Author Topic: Can I save my under carbed beer?  (Read 1543 times)

Offline Cory

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Can I save my under carbed beer?
« on: September 13, 2014, 04:43:04 PM »
Hello All,
Just started brewing last month and definitely have the bug.  GF and I are 2 batches in and are preparing to brew a third next week.  I just opened up our first batch brewed on Aug 17th which was an extract with specialty grain smokey porter kit.  As soon as I popped the cap, I realized I had under carbed it. It was still decently good, especially for being our first one but I was slightly bummed.  I guess I had erred way too much on the safe side for fear of exploding bottles.

I calculated out 4 gallons beings stored at 72 for a CO2 volume of 2.1.  I let it sit in the closet for just 2 weeks.  After I was done bottling, it looks like I had about 4.2 gallons and my house was actually more like 80 the whole time so based on BeerSmith I missed my sugar amount by 10 grams.  (I hit my SG and FG on the nose and had it fermenting at a constant 68 degrees in a temp controlled kegerator for 2 weeks if that helps my questions below)

My question is can I still get this carbonated? 

If so, I used 24 bombers so it wouldn’t be that bad to pop each open and adjust.

Could I just add .43 grams of priming sugar to each one and recap or would I need to make a sugar water solution and divide it into the remaining 23 bombers?

Could I also use conditioning tablets?  If so, how many should I use for each bomber?

Should I let them sit the additional time in the closet or add sugar, cap and put in fridge?

How long would I need to wait…another week?

Thanks!  Love the info i have gathered from this site so far!

Offline majorvices

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2014, 06:24:24 PM »
You might try letting them age another week or two before you try anything else. But you can add a carb tab (be sure to check dosage) or a small amount of sugar to each bottle and recap.

On bottle conditioned beers I find sometimes you get great carbonation after a week, but sometimes it takes a month.

Offline erockrph

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2014, 07:00:17 PM »



On bottle conditioned beers I find sometimes you get great carbonation after a week, but sometimes it takes a month.
+1 - 2 weeks just isn't enough time to call it undercarbonated. My bottled beers are typically drinkably carbonated at 10-14 days, but are still finishing carbonating 3-4 weeks after bottling. Give it some more time.
Eric B.

Finally got around to starting a homebrewing blog: The Hop Whisperer

Offline pete b

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2014, 07:29:10 PM »
If its carbed at all it will probably carb so more if you wait. If there is no carbonation at all after a couple weeks I would worry something's wrong.
Don't let the bastards cheer you up.

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2014, 11:03:55 PM »
Better you wait another 1-2 weeks to see if it carbonates than add more sugar and end up with too much carbonation or worse, exploding bottles.
Heck yeah I blog about homebrewing: Brain Sparging on Brewing

Offline Cory

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2014, 06:49:45 PM »
Thanks guys!

I will give it one more week and see how it goes.  I'll report back.

This could have been a subliminal slip up to convince the GF into getting into kegging sooner.  Going to keg our second batch next weekend. :)

Offline micsager

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2014, 10:04:50 PM »
Thanks guys!

I will give it one more week and see how it goes.  I'll report back.

This could have been a subliminal slip up to convince the GF into getting into kegging sooner.  Going to keg our second batch next weekend. :)

(Just tell her force carbing will fix the problem) 

Offline David Lester

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2014, 04:08:47 PM »
Yes, force carbonating in a keg will allow you to drink it within a few days as opposed to weeks.

Good Luck

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2014, 04:15:42 PM »
I still think most beers benefit from a little time. The extra nice thing about kegging is that you can carb cold

Offline Cory

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2014, 01:34:24 AM »
One week later and it has a little bit of head with an aggressive pour.  Still looks a bit under but not close to what it was like before.  So the inaugural batch passes.  :D

Did end up getting a keg and the second batch is sitting in mini fridge hooked up to gas.  Can't wait to try it.

Thanks for the tips!

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Can I save my under carbed beer?
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2014, 04:32:05 AM »
One week later and it has a little bit of head with an aggressive pour.  Still looks a bit under but not close to what it was like before.  So the inaugural batch passes.  :D

Did end up getting a keg and the second batch is sitting in mini fridge hooked up to gas.  Can't wait to try it.

Thanks for the tips!

Good job