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  1. What is the difference between the DIY1G kit and other 1 gallon kits that I have seen that are less expensive?
  2. The equipment kit doesn’t include a large stock pot, what do I use?
  3. The equipment kit doesn’t have bottles, what do I use?
  4. If I don’t have/want swingtop bottles for my beer, where can I get regular beer bottles?
  5. Does home made beer and wine taste as good as the “real” stuff?
  6. My airlock is done bubbling. Is my beer/wine done?
  7. I can’t get to the next step in my beer/wine when it is recommended on the instruction sheet. Will it hurt to leave it in the bucket or the jug for a few extra days?
  8. I have added my beer and priming sugar to my bottles. How long till they are carbonated?
  9. It has been a month with my beer in the bottles and they are still not carbonated. What did I do wrong?
  10. There is some sediment at the bottom of my carbonated bottle. Is this normal? Is there anything I can do to eliminate it?
  11. Do I really need the Essentials Kit?
  12. There is Campden in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for?
  13. There is Potassium Sorbate in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for?
  14. There is Bentonite in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for?
  15. There is Sparkolloid in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for?
  16. There is Yeast Booster in my wine/mead kit. What is that?
  17. There is Wine Adjuster in my wine kit. What is that?
  18. There is Irish Moss in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that?
  19. There is Gypsum in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that?
  20. There is Yeast Nutrient in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that?
  21. What are the green pellets that look like rabbit food in my beer kit?
  22. If I add more yeast or ferment longer will that make more alcohol?
  23. It is time to transfer my beer/wine to the glass jug and there is a bunch of gross looking stuff in my bucket, and it doesn’t smell very good. Has it gone bad?
  24. I got my beer kit as a gift, and somehow forgot about it. I want to make it now, are the ingredients still good?
  25. I love homebrewing and winemaking with my one DIY1G kit, but what if I want to make bigger batches?

What is the difference between the DIY1G kit and other 1 gallon kits that I have seen that are less expensive? Unlike other one gallon kits that are geared strictly for beer, our kit is designed in a way to help you learn to ferment whatever it is that you want. Beer, Cider, Mead, Fruit Wine, Vegetable Wine, Braggot, Kvas, or even not alcoholic items like Kombucha, sauerkraut, or even homemade soda. Other kits also leave out some important fermenting equipment like a large primary fermenting vessel, a hydrometer, and give you only some tubing for transferring your beer/wine, while we include an Auto-Siphon which makes your experience a LOT easier.

The equipment kit doesn’t include a large stock pot, what do I use? We don’t include a stock pot with the equipment kit because we want the equipment kit to be all inclusive when it comes to fermenting different things and not every type of beverage needs a stock pot. Fortunately, unless you are brewing beer, a stock pot is not an absolute necessity. However, if your are making beer, you will need at least one or two 2 gallon pots or larger. We sell kettles on our site, but you can find smaller ones at your local grocery store, or you can borrow one from Mom or Grandma.

The equipment kit doesn’t have bottles, what do I use? We don’t include bottles with the equipment kit because we want the equipment kit to be all inclusive when it comes to fermenting different things. We recommend drinking some beer from some swing-top style bottles (like Grolsch). These bottles don’t need a separate capper, and can be used for both beer and wine (although wine isn’t typically carbonated, so you can “bottle” wine in just about anything. Mason jars are cool).

If I don’t have/want swingtop bottles for my beer, where can I get regular beer bottles? Any non-screwtop beer bottles will work for the homebrewer. Just clean and save them. You will however, still need caps and a capper. Both are available on our site, or you can visit your local homebrew store. You can get both for around $20 or less. You can buy bottles too.

Does home made beer and wine taste as good as the “real” stuff? It does! In fact, this IS the real stuff. You are creating beer and wine just like the breweries/wineries do, just on a much, much, much smaller level. Remember, beer and wine, mead and cider, has been made for hundreds if not thousands of years just as you will be doing.

My airlock is done bubbling. Is my beer/wine done? Probably, but make sure the ambient temp is at 65-70 for beer, and 70-75 for wine, and give it another day or two to be sure. However, we strongly recommend using your hydrometer to measure the density of your beverage. This is the only real way to know that you are done fermenting. See our “How to Use a Hydrometer” page for more information on how they work.

I can’t get to the next step in my beer/wine when it is recommended on the instruction sheet. Will it hurt to leave it in the bucket or the jug for a few extra days? Nope. You can leave it in the primary fermenting bucket for up to a month, and you can leave it in the secondary jug for several months without an issue. The more alcohol is in the drink the longer it can stay in secondary without problems.

I have added my beer and priming sugar to my bottles. How long till they are carbonated? Keep your bottles at room temperature so the yeast will stay active. Carbonation should take one to two weeks, but can take as many as four.

It has been a month with my beer in the bottles and they are still not carbonated. What did I do wrong? Double check that your bottles are at room temperature (70 degrees F) so the yeast will stay active. Sometimes, people forget to add the priming sugar to their beer/cider before they bottle. If you missed that step, you will not get carbonation.

There is some sediment at the bottom of my carbonated bottle. Is this normal? Is there anything I can do to eliminate it? Unfortunately, this is a byproduct of bottle conditioning. Once you add the sugar to carbonate your bottles, the yeast that is still in suspension eats the sugar, produces CO2 and then falls out of suspension, creating a small amount of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. This will not hurt you, but you can avoid it by pouring your beer into a glass and leaving the very last bit behind.

Do I really need the Essentials Kit? We highly recommend the Essentials Kit, but they are not 100% necessary. Most importantly, the Essentials Kits include a no rinse sanitizer which can greatly reduce your chance of a contamination. We recommend a Clean (PBW), Rinse (water), Sanitize (Io-Star/StarSan) process when brewing.

There is Campden in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for? Kills unwanted bacteria and helps to protect your wine from oxidation. Campden is used by the home winemaker to inhibit bacterial growth, stop fermentation at a desired point and even for sanitation. Also known as Potassium Metabisulfite, or Kmeta, you can use 1 tablet per 1 gallon of wine to stop halt fermentation. While many people choose to use heat to pasteurize their freshly squeezed fruit juice, you can also use Campden.

There is Potassium Sorbate in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for? Although not a sulfite, Sorbate goes hand in hand with Campden. Sorbate is used to inhibit future cell growth and multiplication of yeast and bacteria, but when Sorbate is used, a sulfite needs to be added also, not only to kill current yeast/bacteria cells, but to prevent a compound called geraniol from forming which can give you off flavors and aromas. To stabilize your wine to ensure no corks start to pop after bottling, use one tablet of campden per 1 gallon of wine, along with .3 teaspoons per gallon of wine. Bottle 8-48 hours later.

There is Bentonite in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for? A negatively charged clarifying agent typically used pre fermentation, this volcanic clay is super absorbent and falls out of suspension well, pulling particles with it. Use .5 teaspoon per gallon of wine. Dissolve in small amount of very hot water, then let cool before adding.

There is Sparkolloid in my Wine Essentials Kit. What is it used for? A positively charged clarifying agent, this can be used before bottling if your wine is not super clear. Although sparkolloid is not very aggressive it compliments bentonite by attracting particles that bentonite may have left behind. Dissolve .5 teaspoons in 1/6 cup of boiling water per 1 gallons of wine. Stir in gently.

There is Yeast Booster in my wine/mead kit. What is that? Yeast booster is a blend of yeast nutrient and energizer to help promote a healthy fermentation. It is not 100% necessary, but recommended for a consistent finished product.

There is Wine Adjuster in my wine kit. What is that? This is a blend of pectic enzyme, malic and tartaric acid. This is not 100% necessary, but will help make light colored wine less hazy and add some tartness that is absent from many fruit wines. This is measured out to be a solid recipe for many fruit wines, but you may want to purchase these items separately in the future to get your wine just right for you.

There is Irish Moss in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that? Irish moss is actually a type of seaweed that attracts certain particles in your beer. Using Irish Moss is not 100% necessary, but if you want your final product to be a bit more clear, this product will help. Just add a pinch to the last 5-10 minutes of your boil.

There is Gypsum in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that? Gypsum is used to harden water. Many beer styles prefer hard water, so if you are using soft water from your house tap, add some gypsum to your water before you boil to harden it. Just ¼ teaspoon in 1 gallon of water will be plenty.

There is Yeast Nutrient in my Beer Essentials Kit. What is that? This nutrient is made up of primarily dead yeast cells, but lends an array of vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients important to a health fermentation. Your grain has many of these nutrients as well, but to ensure a full and healthy fermentation, we recommend adding 1/8 of a teaspoon during the last 10 minutes of your boil.

What are the green pellets that look like rabbit food in my beer kit? Hops! When they are on the vine, hops look like a small green pine cone with soft leafs. They are then picked, dried, pelletized and frozen to maintain freshness. We then vacuum pack them and put them in your kit. If you do not think you will brew for a while, keep them out of sunlight and store them in the refrigerator or freezer to maintain freshness.

If I add more yeast or ferment longer will that make more alcohol? Sugar equals alcohol. This could be the sugar from grain, grapes, honey, and other fruits and vegetables, and of course sugar cane. Yeast will “eat” sugar to produce alcohol and CO2, and will do so until it runs out of sugar, or it dies from alcohol toxicity. This typically happens within 2-7 days if fermenting at the correct temps, so adding more yeast or waiting longer will not make more alcohol... but adding more sugar will.

It is time to transfer my beer/wine to the glass jug and there is a bunch of gross looking stuff in my bucket, and it doesn’t smell very good. Has it gone bad? This is normal, some beers/wines produce more of this than others, but the junk on top is called krausen and the sludge on the bottom called trub, is mainly yeast. Some of the most repulsive looking and sometimes even smelling fermentations end up making the best drinks, so see it through to completion and judge the final product.

I got my beer kit as a gift, and somehow forgot about it. I want to make it now, are the ingredients still good? We package our ingredients in a way that will prolong the life of the items. Nothing will go “bad” necessarily if kept away from light, moisture, heat and pests, but the grain can go stale over a few months, the hops flavor can diminish over time, and the yeast can become less viable. I would recommend making the beer anyway, even if the beer doesn't come out as good as it normally would, it will get you familiar with your equipment and the brewing process. Knowing what to expect on your next batch with fresh ingredients will make your second batch that much better.

I love homebrewing and winemaking with my one DIY1G kit, but what if I want to make bigger batches? The most common batch of beer for the home brewer is a 5 gallon batch (or 48 beer bottles). The most common batch size for wine is 6 gallons (or 30 wine bottles). Equipment can be found on our site to make batches of this volume. The good thing is, you will find yourself using many of the items from your 1 gallon kit while you do larger batches.