Can you go too low?

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guypettigrew
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Can you go too low?

Post by guypettigrew » Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:00 pm

Following some really helpful comments in an earlier post, my post fermentation management of the beer is having a change. Usually I cool to 7-8C then dump the yeast and drop into a keg immediately. Getting the yeast out is often problematic at this temperature. It seizes solid and doesn't want to run out through the dump valve.

This time the finished beer was cooled to 12C, which allowed the yeast (White Labs 007) to be harvested really easily from the valve at the bottom of the Ss Brewtech chronical. Thanks for the tips!

Using the Maxi 110 the beer is now down to 3C +/- 0.5C. Never got it as cold as this before.

My worry now is that too much yeast will drop out of suspension. I haven't added priming sugars for years. Just drop to the keg with finings. The beer clears quickly, and conditions within a week.

So, is 3C too low? Will too much yeast drop out and no secondary conditioning happen? I can easily increase the temperature if needed.

Thanks.

Guy

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donchiquon
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Re: Can you go too low?

Post by donchiquon » Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:25 pm

I think you’ll be fine. I dump the yeast at around day 7-10 before crashing to 0.5 degrees for up to a week, during which time I sometimes add gelatin.

I then keg 19L and bottle about 10 x 500ml bottles. I don’t add any priming sugar and haven’t had an issue with under carbonation so far.


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Kev888
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Re: Can you go too low?

Post by Kev888 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:45 pm

For clearing speed, the ideal would be to get it as cold as possible without actually freezing - those last few degrees have far more effect than chilling for days longer. Though if using a conical, you may want to dump what sediment has already settled before beginning to chill, so that it doesn't accumulate and compact too much; I've usually dumped sediment a couple of times before it come to chilling. Then about a day or so into chilling - and this time the sediment is the good stuff, if you want to save it for re-use.

The cooling rate can be more important for yeast health than the temperature as such (short of freezing). Too fast and esters may be caused, plus it is less ideal if you want to harvest and reuse the yeast which settles as you chill, I suppose on that basis then potentially it may slightly affect their performance when priming too. For all that it is often called 'crash' cooling, I like to take around 16hrs to drop it from ale-fermentation temperatures to about -0.5c.

I normally leave it chilling for 3-5days before kegging. In that time I've not personally had a problem with enough yeast making it through (or reviving) for the priming fermentation.
Kev

guypettigrew
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Re: Can you go too low?

Post by guypettigrew » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:17 am

Thanks for the replies and advice.

The beer was kept at 3c for a couple of days after harvesting the yeast, then dropped into the keg.

A couple of days on and it's showing signs of carbonating nicely. I'm away tomorrow for a fortnight--should be perfect by the time I get back.

Guy

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