NDSU Extension - Williams County


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Keeping Stored Grain Cool - March 16, 2018

County Agent Update

Danielle Steinhoff


Keeping Stored Grain Cool

As temperatures fluctuate this time of year, warmer days and sometimes much cooler nights, we have make sure that the grain stored in bins stays the same temperature. Dr. Ken Hellevang, NDSU Extension Engineer, recently released a press release Keep Stored Grain Cool During Spring and Summer that I am gathering this information from. More heat occurs on the south wall of a grain bin during the start of March than it does in the middle of summer, this can cause the grain to exceed average outside temperatures. This can cause concern if the grain is being stored above the recommend moisture levels. It is recommended that producers run aeration fans periodically during the spring to keep the grain temperature cooler, preferable near 30 degrees Fahrenheit during March and April. Temperature sensors are a great tool, but they only read the temperature of the seed that is right next to the sensor, and grain is a great insulator. Using a temperature cable within a few feet from the south wall of your bin can give you a more accurate reading. Aeration fans or ducts should be covered when not operating, the warm moist spring air will be pushed through the grain, which will raise your temperatures. Keeping grain as cool as possible, also storing at the recommended moisture level, will keep the chances of insect activity to a low. This is also recommended to keep the chance of mold growing at a low level, which can affect a large portion of your grain as well. It is suggested that you check your stored grain every two weeks, measure and record the grain temperature and posture contest. Major insect infestations can occur within three to four weeks of when the grain is warm. For more information, call the NDSU Extension Office to receive publications on grain drying and storage at 701-577-4595.

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