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View Poll Results: Have you experienced yeast autolysis?
No, never had it happen to me 144 81.82%
Yes, with 2 to 3 weeks in the primary 1 0.57%
Yes, with 4 - 5 weeks in the primary 1 0.57%
Yes, but with 6 weeks or more in the primary 11 6.25%
WTF is autolysis??? 19 10.80%
Voters: 176. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-22-2007, 10:49 PM   #1
FlyGuy's Avatar
Jan 2007
Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 3,605
Liked 183 Times on 53 Posts

OK, yes yeast autolysis is actually a potential concern (not fiction). But is it a substantial concern? I have been gradually moving away from secondaries and leaving my beer longer and longer in the primary. With up to 6 weeks in the primary, I still haven't perceived anything resembling autolysis. The more I investigate the topic, the more it seems that autolysis is awfully hard to produce.

So, the question is 'Have you experienced autolysis, and if so, how long did you leave your beer in the primary to achieve it?' Comments on the type of beer, yeast, fermentation conditions, etc. would be helpful if you have experienced it. If it was a one-time or rare event, perhaps that could be mentioned too. Thanks.

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Old 05-22-2007, 11:29 PM   #2
boo boo
Jun 2005
Hearts's Delight, Newfoundland
Posts: 4,165
Liked 36 Times on 31 Posts

Nope, never had a beer on the yeast long enough.
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Old 05-23-2007, 12:19 AM   #3
david_42's Avatar
Oct 2005
Oak Grove, Oregon, USA
Posts: 25,599
Liked 158 Times on 148 Posts

I've had it when I failed to clean out a fermenter. Took about two months, in the summer.
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Old 05-23-2007, 12:50 AM   #4
Senior Member
ajf's Avatar
Oct 2005
Long Island
Posts: 4,646
Liked 105 Times on 99 Posts

Never had a problem with autolysis, but I have left beers in the primary for about 6 weeks several times.


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Old 05-23-2007, 01:39 AM   #5
Torchiest's Avatar
Nov 2006
Houston, TX
Posts: 1,761
Liked 8 Times on 7 Posts

Never had a problem. The longest I've left a beer in primary was 31 days, and it was fine. Of course, it was 1.090 OG, so that may have helped.
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Old 05-23-2007, 01:45 AM   #6
Feb 2007
Posts: 205
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I leave 1.090+ beers in primary for 6-8 weeks on occasion and never have any problems with it.

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Old 05-23-2007, 02:48 AM   #7
nosnhojr's Avatar
May 2006
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Posts: 175

My last ale (a Highland Gaelic clone) sat in primary 63 days at around 65-70F with no problems. Only one data point, though.

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Old 06-25-2009, 07:24 AM   #8
yorkbrew's Avatar
Sep 2007
Bellingham, WA
Posts: 114

I just racked a beer to secondary, 1.072 og brewed on 1/21 (today is 6/24). I don't taste anything bad. As far as I'm concerned it's a warm sweet stout, as it should be.

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Old 06-25-2009, 09:48 AM   #9
EvilTOJ's Avatar
Dec 2005
Portland, OR, Oregon
Posts: 6,401
Liked 50 Times on 35 Posts

My doppelbock sat in the primary at least 7 months and no autolysis. My barleywine sat in primary 5 months, no problems.

Now, I left a carboy out that had been racked, but still had the yeast cake in it for a few days in the hot sun. Oh yea, problems.
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Old 06-25-2009, 10:43 AM   #10

Had it once but I can't find the notes. From memory it was somewhere between 4 and 5 weeks in primary.

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