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Wine Cellar Refrigeration Calculator

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mainshipfred

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Working on a design for a small 200 sf wine cellar and had a rough time sizing the refrigeration unit. I came across the spreadsheet in the process. I think it is helpful. Not positive but I'm pretty sure it takes into consideration an undersized unit to help with humidity control. The calculator is an xls and I cannot attach the file. If you open the attached URL and then the "Air Innovations" link it is there.

https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=wine+refrigeration+unit+size+calculator&*
 

meadmaker1

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That calc looks fairly standard.
Be sure to concider, is this a room or a cellar, when intering average temp.
Heat seeks cold. Average ground temp in my area is 55 degrees down to about 20ft.
Small units some times area not very serviceable. Lager units require specailized tools and install techniques.
Beware you tube.
Read install instructions, if you dont have the tools or dont understand charging dont do it. Talk to you heating/cooling guy.
 

mainshipfred

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I'm looking at compressor units with coils and already charged. Kind of plug and play. Just need some simple ducting to the cellar. The calc sheet already takes all the ambient temps and insulation values into consideration. Mine comes to about 1000 btu/h and the units are around $300.00. Total cost to about $500.00 for a 200 sf cellar.
 

meadmaker1

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What Is the ambient temp. A room abbove groud has a higher perimiter temp than an under ground room.
I get called to service these often. Some are even rivited together. This suggests no serviceability. Beware.
What is the value of the wine you are storing.
Having a spare might not be out of the question.
Units I trust for rooms of 1000 cubic ft are $3000 to $4000.
Keep in mind I don t sell them, but I do get called in to make them work.
Often over and under sized. The manufacture should be willing to help size also.
1000 btu above ground in a hot area might not even stay comfortable for poeple, but under ground the heat only touches the lid and maybe the door.
 

meadmaker1

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Im planning on buying a used refidgerator boring a hole in it for a conduit. Through which I intend to pump a brine to cool a true cellar. I will run tubing against some of the walls and if I need can build a small air handler with a water coil I already have. Condesate is no issue. Floor drain. Or heated bucket to evaperate which ever is needed to adjust humidity.
Hydronis and hot water boilers is my thing though so not a project for every one.
Hoping for about 100 square ft of cold bottle storage. Got some digging to do first.
 

mainshipfred

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That's a neat concept. A little upset with you for coming up with it first. Would you have to run a circulating fan, What size tubing to you suppose you will need. I would think the condensation from the tubing would help keep the humidity at a good level.
 

mainshipfred

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OK hydronic dude you really got me thinking. How about running the tubing through a plenum box with a small bathroom exhaust fan attached? The t-stat would control the fan and the circulation pump. Do you think a small freezer with antifreeze or glycol might work as well?
 

meadmaker1

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Planning on 3/8. Tubbing. And an aquarium/water garden pump. Probably methanol for antifreeze. question is how much tubing lenght. adding will be easy
Humidity control wil be by catching condensate and draining it or evaperating it back into air.
Originally wanted to copy a blue berry nursery system, cover a shelf with coils and set carboys on on them to chill.
Possibilities are endless refrigerator has freezer and fridge (built in high/low) even get heat off the back for a work beside? ??
 

mainshipfred

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Keith, I have an evaporator coil from an old freezer. It's only 1/4" though. do you think it would work. I'm going to run RV/Marine antifreeze through it chilled by a 7.1 cf chest freezer. Do you think 1/4" is enough? I can build a 3/8 coil with return bends but would like to use what I have since it has the fins and the 3/8 would not. Your advice is appreciated.
 

meadmaker1

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Im as cheap as they come so using things that I can free or cheap.
It will absolutely work, perhaps better.
Im no math genius but I know that doubling diameter of a pipe doubles surface area as well but increases volume by 4. This means that the smaller pipe will excange heat better. If by chance its not enough add some 3/8 or find a heater core from a car heater, and plumb the brine through it as well. You can put a small fan to move air through it.
Condenser grid will work too, maybe better.
Methanol is my antifreeze choice because its easy to get in any volume and if it spills it will evaporate, glycol as in automotive antifreeze won't.
Perhaps the trendy thing to do would be to wake a not wine with sugar water and champagne yeast to the full 18%. That should be good to around 15 degrees.
 

mainshipfred

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Thanks Keith, the antifreeze is what is used to winterize the water systems. It is not glycol. Pretty sure it's alcohol based and environmentally safe. All we do in spring is start the systems and the antifreeze gets pumped into the water. This morning I bought a small fountain pump and some test tubing. I have a 6' head but not sure what the restrictions of the coil will be. Rated at 50 gpm at 6.5' with a 1/2" discharge. I know I'm not going to get 50 but I think that is OK.
 

mainshipfred

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Just tested it. First off it is 50 gph not gpm. I think the coil is too restrictive. I'm only getting a dribble coming out. If I lower the coil is works fine. I'm going to take the pump back but it was the largest this place had. Going to try another nursery of aquarium place.
 

meadmaker1

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Just tested it. First off it is 50 gph not gpm. I think the coil is too restrictive. I'm only getting a dribble coming out. If I lower the coil is works fine. I'm going to take the pump back but it was the largest this place had. Going to try another nursery of aquarium place.
Temperature rise of the water is you biggest concearn.
The faster the flow the more btus you can potentially extract but if the water doesn't warm up as it passes the flow is faster than it needs to be.
If you can create a closed loop system the head will be reduced because the pump gets relief from the drop back down....pushes and pulls exqually. (Sorta of)
 

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