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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > where does all the air go?
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:10 PM   #1
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Default where does all the air go?

brewed a batch of pale ale last week,and no airlock action,although the krausen was 3 inches thick where does all the pressure go? the pail is pretty air tight


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Old 01-27-2012, 02:17 PM   #2
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I brewed 2 different beers on 1-25, pitched a packet of re-hydrated S-05 into each beer, both beers were similar gravities. Both are at about ~ 66 degrees. I checked yesterday and one had crazy air lock action, the other had none. I was worried so I took the lid off of the one with no action, krausen was thick. I too have thought my bucket was air tight, it was not as both beers are doing well.


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Old 01-27-2012, 02:18 PM   #3
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I hate to say it, but obviously the pail wasn't air tight. The co2 will find the path of least resistance to get out of the fermenter. If there's an easier path out than the airlock, it will take it.

This is exactly why air-lock activity is not good indicator of fermentation. It's merely a by-product
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:20 PM   #4
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I'm not understanding your question....its not air-tight as it has an air-lock on it.
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by broadbill View Post
I'm not understanding your question....its not air-tight as it has an air-lock on it.
meaning the bucket seems pressurized when you put slight pressure on lid the air lock bubbles
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:35 PM   #6
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The airlock works like the p-trap under your sink. The airlock lets co2 out but doesnt let any nasties into your beer. The p-trap lets water out but keeps the sewer gas out of your house.
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvinit View Post
meaning the bucket seems pressurized when you put slight pressure on lid the air lock bubbles
The pressure in the bucket is similiar to the pressure outside of the bucket, otherwise it would be bubbling through the airlock. The airlock bubbles when you push on the lid because you are then increasing the pressure inside the bucket relative to the outside of the bucket.

When you have active fermenation, CO2 generation increases the pressure inside the vessel so it is higher than the pressure outside of it, and the airlock bubbles.

The Krausen you see is probably leftover from active fermentation. It doesn't always fall as quicly as fermenation subsides. With some yeast, it may not fall at all (Belgian Wit yeast is notorious for this).
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:48 PM   #8
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My brewers best ale pail isn't air tight either...You can tell it's not air tight if you put you nose close to the rim of the bucket...if you smell fermenting beer that means the CO2 is escaping from under the lid, not the air lock. Not a problem, it will be just fine.
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:12 PM   #9
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I have 2 buckets and neither one like to bubble. Buckets are pretty good about not being air tight even with a gasket and what we think is a solid seal. As long as there is krausen, no worries.
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvinit View Post
meaning the bucket seems pressurized when you put slight pressure on lid the air lock bubbles
When you press on the lid, a very large amount of gas is trying to find a place to go, since you are reducing the volume of the container holding it. It goes out the airlock because that is the path of least resistance.

However, the rate that the gas tries to leave the container during fermentation is much less. It can now go out through the smaller opening around the lid seal, instead of having to push the weight of the water (or sanitizer, or vodka, or whatever) in the airlock.

At any rate, don't worry about it. Your fermentation is fine even if there is a very small leak in the seal.


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