Insulation and other advice for a cellar

Hey all - we’re building a new house and putting a 10’ x 6’ room in the basement with a WhisperKool system. We’re going to reuse our existing Wine Enthusiast Swedish Wine Racks for storage (we have 5, would be able to fit 7 total as we need to grow). We’re also going to have a 50 bottle fridge upstairs for “staging and overflow” if you will.

Our builder said they will give us standard Batt insulation for free, or it’d be like $600 for spray foam. (They either don’t know, or don’t want to deal with, the vapor barrier).

How important is the vapor barrier, especially since we will not be physically installing anything/going into the wall/etc?

Are there any other considerations we should be thinking about that maybe we’re not? They said they’ll use “weather stripping” on the door… but do we need a special door/glass/etc? (It’s purely functional, not a “show” cellar).

Thanks as always!

I’d recommend 2x6 construction with a plastic vapor barrier if you are using Batt or rigid insulation. With Spray Foam 2x4 construction should be enough and no need for a vapor barrier for spray foam as long as it is “closed cell” foam - Tiger Foam is a good online provider.

The door certainly needs weather stripping - just make sure it is a solid exterior-grade door. If you make it a glass door be sure it blocks UV light or faces an interior room/hallway that is usually kept dark.

Be careful, many builders do not want to deal with your needs for this wine room. They use various contractors to do the construction of the house.

Make sure you give him the all the specifications and be prepared to keep a close watch on the work as it is being done.

Thanks, I really appreciate the insight.

Our builder is pretty good about being transparent with costs & allowances, but they’re not particularly experienced with installation of wine rooms. I’m pretty sure they were planning on 2x4 construction, so I’m going to push for spray foam and just make sure they used the closed cell you mentioned.

Since I know nothing about this stuff either, it’s really helpful to be able to give them specs like this. So, again, thank you guys so much…