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Old 02-09-2006, 12:20 AM   #1
Feb 2006
Posts: 10

Hi, I'm new to homebrewing and this forum. I just made my first batch and it's in the fermenter, but then I got to thinkin, should I put water in the airlock?

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Old 02-09-2006, 12:22 AM   #2
Senior Member
ajf's Avatar
Oct 2005
Long Island
Posts: 4,646
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Yes you should. Without water, it won't be an airlock.

Welcome to the forum.


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Old 02-09-2006, 12:27 AM   #3
Jan 2006
Posts: 23

Yeah, without water in it, air could move in any direction.....out of the fermentor, or in, carrying beer spoiling things.

I started with a three peice airlock, but found a two peice is much nicer.

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Old 02-09-2006, 12:30 AM   #4
Feb 2006
Posts: 10

Thanks guys, really looking forward to my first brew

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Old 02-09-2006, 01:02 AM   #5
Lounge Lizard
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Nov 2005
Posts: 548
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Some people put cheap vodka in theirs. Sounds like a good idea, in case the stuff is sucked in during a temp drop. I used it last time.

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Old 02-09-2006, 03:46 AM   #6
Jan 2006
Chicago, IL
Posts: 70

i use a three-piece airlock and there might be a thin faint line along the circumference. this is supposedly the line to which you fill up with water. obviously it should be sterile water (that's why some people suggest vodka). i just poor some of the gallon'd spring water that i use for brewing.
Primary: nein
Secondary: Bavarian Dunkelweizen (11/20)
6.6.06 Ale (4/12)
Oatmeal Stout (4/20)
On deck:
Stella Artois

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Old 02-09-2006, 04:00 AM   #7
Oct 2005
south florida
Posts: 20

i've been seeing that some folks use cheap vodka in their airlock, but i didn't know that it was b/c liquid could be sucked in to fermentor during temp drop 'till this post.

just curious on whatever stats can be posted about: how vodka affects taste, what is the contamination risk of just using filtered water, at what temp does a significant amount of water get sucked into the fermentor, ect.

thanks for any info,


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Old 02-09-2006, 04:40 AM   #8
El Pistolero
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May 2005
Houston, Baja Oklahoma
Posts: 3,585
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You're talking an ounce in 5 gallons...not nearly enough to affect the taste.

As far as risk of sanitation...not much, but if you use bottled water or alcohol, the risk is zero.
[/I] Up Next - Hobgoblin
After That - Czech Pilsner
Primary - Humboldt Hop Rod (4/24)
Primary - NOT Wheat AG SNCA (5/5)
Secondary -
Conditioning - SNCA Clone (3/3),

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Old 02-09-2006, 04:43 AM   #9
I use secondaries. :p
Walker's Avatar
Sep 2005
Cary, NC
Posts: 10,987
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i'm using vodka in my current batch, and I will never do it again.

I don't even know why I tried it. I've always used filtered tap water or bottled drinking water for my airlock. NEVER had a problem. The risk is low.

However, I decided that since I had a bottle of vodka, I would try it. The stuff is evaporating pretty quickly. I brewed on Saturday night, and I had to re-fill the airlock last night (I had lost 1/2 of the liquid).

However, I won't do this again, because at this rate, I'll have used about 4 shots of vodka on this batch, and it's an unneccessary expense, IMHO.

I don't expect it to affect flavor at all. You'll never be able to tell if someone used water or vodka or sanitizing solution. I'm actually just going to fill it up with water the next time it gets low.

Ground Fault Brewing Co.

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Old 02-09-2006, 03:21 PM   #10
Beer Snob
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Dec 2005
Posts: 2,041
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I have never used anything more then tap water. Although nothing got sucked in the last bactch. I did what you guys said and put a glad bag over it till the temperature stabilized. Have not had to replace anything.

"Don't worry, have a homebrew." ,"The "Bible"

Cherries in the wheat
Michael's Wheat

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