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How apparent is MLF when going well?

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Rocktop

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Sorry all, another question on my pinot noir journey.
Racked my pinot off the gross lees 2 days ago, into 2 carboys, mixed up CH18 and luecofood (MLF nutrients) in some warm water and let sit for 15 minutes. Then introduced into both carboys.
I have watched for 2 days and no visible signs of CO2 being emitted or made.
Should I be able to see signs of obvious MLF working?
Ambient temp is 68 degrees. Didn't check pH at racking but initial was 3.35 so I assume it would be ok.
txs
RT
 

cmason1957

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Mlf is not very apparent at all. You may never see a bubble emitted from your airlock. After about a month, maybe 3 weeks you may see a trail of very small bubbles heading up the side of your carboy. And you may see some very small bubbles at the top. Best way to tell if it is working is to determine amount of malic acid, either via chromatography or malic acid test strips.
 
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Rocktop

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Ok great, i was getting nervous.

RT
 

Ajmassa

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More than once while running mlf on a few wines simultaneously, I’ve had one carboy looking very active with little bubbles steadily rising up. Many carrying little pieces of lees solids- Some shooting up the sides like a torpedo. Solid sinks back down. Bubbles all over & floaties goin up and down etc.
All that happening and sitting right next to a carboy that looked deader than dead.

Ran the test- both progressed and finished equally. So just like @cmason1957 said, cant always rely on the visuals.

Also- a heat pad will help get kicked things off too.
 

AaronSC

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I think temperature and amount of Malic acid make a difference too. In the Finger Lakes MLF was always pretty obvious, likely because the grapes were high in acid and I was keeping them at around 75 degrees during the MLF.

I'm starting ML tomorrow in some of my California grapes tomorrow, given the relative low acids I don't expect to see fireworks, except maybe from Barbera...
 

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