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Is my beer infected?

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packerbrew

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I have been brewing for 2 years now and never ran across this on the top of my beer. I dry hopped it 10 days ago and went to transfer it into a keg and this is what I discovered. The bubbles seem to be coming off my dry hop bags which I boiled before putting in the hops. I also used marbles whic I boiled as well. The beer still tastes pretty good. Should I discard?

image.jpg
 

Bamsdealer

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Looks like it to me, but knock on wood I havent had an infected beer yet. If you do decide to dump it, get a new bucket too. I hear that once an infcted beer comes in contact with your equipment its best to toss it. For the price of a fermenter I personally wouldn't risk it.

That sucks btw
 

CatHead

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They look like jelly fish but from what I have read that is infected most say look for tentacles and that is what it looks like.
 

TahoeRy

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That sucks. I know what it's like to dump batches as I experiment a lot. Two suggestions. Dump the plastic buckets and go with glass carboys. I know there are a lot of guys who preach plastic but I don't like it. One scratch and you have an area that could harbor bacteria and that can lead to what happened to your batch.

Also, don't use things like marbles in your beer, even if you boiled them. I know you where just trying to weigh your hop sack down, but I'd be willing to bet that's where the infection was introduced. Again, other guys will tell you that is not a problem but in my opinion the more you add to a beer once its fermenting / fermented the greater chance you have for infections.

I have heard of hops harboring bacteria as well but usually the alcohol in the beer can handle it. The infection could of been from the hops though as well. How much did you dry hop? Where the hops in a sealed bag?
 

unionrdr

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A little scratch isn't a cave. Good cleaning practices have negated any of this in my 2 plastic fermenters. Did you dip the hop socks in sanitizer before filling? You don't need to boil dry hops first,but the bags need to be sanitized.
 

duboman

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That is infected for sure! It also looks to be a tremendous amount of head space, is this the primary or secondary? I assume secondary since I see no evidence of a krausen ring above the beer.

If this is the secondary with that amount of head space it could be your reason for infection as there was no CO2 layer able to protect the beer. Secondary should be done in a smaller vessel that minimizes head space so CO2 can protect the beer.

Some people will tell you to dump it, others will tell you to rack underneath, carbonate and drink it fast. Others may tell you to let it go for a year and make it a sour. To each his own.

There most likely is a sanitation issue going on with your process as well. What are u=you using to clean? What are you using to sanitize? While scratches in plastic can harbor sites for infection it is my experience that if you are properly cleaning and sanitizing it should not be an issue. I have buckets that are 3-5 years old, less than perfect condition and work perfectly fine!

The bottom line is if you practice proper sanitation using proper products you should not have to worry about infections in your beer.
 

VladOfTrub

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Is that Jellyfish floating around? It seems that pictures like this one posted, are predominantly, in plastic buckets. Fewer in glass water jugs and never in stainless fermenters. I wonder if the root cause analysis would come up with scratched up plastic, or at the time of failure, a brewing environment, not conducive to brewing clean beer? I wonder if sliding a bucket into a bucket for storage can cause the failure? Somehow, there had to be a dirty monkey wrench thrown into the diaper pail.
 
OP
packerbrew

packerbrew

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Thanks for all your help....looks like I will dump this batch and work better sanitation.....
 

unionrdr

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And don't store ale pails stacked inside eachother. That's inviting dirty scratches. I always keep them separate & covered.
 

BansheeRider

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Even as a rookie home brewer that is no doubt an infection. Thank you for posting that pic because now I know what a legitimate infection looks like. Sorry about your loss OP. Also what sanitizers and cleansers do you use?

As for stacking buckets in each other that is a good point. I stack my primary bucket in my bottling bucket because I'm limited with space. I do however sanitize both buckets with my bare hands, then spray the buckets with a spray bottle filled with StarSan. After each time beer comes in contact with my buckets I clean with either oxiclean or b-bright.
 

unionrdr

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I clean the loose crud off mine first. Then put it on the fermenter stand with 4TBSP of PBW in it. Top off with water,stiring as I go to dissolve the PBW powder. Put lid on loosely & allow to sit for a week. It'll soak everything loose to where a light brushing will take it all off. No dirty scratches or anything.
 
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