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Old 03-27-2009, 04:15 AM   #1
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Default How often does your beer get infected?

Hey everyone, been lurking the forums for a while and picked up a couple of beer kits (the no boil pre hopped ones) and have one going in the primary now.

I have made wine for a few years without any problems or infections but looking around in the newbie forum i have seen quite a few posts about infection almost as if its a common thing.

I think I sanitize and clean everything properly and with proper products but with that being said how often does your beer get unintentionally infected?


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Old 03-27-2009, 04:23 AM   #2
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Welcome. Generally, not that often. Beer is pretty forgiven. In over 60 batches, I've had only a few that have gotten contaminated, and I can usually trace back to to where that happened (not fully clean bottles, dirty beer lines, etc.).

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Old 03-27-2009, 04:58 AM   #3
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Zero infections so far. I'm keeping that record going for as long as possible, too.
Originally Posted by Catt22 View Post
I would never use a dead mouse in my beer. It's much better to use live ones. You could probably just steep a dead one, but live ones must be mashed. Actually, smashed and mashed would be best.
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Old 03-27-2009, 05:41 AM   #4
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All I can say is Air Conditioning ruined my perfect 15+ year record. It was incubating pedio and blowing it around the brew room.

Drove me nuts trying to get rid of it. Then one day I clued in. Felt the air blowing on my shoulder from one of the ceiling vent a few feet from a carboy. Eureka! Problem was solved. (I had replaced EVERYTHING plastic and was still getting this damn infection till I noticed it was the AC).

All the beers but one were drinkable, and since I was kegging, I just filtered and kegged. Pedio takes quite some time to actually sour your beer. It was the weird white scum that becomes really flaky when you spoon through it that made me notice.

The undrinkable beer was an IPA that was sitting in a closet for 3 months. I forgot to check it till kegging time and I discovered an inch thick crust of pedio. I aged it for 2 years hoping it would become interesting. Nope! Had to toss it. But the 4 inch pedio crust looked interesting! (sniff.. my one and only toss...sniff)

BTW this is what led to my discovery of oxiclean and it's greatness. 1 scoop per gallon will kill anything.
I may not be an expert, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express........ 6 months ago.
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Old 03-27-2009, 06:21 AM   #5
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Once in fifteen years...I was in a rush, and forgot to sanitize my bottlecaps. Now I just plan my time better, so everything can get done.

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Old 03-27-2009, 06:59 AM   #6
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Ive only had 1 that I think was infected and it was a kit that came with the wort already hopped and done, you just added it to the primary and added 2 gals of water and the yeast that came with it.

I recommend if anyone uses these kits to BOIL them first REGARDLESS what the directions say. It was a stout that came out sour.

Every since then ive been buying extract kits from B3 and boiling my own wort and so on and have had 0 infections since.

My beer has also been so comparative to the brands I love and drink most often so im very very happy.

Infections seem to very rare if you do everything you are suppose to.

Ive seen a lot of is this infected posts and most of the time 9 out of 10 its not.

Also, some infections will not even effect taste.

Infections can effect taste, smell, mouthfeel and so on.

So you may even get infections and not know.

Beer is very forgiving.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:01 AM   #7
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it's one of those things where you want to say that you REALLY have to work at it to get an infected beer - but then it sounds like you don't have to keep things clean.

If you just keep everything wiped up and sanitize whatever is going to touch your beer you should never have an infection.

Odd things happen though (air conditioners).
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:06 AM   #8
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I've had a batch of apfelwein that tasted very vomity and now a batch of orange kolsch that tastes slightly vomity. I also had a pumpkin beer which was medicinal/gross, but I'm not sure if that was infection. I'll call it 2 batches out of 21. Really more than 21 because I'm not counting batches that I did when I brewed with my dad, because that was different equipment, different house, etc.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:46 AM   #9
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I've never had a contaminated batch, but I did get a few bottles out of one batch a while back that gushed. I must have not sanitized the bottles correctly- the beer was good, but then started to sour and gush. It sounded like a lacto infection, but it wasn't in every bottle. I think that around around batch 175 or so.
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Old 03-27-2009, 11:46 AM   #10
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0 in a little over 2 years of brewing, and i only use chlorine based soap to sanitize my stuff.

I put my bottles in the dishwasher with that soap too then rinse them with tap water.

As long as there is some Beer left, there is Hope.
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