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-   -   Kombucha temperature control (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f167/kombucha-temperature-control-286525/)

billtzk 12-11-2011 06:29 AM

Kombucha temperature control
 
I'm going to order a Kombucha mother and make some KT. I keep my house at 67 degrees in the winter and 73 in the summer. The happyherbalist says that Kombucha should be fermented between 74 and 84 degrees.

So how do you Kombucha brewers keep your ferment in the right temp range?

I imagine a brew belt would work. Unfortunately, it's not designed for continuous duty.

The Fermwrap is nice, but too large for the 2.5 gallon ceramic water crock I'll be fermenting in.

The KombuchaKamp heater looks to be perfect, but it is quite pricey.

The Happy Herbalist sells a couple of different heating pads including one with a regulator. Also pricey (with the regulator).

I'm just wondering what other solutions might exist.

android 12-15-2011 09:16 PM

i used to make kombucha regularly and never worried about the temp control. i keep my place around the same temps as you and it never seemed to adversely affect the end product.

billtzk 12-16-2011 12:15 AM

Thank you android, that's good to know. It'll be in my kitchen, which tends to stay a little warmer than the rest of the house. I think I'll give it a try that way. I hate to spend the money on a heater if it's not really needed.

Rahahb 12-21-2011 12:40 AM

For my beer, and maybe kt when it gets colder in my house, I use a big tub with water. In it, I keep an aquarium heater set to whatever temp I want. It auto regulates and keeps the beer pretty steady.

billtzk 12-22-2011 12:50 AM

That sounds like a good solution, Rahahb, if you don't mind tending to the water and changing it occasionally. I plan to brew KT continuously (Happy Herbalist continuous brewing method) in a 2.5 gallon ceramic container with a spigot. That would not work so well in a water bath because of the spigot.

I do have a spare Love controller. That and a heating pad, maybe. A thermowell would be a nice addition to my brewing container, but trying to drill a ceramic container may not be the best idea.

Rahahb 12-22-2011 02:01 AM

I change water once a month maybe. Just put a bit of bleach in there to keep bugs/nasties from growing.

Yeah, spigots might be an issue. But it's cheap and easy with the right container.

Kayleen 12-22-2011 04:27 PM

From what I have read it will just ferment slower if it is colder. I have found that my TV stand is the warmest place in my house with the cable box/DVR and DVD player in there. I moved my KT there after the first 4 days and it seems to be doing good. It's dark enough in there. I open the doors briefly every day or so to let some more fresh air in (It's not a completely sealed area), and it seems to be working. Also this way I am thinking about it from time to time, versus out of sight out of mind type thing.

billtzk 12-22-2011 06:00 PM

Kayleen, I've been trying to think of a good place I could put it where it is naturally warmer. Putting it in the TV stand sounds like a good idea. That won't work for me. Putting it next to my computer might, but that doesn't seem like a good location in my case (on the floor).

I don't have any experience with KT yet, but the instructions that came with my SCOBY from Happy Herbalist says the temp should be 74 to 84, and if it is below 70, it promotes the growth of mold. That is really what concerns me. My house is 65 to 68 in the winter.

Rahahb 12-23-2011 05:07 AM

I forgot to mention...Christmas lights. One strand around your fermentor should be plenty to get it up to a nice temp. I did this with my beer over the winter and it worked fine and that was 5 gallons. Plus, it's a nice touch to the decorations in the house. :)

step 12-23-2011 05:11 AM

My water heater is in a small closet and that seems to work for me when I need slightly elevated temperatures


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