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Liquid yeast problem?

Hi everyone,
I brewed a 5 gallon batch of Sierra Madre a couple days ago on Saturday. I used Wyeast American Ale 1056. Followed the recipe to the mark. I’ve brewed this beer several times in 1 gallon and 5 gallon kits. Always used dry yeast. For this batch my liquid yeast was stored in the refrigerator for about 6 weeks. I noticed the package was a bit puffed up. Made it a little difficult to rupture the inner package. But I did pop the inner package. I mixed thoroughly and let it sit out of the fridge for a couple hours. Sanitized the package before opening. OG on the money at 1.052

It’s been 48 hours and I have zero signs of fermentation. Room temperature at 67. I cracked the lid to have a look, not one bubble on the surface. I’ve always had active fermenting at 48 hours. Going back to the puffed up yeast package makes me wonder if there was something wrong. I’m feeling like the yeast was dead.

Ideas or comments ?

Thank you!


It is likely not enough yeast cells were pitched resulting in an extended lag time. The yeast was most likely aging and a starter was required to achieve a good pitch rate. You may need to pitch more yeast if fermentation doesn’t begin in 24 hours.

The yeast should be kept at room temperature, after breaking the nutrient pack, to bring the yeast out of dormancy before pitching.

Rehydrated US-05 would be a good alternative yeast.

If the yeast pack was past three months that would explain a very long lag time. If so you should have made a starter to get your yeast population and health back up to par. Your best option would be to find a friend who has beer just done fermenting and get yeast from the bottom of their fermenter. Next would be to pitch a pack of dry yeast.

A partially swollen pack is actually normal for 1056 for some reason, so that doesn’t bother me. ( homebrew shop owner told me this). In the future

  1. Have back up dry yeast in the fridge.
  2. Make a yeast starter ( especially for older yeast packs).

I bet your beer will be fermenting by morning, but be ready to repitch if it isn’t. Some people say 72 hours is the limit, but 48 would really bother me as well. Good luck :cheers:

Flars beat me to it, but +1 to his comments.

This is an example of why you should always have a pack or two of dry yeast on hand. You didn’t have enough yeast to get a quick start to the fermentation.

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