Originally Posted by Fid
I just checked your pictures out from your brew day and have a couple things to suggest/ask.
1.) Are you using a propane burner indoors?
2.) Did you keep your wort covered as it was cooling (aside from while you were taking temp readings obviously)?
3.) You can scoop some hot wort out of the kettle and put it into the extract container which helps get all of it out. When I use extract I just dunk the extract container into the wort for a few seconds... you're going to boil the thing for 60 minutes anyways so theres no worries of having anything funky happening because of it.
4.) I noticed that you're siphoning the beer into the carboy. Before you pitch your yeast you can actually just dump it straight in. Put a funnel on top with a colander on it to catch hop particles and whatnot and just dump it right in. It is actually beneficial to aerate your wort before fermentation begins so this helps with that (you can also shake the living piss out of the carboy once you've got it filled and before fermentation beings).
5.) Congrats on your first brew day!
Yep. Using it "indoors" but it's a covered back porch. I grill with charcoal and smoke meat in an electric smoker out here year round. No fires yet. The entire house is cedar so it is worth being concerned about but it's a 20x20 room and we have fire extinguishers.
I did keep the wort covered. Wasn't sure if that's the right thing to do.
for 4, I have a strainer and funnel. Just didn't think about using them or forgot to.
Thanks for the rest of the comments guys! I'll check out the links. Trying to keep hardware costs down until I have a few successful batches out of the way.