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BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer

$149.99

SKU# 41865

Monitor your fermentation from your couch, office, plane, anywhere!

Flat Rate Shipping only $7.99 only from Northern Brewer
The BeerBug keeps you in tune with the inner workings of your brew. Directly measuring density, temperature and reporting in real-time provide you key insights to track and understand your fermentation. Never wonder when your beer will be done, with the BeerBug you know.
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Regular Price: $199.99

Special Price $149.99

Availability: In stock

BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer

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  • BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer
  • BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer with Optional Probe (not included)
  • BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer with Big Mouth Bubbler (not included)
  • BeerBug™ Wifi Digital Hydrometer with Big Mouth Bubbler (not included)

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Product Details
Are you wondering if the BeerBug will work with your current setup?

The BeerBug works with any vessel to which you can add a traditional airlock and works great with all Big Mouth Bubbler® products. CO2 and krausen are rerouted through an airlock or blow-off adapter. Using the BeerBug means never opening your brew during fermentation again.

Connecting to your BeerBug is easy!

The BeerBug connects wirelessly to the cloud. Connect the BeerBug to WiFi just like your phone or tablet. As your brew ferments, periodically your BeerBug will send your data over WiFi. This allows you to view your data, in real time, anytime, anywhere.

We recommend pairing with the BeerBug Temperature Probe (not included) for the most accurate data.
Additional Information
Support Documents:No
Reviews
2.0 / 5.0
25 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Stars
4
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16
No Quailty of Service from Website
Conceptually this is an awesome piece of equipment. It worked like a champ for the first 2 batches, but then thebeerbug.com website started to go sideways.

Here's my biggest complaints:
1 - switching from blow off to bubbler is a PIA. You have to unscrew/screw the adapters. Would be much simpler with a quick release.
2 - Clearly there are issues with thebeerbug.com website. Easy fix to this would be a local network interface to manage the bug and your brew that can SYNC to the website!!! OR, if you don't want to support that, make sure your site is run by a cloud provider capable of elastic scaling to support this application!!!

I bet if you implemented either (or both) of these options you would see most of the <4 star reviews disappear!

Very frustrating and disappointing to have what another review accurately described as a "$200 carboy ornament".
April 16, 2017
Purchased
1 year ago
Sort of works, but inaccurate
As others have noted, the Beer Bug was unusable for months after I purchased it because their web site was down. Eventually, the company came under new ownership and things have been improving.

Once I got it working, though, I found it to be very inaccurate. You start by getting it in place in your brew and waiting an hour for it to stabilize before calibrating it to your own hydrometer reading. That's all fine, but when fermentation was complete, I found that the final S.G. was significantly higher with my hydrometer than what the Beer Bug was reporting.

I reported this issue to the company and received a prompt notification that they had a known "bad batch" of early production Bugs and that I could return mine directly to them for a replacement. I did, and I just finished a batch with the new Bug. While the error was less this time, there was still a 0.010 discrepancy in the final S.G. between the Beer Bug and my hydrometer. Again, I calibrated the Bug according to their instructions at the beginning of the brewing process.

So while it's fun to watch the graphs, and it can be useful to know when fermentation has completed, you can't rely it for any kind of accurate gravity measurement -- there's no substitute for a regular hydrometer and manual measurement. And don't even think about using the Beer Bug on a batch of wine to avoid frequent manual measurements, which is what I'd really wanted to use it for.

It's a great concept, but a poor execution.
March 11, 2017
Purchased
1 year ago
Avoid Like The Plague
This is truly an awful product. I've had it over a year now and have used it about a half dozen times or more.
First, the smartphone apps pretty much never work. I have a Android and an iPhone. I only got logged in on the Android app a few times. I can usually log in with the iPhone, but nothing works from there. I can't view my bug or start a new brew.
The website is somewhat more useful, but that's not saying much. It usually takes multiple tries to start a new brew.
Here's my latest experience. I brewed a batch of beer yesterday and have yet been unable to create the new brew using the beer bug. I tried over two dozen times using the apps and the website. So my brew is fermenting away and I have no way of tracking how far fermentation has come. And this is my normal experience with the Brew Bug. I'll finally get the brew created on their website 2-3 days after I brewed the beer. That's like taking the OG reading 2-3 days into fermentation.
So that's the software. Now let me poop on the hardware. It's not very accurate. Slight changes in temperature affect the Beer Bug readings. I ferment in temperature controlled freezers and generally ramp up the temp as fermentation slows a few degrees a day. The Beer Bug will report big swings in gravity with these 2-3 degree changes. As the temp goes up the gravity drops, so most of my beers finish around the 0.990 range. So I still take hydrometer readings for everything.
So why do I still use it? Well it costs a hell of a lot of money...and it is somewhat helpful when I do lagers as I ramp up the temperature on those as it nears the 50% and 75% completion marks. The Beer Bug is accurate enough to help me ballpark those milestones.
So...avoid this product like the plague.
January 30, 2017
Response from Northern Brewer
We are sorry for your experience and Customer Service will be contacting you directly to discuss our options at this time. We want you to be much happier with our products that you currently are. The BeerBug/Sensorshare team knows that they had some issues with service levels and recently sent a communication to notify users that they believe that the calibration/connectivity issues have been resolved. We are excited for them and hope to see that all of the issues are behind them.
January 31, 2017
Todd JStaff
Did not work and very little to no communication.
I bought this thinking it would be amazing.. It was worthless, months of no connection and no communication from the company.. when there was some communication there was no thankfulness of gratitude for those of us that tried to hold out. Between the product not working and the ungratefulness I sent it back.. I prefer a pain in the butt manual system over this.. Luckly though newer items are coming out.. So there is a silver lining.

Get the Tilt, this is a POC. Not sure why they decided to base it all on a proprietary cloud service. Tilt is local or uploads to google docs.. a non proprietary system.
December 16, 2016
Purchased
1 year ago
Is 'thebeerbug.com' website dead?
I bought my Beerbug about a year or two ago. I've used it during all of my batches and it worked great. Until now. In early October, I brewed a batch and put my BeerBug on it, but it couldn't connect. I soon later learned that nothing was working at the server's website. Northern doesn't know what's going on either, but they acknowledged to me that the Beerbug server was not working. If I reviewed this thing shortly after I bought it, I would have given it 5 stars. Now, based on how long it's been offline (and the almost certainty that I now have an expensive paperweight), I'll give it a 2 star rating, teetering on a 1-star. I hope they get their server problems resolved, but I'm susicious that they don't care. They already have $200 of my money.
October 17, 2016
Response from Northern Brewer
We have been in talks with beer bug and they are hopeful that the issues will be quickly resolved. Some updates did not work as flawlessly as planned, but once they updated, the server should have improved functionality and reliability. They told us a week from this posting and it should be running and they are quite sorry for the issues and their delayed responses. Our customer service department is of course happy to help as well.
November 21, 2016
Northern Brewer
It no work
Can't register. No tech support. I really question NB's integrity on their decision to still sell this item.John
October 14, 2016
Response from Northern Brewer
Thanks for the review and sorry for the trouble. Beerbug assures us that they are working the issues.
November 21, 2016
Northern Brewer
Don't buy yet
Great product in theory but as of right now you can't create an account so you can't use the beerbug I was told to try again in 2-3 weeks
October 14, 2016
Interesting Device, Terrible Implementation
I purchased the BeerBug recently when on sale and was very excited to be able to get realtime gravity measurements on my beer. However, the website is flakey, overloaded, and you can't add a beer or even test the device at all. All communication with the makers of BeerBug via email and FaceBook have not been answered. I currently have a $200 brick, and am extremely frustrated and upset that NorthernBrewer would even sell such a device that is unusable in any form currently.
October 13, 2016
Response from Northern Brewer
Hi Justin,

We have confidence that Parasitx will be able to overcome the technical server issues that they are encountering, and we believe that this situation is a temporary one. However, I realize that the situation is a bit frustrating at the moment, especially given the lack of public communication on their part. Their team is a smaller one, and they are currently devoting all of their resources to resolving this problem - they don&#x27;t have the sort of customer service staffing that we do, as this issue was an unexpected one.

My advice would be to give it some time, as we think it should be back to normal soon. But if you don&#x27;t want to do that, or if you really would not want to bother waiting, get in touch with us over at brewmaster@northernbrewer.com, or 1-800-681-2739, and we can set up a return for it.
November 21, 2016
Northern Brewer
Would be nice if it worked
I see why it's on sale, it hasn't worked since I got it, I can't even register my account because the site is always down and won't even except my info. To proceed with registration, the support even sucks when you try to resolve it. If I were NB I would take it off the shelves.
October 12, 2016
Nice Concept, Lacks necessary reliable website for proper operation
I have yet to register my device after having this in my possession for almost a week now. Every time I attempt to go to the website to register it, the site is down. As I understand it, the website is necessary to be active for proper results. I would avoid this device unless the developers can maintain a reliable site. Note, I have tried to look around the site for 2 weeks with the same results. I was prompted to purchase with the $99 sale price but will be requesting a return. It's not worth the hours of constant trouble shooting I can see involved with the product and support to "make my life easier".It's very curious how come there have been no updates to the "fixes" on the website log since March of 2016 with all of the apparent complaints. Send back to R&D.
October 12, 2016
Q&A
Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 15 questions Browse 15 questions and 24 answers
Will this fit a 2.5 gallon fermentation bucket?
L I on Jun 17, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Depending on the on the bucket, it may not quite fit in the grommet but you could remove the grommet or drill a separate hole in the lid. According to the manufacturer: "Holes that fit grommet sizes can easily be drilled into the lid without threatening the integrity of the brew lid. Please note it is slightly more difficult to steady the BeerBug when using a half inch grommet hole in the bucket lid."
Where does one get the blow off adapter shown in the photo? Is it included? Even the BeerBug website makes no mention of it.
T B on Jan 11, 2016
BEST ANSWER: There are two adapters included, one a right elbow for a vertical trap bubbler, the other a straight adapter with babed connector for blowoff tube.

FWIW I'm still testing my new units (3) - run eight days with still > 45% of initial battery charge, no data loss. Seems to work as (well as) described

CT
Are you able to use this with a blow off tube? I brew a lot of stouts that tend to have high fermentation activity. I would think that this would be a problem, and was wondering if I would be able to use this or if they are looking to make this possible.
James J on Feb 3, 2016
BEST ANSWER: The BeerBug has an adapter on it that allows for a blowoff hose to be attached instead of a air lock.
Can you use multiples of these in the app to monitor each batch separately?
J O on Dec 27, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes. You can have multiple bugs running at once. You need a strong Wifi signal. I returned mine because it would not sync with my Wifi. Not compatible with Tp-link range extender.
Is there a special bung or stopper required to accommodate both the BeerBug and air lock or tube? If so, is it included?
Iamharrythehat on Dec 1, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The beer bug is designed to be used in standard openings so any bung stopper or grommeted hole with work with the beer bug! I hope this helps! Cheers! James J.
Would this work for one gallon batches?
Tony C on Nov 26, 2015
BEST ANSWER: I think so, the weight is approx 5 inches long and suspended in the wort with fishing line. So as long as there is 8 inches clearance between bottom of air lock and bottom of fermenter you should be ok. Another issue might be is the diameter of weight is 1.25 inches wide. So if your using a gallon wine jug might not fit through neck of bottle.hope this help.
What powers the unit? If batteries, what type?
Jason M on Nov 14, 2015
BEST ANSWER: It charges through a micro USB port. There is an included cable, but you will need to provide a power source. I'm using an old cell phone charger wall unit. There are no batteries required.
Will this work with a conical fermenter? I generally brew 12.5 gallon batches and have a lot of head space, maybe 2.5 gallons worth. I would say that's roughly 12 inches of empty space between the top of my conical and the wort. Cheers.
Matthew S on Nov 28, 2015
BEST ANSWER: As long as the fermentor has an opening similar to a standard carboy and the level of the wort is high enough to submerge the probe then it will work fine.
Will this work with wine making?
Jeff G on Oct 27, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The BeerBug works for wine making

it reads a gravity range of .900 to 1.300
Do I also need to buy the $39.99 temperature probe, or is that included?
N S on Oct 19, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The beer bug will sense the ambient air temperature. If you get the add on probe it can read the actual temperature of the liquid which improves its accuracy.
Does this need direct contact with the wort?
S T on Oct 18, 2015
BEST ANSWER: Yes

but the sensor unit itself does not contact the wort. The included "torpedo" is suspended from the sensor unit and immersed in the wort.
The explanation about this device is nonsense! How does it measure the specific gravity of the wort if there is no sensor in the wort?
P B on Oct 17, 2015
BEST ANSWER: This device measures the gravity buy suspending a "torpedo" in the liquid from the sensor unit that is outside on the fermenting vessel.
How much clearance above the fermenter will you need for this, also with an airlock?
Joe D on Oct 17, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The device itself is 4" tall

and about 3.5" of it stick out above your fermentor. The height with an airlock attached is 7.75" - 8"
Would you please list all data points delivered?
L E on Oct 16, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The BeerBug takes readings every 20 minutes and uploads them to the cloud. You can also put it into "High Activity" mode by pressing the button. Then it will constantly be uploading data for 5 minutes before switching back to its default cycle. The data is then viewable on the BeerBug app in your profile. It will begin monitoring from the time you start a new brew until you tell it the brew is "finished" in the app.
My brewing setup consists of a glass fermenter, airlock, and a heating element wrapped around the fermenter. The heating element is controlled by a thermowell which passes through the stopper. Using you device would require one more port on the stopper. Is this possible?
A L on Oct 16, 2015
BEST ANSWER: The beer bug is inserted wherever your airlock would be inserted..then you put the airlock on the beer bug. So if you have a port that uses the airlock

just use that same hole.

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