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1 month on 1st fermentation and Yeast still bubbling

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AgraBaez

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Hi all:

First of all I'm from Dominican Republic and I'm a newby on homebrewing, this is my 3rd batch, it is a Porter recipe and first two batches were great.

On this one I did something different, I added dry malt extract, around 1.5 pounds when boiling the wort. I pitched dry yeast having the wort @100F, too hot I know.

I put the fermentator in the fridge and the next day I observed yeast activity bubbles, is alive!!!. Ok so far. Up to this point temp in the fridge got stuck between 45F-50F for the next days.

I measured ABV after 14 days for the 1st fermentation stage and the measurement was..... 0% ABV, so no alcohol produced, OG 1.07, measured gravity 1.07. I left the beer 14 days more and ABV was 3.9% when the recipe ABV target is 6%,7%,8%...

So having a beer in temps between 45F-50F, visible yeast activity and a month already passed, why the yeast still doing so many CO2???? And why low ABV levels??? Previous batches presented less yeast activity up to this point and final ABV was around 6%.

Help!!
 

kh54s10

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If you have ale yeast at 45 to 50F, if it ferments at all it will take a long time. The yeast has probably gone dormant. Any bubbling or the airlock is just co2 coming out of solution. Ale yeasts need the mid sixties F. Warm the beer up and it should ferment OK.

If you are getting your ABV by reading the hydrometer this is not right. You have to make a calculation from the Original gravity and final gravity.

http://www.brewersfriend.com/abv-calculator/
 

Barley_Bob

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Oh boy.

Well first, you probably did a number on your yeast. Pitching that hot may have killed a large portion of them. Second, you're almost certainly fermenting too cold for the yeast now. If you're using an ale yeast, you should be 10-15F warmer. The reason fermentation is going so slow for is because of those two factors. You have too little yeast working in too cold an environment.

If I were you, I would pitch fresh yeast and try to warm it up to 65ish. If you can't pitch fresh yeast, raising the temperature is still important.

Good luck! I think your batch is far from ruined. It just needs some love!
 
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AgraBaez

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@Barley_Bob thanks for your words of hope, I'll order more yeast to pitch another satchet.

However, if I killed yeast to decrease ABV, bubbles activity shouldn't be less as well?
 
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AgraBaez

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kh54s10 I did the reading with the OG @ 1.07. Later I got 1.04 resulting 3.9%. To warm up the beer I'm using a towel and a shirt, I believe the lazy beer want a fancier coat
 

Barley_Bob

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It could still be just fermenting really slowly, resulting in the bubbles you're seeing. Or it could be off-gassing some. Even if it is fermenting, I would still feel much better by pitching fresh yeast. You want to get that colony up to a good size to prevent off-flavors.

You're constrained in fermentation temperature because you've got the fermenter in the fridge right? Wrapping it up should definitely help. It's not any different than what I do when my basement is cold in the winter. When you pitch fresh yeast, you could also pull it out of the fridge for a while to let it warm up and then wrap it up and put it back. Once good fermentation starts, the heat it gives off will keep it warm inside the towel and shirt.

Good luck!
 
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AgraBaez

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Im heaven guys, just in heaven! With all this information Im sure this batch will be truly a Celebration one, cause I add extra DME to celebrate my 3rd batch (wow.... so many batches...).

Well thanks anyway and I'll keep you posted.
 
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AgraBaez

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Update guys:

I bottled the beer yesterday with approximate 6.6%, I primed the beer with DME also. The yeast I used was American-Ale. Im ok with what I taste/result, that 6.0% feels like 8%, pretty good kick.

However, It didn't reached 7.0% or more due to yeast type?? Safale US5 was the one I used from Fermentis.
 

Barley_Bob

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I dunno, man. It could be any number of things! Your projected OG, FG, and ABV are just that - projections! Each beer turns out a little differently.

If I had to guess, I'd say it's because it's an extract brew. If you were going from all grain, you could lower your mash temp to increase the fermentability of your wort. With DME, you're stuck with whatever mash temp the manufacturer used. For this reason, extract often doesn't work well for larger beers, and this is one possible result. When I first started brewing, I did a larger Oktoberfest and had a similar issue. But this is just a guess.

Given the trouble you had starting this batch, I think you should be pretty happy with the final result! I'm glad you got something you enjoy drinking! Well done!
 

day_trippr

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Given the trouble you had starting this batch, I think you should be pretty happy with the final result![...]
Indeed. Mega golf claps to the yeast for putting up with such abuse...

Cheers! ;)
 
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AgraBaez

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Well indeed, poor yeast dudes there. Thank you both for your support. In a couples of weeks I'll brew a Nut Brown Ale or maybe a Chocolate Stout, let's pray the Brewery Fairy bless my kettle for the next quest.
 
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