Could you (would you) brew in this room with an electric setup? - Home Brew Forums
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:08 PM   #1
kal
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It's so friggin' cold out today (around 3F with wind chill) and it's only November. I'm really questioning if I should put my future 10 gallon electric setup I'm designing in my non-insulated/non-heated garage. I won't enjoy brewing for the 4-5 cold months of the year (0-40F) and the 2-3 summer months won't be fun either as it gets crazy hot (80-100F) in the garage.

Brewing's supposed to be fun right??

So in my basement I have a terracotta lined "cold-room" under my front step:







Why not remove some of the shelves and built a brewing setup in here?

A vent hood would go in a corner and push steam out one of the 4" vents near in the ceiling seen in the second picture.

I'd have to put water/electricity in the cold room but that's not insurmountable. The water main and electrical panel are litterally 2 feet on the other side of the wall.

For electrical I would put a ring of electrical conduit around the ceiling plus a nice 40-50A 240V plug for the brew stand. All done to code, with GFCIs, etc.

I could even hardline the water into the HLT and whatever chiller system I end up with. There's already a drain in the floor (thankfully as that would be have been considerably more difficult).

Also no need to lug carboys or other things up/down stairs through the house to the garage (fermenation and other 'beer work' is done right next to the cold room).

My only concern is the size of the room. It's not huge so there could (would?) most likely be condensation during a 10 gal full wort boil even with the vent hood pulling steam out as fast as possible. The room itself would be ok (it's 100% terracotta lined and the door is solid core meant for external use) but what about the electrical stuff? Would this be like trying to run a toaster in a steam bath/sauna? I'm thinking more of the safety concerns than comfort.

Thoughts guys? What would you do? There's some extra wiring/plumbing costs involved to go here vs the garage but I don't care about that.

Kal




 
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:20 PM   #2
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I'd consider outdoor rated receptacles, but no reason why it couldn't work. Get yourself a variable speed fan as you won't need it full tilt all the time.


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Old 11-21-2008, 04:25 PM   #3
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Jealousy ensues! I'd go for it if I were you for sure. All you're electricals should be covered and moisture proof regardless of indoor vs outdoor. Just install a powerful enough vent system
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:27 PM   #4
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Why were you even considering the garage???? That will be perfect! I would take all the shelving out for maximized room.

 
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:37 PM   #5
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It is friggin cold here eh? I'd check into some hydroponic shops for your vent fans and environmental controls, I’m sure they mastered venting without all the noise and probably water/moisture resistant too.

 
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigmund View Post
I'd consider outdoor rated receptacles, but no reason why it couldn't work.
Thanks. Yes, I figured I should use nice outdoor type plugs with flip-up covers (Home Depot's got all I need with their grey conduit/boxes). I'd get an electrician to verify and do the final connection to the panel anyway.

Quote:
Get yourself a variable speed fan as you won't need it full tilt all the time.
I've got an el-cheapo "regular" white range hood that was in the house when we moved in 8 years ago. It was replaced with something to match our new fridge/stove way back when. It's got 2 or 3 speeds IIRC. No idea what the CFM on it is or if it's enough. If not, maybe I can get something bigger or a bathroom ceiling fan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IrregularPulse View Post
All you're electricals should be covered and moisture proof regardless of indoor vs outdoor.
Really? I just figured using regular indoor plugs wouldn't be allowed past a certain level of humidity (within reason).

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Originally Posted by d_m_s_00 View Post
It is friggin cold here eh? I'd check into some hydroponic shops for your vent fans and environmental controls, I’m sure they mastered venting without all the noise and probably water/moisture resistant too.
Good idea. I'll check around.

Kal


 
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:45 PM   #7
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Make sure to install GFI protected outlets near it all of course.

What is a cold room and why is it terracotta lined?

I'm going to indoor brewing with my new setup, I'll need a very large ventilation fan but should be nicer than going outside.
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:50 PM   #8
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If you didn't brew in it, you'd definately better use it to make one awesome beer cellar and fermentation room.
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boerderij Kabouter View Post
Why were you even considering the garage???? That will be perfect! I would take all the shelving out for maximized room.
I'm scratching my head as well somewhat.

Maybe it was the extra work that would be involved, or maybe it's because the room isn't actually empty like in the photos above. Those were taken when we moved in 8 years ago. Now it is full of food, kegs, fermenters, and one entire wall is now a 400 bottle wine rack. I'd keep half of the shelves on one side for wine and would have to add some extra shelves elsewhere for other stuff. I hate work that isn't directly related to the project I'm undertaking.

Kal

 
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Old 11-21-2008, 04:56 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McKBrew View Post
If you didn't brew in it, you'd definately better use it to make one awesome beer cellar and fermentation room.
Yup. That's what it is now. I have space heater in there now with a termostat to keep it anywhere between 50-70F in the winter depending on how I set it. I have a WY1056 IPA and a WY2565 Cream Ale fermenting in there now at 64F.

It gets up to 68F in the summer so still not bad for most ales.

Kal



 
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