Adding a cold-room to a basement - good idea?


Old 01-17-05, 12:21 PM
Eric in Ottawa
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Adding a cold-room to a basement - good idea?

Hi - I am planning a cold room for food and wine storage. Since this feature wasn't in the original foundation, I was thinking of creating one within the foundation in the NE corner of my basement.

I have about a 6' by 14' space.

I need to think about what the best way to do
- ventilation with the outside (is it required?)
- insulation to the outside (is this necessary)
- insulation to the rest of the house

Anyone with experience in this, please comment or point me to a good reference.

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Old 01-17-05, 04:04 PM
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 1,873
I would suggest you contact an Architect or structural engineer before doing this because the house footings are below the frost line. By exposing the interior foundation wall to below freezing temperatures may raise your footings above the frost line. Which may cause cracks in your foundation wall by either heaving or settling.
Old 01-18-05, 05:47 AM
Eric in Ottawa
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Hi - Thanks for your advice.

My target temperature is actually around 50 F (best for wine storage) - I'm not really after getting close to freezing so "cool" room would be a more appropriate name.

My basement in the winter stays at about 62 F. To get to my target temperature range, could I do a combination of closing off or reducing the forced air heating from going to that area and keep the insulation. If its in the 50 F range, in your opinion, will that temperature affect the footings?

Thanks in advance.
Old 01-18-05, 08:35 AM
caleyg's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 327
You may not get 50. I think it's workable, give it a vent and return air so that you can open it up in the summer to keep it cool. leave it open to the foundation. You may or may not need to insulate it from the rest of the basement. I'd leave it with the back of the studs open (i.e. open to your cool room) for a year and see what the result is. If it's good throw oup drywall on those walls, if you feel like insulation would help, try that for awhile before drywalling.

Depending on your willingness to invest, you could climate control just that room with a separate small HVAC unit (or really just AC). They make portable AC units on wheels.
Old 01-18-05, 08:51 AM
Ed Imeduc's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Mountain Williams Missouri
Posts: 18,389

If you want to keep it at 50o all the time Id look into a small walkin box as they call them. It would just slip together down there for you and have a very small compressor. This way you would be all done with all the work and have the temp you want all the time. they have insulation in the floor the ceiling and all the walls. Have did this in homes for wine. All I know about it is they said the wine had to stay at a set temp and this was the way to go.

Old 01-19-05, 02:02 AM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 71
The objective is to keep the heat "out" of this room.
Providing it is air sealed properly the liquid ceramic insulation would do this.
Address removed By ED

Last edited by Ed Imeduc; 01-19-05 at 05:23 PM.
Old 01-19-05, 05:23 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 71

Here's a link for you to research in Canada


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