Fermentation stopped at 1.020 - can I bottle?

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mclaughlindw4

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A little background for first brew attempt: I boiled wort and pitched yeast last saturday for a red ale kit beer - Starting gravity was 1.050. This past saturday (7 days later), I opened bucket for first time and hydrometer read 1.020. I just now took a second read (48 hours later) and specific gravity is still at 1.020.

Target gravity per instructions are 1.012 - 1.014. I've learned a lot, and was wondering if it was ok to bottle at 1.020? I am ok with it being a little sweet and will pitch yeast much differently next time (I think instructions sucked for this, eg, no mention of aeration or hydrating yeast and pitched at 85 degrees).

Another option is to let it sit a couple more days? But It hasn't moved into two days and I don't want to risk oxidation since I am brewing in bucket.
 

Yooper

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Yes, if the FG hasn't moved it's fine to bottle.

I've had a good number of extract batches top at 1.020, depending on which brand of extract I've used. (Search for a thread called something like 'the 1.020 curse' for more info on others' experiences).
 
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mclaughlindw4

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Thanks, I read many of those threads now. It seems like there are ways to try to get it down further but I think for this my first brew I will just finish it up and move on. I've decided to wait until this weekend though and bottle it at two weeks and hopefully I will not have any oxidation problems.
 

Bensiff

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Sounds like it has finished up and like Yooper said, extracts can finish high. However, no time like the present to learn one of the most valuable brewing lessons...patience. You will do no harm by letting it sit on the yeast for a week or two more, it will likely help clean the beer up to be a better end product and may drop down a point or two more. Also, a very easy technique that might help lower a few points more is giving your bucket a very gentler swirl to get the yeast in suspension...just make sure the lid stays on and the airlock is secure and you will be fine.
 

whoaru99

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Thanks, I read many of those threads now. It seems like there are ways to try to get it down further but I think for this my first brew I will just finish it up and move on. I've decided to wait until this weekend though and bottle it at two weeks and hopefully I will not have any oxidation problems.
With my first extract kit I tried most of the ways, short of pitching more yeast. 1.020 was all she wrote.

2nd extract kit from the same HBS finished right on target.
 
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