Building a Wine Cellar

H2O2 can help you create a custom wine cellar to satisfy all your wine needs. From modular redwood racking systems to free standing cellars and cooling units. We can build your dream cellar. Please contact us for details.

How to Build a Wine Cellar

  1. Desired capacity – How many bottles do you currently have and how many would like to reach. If possible, always go higher than your estimated number as most likely, you will out grow it.

  2. Expandability - If you are unsure of your desired capacity, will you be able to expand the room later? Consider a slightly larger cooling unit to accommodate a possible expansion later.

  3. Electricity - You will need lighting together with a separate outlet for the cooling unit. The unit should have its own separate circuit, especially in a large cellar. Make sure whoever is wiring up your electrical is licensed, last thing you need is the cellar catching on fire.

  4. Vapor barrier - A vapor barrier is a must, all the way around -- on the warm side. Usually 6mm poly film is used.

  5. Framing and insulation - Use 2”x4” to frame interior walls and 2”x6” for exterior walls. This will allow proper insulation required. The interior walls should have a minimum of R-11 insulation and exterior walls should have a minimum of R-19. The ceiling and any above ground floors should have a minimum of R-19 with a vapor barrier.

  6. Ceiling and flooring - Same as framing, if ceiling is an interior wall, apply R-11 insulation. If ceiling is the roof of the house, R-19 is required. Concrete floors should be sealed with a water base sealant. You may use ceramic and other tiles, marble, natural wood flooring, cork, wood- or stone-look tiles, but not carpet, since it will likely acquire mold.

  7. Door - Ideally you will use a heavily insulated exterior steel door like the front door of a house.

  8. Racking – Wood racking is best as wood resists the sudden change of temperature and since the body of the wine rack can be significant in a room it can make a significant difference. Firm and solid woods like oaks and maples are nice, but moisture damage resistant woods such as teak or purpleheart are best, due to their high silica content. However, also due to this very same thing, it can be frustrating to work with these woods as the silica eats through blades rather quickly. Redwood seems to be a very common happy medium. Whichever woods you choose, never use aromatic woods such as cedars - the aroma of these will indeed taint your wines, no matter how tightly corked.

  9. Time to have fun – Fill up the cellar.
Contact: or 416-388-9388