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OG unexpectedly high

Last night I brewed my second batch of Northern Brewer’s Zombie Dirt Pale Ale. I used the extract kit and followed the directions as called for in the recipe.

According to the recipe, the extract ingredients should have an OG of 1.060. The first time I brewed the beer, that’s exactly the reading I got. But this most recent batch has an OG of 1.080.

I brewed the beers nearly identically, the only difference being that I added a scant teaspoon of Irish moss at 20 minutes remaining in the boil.

Here’s the extract “grain bill” for the recipe:
Specialty grains

  • 0.5 lbs Carapils
  • 0.5 lbs Medium Crystal
  • 3.15 lbs Gold malt syrup
  • 3.15 lbs Munich malt syrup (10 min)
  • 2 lbs Golden Light DME (10 min)

Any ideas what could cause such a high OG reading? I’m pretty confident the reading is accurate, but perhaps not.


Did you possibly top off with water and create a stratification of denser sugars at the bottom? My buddy just did that with the Ace of Spades and got a higher grav than expected

With extract, there’s not much chance to vary the gravity. If you used all the extract, and hit your volume, you have the prescribed OG. It’s just not completely mixed.

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Not enough water during boil. Did you recheck ?

Yes, exactly. With kits, if you followed the instructions, topped up to 5 (or whatever the kit size) gallons and mixed it well the OG should be close. Give yourself a pat on the back for using a hydrometer!

Thanks for all the feedback. Much appreciated. Right, my understanding is that there shouldn’t be much OG deviation if you follow the extract recipe correctly. I wasn’t even going to take the hydrometer reading, but the equipment was out…

I started the boil with 2.5 gallons of water, and did not add back any volume I lost to evaporation. But I did top off to 5 gallons, and I mixed/aerated this batch by topping off to five gallons in the fermenter, pouring to a sanitized bucket, then pouring back to fermenter. So I think mixing is adequate, but perhaps not.

All that said, the batch is fermenting extremely well and looks great so far.

Thanks again.

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Not sure how much hydrometer knowledge you have. A couple things that come to mind. Hydrometers are calibrated @ a specific temperature. My hydrometer is calibrated @60°F some are @68°F. They have calculators to adjust reading at different temperatures. Also did you check the hydrometer in distilled water to check that it is indeed 1.000 at the calibration temperature?

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Me after the boil and transfer to the fermenting bucket. Use a refrectometer. And for the rest. Use the hydrometer. For ad. Sample tests at least 3 times.

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