There are three designs of wine cooler - freestanding, built-in, and fully integrated. Freestanding wine coolers are exactly what you’d expect - wine coolers that stand freely.
Freestanding wine coolers are a great option if you don’t plan on storing a unit into kitchen space (e.g inside cabinets or under counters). However, they can be placed standing alone in your kitchen.
If you have a larger wine collection, then a freestanding wine cooler might be your best option. This is because freestanding wine coolers aren’t designed to fit into small kitchen spaces, so they can vary in size.
You can find small and even portable freestanding wine coolers that can be placed on top of a counter, as well as wine coolers the size of double fridge-freezers that can store over a hundred bottles of wine, which is perfect for larger wine collections.
Common Features of Freestanding Wine Coolers
Wine coolers can do much more than just keep your wine cool - most wine coolers also take care of humidity and protect your wine from harmful UV rays.
You can find freestanding wine coolers with dual or multiple temperature zones. Typically, you can set the desired temperature of the wine cooler on a control panel - but if the cooler has dual or multiple temperature zones, then you can set two or three temperatures within the same unit.
This means that you can store your reds, whites, and sparkling wines at separate temperatures within the same unit, or you can prepare some bottles for serving at one temperature while having other bottles storing uninterrupted in the long term at a different temperature.
Some wine coolers will feature interior lighting which gives you a perfect view of your collection in dark conditions. Interior lighting is ideal if you choose a wine cooler with a glass door, as you’ll have a constant view of your collection.
You can also find freestanding wine coolers that have charcoal filters, which work to eliminate any unwanted aromas within the unit.
Freestanding Wine Cooler Installation
Freestanding wine coolers can be installed pretty much anywhere as long as you abide by the manufacturer’s installation requirements.
Typically, freestanding wine coolers need a few centimetres of space around the rear and sides of the unit to allow for optimal airflow. Freestanding wine coolers should also be installed with around 12 inches of space above the unit to prevent overheating.
The vents are located at the rear of the unit, so ventilation requirements should always be met. The majority of freestanding wine coolers can’t be installed in between cabinets or directly against a wall as the heat would be unable to exit.
If you don’t leave enough space around the unit when placing it, then the unit could overheat and the manufacturer warranty would be voided. Your wine collection could also age prematurely and drastically decrease in quality and value, so always be sure to leave the required space around the wine fridge during installation.
Key Benefits of Freestanding Wine Coolers
Wine coolers provide the perfect conditions for both short term and long term storage. One of the main benefits of freestanding wine coolers is that they can vary drastically in size, meaning that you can find the perfect wine cooler for you no matter how large or small your wine collection may be.
Freestanding wine coolers consider the main wine storage factors - temperature, humidity, sunlight, and sometimes even movement/ vibrations. You can find wine coolers that feature vibration-free compressors to keep vibrations to a minimum, which is ideal when storing wine for ageing or investing.
Freestanding wine coolers also give you plenty of freedom in terms of placement. You can place them anywhere in your home or business provided that there’s enough ventilation space.
Most people choose to place their freestanding wine cooler in their utility space, living room, dining room, or basement, but they can also be placed in patio spaces, home gyms, and of course, businesses (e.g hotels, restaurants).
Freestanding Wine Cooler FAQ
Read on to find out the answers to some frequently asked questions about freestanding wine coolers.
What Is The Difference Between Thermoelectric and Compressor Cooling Methods?
Freestanding wine fridges will either use a thermoelectric cooling system or a compressor cooling system.
Thermoelectric uses technology that makes the wine cooler quieter and more energy-efficient, which is perfect if you plan on installing the wine cooler in your home.
However, with thermoelectric wine coolers, the temperature of your home must remain similar to the wine cooler - any temperature fluctuations in your home can affect how well the wine cooler works.
Red wines are best suited to thermoelectric models as the temperature range of a thermoelectric model is between 12-18°C.
On the other hand, compressor units can reach lower temperatures with ease. They work in a similar way to regular refrigerators, as they both use refrigerants. Refrigerants are gases that work as air conditioning components.
Compressor models tend to use more energy as they’re more powerful and can stand up against temperature changes in your home or business. Because of the power used, they tend to be louder.
White wine is best stored in compressor units, as lower temperatures provide better storage conditions for white wine.
How Many Bottles Can Freestanding Wine Coolers Hold?
The amount of bottles a freestanding wine cooler can store depends on two things - the size of the unit, and the number of shelves that the unit has.
You can find a freestanding wine fridge to accommodate your wine collection, whether you have just 10 bottles or over 100 bottles.
Typically, wine coolers are designed to store standard Bordeaux bottles. However, many wine coolers will have space for larger bottles, or to stand your bottles up instead of store them horizontally.
If you have larger bottles (e.g Champagne) as well as regular Bordeaux bottles, you may want to consider purchasing a wine cooler that features adjustable shelves. This means that you can remove or adjust them to suit your collection.