Glycol Chilling?

edited September 2021 in General

Hey guys not sure where to post this

I am getting to the point of looking at buying jacketed uni-tanks, most likely starting with a Brewtools F80 at this stage for use at home. With plans to expand later on (probably a look at a couple of F40's for smaller batches)

I have also been helping a friend go commercial from a beer perspective (he is starting off contract brewing) however we may looking at setting something small scale up long term.

Thinking if I get a Glycol cooling unit I want something that has more capacity then what I currently need, also would be keen to use it to help cool my 4" Dash ( upto a super reflux condenser and 4800w) most likely by using a heat exchange (plate cooler?) to chill the cooling water. Probably setup a tank etc, still thinking this through. Would probably use it to also chill my cooling water for wort chilling as well

To summarize, what are peoples suggestions on a cooling solution that can do the below

  • Maintain multiple uni-tank fermentation temp control lets say upto 500L
  • Help manage Still cooling for a 4" Dash with a Super RC and 4800W
  • Help reduce cooling water temp for wort cooling for lager temp


  • edited September 2021

    OK, so as no one has any thoughts/ideas, I thought I would give making one ago as I had a window A/C unit out in my back shed that came with the house when I brought it.

    No plans to use it for anything else so thought I may as well.

    It's rated at 1055W input for 10500 BTU/h output which would be the equivalent of a 1hp Glycol chiller (depending on brand) from my research but I could be wrong.


    Its bloody loud however so hoping once everything is running it doesn't switch on to often. I may also investigate reducing the fan speed so its quieter but that will be long term.


    Didn't take any pics of it before I modified it, but effectively I have removed the front fan, bypassed the mechanical thermo-switch so it always cools, gotten it ready for an STC1000 to be installed (will put the probe in the cooling tank, and set a 5min compressor delay with a 1c temp range).


    I'll hard wire the re-circulation pump to before the STC so that its always on, will probably hot glue the temp probe in the middle of the coolant tank.

    Modified the cover (probably shouldn't have bothered) but I had already drilled out some rivets as I didn't realize it just slid off.


    Fired it up and it seems to chill still so clearly did something right.

    Still need to get:

    • Build or buy a trolley/stand/table for it to go on
    • Esky/Chilly Bin to use as a coolant tank
    • Submersible pump to recirculate the Glycol in the coolant tank
    • Submersible pump to cool the plate chiller to cool the water for my wort plate chiller/RC/SC
    • Submersible pump to cool a unitank/fermenter
    • Glycol
    • Second plate chiller

    Also in the process of getting an IBC.

    Between the thermal mass of 1000L of water and this homemade Glycol chiller I am hoping to maintain 20°C coolant temp for the still and as as cold as possible for wort chilling to both reduce cooling time and also get down to lager temps.

    Can always add a car radiator/fan to the loop if needed as well.

    Aiming to reduce water wastage and also keep to a minimum of power used.

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  • How big is your kettle charge?

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  • edited September 2021

    @Smaug said: How big is your kettle charge?

    I have a 50L milk can with 4800W and also a 70L pot with lid setup (4400W), so would be max 60L kettle charge volume but typically I run 30-40L.

    Ambient air temp can get up to 45°C however so allowing for that as well, ill mainly use this for fermentation control and wort cooling, but keen to also see how it helps run the still as well.

  • edited September 2021

    Glycol chiller progress

    Test Fitting


    Not super pretty but mainly made from recycled materials and on the cheap.

    Modified Esky, had to slot the top for the pipes, I haven't sealed them at this stage as I want it to be able to be pulled apart (may do in future tho).

    There is a gap behind the chiller condenser so that liquid can flow behind it, when my pumps arrive ill have one pump that will push liquid through it (still working out the best way to do it).


    Should fit a few pumps in OK, its 33L so hoping its big enough.

    Discovered this Esky has a access port so will use this for lines and cables etc, might slot it or do some bulk heads into it or something. Also got my cup holders going haha, these may get filled at some point.


    Cut up the original plastic front fan housing so I can put the controller in something more sealed, the controller is also on the other side to what it was from factory. It will get set on low fan cool to start and controlled by the controller when it arrives. Can always go to high cool if I need too but trying to keep noise down when it does fire up, you can also see I've insulated the piping to hopefully reduce any condensation.


    May build another insulated hood around the chilly bin and also enclose the gap a bit better, will see how it goes first.


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  • edited September 2021

    I did something similar a while back. I only had a 6000 BTU unit though. It works well, although more BTU needed or larger fluid reservoir to keep up with a keg still and a crappy Liebig condenser. Those will be getting upgraded before too long though!


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  • BTW, I removed the factory controls and wired it to a single switch, on or off.

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