The best way to secure your fine wine collection for proper aging is to create the perfect storage environment. Wines thrive in dark places where the light cannot hit them directly and with medium to high humidity. However, the temperature is also an essential consideration.
If your wine cellar already has the ideal temperature and environment, you won’t need to install a cooling unit or humidifier, but that will depend entirely on the area you live in and the average temperature throughout the year. If there are times when the temperature is too high, you’ll want to consider adding a cooling unit.
In today’s guide, we’ll take a look at cooling units and whether they are necessary for your wine cellar. You’ll also learn more about home wine cellars’ temperature and humidity levels to help you create the perfect environment for your collection.
The Importance of a Wine Cellar Cooling Unit
For wine cellar temperature control, we recommend an average temperature of 55ºF for most situations. That temperature will keep your wine safe as it ages properly. However, if you cannot achieve that temperature naturally, you’ll need to install a cooling unit.
Why Are Wine Cellars Cold?
If you store your wine in a cellar with an average temperature below 50ºF, your wine won’t age properly. On the other hand, if the temperature is higher than 60ºF, the wine will age too quickly. Furthermore, if the temperature is over 80ºF, your wine will literally cook while stored in your cellar.
A high-quality cooling unit will help prevent these problems while helping your wine age correctly. The cooling unit will keep the cellar at the same temperature all year round, perfect in areas with very distinctive seasons.
How to Keep a Wine Cellar Cool Using a Cooling Unit
The wine cellar cooling unit works like an air conditioner. Cooling units designed for wine cellars monitor and control the temperature of the room at all times to prevent variations. Some of these devices can also control the humidity levels of your wine cellar. The more features the cooling unit has, the more expensive it will be, but the more protection it will provide.
Types of Wine Cellar Cooling Units
When it comes to cooling units, no one size fits all. Every cellar has unique needs that not every cooling unit will be able to match. That’s why manufacturers provide a wide selection of models with different and unique features.
Here are some of the most popular wine cellar cooling unit types available:
- Through the wall systems: A through-the-wall cooling unit is a self-contained system that exhausts heat outside your cellar while cycling the air to keep the environment cool. It is the most cost-effective option because it needs less space to function.
- Ducted systems: A ducted system is the quietest cooling unit. It is almost vibration-free, but it requires more space to function correctly. This system circulates air through insulated ductwork while sitting in an adjacent room. It is one of the most popular options among collectors.
- Split systems: A split system places the condenser outside the room, making it easier for warm air to dissipate. It tends to be the most useful option for bigger spaces where the noise of a motor might not be ideal. This type of system is our recommendation if you are looking for effectiveness.
- Extreme temp units: If you live in the middle of a desert or a place like Florida, a regular cooling unit won’t work for your cellar. We recommend a unit designed for extreme weather conditions in these kinds of situations. An extreme temp unit will help you with very hot or cold areas.
Does a Wine Cellar Need Ventilation?
Your wine needs to breathe, and your wine cellar does too. The ideal way to create ventilation for your wine collection is to make the air circulation inside the cellar as even as possible. Avoid drafts because they can disrupt the necessary environment for proper wine aging.
Additionally, having good ventilation in your cellar can help enhance your cooling unit’s temperature and humidity control. If you can control the temperature through better ventilation, it can help you save on your electricity bill.
Wine Cellar Cooling and Humidity
The humidity level of your wine cellar is another essential aspect to consider when creating the perfect environment for your collection. An ideal humidity level for a wine cellar is between 50% and 70%, with 60% ideal.
Humidity over 70% can lead to problems like mold and wine degradation, which will render your wine collection worthless. On the other hand, humidity below 50% can dry out your corks and let oxygen in, accelerating aging and devaluing the wine.
Wine Cellar Humidity Control Equipment
The best way to control humidity is by choosing the right place to build your wine cellar. That’s why most collectors use basements and underground storage for their fine wines. If a basement is not an option for you, you can create your own cellar anywhere in your home by using equipment to control the humidity levels.
Humidifiers and cooling units can help create the perfect humidity level for your cellar. However, installing a vapor barrier can also control humidity levels. It is a plastic barrier that prevents condensation inside the cellar.
If you live in a dry area, you’ll need to install a humidifier. This machine will keep your cellar humid enough for your wine collection to thrive. It is recommended in deserts and high-altitude areas.
On the other hand, if you live in an extremely humid area, you should consider combining a humidifier and a cooling unit for better results. We recommend this option for places like Florida or Louisiana.
Wine Racks America Cooling Units
There are many different cooling unit brands on the market. These manufacturers offer a diverse selection of models with unique benefits and advantages for your cellar.
Here are the most popular cooling unit brands:
- WhisperKOOL: It is one of the most reliable and experienced brands. The company designs and manufactures high-quality cooling systems for modern home cellars. You can find a WhisperKOOL cooling unit for every cellar size and at an affordable price.
- Wine Guardian: This cooling unit brand offers the most versatile models for a wide range of needs because they are designed with flexibility in mind. You can use them for almost any type of cellar in virtually any kind of weather. Every unit is made of high-quality materials and provides many benefits for your cellar.
- CellarPro: It is another option with excellent versatility that you can use for almost any cellar type, whether commercial or homemade. These cooling units are durable and reliable in any kind of environment.
- CellarCool: The CellarCool models are powerful, quiet, energy-efficient, and user-friendly. They are perfect for smaller cellars as they can cover up to 2000 cubic feet. So, if you have under-the-stairs, closet-converted, or pantry cellars, these models might be the right ones for you.
Invest in the Best Wine Cooling Units with Wine Racks America
If you are wondering how to cool a wine cellar, we’ve got you covered. At Wine Racks America, we have a wide selection of models for every need, regardless of the size of your wine collection. We also have high-quality dehumidifiers to help cool wines and age them properly.
Check out our entire cooling units catalog or contact us at 888-373-6057 for more information about our products and services!