stick a thermometer in a glass of water for a day or two where you condition your bottles and figure out the temperature. That way you can fine tune your priming solution to get the carbonation level you desire (all the brewing software packages have tools for calculating that easily).

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Old 11-03-2007, 04:42 AM   #5
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Cool, thanks for the advice! I'll check that out

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Old 11-03-2007, 04:45 PM   #6
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I'd check your actual bottled volume.

if you start with exactly 5 gallons, you may be below 4.5gallons actually being bottled, and would need to reduce priming sugar/DME accordingly.

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