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jimvgjr
01-30-2012, 03:53 PM
Hi Everyone,
Have a customer considering placing some fermenters outdoors and is concerned that the cold weather may hinder temperature control. Brewery is in the Chicago area. Does anyone have any suggestions or experience dealing with this that I can share with them?

Thanks much,

Jim
Pro Refrigeration Inc

Buster
01-31-2012, 07:02 AM
Jim,

We are close to finishing a full year with 3-240 bbl ferms and a 240 brite with no temperature issues and we are in Durango, CO, elev 6900 ft. It might not be quite as cold as in Chicago, but they had no issues whatsoever. They were custom built for us with 4" of insulation top to bottom, including the domes and cones. Silver State Stainless built them for us and we are very happy with them. We did enclose the cones in a building, but it is not heated and I think that actually could create more ambient cooling issues than if they were exposed, but it hasn't. The building tends to keep the cold in a bit longer rather than warming up with the sun.
On the brite tank, it is fully exposed top to bottom and we had to put heat tape on the racking ports and we will often have to use a torch to heat the sample cock to get Zahm readings, but we knew this was the case going in to it.
I wouldn't bat an eye about doing it again.

BTW, the brewers thank me regularly for enclosing the cones. I would imagine that it would be a different story if they were fully exposed with several feet of snow :D

Matt
www.skabrewing.com

Alex T
02-03-2012, 12:58 AM
Hey,

Same as Buster said - insulation is the only issue. We are about to do the same - albeit in a much warmer climate - we'll have the opposite issue to snow - too much heat! I would suggest that a good 100mm of insulation top/sides/cone is the minimum requirement. I would go with spray on polyurethane type foam insulation to ensure all is completely insulated.

Cheers,

Alex