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Old 06-04-2012, 07:07 PM   #1
Newguy3420
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Default How long did your fermentation chamber take to cool?

Hey guys, I just built my fermentation chamber using a mini fridge I got off craigslist. Its been about 18 hours and my temperture is only at 70 degrees. I have the temp dangling from the inside ceiling of the chamber. Temperture outside today is 92 degrees but its Vegas and 110 is right around the corner. I caulked and taped inside and outside the foam board. I finished with OSB and caulked the corners of that as well. I went through 3 tubes of caulking so I don't see how any air could be escaping. I'm using a johnson control pre-wired model. Has it not had long enough to cool or is something wrong??? thanks

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Old 06-04-2012, 07:31 PM   #2
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is the compressor running 100% of the time?

when trying to cool a chamber of any type, the two variables you are interested in are; how much cooling power you have, and the influx of heat thru the sides of the chamber (how quickly you can remove heat, and how quickly it seeps back in). as long as there are no major gaps, air escaping shouldnt be a concern.

in other words, if your chamber is not well insulated, the influx of heat right thru the sides might be overwhelming the mini fridge. mini fridges arent meant to continuously remove large amounts of heat (like an air conditioner); but only to keep a very small amount of space cool.

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Old 06-04-2012, 07:58 PM   #3
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yes the compressor has been running constantly....do I need more foam board then? Not enough insulation?

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Old 06-04-2012, 08:00 PM   #4
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i'm using 3/4 in. foam board with an R value of 5......should i double it up?

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Old 06-04-2012, 08:15 PM   #5
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any fan circulation ? put the temp probe on the evap coil see what its reading. here is my temp cooling for a 5 gallon carboy with 83 degree water. I have 2 layers of 3/4" .. Feel the compressor lines one should be hot one should be cold ... see if the outside coil is warm, it has to make heat to make cold

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Old 06-04-2012, 09:32 PM   #6
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cool man.....thanks for posting that. The coils are hot and are running properly. I went and got a couple sheets of 1" foam so that total I will have 1.75". I will have fan circulation in a couple hours when my buddy brings one by as well.

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Old 06-05-2012, 12:03 AM   #7
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another trick is to wait till night and put as much light from flash lights etc inside then close the door. In a dark room you can look to see if everything is sealing up. Anywhere light is escaping so is cold air. I found my door was not sealing perfectly this way. On mine I also used 1 1/2" foam. How big is your ferm. chamber

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Old 06-05-2012, 12:57 AM   #8
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Hi

The big box stores around here have 2" thick foam panels. They are a lot easier to work with than trying to layer up a bunch of thin sheets.

Bob

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Old 06-05-2012, 06:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newguy3420 View Post
cool man.....thanks for posting that. The coils are hot and are running properly.
hot isnt necessarily good. it means it working, but the hotter it is the more heat it is trying to dissipate. while the compressor is working hard (like when initially cooling the chamber, or when putting large hot objects into it), it helps to point a fan at the hot coil to help get rid of some of that heat. that heat is coming from the inside of the chamber; the compressor is pumping it out. if you can help get rid of excess heat, the compressor doesnt have to work as hard, or will be able to work more quickly.
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Old 06-05-2012, 06:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ekjohns View Post
another trick is to wait till night and put as much light from flash lights etc inside then close the door. In a dark room you can look to see if everything is sealing up. Anywhere light is escaping so is cold air. I found my door was not sealing perfectly this way. On mine I also used 1 1/2" foam. How big is your ferm. chamber
Great idea! Why didn't I think of that?

Actually, my fermentation chamber is doing pretty well. I'm using 2" foam insulation board and am sure my chamber is better insulated than the dorm fridge I have it connected to. But, I wasn't sure how to check for leaks around the doors until now. Thanks!
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