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Old 12-06-2012, 06:32 PM   #1
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Default Fermentation Temperature

Greetings All,

I have just registered and am new to the forum and wanted to say hello! I am new to brewing at home and have just begun fermenting my first batch. I have a quick question that I am hoping someone can help me with. My wort was fermenting like mad and I went to sleep. When I woke up, the temperature of the wort had increased to 78 degrees and the fermentation has slowed WAY down. I have made a swamp cooler and the temperature is now at 69 degrees. The airlock is burping about once every 10 seconds. Will the beer be damaged because of the rapid change in temperature? Is there anything else that I need to be worried about? Thank you for all your comments and advice! My apologies for putting this thread in 2 places as I didn't see the Beginners Brewing Forum initially.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:35 PM   #2
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FYI. The temperature has been at a steady 66 degrees for the past 3 hours.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:38 PM   #3
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Damaging beer is very hard to do. What you will likely have is some flavors that you did not intend, but the beer will still be good to drink. It may not be what you wanted or expected to drink but it will be fine. Each yeast has temperatures at which it is happiest. Being in South Texas I know that every fermentation will spend some times in temperatures where the yeast are not happy. I try to keep it down, but have never had anything that couldn't be enjoyed--at least not from something done by a warm fermentation. The best thing is to let is sit and not worry about it--like that is possible when first starting brewing. If the temperature gets too high it could slow the yeast and encourage bacteria to take hold, but so long as you kept everything sanitized it shouldn't be a problem. Even if you got a really nasty bacterial infection you could still drink it. There are many beers that are intentionally infected by the same stuff most of us fight to keep out of our beer.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:42 PM   #4
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Great, Cluckk! I'll patiently wait and I hope that I don't turn out a batch of King Cobra!
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:43 PM   #5
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I agree with cluckk. It is semi hard to do something to a beer that will make it a dumper. With high temps like you had close to the 80s you might have some off flavors that you don't like but you will still have drinkable beer. I suggest looking into some kind of temp control. It will be 1 of your better purchases. Keeping the yeast within their temp range is a big part of making great beer. There are many options from cheap to expensive and from easy to build to complicated. The best part about this hobby is you have a lot of great options for every step of the way. A swamp cooler is one of the cheaper and easiest methods. It works well and most people already have the equipment you need.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:15 PM   #6
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I certainly don't mean to discourage you, and I wish you the best of luck in your new hobby, but I currently have two batches of beer that are borderline undrinkable because of fermentation termperatures in excess of 75*.
Take a look at a thread I posted here when we bottled the beer here, and a thread regarding the first taste 2 weeks after bottling here.

I'm by no means an expert as I've only been doing this 3 months, but I've had two batches ruined due to high temperatures. Here's hoping that yours turns out fine!
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:19 PM   #7
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I always laugh at the "Your doing it wrong" type posts. I love when someone says you have to do this way or that and then you check out something like the procedure for making Lambic and see that they do almost everything that would be in the "Doing it wrong" category. They seem to do everything you would try to avoid, short of bathing the dog in the coolship.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:23 PM   #8
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Next time I bet you are going to start with the fermenter in the swap cooler :-). Like other have said there will likely be a flavor impact. Time will help age out some of the off flavors. Also moving quickly from warm to cool will send some yeast into hibernation early which means that it might take longer to finish and the final gravity may be higher than it would have been otherwise.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:31 PM   #9
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Newbrooer, what yeast did you use?
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:22 PM   #10
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@ cluckc.. I threw the yeast packet away but here is a photo if you can make out what kind it is.

http://www.monsterbrew.com/enlarge.c...edientKit1.jpg
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