Author Topic: Attenuation and Infection  (Read 4796 times)

Offline patrickswayze

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Attenuation and Infection
« on: June 26, 2012, 09:50:41 AM »
My past couple beers have been finishing below 1.009 even though the i have mashed them at temperatures as high as 155. I am just curious if this can possible be in an infection in my plastic fermentors. Their are no off flavors besides the beer having no complementary residual sugar and my bottles foaming as i open them (takes about a minute for bottle to foam over, though i have carbed my bottles correclty with the right amount of sugar. I have used pbw on my equipment, letting it soak for an hour in hot water, is this long enough? 

INFO
Mash Temps: 152-155
Fermentation Temps 70-73F
PBW and Star San used: an hour or so with each
Bottles are new: star sanned those
Yeasts Used: WLP001 and WLP060

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2012, 09:57:02 AM »
If you are confident in your measuring equipment (Thermo, Hydro, etc) I would suspect infection. the foaming over from the bottle says this to me. It sounds like you are getting additional fermentation in the bottle even. Maybe Brett maybe bacteria.
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2012, 10:10:38 AM »
If you are confident in your measuring equipment (Thermo, Hydro, etc) I would suspect infection. the foaming over from the bottle says this to me. It sounds like you are getting additional fermentation in the bottle even. Maybe Brett maybe bacteria.

+1.  The high fermentation temps could be a factor as well.

Dave
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Offline patrickswayze

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2012, 10:17:03 AM »
I am getting some new buckets, the other ones i had used i have had for a year an a half and havent always cleaned them only sanitized. Whats the standard contact time for PBW? Is the hour that i had my quipment in contact with PBW not enough to fully do its job?

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2012, 10:37:39 AM »
I am getting some new buckets, the other ones i had used i have had for a year an a half and havent always cleaned them only sanitized. Whats the standard contact time for PBW? Is the hour that i had my quipment in contact with PBW not enough to fully do its job?

The PBW can only clean what it can reach. If you are not gently scrubbing you could be missing some gunk. If your buckets have spigots there could be places in there that are harboring critters. I clean my buckets with a nylon grain bag. I often just use plain water for cleaning, gently scrubbing till I don't see any gunk any more. Once every couple brews I will clean thouroughly with PBW and take the spigot apart as much as possible to clean out inside it. Every brew I fill the bucket with idophor while I am brewing and run part of it out through the spigot. so far, so good.

Didn't notice the ferm temp before, that could explain higher than expected attenuation but it dosen't explain the continued fermentation in the bottle.
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Offline DrewG

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2012, 10:40:02 AM »
Quote
It sounds like you are getting additional fermentation in the bottle even. Maybe Brett maybe bacteria.
+1

Soaking in star san will only work on clean surfaces. If there is anything stuck to the inside of the bottles (even new bottles) sanitizer wont remove it. I soak mine in PBW, scrub with a bottle brush, rinse with bottle jet and then sanitize. Total PITA but I've never had an issue with them.
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Offline bigchicken

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2012, 11:12:55 AM »
I know dish soap is frowned upon, but I use an antibacterial soap that's free of dye and scent for cleaning all plastics and tubing. Bottles go in the dishwasher. No infections,  no noticeable change from when I've used PBW.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2012, 11:23:23 AM »
I use Cascade and Oxyclean.  Cheaper than PBW and seems to work just as well.

I tend to alternate between the two, rather than mixing.

I also alternate between star san and idophor for sanitizing
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Offline patrickswayze

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2012, 12:14:13 PM »
Maybe Brett maybe bacteria.

Is a Brett infection harder to clean than some other infections? I've never used Brett in my beer, didn't realize it would be that easy to pick up naturally.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2012, 01:12:11 PM »
Maybe Brett maybe bacteria.

Is a Brett infection harder to clean than some other infections? I've never used Brett in my beer, didn't realize it would be that easy to pick up naturally.
no actually. I believe it is easier to get rid of then most bacterial infections. I mention brett because you did not mention any off flavours and in the right circumstances brett can be a very clean yeast. It's also everywhere. that's why there is so much in lambic, ambient air contains LOTS of brett as well as other yeasts and many bacteria.
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2012, 01:48:58 PM »

Didn't notice the ferm temp before, that could explain higher than expected attenuation but it dosen't explain the continued fermentation in the bottle.
[/quote]

Yep, definitely.

I know it's old school, but I always soak my buckets in a strong bleach solution right after I empty them.  No spigots on mine and I've (knocking on wood) never had in infection.  I just empty and rinse the crap out of them with hot water when I'm ready to use them.

Dave
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Offline davidgzach

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2012, 02:07:11 PM »
Oh, and as for the bottles.  Before kegging, I would soak them in bleach as well in my large basin.  What a PITA!  I recently bottled a Gluten-Free brew for a buddy and this time I used B-Brite in my dishwasher.  Worked like a charm..... ;)

I think you need a "sanitize cycle" though......

Dave
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Offline cheba420

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2012, 02:12:00 PM »
PBW or Oxyclean in a hot water solution does not need an hour soak. You do need to get a sponge or a light scrubby to hit the surface of everything though. Starsan will sanitize everything thats clean in under a minute contact time.

Clean bottles in the dishwasher, no cleaner, just run the cycle. The steam and the heat/dry cycle will sanitize them.

I would discard all of your hoses and replace them as well. They probably have some of whatever the problem is hiding in them.
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Offline patrickswayze

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2012, 06:26:14 PM »
Im getting rid of all my bucket fermentors, and i just got new hoses acouple weeks ago that i used on one of the batches. I just put those hoses in pbw, which im going to let sit till saturdays brew session. I hope all this works cause im getting to breaking point with this infection.

Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: Attenuation and Infection
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2012, 07:32:32 AM »
I disagree on infection causing the low FG.

Even the *accidental* strains of brett take quite awhile to achieve super-attenuation (fermentation of normally unfermentable sugars). How long does it take to get to your FG?

155F isn't THAT high of a mash temp. If you aren't using any crystal malts, I wouldn't be surprised to see a FG in the 1.008-1.009 range. This is especially true if your mash temp falls a few degrees during the mash, it takes awhile for you to lauter, or if your mash thermometer is off.

I would check out the thermometer first. Then, think about mashing a bit higher. To get in the 1.015 range for my English Pale, I mash at 158-162 (depending on target starting gravity, amount of crystal, etc.).
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