Originally Posted by toast
I have a closet in my living room that always stays cool in the winter months. I have been monitoring the temperature for the past week or so in hopes of successfully fermenting a pilsner style beer. I've noticed that the average daytime closet temp is about 55-60, and at night it may drop down to 45-50.
I would very much like to take a chance and try it while the weather is cool... I was just wondering about my chances for success without a constant, stable temperature? Thanks!
You can "make" a stable temperature, pretty easily! Try this- fill your fermenter to the 5 gallon line with 50 degree water. Then place it in a tall cooler, and fill with water to the "beer" line. Put that whole thing in the closet, and float a floating thermometer in there. A dab of bleach is a good idea in the water bath, so no mold/mildew will grow. Check the temperature over a couple of days- the temperature of the water bath will be the same temperature inside the fermenter also, within a degree or so.
The reason I suggest this is because I've done just that. The temperature fluctuations go away when you have that much mass, and the liquid doesn't change temperature by more than a degree or two. I easily ferment lagers this way!
If you find the waterbath gets a bit too warm, you can drop in a frozen water bottle.