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Imperial stout blowoff. Edit - It just exploded

I brewed an imperial stout yesterday and pitched a huge starter. Fermentation was appearant after just a few hours so I thought it prudent to put a blowoff tube on. This morning the krausen was in the neck of the bottle and within an hour it was in my tub of water. And it keeps getting stronger and stronger.

I’ve had blowoff plenty of times before, but it always seemed to happen while I was asleep or away from home. This is the first time I’ve been able to sit and watch it go. Crazy stuff!

And since my video camera was there: A little HD blow-off goodness

Nice !! Go baby Go !!!

What yeast did you use and how much? All at once if it was 2 packets? Just curious, thinking of brewing one of these. I also wonder what it tastes like?..?

And it just exploded.

The blow off tube got very fouled and the bucket of water ended up as black as the stout so I put in a new blow of tube with a new bucket. It seems I forgot to cut the bottom off the new airlock and it quickly became blocked. I checked on it before going to bed and not seeing much happening I squeezed the tube to make sure it was clear.


I was about a foot away from the stopper when it blew. I was immediately blinded by a spray of krausen. I stumbled upstairs to wash my eyes out and thankfully my wife came down to help. Once I washed my eyes out I went back down to the basement and everything in a 10’ radius is sprayed in krausen. I’ll take pics tomorrow, but right now my eyes sting and I smell of beer (which honestly I can live with). Craziest thing I’ve ever experienced… kind of like getting peppersprayed… but with beer.


3rd blow off tube is in. And it’s cut properly. And in about 2 gallons of water. That stout is STILL going crazy.


Damn… I’m too late…

I was gonna say that your blowoff hose is too small. You really need to get a one inch hose. I know this from experience, just like yours…

I was brewing a chocolate stout. It was too cold in the basement of the house I was renting at the time, so I move the fermenter to my dining room. Did the small blowoff hose deal like you did (although I put the hose through the stopper, not using an airlock.) Came home early from work and saw that the stopper and hose were laying on the floor. Half of the liquid contents in the carboy was missing. I walked close to the carboy, and found some on the missing liquid. It was soaked into the carpet. Then I looked up. You guessed it. It must have looked like Mount Vesuvius. From what I can guess, the hose plugged up and the pressure built up in the carboy… shot the stopper out and spewed chocolate stout straight up and onto the white ceiling (and beige walls) and then into the dark (fortunately) brown carpet.

Sorry I didn’t get to you in time, but we do learn from our mistakes.

Sorry for your loss.

I apppreciate the wisdom Steve :slight_smile:

Thankfully there was no beer loss… just a lot of krausen… EVERYWHERE.

My shop light gives a good idea of what it looks like 10’ from the carboy.

The craziest thing is I think it’s still getting stronger. It’s been at 66 degrees since I pitched but I’m thinking I need to get it into a deep freeze and drop it in Alaska for scientists to find in 500 years when they can figure out how to contain it :slight_smile:

Just glad to hear your carboy didn’t explode. I’ve heard of that happening,

At least this wasn’t you… ... re=related

Wow… yeah. I’ve got a mess but nothing of that proportion :slight_smile:

Thankfully I think most of the blowoff has stopped but it’s still fermenting like crazy. Lesson learned - respect the imperial stout. :shock:

I use Fermcap and have had no blow-offs. A big blow-off looses a lot of good yeast plus some of the foam positive proteins that help with good foam retention.
Also try to ferment cooler. I also would like to see them make a 6 1/2 Better Bottle.

This thread is full of win! :cheers:

Just hope your beer turns out OK.

That video of the exploded imperial stout is amazing.

Well most everything is cleaned up now. I had krausen in some of weirdest places. If anyone ever asked me if I’d ever have to clean beer out of my fishing reels I probably would have guessed yes. But this is absolutely NOT how I would of imagined it happening.

Anywho… here are a few shots of the collateral damage. Not too bad… but a little bit went everywhere.

And now everything is back to normal… it’s fermenting away as if nothing happened. F’er.

And that was the 3rd pot of water I switched out in about a 12 hour period. Craziest fermentation I’ve ever seen. Time to make some session beers methinks.

That’s some craziness. I’m gonna have to remember this and come up with a way to encase the carboy and blowoff rig if/when I ever brew an imperial. Currently, I ferment in my music room, and it would be a bad scene if this happened in there!

Holy crap this thread is sexy

I know right … i dont know if i should to be upset or excited


I am loving the beer-porn.

There is dried krausen on the unfinished ceiling of my basement from a similar explosion. Never found the other part of the airlock. From that I learned to always have the blow off tube ready and always use one on a big beer.

This thread made me join! lmao!

I had a blowoff once that just floored me! I know now that I made waaay too big a starter, but at the time…

I blew the cover off my bucket fermenter clean across the room. There was beer and krausen on the walls, ceiling and floor! All 5 gallons were missing from the fermenter! And this was with a blowoff tube! Temps were fine. It was winter and this room was thermostatically controlled digitally.

A week later, lots of scrubbing, priming, painting and carpet cleaning later, the beer smell was gone.

Did I say I love my wife? She still lets me brew!

Welcome Barney, and yes, it’s good to have a supportive wife :slight_smile:

FWIW I got curious and took a gravity reading today. In six days it’s dropped from 1.098 to 1.024. Not too shabby :slight_smile:

Wow. I’m officially having nightmares. Here is the Black IPA I just brewed about 36hrs ago. I got lucky, listened to my instincts and went with the blowout tube right away as its an old school carboy and I pitched two bags of Wyeast 1272 instead of making a starter.

My question (not to steal the thread): This being my first blowout, do I let it roll or do I attempt to clean out my tube ASAP?

(EDIT: The foam in the pot is from the star san).

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