|A swamp cooler is the easiest and least expensive way to lower your fermentation tempertures. Even a 10 degree drop can make all the difference. In this photo I also used sanatized, frozen water bottles to cool my wort before pitching the yeast.|
A more precise route to control your brewing temperature year-round is to build a fermentation chamber. Depending on the insullation material and build quality, a fermentation chamber can usually hold tempertures 15°F-20°F below the ambient tempertures where it is located. Here's my hideous eyesore of a chamber that my girlfriend called "The coffin". As you can imagine this is no longer in our home and I'm not allowed to build things anymore.
|As horribly unsightly as mine was, a fermentation chamber like this can help control your|
fermentation temperature in the summer and even get to lager temperatures in the winter.
The best and easiest way to control your fermentation temperature is to hook up a refrigerator or chest freezer with a temp controller. A digital controller runs about $80, and you can usually find a fridge on Craigslist for short money.
Ironically after the United States' exit from the World Cup, several Belgian yeast strains can ferment as high as 85°F. Just like the Belgians withstood the Brazilian heat in extra time, Belgian yeasts are the easiest way to beat the summer heat without worrying about controlling your fermentation temperatures.
I haven't brewed any Belgian styles in over a year and a half and have been meaning to do so again. At my last trip to Beer & Wine Hobby I bought ingredients for a Belgian Pale Ale and a Belgian-style Dubbel on a whim. I hadn't even started recipes before I got there and I proceeded to fill my basket to the brim. I'll be sure to post more as brew day approaches.
What's your plan to beat the heat in your brew house this summer? Share in the comments!
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