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Old 11-02-2015, 04:47 PM   #1
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Basement Wine Cellar


I have a basement wine cellar that was built prior to my owning the house. It was framed in about 12" off the concrete wall foundation. This is great for preventing moisture from seeping into the wood, however, there was no insulation put on the outside of the room itself when it was built and with only a 12" gap, there's no way for me to get in there and insulate the outside of the room with anything to keep the cool air in.

(See the attached diagram)

You can see the shaded area along the 17' wall and 10' wall are air barriers between the cellar and the walls.

My question is seemingly simple but has proven to be very difficult. I wondered if there is any blown in product I could fill that air gap with that WILL come in contact with the concrete walls as well as the outside of the cellar to better insulate the room to keep cold air in?

Thanks for any insight!
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Old 11-02-2015, 06:18 PM   #2
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Loose fill...no.

Foam...sure but it would be expensivo and probably not work.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:00 AM   #3
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How sturdy is the room built, are you able to remove shelves for concrete wall access? Could you glue foamboard at all? Describe both walls...please.

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Old 11-03-2015, 04:47 AM   #4
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Can't remove the shelves to get to the back of the wine racks. If I was to guess it's a 1/2" piece of finishing hardwood sheet like oak plywood nailed to the studs with the shelves built in front of it.

Everything is finished to to support the weight of wine bottles and for maximum aesthetics.
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Old 11-03-2015, 07:24 AM   #5
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According to other posts on the forum, if insulation is placed in that area the cold air supply that's now cooling the wine will be diminished.
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Old 11-03-2015, 08:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeniorSitizen View Post
According to other posts on the forum, if insulation is placed in that area the cold air supply that's now cooling the wine will be diminished.
Wine cellars have cooling units that maintain the proper temperatures. Lack of insulation lets the cool air out of the room. Same concept as a room A/C with no wall insulation.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:39 PM   #7
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A couple of questions -

1.) where are you located? or what is the ambient temperature of the soil?

2.) what is the current temperature of the cellar as it is?

3.) are there any caves in your area that are insulated?

Usually, in most areas the problem is with the cellars being too warm.

Check with a local wine retailer and find out what the temperature of their storage areas are.

I had a friend that grew and sold mushrooms regionally and he had constructed about 100+ uninsulated growing areas made of block with 2' of soil over the top and no heat in MN (down to -20F outside air temps). He also had over 2,000 bottle of his wine collection stored in his artificial "caves". - He did not need air conditioners/heaters because the soil provided the temperature moderation. He did have a few very, very small fans running slowly 24/7/365 to prevent the stratification of the air.

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Old 11-10-2015, 07:40 AM   #8
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I'm in Atlanta, GA and the ambient temp of the soil doesn't get very low during cold months and is warm during the summer.

Without the cooling unit, the space hovers around 76 degrees year round. With cooling unit running, I can get it down to about 66 degrees, but would like to get it to an ideal 55 - 58 degrees for longer term storage of some of my better bottles.

I think the only way I can accomplish it is through better insulation of the room on the outside to prevent cold air loss from the space.
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