12 votes
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What are the most crucial moments for beer contamination?

Just before you add yeast. Your wort will not be heated again Wort is full of nutrients, fullest it was or will be Temperature is optimal for microbiological growth No competition with other microbes ...
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  • 3,706
11 votes
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Consecutive (lacto?) contamination with different fermenters

I'd put my money on the wooden spoon. Legend is that in days of yore, brewers used to stir the wort with a "magic stick". If they didn't, it wouldn't ferment. The reason was the yeast imbedded in ...
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  • 33.3k
9 votes

How clean does your equipment really need to be?

TL; DR; You need to clean! You do this for safety, repeatability, and to avoid wasting your effort. I have cleaned poorly before and wasted brews of both wine and beer, since I took a more rigorous ...
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  • 6,983
6 votes
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Contamination concerns when removing stopper?

As jsled says you have no worries. You are doing the right things, not touching it or putting it down. If just for a few seconds to check on the brew you'll be fine, also you will gain experience ...
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  • 6,983
6 votes

I waited 48 hours to pitch and detected fermention prior to pitching

QUICK TIP: Did you check with a hydrometer before you pitched? The golden rule with determining fermentation is "Trust your hydrometer; Almost everything else will lie to you" - Bubbling airlock and ...
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6 votes

When racking my beer, it looked like someone had poured cream in

I have had something similar, I was brewing a Bohemian Pilsner Ale and the yeast formed tennis ball sized clumps on the top of the beer! I freaked out! But I recited the Papazian mantra and kegged the ...
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  • 2,446
6 votes

Wort Contamination?

Your beer will probably be fine. Yes, your arm probably left some bacteria in the wort, but the wort is also picking up a few bacteria from the air. Cooled wort has some bacteria and/or wild yeast. ...
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  • 3,375
6 votes
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Will Brett C contaminate my equipment?

The standard wisdom I've seen is, as mentioned, that glass and metal "should" be fine but plastic is much more prone to scratching, making it a concern. Brett has a reputation of being very resilient ...
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  • 1,880
6 votes

Safe to return sampled wort to the primary after sampling?

I've read in a few places not to do this as it risks contamination. I do it every time using a well-sanitized thief. I have never had an issue doing this. Does it increase the risk of contamination? ...
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  • 411
6 votes
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Safe to return sampled wort to the primary after sampling?

Do not return samples to the batch. Risk of infection is very high. Sacrificing this small amount of wort makes life easier and give peace of mind. sample tubes are difficult to clean. Many are two ...
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6 votes
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What are these insects in my malt?

They're possibly weevils. The one in the middle looks like it has a long 'snout' that weevils tend to have.
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5 votes
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Is there a way to tell if fruit flies have laid eggs?

Fruit fly eggs are yellow 1/2mm long and will generally hatch into larvae in ~30Hours, so if they are still there 2 days later then they are specks of stuff, if the hatch then they are larvae, which ...
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  • 6,983
5 votes

Has My mead gone south?

Contamination('infection') will usually make a ring right at the surface of the wort/must etc. Anything above the liquid would have come from the initial fermentation foam (or maybe from getting ...
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  • 3,030
5 votes

My cooled wort got contaminated by tap water. What are the primary consequences of re-boiling?

Reboiling will increase bitterness of all the hops that went in 'late' in the kettle. Obviously, as you said you'll lose your aroma charge will decrease in proportion to the length of the reboil. ...
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  • 36.2k
5 votes

Is it possible to decontaminate wine?

No don't boil it! Chances are you are fine at this point. Bacteria just don't hang around lonely old clothespins much. Without knowing what type yeast you pitched, I can't give a solid answer, but if ...
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  • 511
5 votes

Is my beer infected? from an amateur. Posted a picture

This looks like Pediococcus contamination: see here Is this lactobacillus? More information about spoilage here: https://www.craftbrewingbusiness.com/news/four-bacteria-that-will-ruin-your-beer/ ...
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  • 4,736
5 votes
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Possible contamination or mold?

Unless whatever you're bottling is genuinely, horrifyingly undrinkable- I'd never pour anything out before bottling. At any rate- it won't hurt you. It's really difficult to tell on a picture through ...
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  • 1,376
4 votes
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Should dry hopped beer be lightly stirred prior to bottling?

While some claim that the addition of hops to their beer have contributed to contamination, it is quite rare considering how hops are anti-microbial in nature. While not having any way of confirming ...
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  • 5,954
4 votes

Consecutive (lacto?) contamination with different fermenters

Another thing to consider along with the wooden spoon is if you grind your grains in the same room as you brew. Lactobacillus comes from the grains and while grinding or even pouring out of the bag,...
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4 votes

Contamination concerns when removing stopper?

No, you don't need to worry about contamination based on what you describe.
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  • 10.1k
4 votes

Is this pediococcus contamination?

Most likely a wild yeast contamination which could easily contain some of those strains and have the potential to be a positive in a Berliner, or not...(plastic, bandaid, and phenolic flavors possible)...
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  • 1,787
4 votes

Yeast not settling or contamination?

Yeast with a high floculation rate will do this, they usually break off the bottom and float up from trapped c02. Beer looks really clear, good job. When you rack to secondary, go ahead and let the ...
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4 votes
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Is my batch contaminated("infected")?

Looks like flocculant yeast, if you look close it should be the same color as the trub on the bottom if it is. May see them pulling off and coming to the top, but it's hard to see in a dark beer. ...
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4 votes

My cooled wort got contaminated by tap water. What are the primary consequences of re-boiling?

When you say it got contaminated you mean that some tap water went in contact (mixed) with your wort, right? I wouldn't say that is contamination. IMHO, contamination is that some bacteria has started ...
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  • 41
4 votes
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I'm worried about adding germs to my brew when dry hopping

How much of a risk is this? - To answer your first question the risk is minimal. once fermentation has begun in force the solution is mostly unfavorable for non yeast microorganisms. no this isn't to ...
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  • 169
4 votes
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Does this look contaminated?

Looks fine, rack to secondary and grab a bit to taste if it tastes fine then you have most likely avoided any significant bacterial contamination. Smell first, if it smells off don't taste it. Taste ...
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  • 6,983
4 votes
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Does opening the tap of a fermenter bucket increase the chance of contamination?

Using the spigot is undoubtedly much safer than opening the lid. With the spigot on your bucket you're basically just creating a hole where the beer can flow out (and only out). There are some ...
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  • 1,880
4 votes
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If you make wine in higher quantities, is there a higher chance of contamination?

No, the process is the same. If you sanitize everything correctly, you do not have more chances of spoilage, it will only take more time to rack and bottle. Make sure you have the right size ...
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  • 4,736
4 votes
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Contamination from airlock

I think the likelihood of a batch getting contaminated this way is pretty low. Certainly be careful with cleaning and replacing the airlock. But generally speaking the airlock serves as a blocker ...
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  • 1,880
4 votes
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Beer's susceptibility to contamination over time?

The short answer: Beer is susceptible to whatever can live in the wort/beer given it's specific condition at the time. As fermentation continues, fewer and fewer micro-organisms are able to colonise ...
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  • 2,050

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