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Old 10-18-2009, 09:31 PM   #1
jfrostp
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Hey all,

I've had a batch of pumpkin ale sitting in bottles in a 68F room for 3.5 weeks now, and I cracked one open and it's completely flat! I cracked a second one open as well to make sure it wasn't just a fluke, and it was flat as well.

It was about a 4 gallon batch after the trub / etc, and I added 3/4 cup priming sugar that I had dissolved in boiling water and let cool to room temperature. Maybe the problem was how I added the sugar solution to the brew? I poured the sugar water into the bottom of my racking bucket, and then siphoned the beer on top of it, and never gave it a stir. But I've done my other batches this way and have never had a carbonation problem.

Any suggestions as to what I should do? Should I try giving each bottle a swirl and stick them in a warmer room for a couple more weeks, or should I crack open each bottle and add a little bit more sugar water?

Thanks.

 
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:36 PM   #2
Yooper
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I'd wait a couple more weeks. At 68 degrees, it might just be slow to carb up. If you can't get them any warmer, you can wait a bit longer.

If after two more weeks, you get 0 carbonation, I wouldn't add more priming solution because you've already added it.

What that means is that either the yeast are exhausted, or your caps leak. If you're 100% sure that the caps haven't leaked, and also sure that you added the priming solution, then you can remove the caps and add a tiny, tiny, tiny pinch of fresh dry yeast and recap with new caps.

That happened to me once, several years ago. I don't know why, but the yeast just never came to life to carb up my beer. A tiny pinch of yeast (like literally one grain) did the trick.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:36 PM   #3
DavidSteel
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Well, this is quite a pickle. I'm going to say that 1/3rd of your bottles are going to be uber carbonated and some will be little carbonation, while others will be flat.

Solution: if you open the bottle and there is no carbonation, add half to a full tsp of sugar to the bottle, put a new cap on it, swirl it until the sugar is dissolved, and wait a good 3-4 weeks. It'll be a tricky process but it should be okay in the end (hopefully).

 
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:40 PM   #4
jfrostp
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Ok, thanks for the advice.

How do I know if my caps are leaking?

By the way, there is a "pffft" when I open the bottles. And I had put the bottles in the fridge for 48 hours before opening them.

 
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:42 PM   #5
Yooper
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfrostp View Post
Ok, thanks for the advice.

How do I know if my caps are leaking?

By the way, there is a "pffft" when I open the bottles. And I had put the bottles in the fridge for 48 hours before opening them.
Well..............if you've got a "pfffft", it's coming along!

I'd try to put them all someplace warmer, swirl them up end over end gently, and try to keep them at 70-75 degrees for a couple of weeks. Then, try one again.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:43 PM   #6
DavidSteel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
Well..............if you've got a "pfffft", it's coming along!

I'd try to put them all someplace warmer, swirl them up end over end gently, and try to keep them at 70-75 degrees for a couple of weeks. Then, try one again.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:53 PM   #7
jfrostp
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Ok, I'll stick 'em some place warm for a couple more weeks.

By the way, the beers have absolutely no head. They pour like apple juice

 
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Old 10-18-2009, 10:55 PM   #8
DavidSteel
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You didn't put any oils in there, did you? I'm not too knowledgeable to how one loses head on beer but I know oils kill beer head.

 
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Old 10-18-2009, 11:29 PM   #9
ghpeel
 
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I've gotten this before and it's a bummer

I haven't been able to figure out exactly what's happening, but in my case, the beers that are supposed to be highly carbed (belgians, hefe's) come out less carbed than my English style stuff. Its annoying.

I am thinking that I'll start adding fresh yeast at bottling.
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