What do you do when you have bottle bombs?

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Woops

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Well, my basement floor's a mess.

I came back from vacation today to a basement floor covered in shards of glass and dried beer. Only problem is, I checked, and only a couple of the bottles had gone off.

Another one popped about 5 minutes ago. I had never heard a bottle bomb go off. Holy crow, scared me something silly.

Now, I have no idea what to do about the rest of those bottles. How should I get rid of them? I'm absolutely terrified of one going off while I'm holding it. So at the moment, I'm just sitting on half a case of potential (or probable) bottle bombs, and I have no idea what to do about them.

Thanks for any advice. :(
 

WorryWort

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Cover them with something ASAP, like a heavy blanket, or put them in a cooler, and make sure that no one goes near them for 2-3 weeks or until they all explode. If any make it past 2-3 weeks they are probably not going to blow, but I would open and dump them at that point (they will be way over carbed).

They can kill. So be careful.
 

Cascadian

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Target Practice.

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVZUVsHsWis]YouTube - .50 cal vs propane tank w explosive sniper round[/ame]
 

Kauai_Kahuna

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Wear eye protection, and get them as cold as possible and keep them covered up. These are the only real dangerous stuff in homebrewing outside of large pots of boiling wort.
 

thedigitale

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Put them carfully in a bag and offer them to a neighbor you don't like as a peace offering.
 

nebben

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I would recommend chilling them (a lot). The thought of drinking from grenades isn't an appealing prospect, so if it were me, I would put all of what I could into the freezer and the remainders in the fridge. Keep a watchful eye on the ones in the freezer: once they are slushy, gently pop the top off of one (with a glass handy!) and see if you can get the slush/beer into the glass. YMMV.

If you are hell bent on saving the batch, do this and GENTLY put each bottle's worth back into a fermenter (now you're worried about exploding bottles AND oxidation! LOL). If you can get this done successfully, and I would recommend doing it in a room that is easy to clean up, then once the beer is all out of the bottles and back into the fermenter, take a hydrometer reading once temp is back to ~60F. Keep an eye on the reading to see if fermentation is continuing. If after a week, give bottling another try.

YMMVx2 :)
 

Yooper

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I've never had a bottle bomb, but if that was happening, I'd carefully get rid of them. You could wear safety goggles, and put them in a rubbermaid container with a lid and either wait it out, or gently open them and pour them out. I'd probably just put them somewhere safe and let them go if it was me. I wouldn't risk injury to my family or pets.
 

ajf

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There are 3 things you need to do.
1. Get protection. If 3 of them have already gone off, then all the others are likely to as well. Wear safety glasses. Cover as much exposed skin as possible with heavy clothing.
2. Defuse them. Lay a heavy duty tarp, blanket, or towels over the bottles, and then very carefully use a bottle opener to open the bottles. This is likely to be a messy procedure, and should best be done in a bucket or similar to catch all the beer.
3. Buy and learn to use an hydrometer so that this never happens again.

-a.
 

johnd4

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My mother said her brothers (or at least some of the 8 of them) used to brew their own beer and that exploding bottles were an occasional problem as their methods were pretty crude (1930's). Their solution was to wrap the bottle with heavy feed sack material and open upside down into a bucket, pour into a glass and consume. Needless to say, the yeast didn't stay in the bottom of the bottle very well.
 

DixonBeer

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Just do the homer simpson...when the bottles are breaking and swmbo is asking just say "KABLOOIE! what are you talking about KABLAMO! oh excuse me..."
 

Scut_Monkey

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I think a paintball mask would work great if you have one. I would use mine, heavy clothing to protect my neck and arms and work gloves for my hands. I think pictures of whatever operation you do would be much appreciated on here. I would definitely post them if you are dressed up the way I would be.... I'm imagining the bomb squad.
 

DaytonaBigMac

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Question: I had one go off out of 50 (but not more than one) after about 7 days in the bottle. I think it was one of my last ones in the bottles (bottom of the bottling bucket). It had some trub in it. Nothing has exploded since last night. What say all of you? Probably in the clear? I've moved everything to coolers so the safety part is OK...
 
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