Building Your Own Wine Cellar

A wine cellar must be created and designed and like a refrigerator. Meticulous attention must be taken when selecting a room to build a wine cellar because wine can only be maintained in very specific environmental conditions. Underground rooms are ideal. However, make sure you consult a wine specialist – Custom Wine Cellars Virginia, before making any final decisions. Preparing the room is key to controlling the environmental factors that may affect the storing and aging of your wine. A well-constructed wine cellar will allow you to use a simple cooling system.

First off, wide temperature fluctuations will damage wine. Therefore, wine should be stored at a constant temperature, ranging from 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit. There are several cooling systems available to help you maintain this constant temperature. Choose and install a cooling system and be sure it works with your cellar size, construction, and surrounding rooms.

The humidity of the room should be carefully measured, as well. Too much will cause labels to break down and mildew to form on corks. On the flip side, low humidity will dry your corks. That is why the ideal humidity range should be around 60- 80%. 70% is the sweet spot.

Walls: Stud walls should be constructed from 2 x 4 or 2 x 6 lumber spaced 16 apart. Follow your local or state building code. Using 2 x 6 constructions will allow for 6-1/4 thick R19 insulation.

Ceiling: The ceiling will require insulation in the same manner as the walls. Depending on what’s already in place, you may be able to add insulation between existing ceiling joists.

Floor: The floor needs to be insulated, too. However, if the floor is concrete – as is commonly found in basement areas – additional insulation may be unnecessary. Although concrete has a near-zero R-value, in conjunction with the earth underneath it provides thermal mass which should prevent heat seeping into the cellar or coolness escape.

Light exposure must also be carefully monitored. Light accelerates the aging process, and when dealing with white or sparkling wine, light sensitivity increases dramatically. Avoid ultraviolet such as fluorescent at all costs. Low heat emitting LED’s, natural, and conventional lights that dim is suitable.

It is best to contact Custom Wine Cellars Virginia, a wine cellar professional who will help you with the installation of the modular racks and will allow the wine to be stored on its side and at a slight downward angle. This will allow the cork to maintain contact with the wine, so it doesn’t dry out and blocks air from seeping in. Additionally, every single bottle should also be easily accessible to not disturb the other bottles.

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