I am newer to AG and have read of most people not using a secondary fermentation. This is a new thing to me so I tried it on this last batch. My question is how long in primary is too long? This batch began to clear and slow on fermentation so I moved it into my garage to get a cold crash. After about a day, maybe less, it became very cloudy. It smells good, like a normal beer should, but the cloudiness has me concerned. I pitched the yeast ten days ago. Any feedback would be appreciated.
All’s well mate, just leave it be & it will clear.
Avoid opening it to smell just to eliminate any chance of a wild yeast infection, it’s a small risk but a risk all the same. Moving it just stirred things up & your settled out yeast is back in suspension. As it’s colder where you now have it, it will take a little while longer to clear again, but fear not, it will drop nice & clear. I have had a beer in primary for 4 weeks with no ill effects at all. I used to do a secondary ferment & sometimes dry hop fearing the beer is better off being off the primary yeast cake. This has proven to be unfounded & if I want to dry hop these days, I will wait until primary ferment is finished, sometimes this is a couple of weeks ( beer & temp dependant ) & dry hop for a few days in the primary fermenter.
It may be chill haze. Give it a few days (week) to see if it clears. If not you may try some gelatin.
I have a couple beers that have been sitting on their yeast cakes for close to 2 months. Need to get them in kegs this weekend as my supplies are low.
[quote=“Nighthawk”]It may be chill haze. Give it a few days (week) to see if it clears. If not you may try some gelatin.
I have a couple beers that have been sitting on their yeast cakes for close to 2 months. Need to get them in kegs this weekend as my supplies are low.[/quote]
WOW! Two months? Ok, I’ll just relaxe, LOL. I either need to brew more or drink less, my beer’s generally don’t last that long; but then with my wife, me, occasional neighbor, friends.
Regarding gelatin, not familiar with that and have never used it. What does that entail? Do I go to my local grocery store and get a pack of jello? Just kidding.
Thanks for the info
Look at Don Osborn’s channel on YouTube. His latest video was on his methods of using gelatin.
I will just give you some food for thought based on my readings and experience. I like to switch to a secondary because my primary fermenter is a 6 gallon and when the fermentation dies down I like to switch it over to avoid the head space eposing the beer to too much oxygen. The other thing is that I like to brew so I switch from my 6 gallon primaries to 5 gallon secondaries so I don’t have to stop brewing or have to buy more and more 6 gallon carboys.
I listened to an interview, I think it was on the Brewing Network, where they discussed that once the yeast settles to the bottom of the carboy it takes about two weeks until the yeast starts breaking down and when this begins it can add an unwanted taste to your beer. If your going to have your beer age in a carboy for some time (think of Barley Beer that gets better with age) then you would want to move it from the primary where the yeast bed has formed to the secondary to prevent the yeast bed breaking down imparting unwanted flavor to the beer.
BUT…if your only looking at two - three weeks then it shouldn’t be a problem in the primary.
Did you check your gravity before moving to cool temps to be sure it was really done? Otherwise the yeast will go to sleep
I usually don’t do that because I don’t want to expose the beer to any air. What I usually do is wait for the krausen to fall and watch the bubble rate when it slows to 1 per minute, I usually transfer to secondary. This batch I was trying the “no secondary” approach. I think someone once said that if its not broke don’t fix it; but I wanted to try something different for a change.
IMO, autolysis is one of the “great homebrewer” myths.
It my occur on a commercial scale when you have the pressure of 100+ gallons of beer on the yeast. But when you have 5-10 gallons? Not an issue.
Exposing the beer to air? You will expose the beer to more air when you transfer it to a second vessel than just opening the 1st vessel to take a gravity reading. The action of the beer flowing to the second vessel will introduce more oxygen than the beer just sitting there.
You need to decide what works for you.