Author Topic: New cave way too humid  (Read 202 times)

Online scasnerkay

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New cave way too humid
« on: August 08, 2014, 12:24:02 PM »
I am getting used to my new thermostatically modified small freezer --> cave. My old set up always ran way to dry. But this one must have a much tighter seal. I have constant condensation dripping off the top coils of the freezer, which I have diverted with a tray to not drip on the cheeses. But it is a pain to have water all over! The humidity gauge is registering 92% in the cave. I think it is accurate, judging by the lovely growth of all kinds of molds and yeasty smelling things on the cheeses.
What do I do now??
Susan


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Online Spoons

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Re: New cave way too humid
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2014, 12:53:07 PM »
John CH sells a RH control that can augment or reduce RH. You need to buy a desiccant pillow which is moisture absorbant.

http://www.perfect-cheese.com/humidity-control-system
- Eric

Offline ArnaudForestier

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Re: New cave way too humid
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2014, 08:05:45 PM »
I used to have the same issue.  I just made a plastic roof of sorts, that channeled the water to run down the back wall, back into a pan of water.  Cheeses were protected.  92% is nice, imo.
- Paul

Online scasnerkay

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Re: New cave way too humid
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2014, 11:17:24 PM »
Paul, don't those cheeses look a little scarey? They do to me... I have been vacuum sealing my cheeses up til now due to the former cave being too dry. But these are wild! I am not sure what to do with them!
Susan

Offline ArnaudForestier

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Re: New cave way too humid
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2014, 04:48:02 AM »
Susan, please take my advice with a grain of salt; I'm still very much learning.  I also may have the benefit of concentrating on a very limited selection of cheeses in my cave - washed rind, French style alpine cheeses, so the regular inoculation of these cultures (yeasts, geos, coryneforms, micrococci, etc.; or, as now, morge made with the rinds themselves of cheeses I make) have tended to help stave off the blues.  They just can't compete.  I'd still get minor blue spotting on some cheeses, but these were faults in the knit, not anything endemic to the cave (as blues are everywhere, I'm sure you know). 

So, given this proviso, in my experience my new caves (like yours, in smaller, converted refrigerators, etc.) have always acted bizarrely, until they'd settled in and were stocked with cheeses.  Given that, to "jump start" my cave, I got this idea from Pav, back when I first started:  to literally wash the walls of your cave in a brine containing whatever cultures you will be using as your dominant cultures.  Not sure what style you're into, but there are certainly yeasts, geos and likely others that would be common to your cheeses - yes? 

Eventually, I'd think your cheeses would settle in, regardless.  Take care of your blue formations with rind treatments (I use vinegar and salt), and eventually, it will settle in.  If you're concerned about blues forming now, I'd wash your cave thoroughly, sanitize it thoroughly, and re-stock your (treated, if they're a concern) cheeses. 

Again, I hope I'm giving good information.  There are others far more knowledgeable than myself.  (Sailor, for instance, is a microbiologist, and Pav is, well, Pav).  Regardless, my feeling is, basically, don't sweat it.  It will settle out nicely.  Getting 92% is not easy, and many have the opposite problem to yours.  I'd say, congratulations on getting a great environment going.  Best of luck.


- Paul


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