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-   -   Cold House - Where to ferment? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f14/cold-house-where-ferment-382808/)

NHAFER 01-19-2013 06:05 PM

Cold House - Where to ferment?

My house is normally pretty darn cold in San Francisco, and we do not have a heater. The temp in my house ranges from 54'sih, to 68'ish during the day, making it very difficult to get a consistent ferm temp. I've purchased a fermwrap....as well as a temp controller. Aside from using these two pieces, does anyone have any tips they use to create a consistent ferm temp? I'm going to start with Ales, but my house gets WAY to cold at night to keep the yeast happy.

I'll be fermenting in glass carboys.


unionrdr 01-19-2013 06:10 PM

In cases like that (our furnace is fubar'd),I use kerosene heater with a couple electric oil heaters in the house. I used an old fleece lined CPO to wrap around the fermenter to keep temps more consistent,& thus keeping a minimum temp. You could even pick a room for your brewery stuff & get a small heater with temp control for that room.

KeyWestBrewing 01-19-2013 06:12 PM

You can always put the carboy in a big Rubbermaid bin and fill it with water. I do this and rotate ice packs in it to keep the carboy cool but you could add warm/hot water to keep it warm. The water will slow down the temp swings. It would be like a reverse swamp cooler.

unionrdr 01-19-2013 06:15 PM

Some use aquarium heaters in the swamp cooler,but they complain that they can only get them down to 68F. Logical,since they are intended to keep tropical fish warm.

masskrug 01-19-2013 06:20 PM

Could you put it in a box with a lamp? How about one of those heating pads you use on your back?

Disclaimer: It might be a fire hazard.

unionrdr 01-19-2013 06:26 PM

Some have done it with a box of some sort & a light bulb. Makes enough heat to keep the beer warm. Might be fine with a temp controller. Craig did it with a small plastic dunnage container once.

tinytowers 01-19-2013 06:28 PM

A cold house is an advantage. Yeast performs better at the lower end of the spectrum. Keep it cool the first 3-4 days and then move it to the warmest part of your house to finish.

unionrdr 01-19-2013 06:30 PM

Well,with my experiences in socal in November,it got down to around 53F at night,but by 8:30am or so,was already back up to 89F!! Talk about temp swings...

NHAFER 01-19-2013 06:33 PM

Yup. I was brewing in San Diego with some buddies for about a year before I move to SF and decided to take it up again on my own. SF is just so cold!

heckler73 01-19-2013 06:38 PM

make lager.

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