Fridge or Freezer? - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Fridge or Freezer?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 08-17-2012, 12:56 PM   #1
mouthfullofbeer
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 21
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts



sorry my first post is a question, but another member suggested i ask the experts, so here goes:

i just installed a kegerator in our old refrigerator. 1st keg was a bust - all head. no matter what i did, all head. i've been reading a ton on the boards here and i think my issue is that my kit only came with a 4' line, and my excessive pressurizing/depressurizing/checking probably overcarbed the keg and left me with a foamy & ultimately empty hunk of steel... i am running out tonight to get some beer line to hopefully solve that problem.

however, i have found out that my fridge CAN NOT get colder than 48 degrees. is this an acceptable temp for commercial kegs? i know every beer requires a different temp, but is 48 just simply out of the ballpark and i should just start planning out a keezer build?

Cheers,

mouthfullofbeer (foam)

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 03:20 PM   #2
tnlandsailor
 
tnlandsailor's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Apr 2005
Knoxville, TN
Posts: 522
Liked 15 Times on 12 Posts


If you can enjoy your beer at 48 F, then there should not be a problem. Although you might want to check the fridge to make sure there isn't something that can't be fixed (refrigerant low, or something else).

On the carbonation issue, a typical beer is carbonated to about 2.3 volumes. At 48 F, this means a serving pressure of 14 PSI which isn't too awfully high. Make sure that when you get your beer line you get 3/16" ID x 7/16" OD tubing. This is the beer line that will work the best for you. Do NOT get 1/4" ID line. Make sure it's 3/16" ID. Buy about 8 feet and put all of it in place and see what your pour looks like. You can always shorten it if the pour is excessively slow.

You can view a pretty extensive write up on kegging here. There is also an interactive table under the Carbonation anchor link where you can input pressure and temperature to get your CO2 volumes.
__________________
Prosit!

Hands-On Brewing

Dennis Collins
Knoxville, TN
Innovative Homebrew Solutions
Home of the Hop Stopper!
www.ihomebrewsolutions.com

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 05:23 PM   #3
mouthfullofbeer
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 21
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


thanks Dennis.

i do not like serving at 48 degrees. this fridge was free and too old to mess with. time for a keezer.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 10:00 PM   #4
tnlandsailor
 
tnlandsailor's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Apr 2005
Knoxville, TN
Posts: 522
Liked 15 Times on 12 Posts


Not so fast. My first keg fridge was from the early 60's. An absolute tank, but seemed to work okay. That is, until it started freezing my beer. The problem turned out to be a very old thermostat whose contacts were fusing together so the thing never actually turned off. No replacement thermostats were available due to the age, but I got a generic one and put it in and got it to work without too much effort. That keg fridge served me well for the next 3 years until I sold it to someone in my homebrew club who used it for another 4 years or so.

All this in saying, it could turn out to be something very simple. Dig a little bit. It might save you the cost of a new unit and disposing of the old one.
__________________
Prosit!

Hands-On Brewing

Dennis Collins
Knoxville, TN
Innovative Homebrew Solutions
Home of the Hop Stopper!
www.ihomebrewsolutions.com

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2012, 10:30 PM   #5
crazyworld
Recipes 
 
Jan 2011
Rocky Point, NY
Posts: 129
Liked 18 Times on 12 Posts


I found a fridge on the side of the road. Knocked on the guy's door and he told me the hinge pins were all rusted out and bent (they were, no saving them). When I asked him if it got cold, he said it did, but the thermostat was broken and it didn't turn off. Perfect

So I brought it home and tested it out. I cranked its controls as cold as they would go, covered the freezer with a garbage bag, stuck a thermometer in it and turned it on. After an hour, although the fridge wasn't covered in a garbage bag, I could tell the fan in it was shot but the freezer had hit about 40F ... good enough for now. So when I cleaned the fridge up I drilled two 3" holes going from the fridge to the freezer in the back left and back right corners. Three inch holes happens to be roughly the same size as an 80mm ('standard') computer fan so I wired them up to constantly run and push cold air into the fridge. I now use a Ranco temperature controller in the fridge to control temperatures and am happy to say that the fridge maintains perfect temperatures. The freezer does get to freezing temperatures but cannot be trusted to stay frozen when set up this way. I later found the date on a sticker inside the fridge; it was made in 1987. It's older than me Sweet!

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2012, 12:52 AM   #6
david_42
 
david_42's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Oct 2005
Oak Grove, Oregon, USA
Posts: 25,597
Liked 155 Times on 145 Posts


Definitely time to come over to the dark side. Browns, porters and stouts are great at 48F.
__________________
Remember one unassailable statistic, as explained by the late, great George Carlin: "Just think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of them are even stupider!"

"I would like to die on Mars, just not on impact." Elon Musk

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2012, 04:27 PM   #7
mouthfullofbeer
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 21
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


great stories guys but i've already made up my mind on this one. i'll throw the fridge on CL and maybe someone will take it off my hands. i'm in need of a new project anyways so i picked up a 7.2 cu ft freezer, extra tap equipment, and a digital temp controller. i cant wait to get started on this one.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2012, 02:49 PM   #8
diS
 
diS's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Apr 2011
Croatia
Posts: 997
Liked 49 Times on 46 Posts


You could also use it for fermentation, drill 2 holes on side and connect it to fermentation chamber... that is on my mind as my next DIY.
__________________
We are only 10,000 years into beer... there are thousands of years left to go!
Things are bound to change!!

Brewroom with HERMS build
Fermentation chamber and Keezer.. a.k.a. FermKeezer

 
Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2012, 06:35 PM   #9
TopherM
 
TopherM's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Mar 2011
St. Petersburg, FL
Posts: 3,974
Liked 450 Times on 355 Posts


A few tidbits:

1) Freezers are typically much more well insulated than fridges, making them more energy efficient kegerators once you pop a temp controller on there.

2) The powers that be (Jackson/Palmer) actually list ideal serving temps for more ales at 50-55F, wheats/lagers/pilsners at 45-50F, and stouts/porters at 55-60F. Homebrew is NOT mass swill BMC - serving homebrew ice cold will virtually eliminate the hops and malt presence in your beer, at least until it warms up into the suggested range above.

I personally keep my kegorator at 48F....so no issues with the fridge you have!!
__________________
Primary #1 - Midnight Ryeder (Midnight Wheat and Rye)
Primary #2 - Florida Weiss
Primary #3 - Kane-DOH APA (Honey Citra APA)
Secondary #1 - Downtown Flanders Brown (brewed August 2012)
Keg #1 - Raspberry Florida Weiss
Keg #2 - Cinnamon Raisin Cider
Keg #3 - NONE!
Bottled - NONE!

 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
fridge or freezer Barnacle Equipment/Sanitation 3 07-01-2011 12:12 PM
Fridge/freezer help! steelersrbrun Equipment/Sanitation 8 05-17-2010 05:06 PM
Fridge VS Freezer Bru Equipment/Sanitation 8 08-07-2009 06:07 AM
Fridge or Freezer - it must be done DeathBrewer Equipment/Sanitation 12 10-07-2007 06:00 AM
Fridge or Freezer? jfrizzell Equipment/Sanitation 13 07-19-2007 03:07 AM


Forum Jump