I just recently started home brewing again after doing it 15 years ago. I just bought a new kit with the Caribou Slobber kit and I brewed last Sunday and followed the directions exactly. After a couple of days I went down to the basement where I was keeping my brew, and there was very little activity. I let it be, and then the next day I sloshed around the wart a little, and the next day, very little activity. I seemed to remember from my past life that the fermenter filled with foam, and there was lots of movement. It is now a week later. If active fermentation was going to happen, then it would have by now?
What was the wort temp when you pitch the yeast? Dry yeast, liquid yeast?
What temp is the basement at?
Do you have a hydrometer to take a gravity reading?
Dry yeast. The wort temperature was between 70 and 78 degrees F when I pitched the yeast. It sat several hours in an ice bath. The basement is probably about about 60-70 degrees in a dark spot.
I see now though that the directions say that I should have put the fermenter in a warm spot. Could it be that the basement is too cool? Would moving it to a warmer spot help? Or it is too late?
I do not have a hydrometer.
Could the yeast have been denatured by warm temperatures?
Thanks for your response
The temp threshold for yeast is in the 110* range.
Disregard the directions on the temp. The temp of the basement is perfect. Fermentation generates heat. I like my fermentation temp to be around 65*. So I shoot for an air temp of 60*.
Is there a krausen ring above the liquid line? If so, this is a sign that fermentation occurred.
Do you have a shop near by to purchase a hydrometer? If not, where are you located. Someone may be nearby and can loan one to you until you make your next order.
Are you using a bucket?
Just following up to my own questions from several weeks ago. I did order a hydrometer, but it arrived broken, and I am waiting for another. I live out here in the boonies, with no brew shop close by.
Anywhoo, I went ahead and transferred that batch to secondary fermentation, (glass carboyle), then I bottled a couple weeks later. Then after 2 weeks in the bottles I popped one open yesterday, and it tasted pretty damn good!
It was a kit I probably wouldn’t have chosen (Carribou Slobber), but it was the preferable one that came with the deluxe brewing kit. So all is good despite the fact that I never saw it fermenting much.
In the meantime and in contrast, I started brewing a Dead Ringer IPA, and that baby was obviously fermenting! No mistake about that! Anyway, lessons learned, very active fermentation can happen quickly without you noticing? I guess.
Glad to see it worked well. Sometimes the active part of a primary fermentation can happen within the first 1-3 days and if you had a slight leak (loose lid) it could ferment without you noticing it.