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Fermentation PracticesFermentation time and temperature varies according to the style of beer being brewed. Research the style you are brewing and the type of yeast you are using and know what to expect. Lagers ferment at colder temperatures and take longer than ales which ferment at about 68 degrees F.
Always check the starting and ending gravity of your beer to determine if the fermentation is complete. Incomplete or stuck fermentation can be caused by a number of things including a temperature shock or change. Complete the fermentation before bottling by allowing more time, increasing the temperature or adding more yeast.
Do not shock your yeast when pitching. Always make sure your wort temperature is within a few degrees F of your yeast temperature before pitching.
When pitching your yeast, make sure to "whip it up" to introduce oxygen to facilitate yeast growth. This is the only time in the brewing process that you want to introduce oxygen.
Mr. Goodbeer (Mike Snyder) gives advice on aeration in "Tips from the Pros".
Check out page 10 in the October 2002 issue of "Brew Your Own" magazine
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