Beer koozies are more crucial than you think. When you pull a beer out of the fridge, the condensation that builds up on the outside of the can releases heat, warming your drink twice as much in humid weather compared with dry weather, researchers found recently. Beer koozies, you see, are priceless protectors of the cold.
Researcher Dale Durran, Ph.D., of the University of Washington, arrived at this conclusion while trying to teach concepts like evaporative cooling and heat caused by condensation; he figured a cool drink on a sultry day served as a good example. He calculated how much warmth comes from water droplets on the outside of a can. Water just four-thousandths of an inch thick could warm the can’s contents quickly, he found. 38°F to 51°F is the estimated rise in the temperature of the beer in your 12-ounce can after just 5 minutes on a hot, humid day (86°F, 70% humidity). So drink fast or use a koozie.
“Probably the most important thing a beer koozie does is not simply insulate the can, but keep condensation from forming on the outside of it,” Durran says.
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