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I still have airlock bubbles after 3 weeks

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Belmont

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I've heard all of the comments about confusing airlocks for hydrometers so there's no need to repeat it. I for one am not fond of opening my fermenting vessel unless I'm fairly certain that fermentation is complete. Then I'll take a hydrometer reading.

That said, I had an IPA with OG 1.060. I let it sit in primary for 2 weeks. It stopped bubbling completely after 7 or 8 but it still sat on the yeast for 2 weeks. Then I racked to secondary with dry hops in a hop bag. I wasn't paying attention to it for several days after racking but now that it's nearing the time I was expecting to keg it, I've noticed that the airlock is bubbling once every 30-45 seconds. There is a pretty good amount of yeast that has dropped out of suspension at the bottom of the carboy. It's been almost a week in the secondary. The bubbles in the airlock indicate active fermentation though right? Regardless of hydrometer reading, the bubbles show that CO2 is being produced and fermentation is definitely active right?
 

pompeiisneaks

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Yes, but I think that there can be slow active fermentation in some cases for a very long time. What are the fermentation temps? It could be that it was cool enough that the yeast is just doing its job really really slowly. if you're seeing the bubbles still every 30-45 seconds its still doing something. I've never been overly worried about opening up my vessel to take gravity readings, as I regularly sanitize everything, and the cushion of co2 on top helps keep a lot out, and the exposure is minimal, a few seconds to a minute max, and I've yet to have one go bad.. (but I've not done TONS of them, but I've also heard tons tell me its completely safe anyway)
 

PseudoChef

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Probably just CO2 coming out of solution. If the beer has warmed up between primary fermentation and now, this is most likely the case.
 

ArcaneXor

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Shine a flashlight through the carboy to see where the bubbles are coming from. If it's from several spots in the yeast bed, you probably have one of those mysterious dry hop fermentations, where the addition of the non-fermentable hops, for whatever reason, triggers new yeast activity. Assuming that's what it is, it's not harmful, just annoying, because it delays clearing of the beer.

Go ahead and take a hydrometer reading and do a taste test, just to rule out an infection. If you are at final gravity, you can either just let it go or convince the yeast to call it quits by cold crashing.

Before bottling, bring it back up to temperature just to make sure you don't get any more yeast activity (unlikely). And just to be on the safe side, I'd carbonate fairly low for the style.
 
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Belmont

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Even with a flashlight I can't see much past the walls of the carboy. Not very clear at all. I'm never really as worried about clarity as I am flavor. Is this okay to keg as is or should I put it in the refrigerator? How long?
 

ArcaneXor

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Even with a flashlight I can't see much past the walls of the carboy. Not very clear at all. I'm never really as worried about clarity as I am flavor. Is this okay to keg as is or should I put it in the refrigerator? How long?
As long as you are at final gravity, I'd crash and maybe fine it to get some more of the suspended yeast to settle out (that shouldn't take longer than a few days), then keg it.
 

Surefire88

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i have a very similar situation with dryhopping for two weeks now, 4 weeks total. i was nearly at FG when racking to secondary two weeks ago and i am still fetting 3-4 bubbles per minute. temp shouldnt be a factor since it is at 60F in my basement. this cannot just be co2 coming out of soulution right?
 
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