Refrigeration Perfection: Insulation and Vapour Barriers

At Exquisite Wine Cellars, we believe your wine must be protected and respected. And even though your beloved bottles may be a bit high-maintenance, they’re well worth the effort. The good news is, we’re here to do the heavy lifting to ensure that your valued vintage enjoys perfect conditions 24/7.  Think of it as a spa day for your chardonnay!

In addition to attaining a beautiful balance between functionality and aesthetics, proper insulation and vapour barriers are a must when it comes to creating your ideal wine storage space. Here are just a few points to help clarify the importance of these key components:

Hand in Hand – When it comes to insulation and vapour barriers, it’s not an either/or scenario. If you’re going to refrigerate a wine room, you need insulation. And if you’re going to have insulation, you need a barrier. In humid climates (monsoon season here in Arizona) this combination prevents warm, moist air from entering the room or cellar and causing mold. In drier atmospheres, this helps to regulate the humidity within the space.

Combatting Condensation – Think about what happens when you drive your car in very cold weather (yes, it’s July in Phoenix, but use your imagination). You turn up the heat to warm the inside of the vehicle and – voila! – your windshield fogs up with moisture. The same concept applies to your wine room. When you try to make the room cooler than the rest of your home, the humidity from the warmer area of your house will condensate upon contact with your wine storage area. The right barrier will separate the two opposing environments and prevent condensation from building up.

Fantastic Foam – There are quite a few options for insulation; however, closed cell foam is the best way to both insulate and vapour barrier your wine cellar. The advantage of using closed cell foam (also known as polyurethane) is that when it skims over, it forms a vapour barrier. So, there’s no need to install the plastic sheeting that other options might require you to use. Closed cell spray foam is brilliant in that it expands and fills in all the cracks and crevices, leaving no gaps. And if there is any wiring, conduit or piping that goes through your wine room wall, the foam will create a tight seal around it, so there is zero potential for vapour to penetrate the material.

Ready to consider a space for your wine that is both beautiful and climate-controlled to EWC’s exacting standards? We welcome the challenge! Just give us a call, shoot us a text or email with any questions. We’re excited to chat with you about how to build the wine room, wall or cellar of your dreams!