Author Topic: Tracking room temperature during fermentation  (Read 3340 times)

Offline SleepySamSlim

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Tracking room temperature during fermentation
« on: April 21, 2009, 11:08:53 AM »
We live Portland Oregon and our Winters and Springs can be chilly - combined with the fact we generally like a cooler temperature in our home it can make brewing a challenge. I've started using a brew belt with some good luck and will pop another $100 for a full temperature control system --- currently I'm using an appliance timer to set on/off cycles. As Jamil mentions in one of his posts --- proper fermentation is critical for a good quality end product.

So as part of this quest I was wondering how do I check / monitor the room temperature so I know how much it is off the mark from where the particular yeast I'm using wants to be. Yes there is a thermometer on the wall but that does not tell you the mean or average temp. of the room. It only tells you the temp. at that moment.

So on this last batch it dawned on me that there was a very simple solution to this problem. I took one of the 1 gallon plastic buckets I get my extract in --- filled it with 75 deg water (thats where the wort started more or less) - stuck my clip-on thermometer into the water  --- covered it with foil - and set it next to my primary fermenter. Water (like wort) reacts to external temperatures but at a very slow rate  --- sitting over night it went from 75deg down to 65deg while the thermometer on the wall (5ft up) read about 68deg. It eventually settled at 62ish deg. So I now had a simple way to know which way (and how much) the average room temperature was driving the fermenting wort. With the ale yeast I was using I wanted to ferment at 68-70deg. and knew that I would have to add a bit of heat to get fermentation going / keep fermentation it active for a few days (versus watching it crash due to lower temps.)

After primary fermentation I left the bucket out sitting next to the racked ale in the carboy (I'm lazy) -- and we had blip of some nice Spring weather 80deg  --- and the bucket now showed the average room temp heading up to 70deg.  ... the temp. strip on the carboy shows it at 68deg.

Hope you find this helpful
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Offline MaltLicker

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Re: Tracking room temperature during fermentation
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2009, 10:54:27 AM »
Or, if you really want some details, check out this Weather Station.  Ironically, there is one on sale today at www.woot.com

  • Outdoor sensors collect data and transmits data every 128 seconds to the Home Monitor (works on a 433MHz transmission)
  • USB Connection allows you to store weather data on a PC and create specific graphs

I saw it earlier today, but a brewing use never occurred to me.  As long as the temp gauge fits in the fermenter space, it might work great. 

Offline SOGOAK

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Re: Tracking room temperature during fermentation
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2009, 11:38:41 AM »
For the foreseeable future, I am staying 1882.  Although I did move my Ofest to my assistant brewers fridge.  I guess, I'd like controlled fermentation, etc. but for now, I just utilize my accient basement and brew styles that will fit in the temp down there.

Most important for me next is getting kegging gear and getting the bottling monkey off my back.
Good Recipe, Good Ingredients, Good Procedure, Good Sanitation = Good Brew.

Light768

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Re: Tracking room temperature during fermentation
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2009, 09:17:01 PM »
OK that is  a relief ., Now  i know what I am going to do next,.,Thanks for this my friends.,


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