Spring is just around the corner and temperatures are starting to rise (very slowly). Now is the time to start thinking about warming stored grain. Keeping stored grain within 10 to 15 degrees of the ambient temperature outside will help the grain keep longer. Tom Miller has shared three tips that he suggests you consider and incorporate into your spring grain management.
- Running the fans periodically as temperatures rise will help remove moisture that condenses on the cooler bin wall and grain. The south side of the grain bin warms from the sun. This creates a moisture barrier as deep as two feet into the bin. As the humid air rises it condenses on the cooler roof and north wall of the bin. That moisture then drips on top and runs down the inside wall which increases the chance of spoilage.
- If the bin is equipped with a stirring machine, turn it on. Run it long enough so it can make a full pass throughout the bin to help break up the crust on top or possible hot spots that have started. Also having the proper square feet of venting in the roof helps the air and moisture to escape while the fan is running.
- For long-term storage, spring is a good time to sell some grain out of each bin to core it. Fines tend to hold moisture, providing the right conditions for spoilage. Moving fines that might have built up in the center of the bin will help prevent spoilage.
To determine the time it takes the warm front to push through your grain, the bin diameter, eave height, fan type and horsepower need to be known.
A level full 36’ diameter bin with an eave height of 21’ (6 ring, 4” corrugation) and a 28”, 10 horsepower, 3450 rpm axial fan will take approximately 19 hours to warm the grain throughout the bin 10-15 degrees Fahrenheit.
Want help plugging your bin specifications into the warming equation? Give Tom Miller a call!