Built In vs Freestanding Wine Fridge?

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Written By Roseanne

Charlie's been a wine enthusiast for 20+ years. He and Roseanne have a vast amount of experience and expertise in wine refrigerators.





The distinctions between freestanding and built-in wine coolers will be covered in this article.

Given that each of these two main categories of wine refrigerators has advantages and disadvantages, it is crucial to understand how they differ from one another.

So let’s get started and talk about the subject!

Which one should I choose ‚Äď Built-In or Freestanding?

The location of the wine cooler will almost entirely determine the answer to this question.


The ventilation fan on freestanding wine coolers is at the back of the appliance (usually at the bottom).

This vent is crucial for giving the appliance the airflow it needs to keep the temperature consistently chilled.

This wine cooler’s placement in an enclosed space presents a problem because it restricts airflow, which ultimately prevents the fridge from doing its job because it will overheat.

Freestanding wine coolers can only be installed in an open space, for this reason.


  • Very affordable


  • Cannot be used in enclosed environments (undercounter/built-in)



Built-in wine coolers, on the other hand, have their ventilation fan at the front of the unit (usually at the bottom).

They can therefore be installed in enclosed spaces where freestanding units would be unable to do so.


  • Versatile placement options (both built-in and freestanding)


  • Can often be more expensive than freestanding units



Frequently Asked Questions

We’ll answer all of the most frequently asked questions about the subject in this section. If the question you’re looking for an answer to isn’t there, post it in the comments section and we’ll add it to the list along with a detailed response.

By doing so, we can improve the content’s value for readers who want to weigh the pros and cons of built-in vs. freestanding wine refrigerators.

Can a freestanding wine cooler be built in?

A built-in wine cooler can be used in a freestanding setting, but a freestanding wine cooler cannot be built-in (i.e. used in an enclosed setting, such as under your kitchen counter).

Can a built-in wine cooler be used in a freestanding environment?

Yes, both units are essentially freestanding, but built-in units are more flexible in their placement because they have a front-facing vent.

What would happen if I installed a freestanding wine cooler under your counter?

Freestanding wine refrigerators cannot be installed in enclosed spaces because the airflow to the vent would be reduced, as we discussed above.

Therefore, installing such a unit under your counter would put both your wine collection and the cooler itself in danger.


In conclusion, compared to freestanding units, built-in wine fridges have more placement options.

However, there is frequently a surcharge for this.

Nevertheless, we’ve listed some of the best built-in and under-counter wine coolers in this buyer’s guide.

Please post your questions in the comments section below. If they’re particularly useful, we’ll add them to this article.

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