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A wine cooler, or wine chiller, is an appliance designed to generate and maintain the ideal environment for storing bottles of wine. It turns out that these specialized refrigerators are also useful for hash makers to dry bubble hash. But how is a wine fridge different from regular refrigerators, and what makes them useful for drying bubble hash?
Many wine coolers look like mini refrigerators with a glass door, but they are built with features that differ from traditional refrigerators. For starters, most wine coolers are humidity-controlled in order to preserve the moisture levels of wine corks. When wine corks are stored in traditional refrigerators for longer periods of time, the dry air can suck the moisture out of the corks, causing them to become overly porous. This can have a negative effect on the quality of the wine. Wine coolers are designed to maintain humidity, not eliminate it like regular refrigerators.
Wine chillers are also made with different types of cooling units. Most wine coolers are made with thermoelectric technology, which creates a cooling effect from the flow of current between two conductors. These wine coolers require significant clearance and may not be as efficient in warmer environments. Other wine coolers are made with a compressor, just like regular refrigerators. These units use refrigerant and can sustain lower temperatures, even when operating in an environment with warm ambient temperatures. These compressor units also require less clearance to operate effectively.
While drying bubble hash with a freeze dryer is preferred by commercial extractors as the most efficient method to dry large amounts of product thoroughly and efficiently, air drying bubble hash can still deliver premium results for in-home extractors. Drying bubble hash in a wine chiller is considered a form of air drying. Learn more about the different ways to dry bubble hash in Best Ways To Dry Bubble Hash.
What Are the Advantages of Using a Wine Cooler for Drying Bubble Hash?
The biggest advantage to using a wine cooler for drying bubble hash is the temperature control that they offer. While regular refrigerators optimize for temperatures in the 40-degree range, wine coolers can be set for 55 degrees, which is ideal for drying bubble hash.
Wine coolers also offer a dedicated space for drying your bubble hash. Hash that’s left to air dry inside a refrigerator with food can sometimes absorb food odors, which is definitely something to avoid. Keeping your hash isolated in a clean and odor-free space is most desirable.
Humidity is another consideration when drying hash inside a wine cooler. Many smaller wine chillers don’t actually have a built-in way to control humidity. The optimum humidity for air drying bubble hash is 35% relative humidity. This differs from humidity targets for storing wine, which is in the 50-70% relative humidity range. The good news is that most wine coolers will maintain relative humidity around 40%, even if they don’t have dedicated humidity control features. Using a digital hygrometer is necessary if you’re using a wine cooler that doesn’t have humidity control settings.
To lower humidity inside a wine chiller, place a cup of baking soda inside the wine chiller with your hash. Baking soda can absorb moisture from the air and help to reduce humidity. Also, silica placed inside of a mason jar can also work like baking soda to reduce humidity.
How To Use a Wine Cooler for Air Drying Bubble Hash
Using a wine cooler for drying bubble hash is straightforward. The most important step is in the preparation of the bubble hash, to ensure it’s properly broken down into a granular consistency, similar to sand. This is best accomplished using a stainless steel sieve, but you can also use a microplane to grind down the hash into tiny pieces. Read more in Sieving vs Microplaning for Drying Bubble Hash.
The bubble hash should be placed in a very thin layer on top of parchment paper. The parchment paper needs a desiccant underneath to help absorb moisture from the hash. A piece of cardboard is an easy and effective solution. Pizza boxes have long been used for this purpose. Line the pizza box with parchment paper and sieve the hash over this surface. Then place the bubble inside the wine fridge.
Set the temperature to 55 degrees and monitor humidity with a digital hygrometer. Lower the humidity with baking soda as needed, with the target of 35% relative humidity.
How long should you leave bubble hash in the wine cooler? At around 55 degrees with 35% relative humidity, the bubble hash can take anywhere from 3-10 days to dry thoroughly. The bubble hash needs to be completely dry before smoking or pressing into hash rosin.
To test dryness, squeeze a small amount of the hash between your fingertips. It should feel like dry sand, leaving no moisture behind. If there’s any moisture left on your fingers, it’s not ready. Some hash will feel greasy or sticky, which is fine. However, if you feel any wetness, it needs more drying time.
Learn more about best practices for drying bubble hash in Top 5 Bubble Hash Drying Tips.
Wine coolers aren’t necessary for effectively air drying bubble hash, but they can be nice to have. Remember to aim for 55 degrees Fahrenheit at 35% relative humidity for drying bubble hash. A room in the basement with the right temperature and humidity will do just fine, but there are clear advantages to using a wine cooler. Wine coolers offer a clean and dedicated space to air dry bubble hash, with good temperature and humidity regulation. Avoid air drying bubble hash in refrigerators where food is stored, as the hash can potentially absorb some of those smells.
How do you dry your bubble hash? Let us know in the comments!
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is a wine cooler?
A wine cooler is a specialized type of refrigerator that’s designed to keep temperature and humidity levels ideal for storing wine. Wine cooler, or wine chillers, are also good for air drying bubble hash.
What are the ideal settings for drying bubble hash in a wine cooler?
The ideal temperature and humidity levels for drying bubble hash inside a wine cooler is 55 degrees Fahrenheit at 35% relative humidity.
How long does it take to dry bubble hash inside a wine cooler?
It normally takes around a week for bubble hash to dry inside of a wine cooler. Hash that’s dry to the touch and doesn’t leave behind any moisture when squeezed between the fingers is showing signs of being thoroughly dried.
Why is a wine cooler better than a regular refrigerator for drying bubble hash?
Wine coolers are considered better than regular refrigerators for air drying bubble hash because they provide temperature control within the proper range for drying hash (55 degrees Fahrenheit), a designated, clean space for the hash that’s away from other odorous foods, and humidity regulation for a consistent, even drying process.
Can you dry bubble hash inside of a regular refrigerator?
Yes, you can dry bubble hash inside of a regular refrigerator, but you may have difficulty achieving the ideal temperature and humidity (55 degrees at 35% relative humidity). You also risk the bubble hash absorbing odors from food also being stored in the refrigerator.