I realize this is completely associated with the holiday season and a lot of people getting their first brew kits as a holiday gift. There are SOOOOO many posts of new brewers asking if their fermentations are going ok after only 12hrs. So…
RDWHAHB (Relax Don’t Worry Have a Home Brew)!
Fermentations come in all different shapes, sizes, speeds, temps, etc. After pitching your yeast, it can take up to 72hrs for active fermentation to start. They will usually start within the first 12-24hrs, but can take up to 72. So if yours is a little slow to start, RDWHAHB. There are many factors that can cause a long lag time.
If your fermentation starts up and is fast and violent, it will slow down rather quickly. This is usually due to warmer fermentation temps. For most ale yeast, you want your temp to be in the low to mid 60’s. You want your ambient temp a few degrees below where you want the beer to ferment at. 70+ ferm temps are too warm. You’ll still make beer, but you may get some unwanted flavors in there. Search for swamp cooler or get a hold of minifridge to keep the temps cooler.
Just some friendly advice is all. The best thing to do is brew, pitch your yeast in the low 60’s, when you see active fermentation (remember it can take up to 72hrs) start planning out your next brew day and leave the fermentor go for 2-3 weeks minimum. There’s no need to take constant gravity readings, open the top and look. The yeast will do their thing. You’ll have beer soon. You’ll want more beer shortly there after, so start making more… RIGHT AWAY