Published at Thursday, May 31st, 2018 - 03:01:51 AM. . By Heather Chow.
The general rule when building is, the thicker the walls the better the insulation factor, the better the cellar maintains a consistent temperature. A vapor barrier and insulation is required. 6-mil plastic sheeting should be applied to the hot side of the cellar walls & ceiling. If it is impossible to apply to the outside walls then apply the vapor barrier from within the cellar. Wrap the entire cellar, walls and ceilings, in plastic, leaving it loose in-between the stud cavity so the insulation can be placed easily. Recommended MINIMUM R Factor: Walls: R 11 Ceilings: R 19
For flooring, cover the insulation panels with plain wood (plywood), preferably overlaid with a thick synthetic carpet which can cushion dropped bottles and minimise breakage. The optimum cooling equipment is not domestic air conditioners but industrial refrigerating compressors, situated outside the houseapartment and connected to evaporators in the cellar, which are best mounted on the ceiling to save wall space for the racking. It is better to provide over rather than under capacity of cooling because it imposes less strain on the compressor. And insist on high quality equipment, especially the controlling thermostat. A faulty thermostat could cause the compressor to operate non-stop, leading to temperatures of 50 degrees fahrenheit or more below zero, with absolutely disastrous and irretrievable consequences to your wine. Provision of an alarm set to go off if the temperature goes beyond preset minimum and maximum temperatures is essential.
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