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I am moving into a new house, and the garage in the back garden is just screaming out to be converted into a home brewery.

I realise planning a brewing space depends on a lot of specifics (space available, equipment used etc) so rather than focus on my own specific requirements, I was hoping that the group could share any plans or ideas on how best to layout a brewing space in general.

Are there any practical do’s and don’ts, have you done anything to your brewing area that has made life easier, do you have any advice on storing equipment and ingredients etc.? Assuming you have lights, electricity and a water supply, where should you go from there?

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How about heating or A/C, depending on where you live? –  FrustratedWithFormsDesigner Jan 20 '12 at 15:06
    
all kinds of possibilities... converting to wiki –  baka Jan 20 '12 at 20:37

2 Answers 2

I remodeled my garage into a brewing space a few years back and the best thing I did was put in a floor drain and slope the concrete floor 1/8"/ft. down to it. It makes spills and cleanup easy to deal with. Leave yourself plenty of space for shelves and cabinets for storage. If you can work in a sink and under counter water heater, so much the better. I did without for the first 6 years or so and just installed them last fall. Made a big difference in brewing ease and comfort.

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+1 the water drain is very useful. my brewery room used to have one, but after moving house, I'm really missing the drain. –  mdma Jan 20 '12 at 18:14

As you want to build a brewery, I am assuming you are talking about indoors. Space, ventilation, accessibility to water, and, if you're going electric, power are big considerations.

The space is obvious. Brewing equipment takes up some space. Ventilation is important for 2 reasons:

  1. if you're married, and your spouse is not as hardcore a brewer as you are, you definitely do not want to stink up the house. Doing so will make your life far more difficult than it has to be.

  2. if you are using natural gas or propane, you want to make sure you have plenty of air flow, as this can be dangerous indoors.

I recommend going electric, which will probably require you running your own dedicated GFCI circuit(s)... 240V 60A electric cable (#6) is pretty expensive and frustrating to install, so the distance to your distribution box should also be a consideration.

Plumbing is also something to consider. You will want source water and drainage in almost every case. Sanitizing, filling your pots, wort chillers, and cleanup all require water, and using a hose gets annoying very quickly. Garages rarely have pipes in them, but sometimes they are easy to install.

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