Erin Doman on November 18, 2015 0 Comments If you are a long-time wine enthusiast, chances are you have tons of wine bottles taking up space in your kitchen and closets. When you have a large collection in your home, you allow yourself a steady stream of wine to pair with your favorite meals or help you wind down at the end of a long day. Unfortunately, you sacrifice storage space that could be used for clothes or other food and drink, and add clutter and disorganization to your home. If you find yourself with a wine collection steadily growing out of control, you may need to find somewhere else to start storing all of your bottles until you are ready to use each one of them. It may seem impossible to get your own wine cellar if you are on a tight budget. Wine cellars are often expensive to have the professionals build on your existing property. However, it is possible for you to put together your own wine cellar and properly maintain it without spending a fortune on it. It may not be the easiest do-it-yourself project you will ever complete, but it’s doable. Find Your Perfect Wine Cooler Today 1. Choosing the Right Spot in Your Home Before getting started, it’s essential for you to figure out which space in your home is best for storing your collection. If you have an empty walk-in closet you’re not using for your clothes, it’s possible to transform that space into your new wine cellar. Try to think outside of the box when deciding on where to place your wine cellar. There are several things to consider before you break ground on the project. First, be sure the area you choose isn’t located directly next to a window. As the sun shines through the glass, it could cause the temperature in the cellar to rise, which will ultimately ruin the aging process of the various wines you’ve collected. For similar reasons, you should also avoid areas that fluctuate in temperature or humidity levels frequently. Here’s a list of things you’ll need to look out for ahead of time: Avoid any areas in your home with lots of light. Find a dark and slightly humid area. Choose a spot with enough space to accommodate the number of bottles you own. If you have a home with lots of windows, building a wine cellar in a spot that is close to a window may be inevitable. Unfortunately, this sunlight and heat from your window can irreparably damage your wine, so it is best to do what you can to avoid this or limit the sun exposure. In situations like this, it is often ideal to get darkening shades for the windows to keep as much of the light out as possible. Although darkening shades are often affordable, you can reduce the expense even further by simply covering the shades you currently own with a dark colored fabric. Simply place the fabric over the shades, measure how much you will need, cut it down to size and then glue or sew the fabric to them before hanging them back over the windows. This should shroud the room in complete darkness. 2. Affordable Insulation Options The storage temperature for your wine cellar should be no higher than 59 degrees Fahrenheit. If the section of the home isn’t properly insulated, it may get too hot or too cold, causing the bottles to go bad after a while. You don’t want to lose out on the investment you’ve made when buying each of these different bottles, so it’s important to insulate the room. You don’t have to hire insulation experts to complete this task. Visit your local hardware store and check out some of the options available. The best ones to use include: Bubble foil Reflective roll Insulating mats Mineral wool panels Compare these options ahead of time to determine which one is right for the type of cellar you are creating. Checking the cost of each option may be important when you are attempting to stick to your budget. Luckily, the options listed above are budget-friendly yet still effective. After choosing the insulation, it’s time to figure out how to bring some humidity to the specific section of your home. Wine bottles are properly preserved when they are in a room with about 60 percent humidity. One simple and cheap way to increase the humidity is to place a hygrometer humidifier in the room. It wouldn’t hurt to add a thermometer against the wall because then you could regularly check the temperature and make sure it’s just right at all times. 3. Investing in Racks or Making Them Yourself The next thing you need to address when putting your cellar together is what you will use to hold all of your bottles inside of the room. It’s best to use wine racks to protect the bottles from breaking, hold them in a sturdy position and keep them from directly touching the floor. There are a lot of cheap racks available online. You don’t need to invest in the most expensive rack you can find. You simply need something that is sturdy and reliable to ensure your collection stays in good condition. Some of the more affordable wood wine racks can hold a total of 40-50 bottles at once. You can also choose to buy metal wine racks, which will be one of the sturdiest available. You may need more than one of them, but you can always place them side by side. If you would rather not purchase the wine racks, consider making them on your own. There are a lot of great do-it-yourself instructional guides that can teach you exactly how to put together your own racks using a number of supplies. Some of the most commonly used supplies include: Old pallets Wooden crates Old dresser drawers Wooden slabs If you have any of these old materials lying around, try to put them to good use by creating a unique wine rack full of character out of them. The only other supplies you’ll likely need are a few screws and a screwdriver to put it together. Before you know it, you will have created a sturdy and reliable rack with items you already had in your garage instead of spending any additional money for something you don’t need. 4. Scratch-and-Dent Options You can usually find discounted versions of any items you may want in your wine cellar–such as a wine cooler–in the scratch-and-dent or open-box sections of the retailer. Open-box wine coolers are units that have been opened by a customer and then returned for one reason or another, but are otherwise undamaged. These units are typically sold for a cheaper price than the unopened unit is. Scratch-and-dent wine coolers are similar to open-box units in that they were previously owned by someone else, but in this case they might show a bit of wear and tear. The extent of the scratches and dents can vary greatly, but the appliance operates just fine. These units are often even cheaper than the open-box appliances, seeing as they don’t look quite as aesthetically pleasing as you might want. These appliances are a great way to incorporate a wine refrigerator into your wine cellar without going over budget. Now that you know how to create a wine cellar on a budget, you should start planning out your design. Writing down your ideas and even drawing a small sketch of what you would like your cellar to look like will help you prepare for the work you’ll need to do. After all of this hard work, eventually your custom wine cellar will come together, and you’ll be able to enjoy this new home for your wine collection.