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Fermenter Cooling and Temperature Design


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Hi Everyone, 

Well as I'm new to Fermentation and the distillery business in general, I have found great information on this Forum and in communicating with some of you followers in the past.

Here are my question(s)  I'm designing the chiller process for my fermenters, will I need the temperature to remain constant +/- a degree or two or would the process be harmed if I have a +/-10 degree fluctuation between that range.? I'm located in Florida so far the measurable ambient temp inside the distillery process area with out the exhaust fans son has been about 83 degrees July/August.

My chiller manufacture recommended that a total chilled water system volume of 900-1000 gallons to keep the chiller from short cycling, my idea is to maintain the chilled water temperature in the tank by constantly recirculating the water, and then have a separate pump(s) that would draw off the water and send it to the fermenters cooling jackets, If I have a larger temperature control band in the vessels we could just cycle the pump(s) on and off and allow the temperature in the tanks to fluctuate +/- 5 degrees above and below the temp set point. If I need tighter control  the secondary pump that serves the fermenters would need to run continuously and we would control the flow of cooling jacket with three way valves to maintain a much tighter tolerance.

Comments on my system ? What have many of you found to be the most efficient way ?  THANKS  Lorenzo

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There are a lot of different ways to achieve cooling. Chilled water is one way to approach it, my preference for fermentor cooling is glycol, as it requires less maintenance and treatment than water. Are you planning to use your outflowing water in process or just cool and recirc?

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Thouhgt about using it in process just haven’t implemented a plan yet, wouldnt I need two tanks  ? Glycol wasn’t suggested by the mechanical guys I  bought the chiller from have been considering how to add it to system  what temp are U maintaining for fermentation?


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When compared to condensing vapor and cooling mash maintaining ferm temps is a metaphorical blip on the radar. For us, the most difficult calculation was the size of the  tube in tube mash cooler.  This article in BYO has all of the math needed to DIY one.  

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On 9/15/2018 at 12:30 PM, Silk City Distillers said:

1000 gallon chiller tank for fermenters?

How much fermentation capacity - how many active ferments at once, crash cooling in the fermenters?

Hey Silk City

 So is the 1000 gal chiller excessive for  our proposed application  ? This capacity came via Carrier Commercial Chillers.

 Fermenters are 500 gallon, square tanks with 2 cooling jackets probably only two active ferments going on at any give time.

 Any suggestions. .

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