Why Are Wine Fridges So Expensive? The Ultimate Answer from Wine Experts

To explain why wine coolers are expensive because they are manufactured to special standards to be able to meet all customer requirements. As well as adding many other modern and convenient functions. And for more of its features see below.

1. Why are wine fridges so expensive?

Due to the advanced temperature control technology, UV-blocking glass, and humidity control devices that are incorporated into its construction, a good wine fridge is pricey. Additionally, it is usual practice to have wine refrigerators custom-tailored to fit a cabinet space, which raises the price as well. 

Why are wine fridges so expensive?
Wine fridges are so expensive due to their technologies, materials, etc. (Source: Internet)

A wine fridge will typically cost more because it is made of higher-quality materials. The following are a few materials that can be utilized in wine coolers as well as how they affect the cost:

  • Steel is stainless

Stainless steel is a high-end material whose manufacturing costs are higher than those of materials like plastic or metal. Because of this, stainless steel wine coolers are typically more expensive than those constructed of other materials.

  • App Management

The price of some of the most recent wine cooler generations will increase since they include high-tech capabilities like application control via Bluetooth or a Wi-Fi connection.

  • Controlling humidity

When compared to versions without this feature, wine coolers with humidity control are frequently more expensive.

This is so that the ideal humidity level can be maintained inside the wine fridge, which necessitates more parts and technology.

  • UV Protection

A crucial element that helps shield your wine from light damage in wine coolers is UV protection. By causing wine’s molecular structure to disintegrate, ultraviolet (UV) light can ruin the beverage, causing early aging, bad flavors, and odors.

Usually composed of tempered glass that has been treated to block harmful UV rays, UV-protected glass doors are meant to withstand the elements. Seeing your wine collection in this way prevents it from being damaged by light.

It is because of the above factors that incorporate specially designed racks and humidity control units included in their design. Many wine coolers are built specifically to fit the space in your home so that naturally drives up the price.

2. Understanding the different types of wine coolers

Here are the elements that make up a wine cooler that will help you understand how those factors affect costs.

1. Wine coolers types depending on cooling technology: 

  • Thermoelectric technology

Thermoelectric technology is best suited for wine enthusiasts with collections under twenty bottles at a time because they constantly cool themselves with a fan, which can be expensive for larger collections.

On average, a good thermoelectric unit costs around $150 – $300; you might even find a good deal. The cost rises as you hunt for a dual-zone unit or as the size goes beyond 18 to 20 bottles.

Advantages of Thermoelectric Wine Coolers Disadvantages of Thermoelectric Wine Coolers
Energy-efficiency: Without as many moving parts when they are modest, thermoelectric wine cabinets use less energy to run than compressor-powered ones do.  Limited capacity: Due to their limited energy efficiency at larger sizes, thermoelectric wine refrigerators are normally appropriate for small wine collections.
No Vibrations: A thermoelectric wine cooler is designed to reduce vibrations because they are bad for wine maturation.  Continuous cooling: To maintain a constant temperature, thermoelectric wine cabinets must always be on.
No Noise: Thermoelectric wine coolers work quietly because they have fewer internal components and are therefore a good option if you’re looking for one.  Bad design for the basement: In warm or temperature-variable situations, thermoelectric wine refrigerators don’t operate well.
  • Compressor technology

Similar to a typical standard refrigerator, compressor wine refrigerators cycle on and off to regulate their internal temperature.

Regardless of where you live or where you set it, you can rely on compressor wine coolers to perform well.

For a device with a capacity of 12 to 50 bottles, you should budget about $200- $500.

Advantages of Compressor Wine Coolers Disadvantages of Compressor Wine Coolers
Power: Compressor wine coolers have a much larger cooling capacity, can achieve lower temperatures, and do it with great efficiency.  Vibrations: Compressor wine coolers can produce small vibrations due to the many moving parts and require the compressor to be switched on and off periodically. However, most compressor wine coolers use rubber brushes to compensate for this disadvantage.
No Capacity Limit: Since compressor-powered cooling devices are more powerful and efficient than thermoelectric ones, they can accommodate larger wine collections.  Noise: Perhaps in the middle of the night, you heard the refrigerator in your home buzzing. Although several advancements have been made to reduce noise production, compressor wine coolers can still do the same thing. 
They can acclimate to varying temperatures: Your wine collection won’t care where it is kept because a compressor wine cooler maintains its temperature regardless of changes in the outside environment.
Energy-efficiency: Numerous compressor wine coolers let you adjust cooling capacity in response to demand, which saves you energy.
  • Wine coolers types depending on temperature zones:

You would be aware that different wines require varied temperatures for both storage and consumption. 

Therefore, a dual-zone refrigerator would be excellent if you intend to have a variety of wine genres. A multi-zone refrigerator would be the ideal choice if you wanted a wine chiller. 

  • Single-zone wine cooler
Single-zone wine cooler
A single-zone wine refrigerator is a unit with only one zone of temperature control. (Source: Internet)

Single-zone wine refrigerators provide a continuous, single storage area. Your wine bottles will all cool to the same temperature because there is just one temperature distribution in these machines. There is no concern about bottle overlap because the interior racks hold each bottle separately, maintaining ideal chilling.

It is useful for people who are just beginning a wine collection with one type of wine. The temperature inside doesn’t need to be fiddled with all the time because it has a smooth temperature function. But if a customer absolutely must have a single zone cooler but prefers several types of wine, they will have to purchase additional units, which quickly adds up in cost.

  • Dual-zone wine cooler
Dual-zone wine cooler
A dual-zone wine cooler – a wine cooler that offers two temperature zones. (Source: Internet)

Dual-zone coolers offer two distinct storage areas with horizontal dividing walls, as the name suggests. These coolers allow you to store multiple wine categories because their two distinct chambers each have a different cooling temperature.

The dual zone cooler costs less to store multiple wines simultaneously and they may be kept in the same cooler at various temperatures, it is ideal for people who enjoy a variety of wines. In terms of both size and cost, it is a substantial investment. Due to its higher price than the single-zone cooler, the dual-zone cooler might not be the best option unless it is intended to store various types of wine.

  • Multi-zone wine cooler
Multi-zone wine cooler
Multi-zone wine coolers have two or more temperature zones. (Source: Internet)

For those that collect wine seriously, a multi-zone wine cooler or refrigerator is recommended. With a bottle capacity of more than 100 bottles and up to three temperature zones, these multi-zone coolers are substantially bigger. 

With beer and white and red wine able to be stored in it at the ideal temperature, it creates the ideal refrigerator. Additionally, you can use it as a chiller to prepare that bottle of white wine for serving. 

With the use of circulation fans, this kind of wine refrigerator eliminates uneven chilling by dispersing the cooler air.

2. Wine coolers types depending on location:

  • Freestanding Wine Cooler
Freestanding Wine Cooler
A freestanding wine cooler is the most common type of cooler, owing to its low cost. (Source: Internet)

The most common type of cooler is a freestanding wine cooler, largely due to its mid-range cost. Although freestanding coolers come in a range of sizes, each one does take up some floor space.

The main advantage of freestanding coolers is that you can put them anywhere in your house you desire and they will still function as intended. 

Single-zone freestanding coolers typically cost $60 to $300. A $170 budget will often get you a unit. Expect to pay between $400 and $1000 for a capacity of more than 36 bottles.

  • Built-in Wine Cooler
Built-in Wine Cooler
Designed to seamlessly fit your lifestyle, built-in wine coolers are the ideal wine storage solution. (Source: Internet)

The advantage of a built-in cooler is significant. Your kitchen will have a faultless appearance if you mount them under or in a cabinet. The increased cost of built-in units and their distinctive engineering compared to their freestanding counterparts may be caused by this.

Your built-in home unit will cost you approximately $600. Built-in refrigerators with at least an 18-bottle capacity can run you roughly $400. If you decide on a type that can hold thirty or more bottles at once, the cost can go over $1000.

  • Countertop Wine Cooler
Countertop Wine Cooler
A countertop wine fridge is a freestanding appliance designed to be used on a countertop or table. (Source: Internet)

For someone who drinks wine frequently, a countertop wine cooler is an ideal accessory. These practical devices maintain the proper temperature for storing and serving wine bottles.

Depending on the amenities, the price of a countertop wine cooler can range from a few hundred to thousands of dollars. But investing in a countertop wine cooler doesn’t have to be expensive. There are still reasonable, affordable options but still bring an interesting experience.

  • Undercounter Wine Cooler

The wine cooler behind the counter is intended to be integrated with the cabinet. Due to its ability to store wine out of sight, this style of wine cooler is frequently employed in pubs and restaurants.

Undercounter Wine Cooler
Undercounter wine cooler with two temperature chambers. (Source: Internet)

To guarantee that your wine is held at the proper temperature, they are frequently accompanied by a temperature control and can either be freestanding or incorporated into the countertop.

Undercounter wine coolers feature several significant advantages over other varieties of wine coolers. They are more suitable for compact places because of their characteristic smaller size. They frequently come with built-in temperature controls, and they are also frequently less priced than conventional wine coolers. The average price ranges from $200 to $500. Because of this, maintaining the ideal temperature for aging or serving wine is simple.

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3. Difference between wine refrigerators/wine coolers/beverage coolers and average prices

  • Wine refrigerators

Wine refrigerators, commonly referred to as wine cabinets, are designed to preserve the ideal climate and temperature for aging exquisite wines for however long is required, whether that is a few months or many years.

In other words, the purpose of a wine refrigerator is to preserve and lengthen the life of your wine.

Depending on the number of bottles it can hold, a wine refrigerator can cost anywhere from $200 to more than $10,000. Models with a bottle capacity larger than 50 will be significantly more expensive, while smaller wine freezers under 50 bottles will cost between $200 and $1000.

  • Wine coolers

Wine coolers are made to keep wine at the right temperature for serving for a short while. In other words, it serves only to cool your wine before you drink it.

Because wine shouldn’t be kept as cold as other beverages, a wine cooler is set to a higher temperature range than a typical refrigerator or beverage cooler. A wine chiller won’t typically refrigerate below 46°F on average.

You should expect to pay about $600 on average for a built-in unit for your home. You may anticipate paying roughly $400 for a built-in wine chiller, which typically has a capacity of at least 18 bottles. Prices exceed $1,000 for refrigerators with two doors or bottle capacities of 30 or more.

  • Beverage coolers

We refer to a combination wine and beverage cooler what we call a wine and beer fridge in our house as a short-term storage device even though it has a wide temperature range and can be used for all types of beverages.

Remember that if you wish to keep both wine and beverages at the same time and the unit doesn’t have separate temperature zones, depending on how you set the internal thermostat, the wine will either be too cold or the beer and soda will be too warm.

The average price of wine fridges will range from $80 – $500 depending on how much space you want to store.

4. Operating Expenses of a Wine Cooler

Operating Expenses of a Wine Cooler
The monthly operating cost of a wine cooler is influenced by factors such as its age, size, and installed technology. (Source: Internet)

A wine cooler’s age, size, and installed technology all have an impact on how much it costs to operate each month. You will often have to pay $3 to $9 each month toward the cost.

A quick calculation reveals that an A++ class thermoelectric model will increase your yearly electricity expenditure by $36. On the other hand, a larger compressor model with A++ class technology will increase your yearly electricity expenditure by $108. 

These sums are not significant when weighed against the benefits of having a dependable and secure appliance to keep your treasures in bottles. Unquestionably, an efficient appliance that extends the life of your wine collection is a worthwhile investment.

5. Are wine coolers worth having in your home?

Of course. If it doesn’t obstruct cabinet space and blends in with the decor, a built-in wine cooler can be a lovely addition to any kitchen or basement bar area.

This makes a wine refrigerator an extremely wise purchase. Make a few comparisons to see if the price is justified. Wine bottles are vulnerable to the risks of harsh weather if you don’t provide dependable cooling equipment for them. This will make the wines bad.

Therefore, replacing all of your priceless bottles of wine will cost more money than the initial investment and ongoing running costs of your wine fridge. Because the temperature is so low, you shouldn’t even try to store your bottles in a standard refrigerator.

Additionally, wine fridges provide you the option to change the temperature of your wine, which should always be between 10 and 20 degrees warmer than the temperature in your standard refrigerator and roughly 10 degrees colder than the ambient air temperature.

6. Do Wine Fridges Use Less Energy?

As you may have observed, listed above energy efficiency is an advantage for both forms of cooling power because, at large capacities, a compressor fridge uses less energy than a thermoelectric cabinet, and vice versa.

Since manufacturers will employ the cooling power necessary for the size of the fridge, wine refrigerators are often energy-efficient.

On average, wine fridges consume about 100 watts of electricity, while standard kitchen refrigerators might use anything from 350 to 800 watts. 

7. Some tips to reduce the cost of wine fridges

If you carefully consider all of your alternatives and choose wisely, wine fridges are not prohibitively expensive. The location of the cooling system, how many bottles you plan to store at once, and the local climate are important considerations.

You may get your hands on a fantastic system at a fair price if you choose the appropriate technology and model based on these. Here are some suggestions to help you spend less on your wine fridge: 

  1. Only get a tiny thermoelectric fridge if you intend to store a limited amount of wine and live in a cooler climate. At the time of purchase and even when running the wine cooler each month, you won’t have to pay outrageous fees.
  2. Buying a compressor fridge is preferable for larger wine collections. Long-term energy savings and increased productivity are both achieved.
  3. Your wine refrigerator should be placed in a dim, cold area. As a result, the system will operate even more effectively and last longer.
  4. Avoid often opening the doors of your wine refrigerator. Your cooling system’s lifespan and energy efficiency will increase with sparing use.
  5. A larger refrigerator is preferable to several smaller ones. This is a typical error that wine collectors make, which results in higher buying costs.

8. FAQs

1. What should I expect to pay for a wine fridge?

You will spend approximately $600 on a built-in unit for your home. The average price of a built-in wine cooler is roughly $400, and they typically hold at least 18 bottles. Appliances with a 30-bottle capacity or more and double doors cost more than $1,000.

2. Is buying a wine cooler a wise decision?

Almost every wine enthusiast would find wine coolers to be a great investment because they allow for more precise control of the temperature and humidity of your wine.

3. How long will a wine fridge last?

The price to replace a wine cooler can range from $150 to $2000 and its lifespan is typically 9 to 13 years. It does not necessarily require replacement just because it began making an odd noise or isn’t cooling properly.

4. Do wine refrigerators draw a lot of power?

In comparison to a typical standard refrigerator, a wine fridge will use less electricity. Then, a wine fridge with a large capacity of up to 200 bottles will have higher electricity consumption than a wine fridge with a small capacity of 6 bottles.

5. What is the price of a large wine fridge?

The average price range for large wine coolers is between $800 and $4,000, and often much more.

6. Does red wine require a wine fridge?

Because it can maintain the proper temperature for your wine, a wine fridge is beneficial. The temperature of your typical refrigerator may change because it is probably opened and shut frequently. Wine bottles should not be exposed to frequent temperature changes.

7. What makes a wine cooler essential?

The ideal temperature for storing wine is achieved using wine coolers. According to the manufacturer, most coolers will have a larger range of temperatures between 3ºC  and 16ºC. Wine should be stored between 11ºC  and 15ºC. A wine cooler’s primary job is to keep your wine chilled.

8. Do wine fridges increase worth?

The quick response is that adding a wine cellar will undoubtedly raise the value of your home.

9. Why do certain refrigerators have such a high price tag?

They take less time and resources to create than other things. But if it’s filled with extra functions, even a tiny fridge may be pricey. Due to the higher cost of materials, larger refrigerators are more expensive. To keep it cool, they further require bigger compressors.


At first appearance, wine coolers appear to be more expensive, but there are good reasons why they are more expensive than small appliances like mini-fridges. Additionally, establishing a wine cellar is significantly more expensive than buying and maintaining a wine cooler. Finally, I hope this blog has given you more insight into the cost, why are wine fridges so expensive, and the lifespan of wine coolers. 

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