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Over-Carbonated Bottles & Volume Adjustment

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JstnMoyer

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My brews keep coming out over-carbonated. About a month after bottling, my beers are so over-carbonated, that I have to pour them in larger beer glasses and give them a good stir with a spoon to release some of the bite so I can enjoy them. This has been the case with 7 out of 8 batches.

I assume this has a lot to do with dialing in volume control (BIAB) and adjusting the priming sugar solution as needed. I've been going into fermentation under volume (ie 4.75 gallons instead of 5.25) because I usually don’t dilute to get up to target volume. I use a priming solution of 5 oz corn sugar and 2 cups of water. I’ll hold back a little sugar if I am slightly under volume - so not a very exact approach for adjusting - and my brews still end up over carbonated. Is this another case for always adjusting wort volume via dilution before and/or after the boil? And what other approaches do you all use for getting more precise with bottle carbonation?
 

dmtaylor

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Way too much priming sugar. Try just 3.75 oz and you'll get great results. Use this amount for every recipe, every style, and you'll rarely if ever have a problem again. I've been bottling every batch (>150 batches) since 1999, if it matters.
 

dwhite60

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That much sugar is a LOT of priming sugar.

Could also be an infection. Bugs can get in your beer that will ferment sugar your brewing yeast won't.

If you're SURE your priming sugar amount is correct, I'd look at my sanitation. It can be little things too. Piece of something stuck in a bottle filler, built up gunk in a valve, stuff growing in unsanitized hoses.
 
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JstnMoyer

JstnMoyer

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This is a good calculator; Beer Priming Calculator - Brewer's Friend

What is your fermentation schedule and bottling set up?
I'm only 8 batches in. I've brewed a couple lagers. But, generally 10-14 days in primary and staying within temp range recommended on yeast packaging and performing d-rest when necessary. I place priming solution in bottling bucket then rack the beer. Bottling using Northern Brewer bottling wand. I stick to the book with cleaning and sanitation.
 

jschein

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I agree that is a lot of priming sugar. After 10-14 fermentation is your FG what you expect? If your cleaning- sanitation is good then I would check the FG and definitely reduce the priming sugar, check out the calculator I linked above. Good luck
 
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JstnMoyer

JstnMoyer

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I agree that is a lot of priming sugar. After 10-14 fermentation is your FG what you expect? If your cleaning- sanitation is good then I would check the FG and definitely reduce the priming sugar, check out the calculator I linked above. Good luck
Fortunately, I haven't had issues reaching target FG within 2 weeks. I always check FG before bottling. Once, I did go below by 3 points (1.007) but that was also the one batch I diluted before pitching to get to target volume. I worried it over diluted and it would be too thin. It still over carbed... But otherwise, it turned out great. It was an APA.
 

ncbrewer

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Try checking gravity three days before bottling day, and again on bottling day. If it drops, it's not finished fermenting.
 
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