Are They Better than Compressor Coolers?
If you have only a small space for storing your wine collection consider buying a thermoelectric wine cooler refrigerator.
Peltier thermoelectric cooling technology ensures silent operation as opposed to the compressor or absorption technology used in some models, which can be noisy.
Peltier wine cooler refriegrators are also more eco-friendly, another benefit since they do not contain cooling agents such as CFC or HCFC (chlorofluoracarbons) that are known to be partly responsible for the thinning of protective ozone layer in the stratosphere.
If you have an older refrigerator in your kitchen then you know that the compressor can be rather noisy.
Thermoelectric technology is used in smaller equipment where less quantity of cool air is needed to be produced.
Keep in mind that thermoelectric wine coolers are small wine refrigerators, the largest one holds 28 bottles.
If you only have space for a countertop wine cooler then a thermoelectric unit might be the ideal choice.
Thermoelectric cooling technology is based on a scientific discovery: the Peltier effect.
Peltier, a 19th-century French scientist, found that when electric current goes through two different metals, semiconductors, temperature difference occurs.
In thermoelectric wine coolers/refrigerators pairs of semiconductor metals of different shapes (“N” shape and “P” shape) are connected electrically between two ceramic plates.
When electricity passes through the conductors one type of the conductor becomes hot and releases heat while the other type absorbs the heat and cools down.
So the semiconductors work as heat pumps driving heat from one surface to the other.
A fan forces out the generated heat from the inside of the wine cooler, that’s the only moving part in a thermoelectric wine fridge.
Compressor Vs. Thermoelectric Wine Refrigerators
Another advantage of thermoelectric wine coolers over compressor fridges that the fluctuation in interior temperature from the bottom to the top is only +/- 1-2 °C (in compressor-operated fridges it can be as high as +- 5 °C) which provides more constant storage environment for your wines.
Peltier coolers don’t have moving parts – only a fan to circulate the cold air within the unit and pushing out the hot air througth the vents – that’s why they operate more silently.
Another great strength of thermoelectric wine fridges that they work without causing vibration.
Even slight vibration if going on for a long ime can disturb the natural sedimentation process in wines and spoil the the taste and consistency of the wine.
With a thermoelectric wine cooler you can rest assured that your favorite wines are stored in a vibration-free environment.
Compressor-operated high-end wine coolers for example Marvel wine refrigerators are equipped with special vibration dampener systems.
An Eco-Friendly Wine Refrigerator
Thermolectric wine coolers don’t contain freon or other CFC-s or HCFC-s (an abbreviation for chlorofluorocarbons, carbohydrogens contianing chlorene or fluor), hazardous materials that are responsible for the thinning of ozone layer in the air.
If placed and operated according to their instruction manual thermolectric wine coolers use less electricity than compressor-operated fridges adding another score to environmental friendliness.
Less moving parts also means less chance of breaking down and less maintenance.
If environmental friendliness is an important factor for you when you buy products than you’ll love thermolectric wine fridges.
You’ll find eco-friendly compressor-run wine refrigerators, too. Liebherr wine refrigerators and wine cabinets are considered to be the greenest wine storage appliances in the world.
One thing to keep in mind when buying a thermoelectric wine cooler is the ambient temperature.
The cooling efficiency of these fridges depends highly on the temperature of the room they’re placed in.
The temperature in the room where the cooler is placed shouldn’t fluctuate to a great extent. Most manufacturers tell that room temperature (max. 77 °F – 25 °C) is required for proper operation of a themoelectric wine cooler.
Furthermore, to achieve the desired cooling temperature inside the device the difference between the ambient temperature and the set cooling temp. shouldn’t be higher than 13 degrees.
Many of the small capacity wine cooelrs are only for freestanding use, meaning that you have to leave enough clearance (cc. 5 inches) around the sides and at the back of the wine fridge for proper air ventilation.
Some people are concerned about the longevity of the conductors because they’re exposed to contraction/expansion stress due to the temperature changes that might caused them to break.
This is however only a theory and this type of failure hasn’t occured in thermoelectric wine coolers yet.
But it’s a good ide to check how long warranty is provided for the wine cooler you plan to purchase. Always ask about what’s included in the warranty. Being the only moving part it’s usually the fan that tends to break down.
All major wine refrigerator manufacturers have thermoelectric models: Avanti, Cuisinart, Danby, Chambrer, Edgestar, Emerson, Haier, Koolatron, Magic Chef/Ewave, Sunpentown, Sunbeam, Vinotemp and Wine Enthusiast.
Keep in mind though many people complain on the low quality of small, cheap, wine coolers by these brands. Reviews provided by owners of these wine coolers often mention:
- early failures-break downs (within a couple of months, a year or just after the warranty period),
- noise, and
- bad customer service (in case of some brands).
This doesn’t mean that each and every unit by these brands is of low quality but the frequent complaints mentioned in reviews should make one extra cautious before buying a wine fridge from any of these brands.
If you’re tight on budget consider buying an Avanti Thermolelectric Wine Cooler that costs around 160-220 $ without shipping, The largest one, that holds 28 bottles, is around 220 $.
Visit our page about Haier Wine Coolers for more affordable thermoelectric wine coolers.
Vinotemp also offers a wide choice of thermolectric Peltier wine coolers both for freestanding and built-in use. Read user reviews on the Vinotemp VT-28TEDS 28-bottle wine refrigerator model.
Another good choice are Wine Enthusiast Silent Wine Refrigerators stressing the noiseless feature by using “Silent” in the brand name. The Wine Enthusiast 28-Bottle Wine Cooler is an attractive, freestanding unit that costs around $300 and holds 24-26 bottle sof wine depending on bottle size and shape.
For space-efficient, affordable wine bottle coolers read our review of EdgeStar wine Cooler Refrigerators.
Cuisinart Wine Refrigerators include 6-bottle, 8-bottle, 12-bottle, 16-bottle and 32-bottle models.
Koolatron Thermolelectric Wine Coolers offer wine storage units in 4 sizes: 4-bottle wall-mountable unit, 6-bottle and a 12-bottle models.
The Eurocave La Petite Wine Refrigerator uses double Peltier cooling technology. It is a compact cabinet with narrow, 12″ width that accommodates 10 bottles horizontally and you can also keep in it 2 opened bottles of wine for preservation.
Most slim wine cooler refrigerators also apply thermoelectric cooling.
Compare Thermoelectric Wine Refrigerators in Various Bottle Count Categories
- Compare 4-Bottle Mini Wine Coolers
- Compare 6-Bottle Wine Coolers
- Compare 8-bottle Wine Refrigerators
- Compare 12-Bottle Wine Cooler Refrigerators
- 16-Bottle Wine Refrigerators
TIP: The Haier 18 Bottle wine cooler tower is a narrow, 11″ -wide thermoelectric unit perfect for tight spaces.
For those who prefer to have a nice selection of both reds and whites at hand, a two temperature zone wine cooler might be the right wine storage solution.
Dual-zone wine coolers have 2 independently controlled compartments: one for storing red wines and another zone for chilling whites.
You can find more information about Two-Zone Wine Refrigerators here.
Thermoelectric Wine Coolers with 2 Temperature Zones:
- Vinotemp Two-Zone Wine Coolers – wide choice of thermoelectric models.
- The Avanti EWC18DZ is an 18-bottle thermolectric wine cellar with two temperature zones.
- EdgeStar 32-bottle Two-Zone Wine Refrigerator – a nice and inexpensive two-door wine cellar for freestanding placement.
- Chambrer has some dual zone models: the Chambrer WC602-137 holds 6+1 bottles in its two compartments.
- New Air Wine Coolers offer some dual temperature zone models: a 21-bottle (NewAir AW-211ED) and a 32-bottle (NewAir AW-320ED) model.