A built in wine cooler is designed to sit on the floor but with cabinetry enclosing the unit from all sides, just leaving the door exposed. These units have fans on the under side and a grille to the front, this allows cool air to be drawn in to enable the cooling process. Warm air is expelled via another fan or out of the small gaps in the sides depending on the size of the unit.
It is imperative that this type of units grille to the front is not blocked by the plinth or skirting board. If you wish to run a plinth along the front of the unit, a grille must be installed in the plinth so that the unit can still draw in cool air.
What sizes do built in wine coolers come in?
Built in wine coolers that are narrower, for example 15cm, 30cm and 40cm wine coolers require a minimum of 0.25cm ventilation space around the sides to allow warm air to dissipate out. Failure to allow the necessary breathing space will hinder the units cooling performance and may void the manufacturers warranty.
Thinner units, below 600mm in width should not be 'fully integrated', meaning to have a kitchen cabinet door in front of the wine cooler door. This is because the ventilation to the sides and above the unit will be blocked. Since there is only one fan located on the underside of the thinner built in units, the necessary air flow will be blocked if the sides are blocked.
Do I need to leave any ventilation to the rear of my wine cooler?
Built in wine coolers also require a minimum of 0.5-1cm of breathing space to the rear of the unit to allow for the necessary air flow, but also to ensure that the unit is not touching the rear wall/cupboard as this may cause unwanted vibrations.
This type of unit can also be utilised as a freestanding unit as it sits on the floor. An example of how a built in wine cooler should be installed can be viewed below: