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adam88king

Ambient temp vs keg temp

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Ive read a lot about temps on here but i still have this question. I have read that the temp in your keg is whats important and it can be 5 to 10 degrees hotter in the first week of fermentation. I had my keg on the kitchen counter with an ambient temp of 68 and after 2 days i read this info and moved it to a room in my basement that has an average temp of about 61. Is this too cold and if not after the first week is over and the agressive fermentation is over should i move it back to a higher temp? My second question is that when i moved it to the basement I tipped it back with a dvd case to try to get the trub to the back but now the ring of sediment that developed around the top of the liquid is no longer in the liquid at the front of the keg; is this cause for concern? That explanation was kind of rambling and i hope it isnt too confusing. Thanks for any help on this first batch and by the way its classic american light if that makes a difference!

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Temp of wort is what matters.  A stick on thermometer (made for fish tanks, not the checkmark sticker you get from Mr. Beer) is great to see the actual temp inside.  

 

At peak fermentation, the temp does go up and it varies.  4 - 8, 5 -10, ...  So, when it's at peak, being in a 61 degree room would be ideal, whereas being in a 72 degree room would not be ideal (my first batches were in a closet where I put a small heater to keep the closet at 72.  Boy did those taste lousy.)  

 

Then, when fermentation quiets you'd want it warmer, 61 is probably a bit cold.  Note that the temp on your basement floor will be colder than the temp on a table, or on a shelf above the table (one brewer has a stack of shelves with thermometers on each as they vary by a few degrees).  I do mine at 64 degrees, in a temperature controlled freezer (with a controller that keeps the liquid at 64 degrees).  So at peak it's 64, when it subsides it's 64, ...

 

So yes, after the first week is over I would move it to the 68 degree room.

 

Covering the ring of sediment (krausen ring) is not necessary.  Sloshing the liquid around isn't ideal, put the LBK in a Rubbermaid tub to carry it around.  

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Thank you for the quick response. That explaination pretty much confirmed everything i was thinking...now i just need to stay patient for another 6 weeks!

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So the 68 to 76 degree yeast temp Mr Beer recommend is to high then?

Why would you say that?

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Why would you say that?

Read that you ferment at 64 now and that your 1st batches did not turn out good when you brewed at 72 degree room temp.

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Correct.  You asked about Mr. Beer's guidance of 68 to 76 degree yeast temp, i.e. wort temperature.  Room temperature <> wort temperature.  When I had my LBK sitting at 72 degree air temp, it would have peaked in the high 70s, and that created off flavors.  That's why you should get a stick on thermometer to know the wort temp.  

 

If you ferment at 64 degree air temp, it's impossible for the wort to get to high 70s.

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Thanks. Was concerned the yeast might go dormant. Will be lowering the temp in my brew room for all future batches

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The yeast won't go dormant unless wort temp drops below 60 or lower, depending on the strain.

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Live in cold NY and the house cycles between 62 (night and when at work) and 66 when awake and home. Wondering if the wort temp would be OK through these cycles. After all, temp never goes below 62.

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Yes, it would be fine. On a shelf or table will be same temp as thermostat, floor will be colder.

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