Why do I have Flat Beer after 2 weeks

This is my second batch and both batches are flat even after being bottled for two weeks. The beer spent two weeks in both a primary and secondary fermentor. It smelled divine on bottling day!

I have tried two bottles. The taste is good, but they are flat. The temperature in the room for fermenting/bottling is 65-70 degrees.

  1. I messed up and put the bottles in the dishwasher with soap. I rinsed them out with water and a brush to get out the soap. Then I sanitized them again with Star San and submerged the bottles for 2 minutes minimum. Next I drained the bottles and filled them without letting them dry. Is this okay? Does Starsan kill the yeast?

  2. I add the priming sugar without letting it cool after boiling. It is added when there is 1 inch of beer in the bucket and i let the hose fill the bucket from the bottom. Do I need to stir the beer to get the sugar distributed evenly?

  3. The caps are on tight, I think.

  4. I do not have city water. Is adding well water to the wort messing things up? Again, it smells and tastes fine and it is clear.

I understand that the dishwasher soap won’t let a head develop, but doesn’t prevent the carbing, right?

I will add that some of my first batch did carbed up after 6+ weeks in the bottle. That seems way too long to this novice. What is going on?

Any help is very much appreciated. :cheers:

perhaps the temp is too low after bottling
I have seen it said it should be bit warmer

If you are asking the question “do I need to stir the priming sugar in?”, then it must mean that you did not.

Yes you do. Most people stir it gently up front and then again after every 6-12 beers.

I personally think you have too issues. You need to give it more time and it was not well stirred. Problem is, for every one that did not get enough priming sugar, others got too much and you might end up with bottle bombs.

Are you getting any hiss when you open the beers? If that’s the case then the yeast is doing it’s work, and just needs more time.

My basement’s about 65F, and I don’t think I’ve ever had beer that was properly carbonated in less than 3 weeks.


I knew I had to stir in the sugar! Northern Brewer’s instructional videos (I bought their kit) don’t say to do that, but it only makes sense to actually stir in the priming sugar. The video just shows the happy brewer adding the priming sugar, filling the bucket and then bottling away.

Thank you for your help.

Yes, homebrewing lore says that just siphoning on top of the sugar syrup is good enough, but I didn’t find this to be true. Maybe if you make a really thin syrup and vigorously siphon it’ll work out, but I had inconsistent carbonation until I started gently stirring after every six-pack.

If you can store the bottles where it’s a little warmer, like 75-80F, you’ll speed up the carbonation process. Also, turn each bottle upside-down and swirl it to get the yeast back into suspension once or twice a day (don’t shake, just snap your wrist once to get the beer moving).


" Problem is, for every one that did not get enough priming sugar, others got too much and you might end up with bottle bombs."

Yes, please watch out for this.
To be on the safe side you can store your bottles in a plastic storage bin.
That way, if you have a bottle bomb it will be contained.