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Air Lock Shot Off of Fermentor

I’m new to home brewing and just made my first batch yesterday afternoon. I was woken up to the sound of my air lock shooting off of my fermentor and bouncing around in the closet. I quickly sanitized the blow off hose and placed it in the fermentor. Now my air lock has a bunch of gunk inside.

A. How do i clean the air lock?

B. Should I leave the blow off hose for the whole duration of the fermenting period?

any suggestions and any advice from you more advanced home brewers would be highly appreciated

A: Pick up some generic Oxiclean from the Dollar store. Also a small baby bottle brush.

B: It doesn’t hurt to start with a blow off tube and never use an air lock.

Thanks NightHawk. What do you suggest I use instead of the airlock?

My faucet for the brewing sink is a 8" of 5/8" diameter milk line with a garden hose barb fitting for attachment to the hot/cold mixer line. The stem of my airlock fits inside the milk line. I use hot water under pressure to clean the inside of the airlock. So far only had to do it once.
Are you fermenting a 5 gallon batch in a 5 gallon fermentor or just some very active yeast? High fermentation temperature causing aggressive yeast activity?

I am fermenting a 5 gallon batch but using a 6 gallon fermentor. I brewing a bavarian hefewezien beer. After making the wort and placing the pot in a ice bath. I noticed the with the thermometer that the bottom of the pot was below 100 F but the top was reading between 120-130F. I placed the wort in the fermentor and pitched the yeast when the fermentor was cool to touch.

I think that may have been the problem with the over active fermentation.

I love hefes and brew one every 4 to 6 weeks. They always have a very active fermentation. I use a blow off hose for 3 to 4 days, then switch to an air lock on all my batches.

A blow off tube is a large air lock.

You can make something that is easy to clean with a bottle brush like this.

http://brewing.lustreking.com/gear/bbbot.html
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