Jump to content
Coopers Community

Yeast not activating?


Recommended Posts

Hey all. Bottled my first batch yesterday. The Cooper Lager that came with the kit. Was at 1005 for 3 days. Going to wait 2 weeks then try a bottle. Then another bottle a week or so till it hopefully tastes like good beer. 😁

I immediately threw another batch in the fermenter. After thoroughly cleaning everything of course! 😄 Canadian Blonde with Brew Enhancer 2.

I miscalculated this time though. I used tap water for the first batch and went and got distilled water this time. Didn't take into account that the bottled distilled water wasn't as cold as my tap water so after the enhancer and can were mixed I was at a higher temp than I liked. So I threw a wet towel around the fermenter and a fan for a quick swamp chiller and brought the temps down. Took about 40-45 minutes. With the lid on of course. I then gave it a really good stirring to try and oxygenate the wort before pitching the yeast. Kept an eye on it and it didn't look like anything was happening. The yeast or at least a good portion of it was floating on the top. I waited 6 hours and then sterilized my spoon and gave it a gentle stirring. Went to bed and when I woke up things are looking good. Lots of bubbling and a faint krausen ring starting to form.

I know to have a litre or 2 of almost frozen water on hand in case for next batch!

To late now but did I jump the gun in stirring? Should I have waited longer to see if it would kick in on it's own? Or should I have just pitched the yeast at the higher end of the temp range and let it slowly cool down to the lower range on it's own?

Lots to learn! 😃

 

Sean

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Sean_O said:

Hey all. Bottled my first batch yesterday. The Cooper Lager that came with the kit. Was at 1005 for 3 days. Going to wait 2 weeks then try a bottle. Then another bottle a week or so till it hopefully tastes like good beer. 😁

I immediately threw another batch in the fermenter. After thoroughly cleaning everything of course! 😄 Canadian Blonde with Brew Enhancer 2.

I miscalculated this time though. I used tap water for the first batch and went and got distilled water this time. Didn't take into account that the bottled distilled water wasn't as cold as my tap water so after the enhancer and can were mixed I was at a higher temp than I liked. So I threw a wet towel around the fermenter and a fan for a quick swamp chiller and brought the temps down. Took about 40-45 minutes. With the lid on of course. I then gave it a really good stirring to try and oxygenate the wort before pitching the yeast. Kept an eye on it and it didn't look like anything was happening. The yeast or at least a good portion of it was floating on the top. I waited 6 hours and then sterilized my spoon and gave it a gentle stirring. Went to bed and when I woke up things are looking good. Lots of bubbling and a faint krausen ring starting to form.

I know to have a litre or 2 of almost frozen water on hand in case for next batch!

To late now but did I jump the gun in stirring? Should I have waited longer to see if it would kick in on it's own? Or should I have just pitched the yeast at the higher end of the temp range and let it slowly cool down to the lower range on it's own?

Lots to learn! 😃

 

Sean

Sometimes yeast takes its time to fire up. 24 hours or more before you see activity is nothing out of the ordinary. Patience is the name of the game 🙂 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Sean_O said:

Hey all. Bottled my first batch yesterday. The Cooper Lager that came with the kit. Was at 1005 for 3 days. Going to wait 2 weeks then try a bottle. Then another bottle a week or so till it hopefully tastes like good beer. 😁

I immediately threw another batch in the fermenter. After thoroughly cleaning everything of course! 😄 Canadian Blonde with Brew Enhancer 2.

I miscalculated this time though. I used tap water for the first batch and went and got distilled water this time. Didn't take into account that the bottled distilled water wasn't as cold as my tap water so after the enhancer and can were mixed I was at a higher temp than I liked. So I threw a wet towel around the fermenter and a fan for a quick swamp chiller and brought the temps down. Took about 40-45 minutes. With the lid on of course. I then gave it a really good stirring to try and oxygenate the wort before pitching the yeast. Kept an eye on it and it didn't look like anything was happening. The yeast or at least a good portion of it was floating on the top. I waited 6 hours and then sterilized my spoon and gave it a gentle stirring. Went to bed and when I woke up things are looking good. Lots of bubbling and a faint krausen ring starting to form.

I know to have a litre or 2 of almost frozen water on hand in case for next batch!

To late now but did I jump the gun in stirring? Should I have waited longer to see if it would kick in on it's own? Or should I have just pitched the yeast at the higher end of the temp range and let it slowly cool down to the lower range on it's own?

Lots to learn! 😃

 

Sean

Hmm, yeah, well, I don't think you need to stir it after you've sprinkled it over the top.

I always pitch the yeast when the wort is at the lower end of the temperature range and then bring it up to the fermenting temperature after the reproduction phase. Pitching at the higher end and letting it cool down to fermenting temp leads to a higher level of diacetyl according to what I have read.

I chill all my water, or as much as I can, prior to starting a brew.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Kegory said:

Hmm, yeah, well, I don't think you need to stir it after you've sprinkled it over the top.

I always pitch the yeast when the wort is at the lower end of the temperature range and then bring it up to the fermenting temperature after the reproduction phase. Pitching at the higher end and letting it cool down to fermenting temp leads to a higher level of diacetyl according to what I have read.

I chill all my water, or as much as I can, prior to starting a brew.

I don't stir my yeast, but I do my fermenting in the garage which is downstairs. So after pitching the yeast it always gets a little jiggle as it's carried down the steps.

I thought I had read on the instructions of one of my yeast packets to pitch at the higher end, but I could have imagined that. Oh well.

 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't muck about with temperature.  It isn't critical for anything at entry level, and I still don't bother about it after 40 years.  Within the acceptable range for your yeast is good enough.  Temperature control during fermentation is best but again, not critical to you at this point.

Warm the can of extract by opening the lid and standing it in hot water.  Pour it in the FV and do a double rinse of the can with hot (boiling water).  Use a tea towel or gloves and be careful with boiling water.  Add your sugar and stir.  Top your FV up to the 23 litre mark with tap water and you'll be in range.  Sprinkle the yeast on top.  Close the lid.  Job done.

If you did anything wrong, it was most likely using distilled water.  No minerals or nutrients in distilled water and it probably lacked oxygen as well.

Edited by glivo
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Aussiekraut said:

Sometimes yeast takes its time to fire up. 24 hours or more before you see activity is nothing out of the ordinary. Patience is the name of the game 🙂 

Aha. Lesson learned. Be more patient! Thanks!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Kegory said:

Hmm, yeah, well, I don't think you need to stir it after you've sprinkled it over the top.

I always pitch the yeast when the wort is at the lower end of the temperature range and then bring it up to the fermenting temperature after the reproduction phase. Pitching at the higher end and letting it cool down to fermenting temp leads to a higher level of diacetyl according to what I have read.

I chill all my water, or as much as I can, prior to starting a brew.

Awesome. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, glivo said:

Don't muck about with temperature.  It isn't critical for anything at entry level, and I still don't bother about it after 40 years.  Within the acceptable range for your yeast is good enough.  Temperature control during fermentation is best but again, not critical to you at this point.

Warm the can of extract by opening the lid and standing it in hot water.  Pour it in the FV and do a double rinse of the can with hot (boiling water).  Use a tea towel or gloves and be careful with boiling water.  Add your sugar and stir.  Top your FV up to the 23 litre mark with tap water and you'll be in range.  Sprinkle the yeast on top.  Close the lid.  Job done.

If you did anything wrong, it was most likely using distilled water.  No minerals or nutrients in distilled water and it probably lacked oxygen as well.

Thanks. Newbie jitters. 😁

So you use tap water? I read that tap water has chloramine that can cause a weird taste at times.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It really depends upon where you live and the town water supply in that area.  Plenty of people make home brew out of tap water.  I consider myself fortunate to have rainwater, but others would argue it's a negative.  Try it once and see.  Bottled spring water (the cheap stuff) is about $5.00 for 10 litres at Coles.  Cheap enough if you don't make loads of beer.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Sean_O said:

Thanks. Newbie jitters. 😁

So you use tap water? I read that tap water has chloramine that can cause a weird taste at times.

I & a few others have Puratap, which filters the nasties out, I have never had any problem with it, it tastes fine. 

There would be plenty of brewers using tap water, but you can fill a fermenter/container with enough for the brew water & leave it uncovered overnight which will evaporate the chlorine & taste much better.

Watch out for insects though, it's best to put a muslin cloth or something to cover it that will let air in.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Sean_O said:

Thanks. Newbie jitters. 😁

So you use tap water? I read that tap water has chloramine that can cause a weird taste at times.

The old saying rings true " if it's good enough to drink it's good enough to brew with "

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Back Brewing said:

The old saying rings true " if it's good enough to drink it's good enough to brew with "

Or, as the old story goes, the water wasn't good enough to drink, so they brewed with it 😅

We've got a simple carbon filter for our tap water. You have to run it very slowly to effectively remove the chlorine from drinking water, but when it comes to brewing 20 odd litres I don't have that much patience. One day maybe I'll look into getting something better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 4/12/2024 at 12:56 PM, ChairmanDrew said:

I don't stir my yeast, but I do my fermenting in the garage which is downstairs. So after pitching the yeast it always gets a little jiggle as it's carried down the steps.

I thought I had read on the instructions of one of my yeast packets to pitch at the higher end, but I could have imagined that. Oh well.

 

Yes, you probably did read those instructions on a yeast packet. Also probably in some recipes/instruction sheets. In How to Brew John Palmer's experimental results indicated that pitching low then raising the temperature produced lower rates of diacetyl than pitching high and then cooling to fermenting temperature.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Sean_O said:

Thanks. Newbie jitters. 😁

So you use tap water? I read that tap water has chloramine that can cause a weird taste at times.

I use tap water but I treat it with potassium metabisulphite to remove the chorine and chloramine. The evaporation method only removes the chlorine but the chloramine is not volatile and doesn't evaporate off (that's why they put it in). It does leave a weird taste if you don't get rid of it, at least it did in my beers.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Kegory said:

Yes, you probably did read those instructions on a yeast packet. Also probably in some recipes/instruction sheets. In How to Brew John Palmer's experimental results indicated that pitching low then raising the temperature produced lower rates of diacetyl than pitching high and then cooling to fermenting temperature.

Nah, just checked my packs and none of them say it, so I quite likely either imagined it or might have thought I read it recently when looking into rehydrating yeast.

I usually pitch at the temp I want to ferment at, but the other day I pitched a couple of degrees higher. I guess I thought the temp would come down overnight before the yeast kicked off, but it's been a bit warmer than expected lately.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...