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After reading that some of you guys use aquarium heaters to keep a fermentation warm, I thought I'd give it a go. I'm using a 300W German-made titanium heater in a 250L fermenter which doesn't have any element control. I figured this would be more reliable by switching the heater on/off via a separate temp controller.
It worked great the first time. The second time, it has burnt out 3 days into the fermentation. I had it set to 30°C and the fermentation is largely finished (rum fermentation). When I looked at the heater tube, I can see that there is a 2-inch band of yeast which has "cooked" onto the titanium casing. Presumably that's the reason for the burn-out.
Has anyone had this issue before and how did you get around it please? Since the yeast will drop out of suspension as the fermentation dies down, it's surely inevitable that yeast will be exposed to the heater, because it's positioning is in the bottom third of the tank?