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Helpful Hints to Keep Your Brew “Brewing” in the Cold

There’s nothing better than an ice cold beer. But here’s a few tips to make sure your brew doesn’t get “ice cold” too early?

shieldCarboy Shield:  Use a 4 in 1 carboy shield to insulate your carboy.  The shield fits snuggly around 5 and 6 gallon carboys, conserving heat and protecting your brew from the harmful effects of light. As a bonus, the padded insulation also helps protect the glass from any accidental damage.

Brew Belt: A Brew Belt will help maintain a constant brewing temperature of 68-75° F for up to 8 days. The 15W belt comes with two spring sizes to fit most fermenters.belt

Digital Temperature Controller: The digital controller has a digital display with adjustable differential. It can be used to either heat or cool a fermentation environment. When hooked up to a refrigerator, it turns the compressor on when the ambient temperature rises above your programmed temperature; when hooked up to a heater, it activates when the temperature drops too low. A sensor probe monitors the temperature inside while the readout displays it in either Fahrenheit or Celsius.

Heating Pad: Place a heating pad underneath your fermenter and let the process of convection do its thing. As most pads are unregulated, you’ll have to keep an eye on the temperature and be mindful not to overheat your fermenter.

bulb100 watt Light Bulb: Place a 100 watt bulb approximately 12 inches for your batch to warm up the temperature by as much as 8-10° F.  Back the bulb away, or use a lower wattage to affect less of a temperature increase. Be sure to cover your carboy with some sort of blanket to protect it from the potentially harmful effect of direct light.

Aquarium Heater: Put your fermenter into a tub or larger bucket and fill the outside container with warm water. Using an aquarium heater (available at most pet supply stores) heat and regulate the temperature of the water.

Polish Ingenuity: Wrap a blanket around your fermenter and keep it in a box.  This will help to insulate your wort and minimize temperature fluctuations… Side Note: we did our best to include duct tape into this recommendation, but couldn’t come up with any logical uses. However, it’s always best to keep a roll nearby, just in case.polish flag

Location, Location, Location: Take a few days and monitor the temperatures, or fluctuation in temperature, throughout the areas in your house you typically place your fermenter. This will allow you to find the ideal storage space. Also, avoid placing your fermenter directly onto cold flooring, particularly cement, which are usually many degrees below ambient room temperature.

Brew a Lager.  Take advantage of the cooler temperatures to brew a cold fermenting beer.  Lager yeasts work better at an average temp of 45-60° F (Ales require 60-75° F).

snow beer