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Record high temps no good for fermentation

I currently have an Am. Amber (Lakefront’s Fixed Gear) clarifying in my secondary fermenter. I still have to dry hop it, so I’m at least 7 days away from bottling. The temps around here (Milwaukee) lately are reaching record highs, thus making my non-air conditioned apartment reach temps in the mid to upper 70s. My yeast is supposed to ferment between 62F and 72F. I can’t really do anything about it, but can I expect any funny stuff going on with this beer being that the temps are pushing 75 or 80 in my apartment? Like I said, the actual fermentation is complete a while ago. But I’m wondering if autolysis might occur with the high temps we’ve been having. Thanks for any help you can give.


RDWHAHB, I believe this is my second time posting that autolysis takes a while to happen. You already racked off the cake so there is less yeast to autolysis. If you are concerned about the heat try to make an insulated fermentation chamber. You can buy the materials at Home Depot it is basically a box made with insulation foam board and you put your fermenter inside and you can put a frozen water bottle every couple of hours to regulate the temp. You might experience off flavors as a result of the heat, but anyone correct me if i am wrong most of the flavors are developed during primary fermentation. The secondary is just to clarify and dryhop and let everything settle out.

+1. I’ve read that temperature control is only crucial during the first few days of fermentation. At least for ales. And I routinely leave my fermentors in my fermentation fridge for 5-7days (in the low 60’sF) then take them out and let them sit at room temps (which range from 66-74F) for the balance of time the beer is in primary. And for the entire time in secondary.

You should be fine, but yeah, look into swamp coolers or maybe you can pick up a used minifridge to use as a fermentation chamber… like I did! $70 on craigslist. $70 for a temperature controller. Some of the best money I’ve spent on brewing equipment.

Lagers are another story all together.

i have a beer in the primary right now that has been there for 5 weeks. Autolyst is not really an issue to homebrewers. we thought it was a while back, because it is an issue for breweries. but thats because the yeast is under a lot of pressure from the beer ontop of it (in large breweries). 5 gallons of pressure wont cause autolyst (at least not for a long time, in terms of MONTHS not weeks). plus yours is in the secondary, there should be a lot less yeast in there anyway. primary fermentation temperature is much more important than worrying about autolyst

+1 to dobe. temperature is most detrimental during the first week of primary fermentation.

edit addition: if your beer fermented in the primary over 72-80 degrees fahrenheit, then off flavors and fusel alcohols will be present. ideally you want ale yeast to be in the 60s. remember, that fermentation temperature is always warmer than ambient temperature (this means if the outside temperature is 70 degrees, the temperature during fermentation will be more than 70 during the active fermentation)

I was having the same issue with a beer in active fermentation. It was creeping up towards 70*, and I like to ferment in the low - mid 60s. I ended up putting the carboy in one of my brew kettles, filled the kettle with cold water (no ice), wrapped a towel around the carboy, and then poured water all over the towel. The temp immediately came down to 66*. I put a fan on it and the temp didn’t budge for 3 days. Just took it out this morning because active fermentation is pretty much over.

I am gonna build a pink foam board ice box next time the eagle drops a load but till then I have been runnig with super simple. Got a large plastic plant dish (the ones that catch the water under the plant $1.75) placed the fermentor in that, towel around the fermentor, soak down the towel and leave the overhead fan on high. I had one day I had to pull it all off cause my temp dipped to 62 but for the most part this rig has kept me at 66 prety well.


I’ve come to really like low temps for some reason. 62 is ideal.

+1! I set my minifridge to about 58-60F at the beginning of fermentation and start to raise the temp slowly (about 1 degree a day) somewhere around day 3. When I get to the mid to upper 60’s, I pull the fermentor out and let it sit at room temps. Then brew again and get another fermentor in the fridge at 60F.

I’m definitely gonna have to get a fridge if I want to keep up the low temps throughout the summer.

i use big circular buckets from home depot. fill them with water and use frozen water bottles to keep the temp low. i also like low 60’s for most ale strains

What yeast did you use? Some are way more forgiving at higher temperatures than others.

I had my NB Black IPA get up to 78 on accident three days into primary and it tastes GREAT. I only sampled during bottling as I had enough for a pint glass left over, but like I said, it came out great. No idea how. I’m a learnin’!

S.scoggin - So you are fitting a full size 5 gallon fermentor in buckets from Home Repo?? I have casually looked for something like this while wandering through but have yet to see a bucket/tub large enough to fit a fermenter and a couple of frozen milk jugs in it. Where are they hiding these items at??


It looks something like this. I can’t find the dimensions to this one, but in mine a 6.5 gallon carboy fits inside with room for plastic water bottles around the side. You can also get HUGE rectangular containers that can fit multiple carboys ... 386&sr=8-6

Now that I think about it… I might not have gotten it from home depot, but I can’t remember. I’m sure a Walmart or Fred Myers would have something similar

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