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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Signs of a gusher or the dreaded bomb
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Old 01-28-2010, 01:01 PM   #1
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Default Signs of a gusher or the dreaded bomb

I bottled my beer last Saturday. This is my first batch, so I don't know what to look for. After 2 days of conditioning I pulled one bottle out and refridgerated it for 2 additional days. After that short time, to my surprise there was a C02 release when I popped the top, and when I poured it into a glass there a small amount of head that lasted. There were a few bubbles that made there way up the sides of the glass and the beer didn't really taste all that green. I can only imagine what another 2 weeks will bring.

That all said... should I be concerned this batch is carbonating too fast. Am I potentially looking at two cases of gushers or God forbid a few bombs? This is an american amber ale with a final gravity below 1.02 (1.018-1.019). Please put my mind to ease, or offer steps to help remedy a possible problem.

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Old 01-28-2010, 01:07 PM   #2
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Sounds like it is right on track, actually with most beer I would expect a gusher before the co2 gets absorbed in the beer (say about two weeks). 3 weeks should be about right. Of course this depends on the correct amount of priming and the OG of it, higher OG takes longer.

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Old 01-28-2010, 01:23 PM   #3
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You bottled last Saturday but when did you brew it?

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Old 01-28-2010, 02:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
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You bottled last Saturday but when did you brew it?
Just out of curiosity, how would this make a difference in relation to carbonation?
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Old 01-28-2010, 02:49 PM   #5
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Just out of curiosity, how would this make a difference in relation to carbonation?
Well if you didn't take a reading, didn't leave sufficient time for the yeast to finish fermenting, and bottled while the beer was still fermenting, then you could be adding to half fermented beer, and will max out the bottle's ability to hold in the co2, and the beottles could go "boom."

Let's say if you followed some idiotic kit instructions that said bottle after 7 days, but you had a 3 day lag time before your yeast even started fermented, therefore you may have only 4 days of fermentation, and you beer may only, lets say at 75% fermentation. The beer is going to still end up needing to ferment in the bottle, is going to produce x volumes of co2, and if you add the typical amount of sugar to the beer to produce the 2-2.5 volume of co2 for cabonation, you could quite possibly be producing 4-6 volumes of co2 in a bottle, that may have a rating of no more than 3.5 volume of co2.
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Old 01-28-2010, 02:55 PM   #6
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Now the reason you have a gusher is not that anything is wrong, but that you opened the beer after only a couple days.

you opened it at a point where although there was co2 present in the headspace, it hadn't fully integrated into solution. In other words it wasn't carbed yet.

How long did you chill the bottle before tasting it? The longer you chill it the more it will pull it into solution as well.

But generally we recommend a minimum of three weeks at 70 to carb and condition most average gravity beers. Some take longer, weeks or months even.

I bet that if you leave your bottles alone for another 2.5 weeks minimum, then chill a couple down for at least 48 hours...your beer will be carbed just fine.

More info about carbing and conditioning, can be found here, there is a video that shows EXACTLY what just happened when you opened your bottle prematurely.

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Old 01-28-2010, 10:41 PM   #7
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Unless I had a stuck fermentation, I'm pretty sure it was done fermenting (left in fermenter for 2 full weeks).

After 2 days of bottle conditioning, I pulled one and fridged it for the 48 hours just out of curiousity to see how it was coming along.

I was just slightly concerned because I didn't think the beer itself would have much carbonization at only the two day mark. I planned on pulling one at the 1 week mark as well, and finally the two week mark. This being my first batch, I wanted to get a feel and taste for the 'green beer' progressing through conditioning. I thought the beer tasted pretty decent for being green (it actually grew on me and I would've drank another if I had one).

So... is there call for concern with a decent amount of carbonization with only 2 days in bottle conditioning and 48hrs in the fridge?
Is there a chance I'll have to release some pressure in each bottle and recap? Is there really any way of knowing? I guess I'm just looking for reassurance and piece of mind, those are my babies down in the basement

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