View Full Version : Installing airlock

10-04-2014, 10:45 AM
So I have just now made my batch of mead and am currently letting it sit without an airlock but with two layers of cheesecloth covering the opening. I heard from a few people to do this and let it sit for a few days. How would I know when to install the airlock? It is already fizzing and foaming a little bit I just do not want to leave it exposed for too long (it has been two days already).

10-04-2014, 12:00 PM
I have started leaving the lid loose on my primary bucket until the 1/3 sugar break. It seems this would be similar to cheesecloth on a one gallon jug. As long as the fermentation is vigorous, it seems you should be fine. I have never tried this, but I would probably put the airlock in after three days.

I am sure someone with more experience on the subject will answer.

10-04-2014, 05:49 PM
Some people go the whole primary like that. Some people put the airlock in immediately.
It should be safe either way. The biggest risk is at the end of ferment, and oxygen is not your risk, it's acetobacter(vinegar bacteria) or other spoiling agents.
Tell us why you haven't installed an airlock and we'll be better able to assist.

10-04-2014, 08:06 PM
I was the told the first few days that the must needs to be exposed to as much oxygen as possible and also that during this stage that a lot of c02 is emitted and an airlock would not be sufficient enough to vent those gases. But after that to then install the airlock. Mostly I want to install the airlock so I can keep a better track of its progress.

10-04-2014, 09:32 PM
Not using an airlock won' t hurt anything during the first part of fermentation. It's only after fermentation has slowed that it becomes important to keep the must under airlock but that being said I've never had a fermentation that my three part airlock couldn't handle.

10-04-2014, 10:38 PM
I do primary in a bucket covered with a towel, at least until the sugar break. Sometimes a bit longer - I've had batches go to .998 in a bucket. Then I rack it to a carboy with an airlock.

10-04-2014, 11:21 PM
Oh. Just bung an airlock in it. You'll be fine.

10-05-2014, 12:08 AM
Yeah. If you are worried bung that thing up.

Sent from my galafreyan transdimensional communicator 100 years from now.

10-05-2014, 12:02 PM
I often go all the way with lid just resting on top...not sealed. No worries

10-05-2014, 07:01 PM
How do you tell when the first part of fermentation is done?

10-05-2014, 10:06 PM
Hydrometer readings. You get a reading before you pitch the yeast. Then monitor once or twice a day until the drop in specific gravity slows.

Yay mead!