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Old 06-01-2011, 01:22 PM   #1
Alleydude
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Default Summer Brewing

It's getting stinking hot here in Michigan (finally, not complaining), and I want to keep brewing. I am trying to keep the house around 74 with the AC, but our basement is about 65 degrees.

I don't have a dedicated cooler for keeping my fermenter at a constant temperature, no kegerator, and the snow outside is long gone.

So do I have suitable conditions to do more brewing? Or should I hold off until either the temps start to drop, or I can afford a temperature controlled cooler (Fall and winter will be here sooner than I will be able to afford the later)?

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:27 PM   #2
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If you have $30, you can build a fermentation chamber out of a cube cooler and styrofoam that keeps temperatures 15-20 degrees below ambient.

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:29 PM   #3
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I'd ferment some ales in your basement. 65F is a good ambient temp, and your actual fermentation will be a few degrees above that. Also on the plus side, my basement doesn't vary in temps much at all in mid season, so I'm guessing yours won't either. Keep on brewing, and share some of that warm weather with us yoopers!

TB

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:31 PM   #4
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65F in the basement cellar! You're very fortunate! Excellent ale temperatures.

I bought a large refrigerator so that I could ferment at those temps during the summer.

They are calling for 100F here in SC today...

M_C

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:33 PM   #5
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You can get one of those big circular tubs that are often used for drinks/kegs at college parties - fill it up with water and interchange frozen water bottles every 8 hours or so to keep the temp down. Cost is about $10. Can also throw a towel/t-shirt and a fan in the mix to keep things cool. This is called a "Swamp Cooler." Another option is to look into a saison which the yeas can ferment at a bit higher temperatures. If you can cool the wort to the mid 60s, pitch saison yeast and leave the fermenter in your basement, you should be ok.

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Old 06-01-2011, 01:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiber_Brew View Post
I'd ferment some ales in your basement. 65F is a good ambient temp, and your actual fermentation will be a few degrees above that. Also on the plus side, my basement doesn't vary in temps much at all in mid season, so I'm guessing yours won't either. Keep on brewing, and share some of that warm weather with us yoopers!

TB
Ha ha... yesterday was STINKING hot (topped out at 88 degrees) but today it's low 60's and windy. This weather's crazy.

Thanks for all the input.
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Old 06-01-2011, 02:46 PM   #7
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I have been fermenting my beer in my basement which sits around 65 or so. I have had no issues with fermentation so far.

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Old 06-01-2011, 02:52 PM   #8
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65 is colder than I keep my condo in the winter. Shouldn't be a problem for most ales especially if you use a swamp cooler

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Old 06-01-2011, 02:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArcaneXor View Post
If you have $30, you can build a fermentation chamber out of a cube cooler and styrofoam that keeps temperatures 15-20 degrees below ambient.
How does that work, and what is a cube cooler?
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Old 06-01-2011, 03:01 PM   #10
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You'll need to do something to lower your temps. The easiest way is a cooler with some ice cubes in it. A little harder are those fermentation chambers people build. The best, but most expensive is using a fridge or freezer with a temp controller.

Here in Arizona, I have absolutely no choice but to use refrigeration. It costs a fortune to keep the house under 80* in the summer, and it's a pain to get beer down to the low 60s in 80 degree weather without refrigeration.

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