Grain Storage Reminders for Fall


Proper grain storage involves managing moisture, temperature, and insect activity in storage structures. Poor temperature control is the primary reason dry grain goes out of condition, allowing moisture to migrate through the grain, accumulate, and cause spoilage. Natural air movements that cause heat and moisture accumulation in stored grain can be offset by proper aeration.

  • Before storing grain, clean all equipment and bins and apply approved insecticides to the clean bin surfaces. DO NOT put new grain on top of old grain infested with insects.
  • Shelled corn should be stored at a maximum moisture content of 15.5% if sold by the next spring, 14% if stored 6-12 months, and 13% if stored more than one year.
  • Soybeans should be stored at a maximum moisture content of 14% if sold by next spring, 12% if stored up to one year, and 11% if stored more than a year.
  • Monitor and control the temperature. Keep grain temperature below 50 °F at all times to minimize insect activity and mold growth. Cool grain down to freezing or below for winter storage.
  • Aerate grain to maintain a uniform temperature. Bins should be aerated whenever the average daily temperature is 10-15 degrees cooler than the grain.
  • Bins should be checked weekly during the fall and spring when temperatures are quickly changing, but can be reduced to every two or three weeks throughout the winter. Watch for crusts, unusual smells, and insects.
  • NEVER enter a bin when grain is flowing and be extremely cautious around all grain handling structures and equipment.


Scott, J. 2014. 8 tips for long-term grain storage. 171003115348