Iowa State University Extension agricultural engineer Kris Kohl recommends farmers cool down the storage bin and make sure the moisture level isn’t too high when the beans are harvested.
“We need to aerate the bin and get the temperature down to refrigerator temperatures which would be 40-degrees or below,” Kohl says. “Soybeans in general, it’s hard to harvest them when they’re above the 13%.”
For soybeans with a higher moisture content, it’s sometimes best to dry them using natural air and to avoid firing up the heaters.
“A lot of people say that soybeans don’t dry like corn or they don’t dry normally,” Kohl says, “but all of the calculations show the rate of speed is what you’d expect it to be.”
Precautions need to be taken when drying soybeans.
“The really scary thing about soybeans is, being an oil seed, they have a lot of energy in them and if you ever get them to catch fire, they will burn up everything,” Kohl says. “I really encourage people to just use natural air.”
Some growers might want to take their soybeans to a commercial elevator and run them through a corn dryer, but he says the risk of fire is far too great.
(Thanks to Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton)