Shipping in the cold

Discussion in 'Beer Trading Talk & Help' started by beerinmaine, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    Often asked: how cold is too cold? Practical example --

    It got colder quicker than I expected, so I had an inbound trade being delivered today. Overnight low was 0, high of 10, and 4 degrees when I got home. Box was sitting by the door, on the ground.

    Opened it up --- all OK. A couple of the 12oz, lower ABV bottles were beginning to get slushy/frozen in the neck, but all the other showed no sign of freezing and still plenty of room for expansion before busting off the cap. The slushy ones thawed within minutes in the 55 degree basement.

    I wouldn't recommend this - but if your beer does get caught out in the cold, probably no need for panic.
    gpawned likes this.
  2. jmarsh123

    jmarsh123 Advocate (600) Indiana Mar 31, 2010 Verified

    In general I see to have been fine receiving packages anytime it's over 20 or so. Over Christmas, I had a package sitting on my porch for 5 days because I didn't know it was coming and it arrived the day I left. It was buried under a snow drift, but still fine.

    Bottom line as long as you get to the package within a few hours, it's probably ok although I'm still leery when temps fall around 0.
  3. Hanzo

    Hanzo Champion (965) Virginia Feb 27, 2012

    gpawned likes this.
  4. yeahnatenelson

    yeahnatenelson Advocate (690) Illinois Feb 8, 2010 Verified

    It's best to thaw any frozen bottles/cans in the fridge - thawing too quickly may cause the container to burst. Also: don't open it for a few days to give the CO2 time to go back into liquid suspension.w
    youbrewidrink and mnbearsfan like this.
  5. willseph

    willseph Initiate (0) Illinois Jan 31, 2011

    Mr. Wizard over here...

    But seriously, the second point is great advice that is often overlooked.
  6. F2brewers

    F2brewers Moderator (585) Massachusetts Mar 12, 2005 Staff Member Verified Subscriber

    Although the point is correct, technically, the CO2 is dissolved back into the beer forming a true solution; it is not suspended.

    From a chemist's point of view (nerd alert), a suspension of this nature requires the presence of solid material in the liquid *and* (typically) that the particles are large enough to fall out of suspension and cause the formation of sediment. I've yet to see that happen in any of my beer. ;)

    JimmyTheRustler and ShogoKawada like this.
  7. moefriedman

    moefriedman Savant (305) Illinois Feb 15, 2012 Verified

    Here's my sad story: I totally wasn't thinking last week and yadda, yadda, yadda it hit single digits in Chicago. And 4 bottles of Cascade froze. 2 bottles literally cracked and other 2 froze and corks flew off so are somewhat salvageable(gotta drink them now)
  8. chase2634

    chase2634 Savant (315) Pennsylvania Nov 10, 2009

    Temps here in PA hit single digits this week and three of my trades were postponed until next week when the temps get back in the steamy 30's. Not worth the risk imo.
    CaptCleveland likes this.
  9. Holy shit it must suck living where you guys live!?! Single digits! Gotta love SoCal. :)
  10. youbrewidrink

    youbrewidrink Advocate (720) Vermont Apr 9, 2009 Verified

    It was zero here this morning and we all were celebrating that spring is coming.
  11. Chewbacca

    Chewbacca Initiate (0) Antarctica Jan 22, 2013

    You should see the weather on Hoth!
  12. More like Coldth!!
  13. I had two bottles of homebrew freeze and shatter recently as I was trying to ship them to Colorado.