Small Wine Cellar Cooling Units for Refrigerating Smaller Storage Spaces

Small Wine Cellar Cooling Units for Refrigerating Smaller Storage Spaces

There’s a science to selecting the right wine cellar cooling unit, even if you’re refrigerating a smaller space that doesn’t require much cooling. Part of maintaining a healthy home is to design energy efficient living areas, and if your wine cellar cooler is too big or too small then it’s probably inefficient or in-optimal for the task of keeping your wine stored at the perfect temperature. Also small storage spaces can have annoying cooling units that are too loud, or too inaccessible, or they vent in such a way as to make standing in the cellar uncomfortable.

Select the Best Small Wine Cellar Cooler Unit for your Space

Small cellar managers don’t need to worry so much about calculating the heat load of their wine storage space, or charting the changes over the course of a hot summer days and cold winter nights. With a small space the load is pretty constant and manageable. That being said however, cellar owners should decide on the best type of unit for the intended application. They should know the various styles, sizes, capacities and venting options of all suitable solutions, and then decide on the proper make and model. Wine cellar cooling units come in four different styles, and each type employs a different refrigeration methodology or ducting pattern:

Self-contained (the evaporator and condensing unit share the same housing)

Fully ducted self-contained (the unit is fully ducted – instead of being mounted in the cellar, it is installed elsewhere and the air is “conducted” in and out of the cellar)

Split system (the evaporator is in the cellar, and the condensing unit is outside or in an attic or adjacent utility room; a line set connects the two halves of the system)

Fully ducted split system (the evaporator unit and condensing unit are both separate and ducted – instead of being mounted in the cellar, they are both installed elsewhere, and the air is “conducted” in and out of the cellar)

The cooling fans inside self-contained units and non-ducted split systems will generate noise. If you prefer a quiet cellar environment, you should select a fully ducted system. And fully ducted cooling units allow more versatile installation options as well, but they can be more complicated to access for routine maintenance.

Cellar Pro 1800 Series Wine Cooling Unit

CellarPro 1800 small wine cellar cooling unit

The CellarPro 1800 wine cooling unit series was designed for cabinets and small spaces. This popular model is 18″w x 16.5″d x 10.5″h and is a good fit for both residential and small commercial cellars or dining establishments where there’s a lot of foot traffic at mealtimes. This unit offers a choice of top or rear hot exhaustIf the unit’s location does not provide sufficient room for airflow, you may need to purchase a rear duct kit. These cooling units can be installed above the wine cellar when used with our front intake hood. They can also be installed completely inside the wine cellar when used with our rear duct kit, which allows supply and return air flows from the rear of the cooling unit to be ducted up to 100 equivalent feet (50 feet per duct). Energy-saver mode, quick-chill mode, and auto-defrost cycle provide convenient solutions to common cellar needs.

CellarPro cooling units are designed to operate in environments ranging from 40 to 95 degrees. For installations in environments down to 20°F, we recommend adding our compressor heater modification to the cooling unit. Below 20°F, the cooling unit’s performance will begin to degrade.

This unit has cooling capacity for cellars that are 200-400 Cu. Ft.

CellarPro 1880H Houdini was introduced in 2018

The new CellarPro 1800H (the Houdini) is shorter, narrower and longer than the other 1800 series cooling units.  It was introduced in 2018 and marketed by the company as “the first cooling unit specifically designed for glass-enclosed wine cellars“. This factoid is on their website. It is designed for wine cabinets or cellars of up to 200 cubic feet. 

The highly versatile Houdini can be installed inside the cellar, above the cellar, in the ceiling or in the next room. It may also be partially or fully ducted. Ambient temperature range is 40F to 95F. By adding low ambient accessories, the unit will then tolerate cold as low as -20F. The removable power cord can be plugged in from the rear or the side of the cooling unit. The unit includes a three amp receptacle for power (eg to a light) inside the cellar, and it includes a fresh-air filter for easy maintenance and upkeep.

Breezaire Compact Series

Breezaire’s most popular wine cellar cooling systems are completely self-contained modules that are simply mounted in a wall.

Breezaire WKCE Compact Series Cooler Units are smaller-sized cellar cooling units that blow the cold air out the bottom. The air flow direction makes them ideal to be installed in cabinets or narrow width spaces. Compact units can be configured with hot air blowing out the top of the unit as opposed to at the back which is standard. The fresh air intake is still needed at back of unit so plenty of room is needed for air circulation or perhaps a wall-cut to access adjacent space.

Breezaire is sometimes selected by cellar owners because of its attractive metal cabinet that blends in with the decor of their cellar area and can be flush mounted to any wall. Another popular selling feature is their easy installation. Breezaire’s most popular wine cellar cooling systems are completely self-contained modules that are simply mounted in a wall and connected to a standard 115AC source (230V/50Hz also available as special order). No plumbing, no complicated wiring or special procedures are required for on-site installation (you may want to prepare for a drain line). (Split system requires professional installation by a licensed refrigeration technician). Units are shipped from the factory fully charged and ready for use when mounted in a wall and connected to 115 AC volt source.

Two Breezaire Compact Series models available for capacities of up to 265 cubic feet.

Koolspace KoolR 600

Are you looking for a real quiet wine cellar cooling unit? This make and model is the standard for which others measure the noise of their products. The KoolR Plus (Magnum) Wine Cooling Unit (KoolR 600) leads the industry in efficiency, power and quality. Koolspace, koolR™ may be a good choice for a small spaces.

Whisperkool SC 2000i cooling unit
KoolR Plus (Magnum) Wine Cooling Unit (KoolR 600)

Ideally, koolR / KoolRPlus Magnum units should be installed above the cellar door as they need air circulation around and below the unit. The cooling unit’s rear end conveniently monitors the temperature inside your wine cellar with a digital display. The koolR & KoolRPlus (Magnum) wine cellar cooling units come with an off-white colored front grill which can be painted any colour to allow the back end of the device to blend-in with existing decor.

The units come standard with a High-Temperature Alarm. The system’s electronic controls come with advanced EMI / RFI filters. EMI Filters, or electromagnetic interference filters, also called RFI Filters or radio-frequency interference filters, are an electrical device / circuit that mitigate the high frequency electromagnetic noise present on the power lines.

WhisperKOOL Mini Split Wine Cooling Unit

WhisperKOOL Platinum Mini Split is a compact wall mounted wine cellar cooling unit that cools wine cellars up to 500 cubic feet.

The Platinum Mini Split is small and compact, yet powerful and quiet. This efficient wine cooling unit can cool rooms of up to 500 cubic feet. It’s a good choice for a converted closet, pantry, and or economical wine cellar. As with all of the Platinum Models, the Platinum Mini Split comes with our most advanced controller and gives the user complete control over their cellar environment. If you don’t mind seeing the grill of your cooling unit in your cellar, a wall-mounted split system is what you need. If you prefer your unit to be out of sight, you should get a fully ducted split system.

The Platinum Series of split systems allow you to decide where the evaporator unit and the condensing unit will be located. The condensing unit can be located up to 100 feet away from the evaporator unit. The evaporator unit will be mounted in the cellar, or it can also be located nearby with air ducting.

Please note it’s strongly recommended that buyers also purchase the exterior housing with the WSSMINI regardless of positioning.  Without the housing, the inner fan is exposed.  There is no additional delivery cost if the housing is ordered with the cooling unit, while there will be a delivery fee if the housing is ordered separately afterwards.

A Ceiling-Mount Mini Split is also available where the evaporator may be fully or partially recessed into the ceiling for a very discreet appearance.

Maintaining Your Wine Cellar’s Chill

After a wine cellar has been built, regardless of its size, volume and material specifications, the time will still come when regular inspections are needed to keep an eye on its integrity and make sure you’re not inadvertently cooling down your entire house or restaurant. Even giving the unit a good vacuum occasionally will help to clear any build-up.

During wine cellar inspections, the use of thermal imagery can determine whether the conditions of the cellar plus the wine cooling unit still provide the ideal environment for wine storage.

Proper Wine Storage in Wine Cellars: Managing Temperature, Humidity, and Vibrations

Proper Wine Storage in Wine Cellars: Managing Temperature, Humidity, and Vibrations

Wine is perishable, so proper wine storage is critical to maintaining its delicate flavour and bouquet.

The manner in which wine is stored impacts the way it tastes when served.  Collectors have no control over how their wine was made, but after purchasing the product it’s up to them to treat the bottles properly and in ways that will increase their flavour and value. This post will explore our beliefs on proper wine cellar temperature, humidity, lighting, racking angles, and how to manage vibrations and ventilate your wine cellar. If you’re serious about drinking fine wines, then the act of storing and handling your best vintages is a serious exercise, and one that is both science and art.

wooden wine racks in glass door wine cellar Toronto

Wall mounted wooden wine racks, wine coolers, temperature and humidity controls, storage angles and decanters are just some of the equipment necessary to protect and perfectly age a high quality bottle of wine.

This detailed blog post will showcase Rosehill’s wine storage secrets and give insights into best practices for wine cellar maintenance.

What is the Best Temperature for a Wine Cellar?

thermometer in wine cellar, best temperature for storing wineMaintaining the optimal temperature and avoiding wild temperature swings are the two most critical exercises for proper wine storage. A stable and pervasive chill is what makes a good wine cellar.

Wine can be stored safely from 40° to 65°F (4° to 18°C). The optimal storage temperature depends on the wine’s age and how long it will be stored. If the bottle will be opened within a year or two, a warmer temperature of 60° to 65°F (15° to 18°C) will speed the development of bottle bouquet.

If your intention is to store the wine for longer term, cooler temperatures are desired. Quality white wines are usually consumed sooner than red wines but can benefit by cooler storage. In this case the esters, or fruity character, disappear more rapidly at warmer temperatures.

What Happens When Wine is Stored at Room Temperature?

Storage at room temperature at 70°F (21°C) or higher will cause undesirable changes in the wine as various reactions are accelerated in the bottle, but at different rates. The result is a lack of balance in the aging process. Even fluctuations of more than 5° to 10°F (2° to 4°C) are undesirable.

spoiled wine tastes like fruit stew , oxidized wine is vinegarWhen wine is stored at room temperature, or placed in attics where the temperature fluctuates, the sensitive and perishable liquid can suffer heat damage. Wine is cooking at 80°F. When uncorked, a cooked wine may smell like a fruit stew or slightly burned. Tasting cooked wine is an unpleasant experience as the finish is absolutely ruined.

When wine is too refrigerated, by contrast, it can also suffer. When stored in too-cold frigid temperatures the liquid is subject to “slow aging” which means it doesn’t mature or gain anything during the aging process. Wine stored below 50°F hardly ages at all – it’s still a ripe juice when uncorked, years later. Is there sedimentation in the bottle? Cellar managers that encounter particles in wine stored at lower temperatures could be seeing tartaric acid crystals in the liquid.

Improper Wine Storage in Attics, Storage Lockers and Shipping Containers

improper storage of wine will ruin the flavour and bouquetWine stored in garages and attics is quite often subject to excessive temperature fluctuations. Wine in bottles stacked upright in boxes, placed upright in the cardboard box in a garage can lose its seal. The temperature fluctuations can break the seal of the cork, thereby exposing the wine to air or cause a pressure differential, which pulls air into the bottle. Oxidation: wine exposed to excessive oxygen will age faster.

How to Maintain a Consistent Wine Cellar Temperature?

If you are just constructing a wine cellar there are plenty of things you can do to help keep the cellar cool in all seasons. During cellar construction, keep an eye on all places without insulation. There should be no gaps – just like insulating a house. Cellar owners minimize the potential “coolness” loss areas like windows and poorly insulated doors and ceilings. Top cellar owners concentrate on building a controlled environment for their prized wine collection.

If you have a wine cellar and are investigating its environment, simply put your hand on the walls and ceilings and feel for unseen heat sources. Restaurant wine cellars are notorious for also having computer servers or unseen ventilation ducts that either siphon the chill or vent hot air into the abode. Be on the lookout for air gaps or cracks in the wall or floor or ceiling too. If your wine cellar needs better cooling please view our selection of wine coolers with adjustable temperature controls, and wine cellar cooling units for full environmental control.

Regarding Wine Cellar Humidity, How to Control Moisture in Wine Cellar?

The way in which your wine is stored and handled has every bit as much to do with its taste as does the way it’s made. Preserving a proper stable storage environment for the liquid to age and become more deliciously complicated as it matures is the role of the wine cellar and manager.

Why Control Humidity in a Wine Cellar?

Although sometimes overlooked during the wine cellar-construction process, proper humidity is also very important. Humidity control prevents mold from forming (which happens naturally when a cellar is too humid) and protects the wooden corks in wine bottles from shrinking and drying out (which happens when the wine cellar is too dry).

black mold and white mold in a cellar basement, wine cellarMoisture leads to mold and mildew growth. The glass and stainless steel used in modern cellars tends to be more “sterile” and these soulless materials don’t allow for mold to grow, like the organic substances of stone or wood. Since wine absorbs the aromas in its environment, the presence of mold impacts the flavor through the cork.  Wine stored in cellars devoid of mold usually lack complexity. So, although many cellar managers believe it’s ideal to have mold growth within a wine cellar, it can be dangerous if it spreads into the walls of your home or restaurant business.

Moldy corks or even fungus-covered corks are not necessarily bad, as long as they still maintain the seal (but fungi-covered corks can become awkward talking points in wine cellar tours).

On the other hand corks that are too dry are deadly to wine. A deteriorated cork will lose its seal and this will lead to oxidation of the wine. When the seal is broken then oxygen will slowly leech into the bottle causing the conversion of the wine into its acidic form – vinegar. Wine that tastes bitter or like vinegar is usually the result of failed corking causing wine oxidation. (Tip to winemakers: screw-cap bottle closures do not require humidity in the wine cellar.)

How To Measure Humidity in a Wine Cellar

program humidity meter, hygrometer in wine cellarRelative Humidity (RH) is the percentage of vapor in the air at a given temperature. Storage humidity levels should ideally stay between 50% to 70%, not much higher, nor lower. When it’s too high, mold can form and bottle labels will be ruined. Excessive humidity does not affect the wine, however.

TIP: Wine bottles should be stored on their side to allow the wine to keep the cork wet, and this contact will discourage the cork from drying out should humidity conditions not be ideal. The ideal storage angle is another factor we’ll discuss later in this article.

Four Factors That Affect Wine Cellar Humidity

Three of the four factors that affect wine cellar humidity are beyond the control of the cellar manager:

  1. Geography
  2. Climate
  3. Season
  4. How well your cellar is constructed and insulated (vapor-barriers, ceiling insulation, etc.)

Rosehill offers advice on humidity gauges and humidification systems. Contact us if you have further questions – our experts will help you.

Regarding Wine Cellar Lights, How Dark Should A Wine Cellar Be?

glassblowers in Maine 1890 making dark coloured wine bottlesEver since humans discovered glass making, and started putting wine in bottles, artisans have known that dark colored glass bottles help shield wine from sunlight, and wine tastes better when stored in dark glass away from the sun.  Glasshouses in the late 1800s prized their dark glass bottles for wine and spirits, as contrasted to the clarity of clear glass bottles for compound medicines and cobalt blue bottles for poisons.

It wasn’t until later in the 19th century that scientists and winemakers understood ultraviolet light, and its destructive properties, and only after more experimentation was it revealed that ultraviolet light can penetrate even dark-colored glass! Wine cellars became even more important from that moment on as storing wine in dark conditions is essential to keep this perishable liquid from spoiling.

Ultraviolet light can cause oxidization of the tannins, causing an unpleasant aroma, ruining the wine. Sparkling wines are even more sensitive to light (all spectrums) and should be given extra care when stored in wine cellars with lots of foot traffic and fingers on the light switches. Delicate, light-bodied white wines run the greatest risk from light exposure and are often packaged in darkly tinted wine bottles that offer some protection from bright light. Wines packaged in clear, light green and blue colored bottles are the most vulnerable to light and may need extra precautions for storage.

soth facing stone cellar window sunlightFor example, the Champagne house of Louis Roederer uses cellophane wrap to protect its premium cuvee Cristal from light, the wine being packaged in a clear bottle. In the cellar, wines are stored in corrugated boxes or wooden crates to protect the wines from direct light.

Buy a light timer. Whenever possible, put your cellar lights on a timer. If you ever forget to turn off the lights in your wine cellar, the timer will do it for you, keeping your wine safe. Also, when it comes to selecting the best lighting fixtures, top cellars utilize low-wattage surface-mounted lighting to minimize additional heat in the room and avoid any cool loss that may occur with holes for pot lights. LED lights come in a variety of shapes and configurations and can be made to look incredible in any space. While pot lights on a dimmer switch may seem like a good decorative idea, and one that is imminently functional, the pots are never insulated well enough and thus are not recommended for wine cellars. It should also be noted that low-wattage, non-heat emitting lights (LEDs) are better for wine storage than fluorescent lighting (see below).

Why you should never have fluorescent lights in your wine cellar?

no not put flourescent lights in wine cellarFluorescent lighting emits significant amounts of ultraviolet light, which negatively impact wines on a photo-chemical level.  UV light can age wine prematurely.  Sunlight, fluorescent lights, and even some tungsten filament incandescent lighting can adversely react with phenolic compounds in wine and create “wine faults”.  A wine fault is an unpleasant characteristic of a wine often resulting from poor wine making practices or storage conditions that leads to wine spoilage. Many of the elements that cause wine faults are already naturally present in wine, but at insufficient concentrations to be of issue in most bottles.

Glass wine cellars are hard to shield from bright lights. While modern glass wine cellars are lovely to behold, and offer guests and dining patrons much to contemplate while tasting wine, our wine cellar-design preference is to have no glass in the structure at all.  If you read Rosehill wine cellar design page you will notice we shy away from using glass either in the wine cellar or on cabinet doors because of its poor thermal and photosensitive properties. We love our various designer clients, but they can sometimes use glass to a point beyond all practicality when it comes appropriate wine storage.  Something to think about …

Wine Cellar Racking: What’s the Best Angle for Wine Cellar Bottle Racks?

wine corks in glass bowl at Rosehill Wine Cellar showroom in EtobicokeWine corks are typically made from the bark of cork oak trees. The cork oak (Quercus suber) is native to the Mediterranean region, which is where most of the world’s cork supply is obtained. Because of its impermeability, buoyancy, elasticity, and fire resistance, it is used in a variety of products, the most common of which is wine bottle stoppers.

After about ten years in a wine bottle, a wooden cork can sometimes deteriorate; the rate of deterioration seems to be affected by ambient storage temperature and humidity of the air. Warmer and excessively humid storage environments cause growth of molds, which attack both the cork and the label. Insufficient humidity may cause the cork to dry and crumble, in which case it should be replaced. So what should you do to prevent either of these unfortunate scenarios? Store your wine at a proper angle.

Why should most wine bottles be stored laying flat on their sides?

When wine is stored on its side, the cork remains wet. When wet, the transmission of air through the cork into the wine is minimized. When bottles are stored upright, the cork eventually dries out and oxygen in the air causes chemical changes in the wine, spoiling it. In addition, the cork may work loose due to pressure changes and cause leakage or exposure to air.

Fortified wines should be stored standing up.  Sparkling wines—which have about 70 to 90 pounds of pressure per square inch in a sealed bottle because of all that carbon dioxide—are naturally more humid inside, and the cork will not dry out as fast, if ever. Madeira is a long-lived fortified wine that’s basically oxidized already, so there is less concern about it getting further oxidized … but there’s an exception to this rule, and that exception concerns port. Bottles of port should be stored on their side.

Wine Cellars from RosehillView our wooden wine racks with several configurations of side-angled bottle holders (which also help reduce vibration) for longer term storage options.

Since we began this section by discussing wooden corks, we should conclude our discussion with a brief mention of plastic corks. Generally speaking, plastic corks work just fine and some people feel they provide a better seal – plastic corks don’t deteriorate. However, if you want notes from the cellar in the bottle you need wood. With plastic corks you still want to be concerned with the other wine storage factors we’ve touched in this series: light, temperature, etc., but with plastic corks humidity becomes less of an issue.  And of course, there is a certain time-honoured romance and Epicurean tradition, which seems absent with plastic corks and screw top bottles. What do you think?

How to Manage Vibrations and Micro Vibrations in Wine Cellar?

garbage truck in urban alley vibrations above restaurant wine cellarHow do the constant vibrations from a nearby roadway (streetcar!) and the micro vibrations from nearby cooling systems affect wine making and proper wine storage? They can shake, rattle and roll the body out of the wine.  Constant vibrations in your wine cellar will disturb the slow process of biochemical evolution in wine and this is often fatal to finer crus.

Common mistakes include storing wine on wooden floors, which vibrate with human foot traffic. Or storing wine in basement cellars that are near or share an exterior wall with a garbage-bin pickup-point outside.  Urban restaurants with basement wine cellars struggle with these man-made quakes; modern garbage trucks are massive and they make significant tremors up and down every nearby building when they shake the garbage of the bins, which is three times a week in most cities across North America.

How to Protect Wine Cellar from Micro Vibrations?

scrap wood cuts at Rosehill wine cellar shopWall anchored wooden racks are typically the best option for long term storage as wood dampens small vibrations, and wall anchoring helps to eliminate any sway in the racks.  Woods like beech, redwood, maple and mahogany are best choices for wine cellar racks because they respond well to the cool, moist environment of an Ontario cellar and these woods do not impart any negative odor that may be absorbed into the bottle as the wine ages

All Heart California redwood wine racking in a custom cellar built by Rosehill Wine Cellars.

View our selection of wood wine racks for wine cellars and open area storage points. These wooden racks have smooth radius edge which helps prevent vintage label tearing or damage.  Below is a glace at the scrap wood pile – six or eight different species of wood are frequently used at Rosehill as we customize the racks to every environment and decor.

Plan Out Proper Ventilation for Wine Cellar Before Construction

Proper ventilation is critical for long-term wine storage as it allows for sufficient air-flow to help eliminate odor build-up, or mold, which can harm wine bottle corks and labels (*although some winemakers like moldy cellars as they believe the earthy storage environment can positively impact the wine).  The moldy cellar is sure to negatively impact the house or commercial building that accommodates the wine cellar.

During the wine cellar design phase, and wine cellar construction it is important to include an adequate method of ventilation and air-flow.  Premium quality wine cellar cooling units offered by Rosehill are designed to provide optimal filtration and ventilation solutions for cellars of varying sizes.

 

5 More Facts About Wine Cellar Cooling Units

5 More Facts About Wine Cellar Cooling Units

Wine Cooling units

Breezaire Cooling Units

Wine cellar cooling units can rightly be considered the cornerstone of a proper wine storage environment. There are many other factors that impact the effectiveness of a wine cooling unit, however. The following are more facts about wine cellar cooling units, including information about other components that affect how the unit performs.

1-Vapor Barrier

During construction of a wine cellar, it’s essential to include a vapor barrier or vapor retarder. Because sudden or frequent temperature and humidity fluctuations in a wine cellar can damage wine, the vapor barrier and insulation are both of tremendous importance. A vapor retarder prevents warm air from entering the cool environment in your wine cellar. Various factors determine the thickness, finishes, and applications of a vapor barrier. Those factors include the size, capacity, and location of your wine cellar. The vapor barrier must be installed on the warm side of the wall, and the process must be thoroughly done. The effectiveness of the vapor barrier impacts the performance and effectiveness of the wine cellar cooling unit.

2-Insulation

Professionals in wine cellar construction understand the unique role insulation plays, to ensure that wine cellar cooling units can do the job they are designed to do. Insulation must be properly installed in the walls, floors, doors, and windows. The requirements for insulation are determined by the outside wall the cellar occupies and the depth of the cellar below grade. Some of the challenges to proper wine cellar insulation include ductwork, plumbing pipes, and electrical wirings.

3-Drain Line

Another important aspect of a wine cellar that many people don’t know about is the condensate drain line. The condensate fitting and tube allows overflow condensation to exit from underneath the wine cellar cooling unit. The drain line must be connected at all times, so that the walls and other wine cellar components aren’t damaged by water. Maintaining the proper temperature and humidity in a wine cellar requires a drain line. However, when a wine cellar is built properly, condensation is minimal.

4-Electrical Circuit

The electrical work on a wine cellar is also important, to ensure that the cooling unit can perform at an optimal level. A dedicated electrical circuit helps to minimize the risk of a tripped circuit breaker. If the electricity ever went out for a prolonged period, it could mean the wine environment is altered and the wine is spoiled.

5-Maintenance Required

Previously in this two-part series it was mentioned that wine cooling units operate up to 70% of the time. Quality wine cellar cooling units, such as those made by manufacturers Breezaire and WhisperKOOL, can be depended upon to work dependably usually for 35,000 hours before any type of mechanical service is required.

All of the essential elements of building a quality wine cellar have an impact on the wine cooling unit. When you trust professionals like the wine cellar construction experts at Rosehill Wine Cellars, you can be confident of top quality results. Contact Rosehill Wine Cellars today to get started on your own wine cellar in southern Ontario. Recommendations will be made on the best wine cooling unit to choose, based on the specifics of the wine cellar itself.

5 Facts about Wine Cellar Cooling Units  

5 Facts about Wine Cellar Cooling Units  

CellarCOOL: Through the Wall Wine Cellar Cooling Units

CellarCool wine cellar cooling unit.

If you have a wine cellar, a wine cellar cooling unit is essential. The entire point of a wine cellar is to provide the right environment in which to store wine. The cooling unit is the component that does the most to accomplish that crucial function. With a wine cooling unit of the appropriate size from a leading manufacturer such as Wine Guardian, CellarCool, WhisperKOOL, or CellarPro, you can rest assured that your wine is being beautifully preserved. With these cooling units plus other top brands, you can anticipate enjoying your wine collection, including the vintages that are best when stored for years. The following are five facts about wine cellar cooling units that you may not be aware of.

1. Wine Cellar Temperature

To keep the temperature in a wine cellar unit at the desired levels, wine cellar cooling units typically run between 50% and 70% of the time, depending on size and construction of the wine cellar.

2. Temperature Differentials

Temperature differential must be checked before you can make the right determination on the wine cellar cooling unit you need. The area a unit is exhausting into is part of the equation. A 30°F temperature differential means that if the exhaust environment is 90°F, the cooling unit can only cool the cellar down to 60°F.

3. Noisy Cooling Units

Cooling units make noise, though it is minimized as much as possible. Noise is generated from the compressor and airflow through the fans. The location of the cellar and the cooling unit exhaust should be considered, with regard to having acceptable levels of noise.

4. Proper Ventilation

During the operation of a wine cooling unit, heat is absorbed from the air and dissipated from the unit. In other words, a large amount of heat is generated by cooling units. For this reason, proper ventilation is essential.

5. Proper Humidity Control

Precise humidity control is another aspect of creating perfect conditions in a wine cellar. In low humidity, wine corks tend to dry out, crack, and shrink. This causes oxidation of the wine, which destroys the flavors. If the humidity level is too high, mildew and mold can grow in the cellar, including on wine labels. Some wine cellar cooling units, such as all WhisperKOOL cooling systems, remove excess humidity as well as maintain the proper temperature.

When you have a custom wine cellar built by experts like the professionals at Rosehill Wine Cellar, you can trust that all aspects of the cellar will be a perfect match for the recommended options for a wine cooling unit. There’s more to learn about wine cooling units in the second part of this series.

Why Wine Cellar Thermal Load Calculation is Not a “One and Done”

Why Wine Cellar Thermal Load Calculation is Not a “One and Done”

Wine cellar construction is a specialized niche. As the experts know, installing the perfect refrigeration system is essential, to preserve wine. Getting the selection of a wine cooling unit right is directly linked to thermal load calculation. Engineers calculate thermal load based on specifics provided about your particular wine cellar. Even after a wine cellar has been built according to the correct specifications, the time comes when regular inspections are needed. During wine cellar inspections, the use of thermal imagery can determine whether the conditions of the cellar plus the wine cooling unit still provide the ideal environment for wine storage.

What factors are considered in calculating thermal load?

Some of the factors considered in calculating thermal load won’t change but others can be affected over time, creating

Wine Cooling units

Wine Guardian cooling unit

an altered environment. First, there are wine cellar specifications about the permanent structure, such as height of the cellar and the square footage and type of glass, if any. The following are among the other things considered when calculating thermal load:

  • Which walls and/or ceiling are exposed to the sun or a non-conditioned environment, such as a garage?
  • What are the humidity and temperate levels around the cellar?
  • What in the cellar generates heat? The type of lighting used is highly relevant, since some bulbs create a significant amount of heat, even if non-UV, and others, such as LED lights, create a miniscule amount of heat, in comparison.
  • Is the wine cellar residential or commercial? The frequency of use impacts the wine cellar environment.
  • What type of wine cooling unit will be installed?
  • Are there bends in combined ducting, and are those bends sharp or gradual?
  • How many bottles are expected to be stored in the wine cellar?

Why wine cellar inspections are important

The answers about a wine cellar at the time it is built can change for many different reasons, impacting how ideally the wine cooling unit may be for the space. In addition, wine cooling units themselves eventually need to be replaced. They harder the cooling system has to work to maintain the right temperature, the sooner it will deteriorate.

Because of the changes that may exist, including those shaped by time, wine cellar inspections are important. For example, insulation may no longer provide the same level of efficiency at keeping out heat. A wine collection is an investment that needs to be protected, and diligence is important, to prevent valuable wine from being spoiled.

Thermal imagery is new technology that can be used to determine where heat may be coming from in a wine cellar and whether the environment is still maintained at the desired temperature and humidity range.

Does your wine cellar need an inspection?

Wine cellars have become more than dark, dank storage rooms for fine wine. In modern times, they are often enjoyed as places to bring friends and sample the wine. Another reason inspections may be needed is the addition of lighting. Contact the experts at Rosehill Wine Cellar, whether you need wine cellar construction or a professional wine cellar inspection. Don’t forget: Thermal load calculation is not a “one and done” venture.