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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Is my cellar ok?
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Old 04-16-2012, 11:02 PM   #1
Genjin
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Default Is my cellar ok?

I haven't felt the need to upgrade my fermentation process as my beers are coming out pretty much as I'd expect for someone with my experience. However, I'd love to get some feedback on my fermentation. My cellar stays a consistent 63-65F. I chill my wort down to about 65F for my ales and then pitch. Through fermentation I've seen the temp on the strip go up to 67F, but never higher than that, though I know the internal could be higher. I haven't noticed any strong esters and the beer hasn't had any trouble reaching final gravity.

Does anybody else ferment out in the open in a basement? Seems to work, but I know a lot of people suggest getting better control over ferm temps. Should I be more concerned?

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Old 04-16-2012, 11:05 PM   #2
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Those temps seem fine to me. People report internal temp to be around 5 degrees warmer, which gives you 72. That a good upper bound. Wouldn't want to go any hotter than that.

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Old 04-16-2012, 11:09 PM   #3
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For most ales that sounds about like perfect conditions . I'm assuming the temp strip is directly on your fermenter?
If it gets colder in the winter you can always invest in a brew-belt or other type of wrap-heater.

Pez.

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Old 04-16-2012, 11:14 PM   #4
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While I do not ferment in a basement, I envy you. 63-65 is my ideal ale fermentation range. While that means I like to ferment lower then 63-65 ambient, you are very close to where you want to be. So while it may not be ideal, its close. 67 as a top measured temp is probably okay, though its higher then I like. lots of people are happy with much higher ferment temps. If you are worried about it/hate esters, then you could lower the top temperature during the first 3-5 days using one of the many methods people choose. But if your happy then let it roll! you aren't far off anyway.

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Old 04-16-2012, 11:22 PM   #5
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In the summer I will use my cellar to ferment simply because is is much cooler in there. In the winter though I use a empty bedroom and turn on the heat.

Right now though it is 45 degrees in there and that might be good for lagering but not so much for the ales that I love.

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Old 04-17-2012, 12:59 AM   #6
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In the winter my basement stays at about 59-60 degrees, perfect for fermenting ales. In the summer it gets warmer and I have to use my fermentation chamber.

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Old 04-17-2012, 06:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pezman1 View Post
For most ales that sounds about like perfect conditions . I'm assuming the temp strip is directly on your fermenter?
If it gets colder in the winter you can always invest in a brew-belt or other type of wrap-heater.

Pez.
Yeah, the strips are directly on the fermenters. I use both plastic and glass for primary and both seem to get similar readings. In the dead of winter it only got down to maybe 61F. I am actually in an eight unit brick apartment building that was built in 1929. We are heated by a giant boiler in basement which seems to keep things warm enough in the winter. We each have a large (~5'x10') storage unit in the basement which I use for my fermentation.

I can't imagine trying to ferment in the apartment. It would easily get into the high seventies inside the place while that boiler was roaring.
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Old 04-17-2012, 08:32 AM   #8
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I use my basement for lagering and a spare bedroom for most other things. The spare hovers around 17C/63F.

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Old 04-17-2012, 09:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eckythump View Post
People report internal temp to be around 5 degrees warmer than the Fermometer
I believe it is actually been proven to be less than 1F
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Revvy>>You shouldn't worry about ANYTHING, you didn't hurt the yeast, they know what they need to do, they want to eat all that sugar they are swimming around in. They want to pee alcohol and fart co2, it's their nature.

Bobby_M>>I flood the keg with CO2 for one minute with the lid off, rack the beer in to the bottom gently, seal it, flood it, vent it. If there's still O2 in there after that, F it.

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Old 04-17-2012, 09:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Genjin View Post
Does anybody else ferment out in the open in a basement? Seems to work, but I know a lot of people suggest getting better control over ferm temps. Should I be more concerned?
I ferment my ales in a bathtub in a downstairs bathroom with no windows and have pretty consistent temperatures. If the temperature starts to rise I fill the tub with water to just below the Fermometer, drape a wet towel over it so the towel is in the water and then I will use a fan to blow air across that if I need to.

Works really well. I can keep the temperature pretty consistent.
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Revvy>>You shouldn't worry about ANYTHING, you didn't hurt the yeast, they know what they need to do, they want to eat all that sugar they are swimming around in. They want to pee alcohol and fart co2, it's their nature.

Bobby_M>>I flood the keg with CO2 for one minute with the lid off, rack the beer in to the bottom gently, seal it, flood it, vent it. If there's still O2 in there after that, F it.

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