Author Topic: Unplanned open fermentation  (Read 2686 times)

Offline rbowers

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Unplanned open fermentation
« on: June 21, 2012, 10:43:49 AM »
So I brewed up my long planned Baltic porter, dropped it in the keezer to ferment at 58F and promptly left town the next day for Florida for five days.  Came home and found the airlock top sitting on the floor of the keezer- I suspect the fermentation activity and foam blew it off but there was no significant mess to suggest all that much of an overflow of fermentation activity.  Anyways, the carboy sat open to the air of the keezer x 5 days at the most.  There is an internal small fan in the keezer circulating air.  The SG has dropped from 1.085 to 1.050, it tastes fine, and no horrendous odor.  I replaced the airlock and fermentation continues, albeit, slowly.  What are the chances this is infected?  How do I tell?  Is this worth following thru to the end of my planned 3-6 months aging.  I was really excited on this beer and pretty pissed this happened especially since I genuinely considered a blow off tube but then decided against it.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2012, 11:19:51 AM »
It's more than likely fine.  CO2 was blowing out through the port the whole time and that C)2 was filling your keezer with CO2 too so it isn't a very hospitable growth environment anyway. 

If it tastes fine I would just keep going with it.  No point in throwing it away until you have some evidence that something is wrong.  I've had the bubble lock blow out before, sometimes for days, and it didn't cause any issues.

Paul
Where the heck are we going?  And what's with this hand basket?

Offline euge

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2012, 11:54:57 AM »
Even with the fan this is a sealed environment. Maybe you had some exposure but the beer will be fine. You won't know until later though.

Not worth throwing it out at this point.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline davidgzach

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2012, 12:00:16 PM »
You should be fine.......RDWHAHB!
Dave Zach

Offline bigchicken

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2012, 12:06:06 PM »
It's more than likely fine.  CO2 was blowing out through the port the whole time and that C)2 was filling your keezer with CO2 too so it isn't a very hospitable growth environment anyway. 

If it tastes fine I would just keep going with it.  No point in throwing it away until you have some evidence that something is wrong.  I've had the bubble lock blow out before, sometimes for days, and it didn't cause any issues.

Paul

+1

Probably didn't happen until there was a good amount of CO2 present. That would have acted like a barrier. With the fan in there, I suppose it could contribute some type of off flavor, depending what else was in there.
TJ Cook
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In bottles: One Fruit Fly Saison, Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Ale, Snow Eater Winter Warmer

Offline rbowers

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2012, 01:01:24 PM »
Thanks for the tips.  I'll hang with it and see where things go.  Come September we will know I guess.
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Offline hoser

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2012, 01:17:00 PM »
What type of airlock? 3 piece or S-bubble? Was it just the top that blew off of the airlock?  If so, was their still fluid in the airlock?  The fluid is actually the barrier of protection more so than the cap (as long as it is something like star san or ETOH).  Either way, if their was still fluid in the airlock than I wouldn't worry about contamination.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2012, 01:21:52 PM by hoser »

Offline rbowers

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2012, 03:40:00 PM »
3 piece airlock and the cap was missing leaving a direct communication between beer and ambient air.  The fluid surrounds the tube in the center of the airlock and was filled with water and subsequently beer when I found it.
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APA
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Helles

Conditioning:
American IPA

On Tap:
German Alt
English IPA
Saison Du Buff Clone
Witbier

Bottles
Flanders Red

Coming Up:
Belgian Stout

Offline tubercle

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Re: Unplanned open fermentation
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2012, 08:29:11 PM »
I never had a problem with any of my planned open ferments so you should not have a problem with an unplanned one.
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