Author Topic: What's the coldest I can brew?  (Read 1778 times)

Offline saintjimmy

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What's the coldest I can brew?
« on: December 09, 2016, 06:15:20 AM »
I'm planning my next brew for Monday, Dec 13, and was looking at the forecast because I brew outside.  It's supposed to be -9c (15f), and have no idea if that is too cold or not.  Thoughts?

The brew is going to be a Tripel IPA (not a Triple IPA)... for my wife's birthday in February.

Cheers,

James

Offline Nwsurfkid

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2016, 08:17:49 AM »
You could brew in the arctic if your burner had enough BTU's and no wind....you might need a bit more gas or electric bill $$ on hand. 😆

You could get all thermo dynamic on it with delta T's and burner output...if you were concerned.

Drink some Rum, and give it a try.

Keeping your Mash temp steady might be the issue if it is outside with kettle.



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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2016, 12:30:12 PM »
I have never brewed that cold but I have brewed outdoors in sub freezing temps several times. The key for me was always to bring in the garden hose and wort chiller and leave the outdoor spigot on at a trickle so it wouldn't freeze.

Offline pete b

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2016, 01:33:44 PM »
It depends on your set up. I batch sparge and my indoor stove can handle the separate batches of mash and sparge water so when its that cold I mash in the house and do just the boil on the deck with a wind break.
Cleaning up is a PIA.
Chilling the wort is fast.
Mostly in the winter I do 2.5 gallon Brian.
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Offline neddles

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2016, 01:37:49 PM »
I have conducted my boil outside as low as -11F. Really not any different than any other brew except for the fact that it was pretty much impossible to see the surface of the wort during the boil.

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2016, 03:31:48 PM »
I tried brewing outside once when it was in the mid-20s and windy as heck. Flame went out a few times on the burner and it really struggled to keep a boil. Then the tank ran out with about five minutes to go. Awful brew day.

Tried to coolship that wort. Wort froze. Unsurprisingly did not turn out and turned into five gallons of yard fertilizer.
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Offline Stevie

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2016, 03:35:24 PM »
Put the propane cylinder in a warm water bath.

Offline bayareabrewer

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2016, 04:49:44 PM »
As a wussy Californian that thinks temps in the 40's are almost intolerable, you people are insane :)

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2016, 04:54:47 PM »
As a wussy Californian that thinks temps in the 40's are almost intolerable, you people are insane :)


I'll cop to an occasional 'wuss moment' myself. Being in the Midwest, I'm often out there in the butt freezing cold. But now and then I'm not in the mood to brew in a polar vortex, and opt to take the party into the kitchen. In my 20s it was a badge of honor. Now, at 49 I'm glad to have sensation in my extremities.  :)
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Offline coolman26

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2016, 05:19:12 PM »
I've brewed to single digits. Really not much to it IMO. I just make sure not to let the hose freeze. I bring in the cooler MT the night before. The burner heat makes it tolerable. Having a wind screen is a must for winter. I've been unable to brew for a long time. I'm brewing 20 gallons of Kolsch Sunday morning, if the rain holds off. The temp will be mid 20's. I'm hooked up to NG so that helps.


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Offline BrewArk

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2016, 05:31:57 PM »
Depends on your elevation. ;)
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Offline saintjimmy

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2016, 05:52:58 PM »
Fantastic!  Thanks for all the advise.  We are having a brewing party, where only the hearty will survive.  It will be sunny, so that will make things better! 

My wife will have her birthday present  ;D

Offline brewinhard

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2016, 07:27:59 PM »
I have brewed in some pretty frigid temps before. As stated above, you definitely want to be able to keep your propane from freezing up which will happen pretty quickly while you are using it. You definitely will want to bring your mash tun inside (or at least to a warmer spot) if possible to maintain your temps as long as possible. Also keep your chiller in a warmer spot (and water line) until needed as any water left behind in it could easily freeze causing the end of the brew day to suck.

Offline Arsuf476

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2016, 02:06:58 AM »
I've brewed in the 20s, have a wind break prepped ( half open garage door) and plenty of warming refreshments. Rubber gloves when handling liquid are a must. Otherwise, brew on.

Offline santoch

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Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2016, 02:44:43 AM »
I have brewed in some pretty frigid temps before. As stated above, you definitely want to be able to keep your propane from freezing up which will happen pretty quickly while you are using it. You definitely will want to bring your mash tun inside (or at least to a warmer spot) if possible to maintain your temps as long as possible. Also keep your chiller in a warmer spot (and water line) until needed as any water left behind in it could easily freeze causing the end of the brew day to suck.

This^^^^  Have a spare propane tank ready and keep it INSIDE until you need it.  Expanding propane gets cold, and in such cold weather, it can and will freeze the regulator up.  I have had this happen to me. A warm water bath for it is a good idea, but having a backup plan will help just in case the worst happens.


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