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A little help plese

On Monday I brewed my first brew (Amer. amber ale) The first couple of days
the airlock was bubbling every 3 seconds. Today it is 40-50 seconds. This day 5
and was thinking there should be more fermenting going on. Am I alright, should
I sit on my hands.

Relax and wait. You could take a gravity sample if you really want to know what’s going on…bubbles really don’t tell you much. But if it was me, I wouldn’t worry about it for at least another 5 days. What temp is it fermenting at?

i’m betting its almost done but as denny said take a gravity reading to be sure.

Thanks guys, it has been fluctuating some but staying between 64 & 74
when I’ve been checking it. Guess I’ll just sit on my hands for a few more
days then maybe I’ll check it.

I always wait at least two weeks(usually 3-4) before racking off of primary. No need to rush it.

Depending on your fermentation temps the yeast may have done their job in a day or two, and now you’re into the conditioning phase. Nothing wrong with letting it sit for another week or so to let stuff settle out. You might also want to rock the fermenter to rouse the yeast and wake them back up.

Tried rocking it, didn’t do anything for it. So what you’re telling me is there’s
more going on than just fermenting.

Yes, yeast don’t just produce alcohol and carbon dioxide. They produce 100’s of different compounds. That’s why beer tastes like beer! Most of these compounds are good for beer flavor but some are not. Some of the “off flavors” can be “eaten” (reduced) by the yeast after the fermentable sugar is used up. This will improve the flavor of the beer with time. As others have already said leave the beer on the yeast of a few weeks. Your taste buds will love you for it.

Thanks a bunch! Feeling alot less anxious. Going back to sitting on my hands
and watching football.


I am guessing your fermentation temp is too high…between 64 and 74 seems like it to me. I try to keep my temps around a max of 65. The process will go quicker at a higher temp, but you will end up with a beer far inferior to that fermented at the proper temperature.

and try to not let the temps bounce up and down if you can. the beer will taste alot better.

60’s is OK but that 74F is kind of high. I try not to let things get out of the 60’s, mid-60’s is better during the peak of fermentation. Once things slow you can let it warm up to help it finish completely. I’m guessing your beer is fine though, some of my regular strength beers get past their peak by day 5.

Didn’t know I should try to stay a little closer to 64 than 74. I’m using a spare bathroom
that I don’t turn the heat on unless someone comes to stay. So I’m fighting adjusting
electric baseboard heat, sun comes across the window in the afternoon, and it was blowing
25-50mph for 5 or 6 days and nites, no lie. I’m not complaining, just letting you I’m hoping to have
better luck keeping temps around 65 with the new info. Also I should have mentioned that
when I poured the wort into the fermentor I strained it through a tea towel and had alot of
trub( ?) in the towel. Would that make a difference? Sorry for leaving that info out earlier if it was
important. What can I say, I’m a first timer.

Removing trub shouldn’t do anything as long as you had the towel sanitized.

The easy way to modulate temps is to put the fermentor in a plastic tub or cooler with water (swamp cooler). This extra 3-5gal of water acts as a heat sink to reduce the increase caused by fermentation. You can also freeze a couple bottles of ice and rotate one in each day to keep temps down when it gets warmer. A fermometer taped to the side of the fermentor will tell you what the wort is doing temp-wise.

As it gets colder we’ll need less temp control, and I’ve even had to put a fish tank heater in my swamp cooler.

If it’s in direct sunlight, cover it with a black shirt or towel. This will increase the temp also so be sure to counteract the heating effect.

Wow, thanks for all this great feedback. Towel was sanitized, and it’s not I direct sunlight.
Think I’ll go 3 weeks on primary. Should I do a secondary or not?

[quote=“AL_Richard”]Wow, thanks for all this great feedback. Towel was sanitized, and it’s not I direct sunlight.
Think I’ll go 3 weeks on primary. Should I do a secondary or not?[/quote]I’d skip the secondary, but that’s how I roll 8) I’d also check it after 2 weeks, if you get the same hydrometer reading 3 days in a row it’s good to bottle.

Thanks for all this great information guys. The towel was sanitized, and the brew has bee out of
direct sunlight. I’ll just have to be a bit more diligent. Another Q, doing three weeks primary
(Per advice, thx) do or should I secondary?

Personally, I wouldn’t. 3 weeks in the primary should be good for that beer.

Thanks again guys

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