To allow me to control the temperature of the demijohns during fermentation I had to build an insulated enclosure.
So I didn’t have to use any space in the house for brewing this was constructed in the garage along with the brewery. Unfortunately during winter it gets very cold in here.
To allow me ferment while it is cold in winter I made the enclosure. It’s constructed by surrounding some of the storage shelves I use in the garage with sheets of wood covered with polystyrene for insulation.
At the bottom of the enclosure I’ve put a heating plant propagator, The propagator is made to keep the bottom of it at a stable 18 degrees C which is quite a good temperature for overall fermentation of the beer I’ve made.
So I can check the temperature within the enclosure I’ve also put a Dallas one wire temperature thermometer so I’ve always got an instant reading without having to open the enclosure.
At the front I’ve put some clear perspex sheets so I can keep an eye on the fermentation within the demijohns throughout, I’ve also put some strips of insulation material between the perspex fronts and the sides to ensure it’s as insulated as possible.
In the future I may improve the temperature control during fermentation by turning off the heater under the control of my control system but for now it’s just left permanently on.
After running this setup for about a year I decided it needed a little upgrade to improve the heat being held in the enclosure, to this end I installed a new temperature controlled tubular heater. This now means I can have as much or as little heat in the enclosure as I want by just twiddling the little thermostat on the unit.
At the same time I installed a small circulation fan to try and reduce any cold or hot spots which might be found in the enclosure.