How to Build Your Own Wine Cellar

Are you thinking of investing in a wine cellar? Well before you begin building one do you know what it actually does? If you live in the world of wine a wine cellar can be a symbol of status, but besides looking important and holding wine it does a lot more than that.

A wine cellar stores as well as protects the wine from external factors that can damage the wine. Main external damaging factors include light, heat, and humidity. Wine is perishable under these conditions but if protected the bottles of wine can maintain their quality, flavor, richness, and aroma as they mature over the years.

Before building a wine cellar, keep in mind that it has to keep a consistent temperature, darkness, and humidity. You will also need to provide good ventilation and cleanliness. So how do you build the perfect wine cellar? Here are some steps to follow:

As before you start any project you know it is always good to do some thorough research. There are numerous sites on the internet that offer kits for wine cellars. The average range in price can go from 2000 to 4000 dollars conservatively. It will get more expensive depending on the quality of items you choose. It is not good to short cut on quality especially if you will be storing expensive wines.

You may choose to have your wine cellar above or below ground depending on your house. A larger house may provide more space for a wine cellar above ground, while a house with a basement to put a wine cellar in is actually the best solution to provide the best support for the weight of the racks and coolers.

Whatever area you choose it needs to be properly insulated. Inner walls should have insulation with an R value of at least 11 and exterior walls and ceilings should be at least R-19. Putting a wine cellar in the basement also requires a vapor barrier for the walls and concrete to seal the floors. A vapor barrier is usually a polyethylene plastic of 6mm. Make sure you have the right face against the walls or moisture might cause damage to the walls.

Next is the door – The best door should not be made out of wood because they will not provide the proper insulation. It also should be solid, windowless and have proper weather stripping to provide an airtight seal.

The cooler should be placed in the back of the wine cellar because it is the most appealing spot. Place on boards going perpendicular to the width of the cooler and the top should be around 6 inches from the ceiling.

At last you can finish the space by putting up drywall on the walls with a durable strip paneling. When choosing your lighting stay away from recessed lights because air can get through and also place light switches on the outside so that they will not get in the way of wine racks.

Source: How and Why To Build A Wine Cellar 3rd Edition by Richard M. Gold

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