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DIY cellar construction

DIY cellar construction


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Cellar - a room for storing fruits, vegetables, various products and supplies.

Due to the level of humidity and the maintained temperature range, the cellar serves as a kind of "refrigerator" for food, and allows you to keep them fresh for a long time.

The cellar becomes often necessary in country houses and dachas. The large size of the room allows you to store quite large stocks without worrying about their safety.

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Types of cellars

Before starting construction, you need to decide on the type of cellar that is suitable for construction on the site.

Cellars are:

  • Underground.
  • Semi-underground.
  • Terrestrial.

An underground (or earthen) cellar is the most popular. This is a room that is completely underground. This includes cellars in garages, on plots and in houses.

The cellar in the house is often called the underground. Such underground premises are built in places where groundwater is located at a great distance from the surface, or in elevated areas of the terrain.

Semi-underground are semi-buried cellars. Such cellars are arranged where the water table is close to the surface or where there are almost no elevated areas.

Above-ground ones are not exactly cellars; they are rather non-buried premises for storing food. In such premises, humidity and low temperature must be maintained (always artificially) and they are used mainly in agro-industrial and agriculture.

Selection of a place for the construction of a cellar

If you want to make a cellar in a country house or in a garage, then the place has already been chosen. It remains only to find out the level of groundwater and the suitability of the place for the construction of the cellar.

You don't have to build a cellar in the house. Under the cellar, you can equip a basement, you just need to determine what kind of humidity it has and how cold it is.

The optimum temperature for storing vegetables is between 2 and 60 C above zero. And the optimum humidity is 75-85%.

If the basement meets these conditions, it can be safely used as a cellar. Temperatures above the limit are unacceptable, since vegetables will deteriorate very quickly, and at temperatures below the limit, vegetables can freeze, which will also negatively affect their quality.

Elevated terrain and dry soil are most suitable for the cellar. You can determine the level of groundwater yourself. There are several determination methods for this:

  • The groundwater level can be determined by the water level in the nearest wells.
  • Drilling a small well into the depth, will also show the level of groundwater.
  • If there is a lot of greenery on the site, horsetail, sedge or plants that grow on swampy water soils grow, then the groundwater is close to the surface.

If you are not satisfied with such methods of determination, then it is worth calling a geologist to study a piece of land.

It is better to determine the water levels in spring or autumn, since these are times of either melting snow or rains, that is, the water level at this time is the highest. This is done in order to determine not only their level, but also the level of flooding of the site during periods of rising water.

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Selection of materials for construction

The material for the construction of the cellar is selected based on its type.

For above-ground cellars, wooden log cabins, brick or block buildings are suitable. The choice of material for such a cellar is unlimited by conditions, since the atmosphere inside will be artificially maintained.

For semi-underground cellars, the use of several types of materials is suitable.

For example, for the ground part, wood, brick or foam blocks are suitable, and for the recessed part, mainly brick or concrete.

For underground cellars, there are a number of requirements that materials must meet. Wood is used very rarely, as ordinary planks and planks will rot and decompose at this humidity.

The timber must be tarred, treated with special compounds and antiseptics. It is quite difficult and expensive, so other materials are used more often.

The most popular are brick and concrete. Fired brick is used (it is less susceptible to destruction), and concrete can be used both block and monolithic walls. Less commonly, iron sheets are used as a material.

When using home basements as a cellar, you need to know some features. The underfloor is very convenient because you don't need to go anywhere to get supplies.

It is enough to go down to the underground from the house. But you need to know that the use of subfloors guarantees the appearance of mice with which you have to fight. Also, the subfloor should be removed from the main living rooms, preferably on the veranda, kitchen or in the hallway. Also, the basement should be well ventilated.

The ventilation system is usually provided in the basement even during the construction of the house, but if it is not there, then it must be remembered that the products and the walls of the underground will become moldy.

Cellar construction

For the construction of underground and semi-underground types of cellars, you must first dig a pit. For an underground cellar, the pit will be large and deep, since the cellar itself will be completely underground.

It is important to remember that digging a pit should not be according to the clear dimensions of the future room, but much more, since you will need material for laying the floor and walls.

When the pit is dug, you can build a base. It is best to put a protective cushion of gravel, crushed stone, pieces of brick or stone and fill them with bitumen. This creates a layer that will protect the room from excess moisture and water.

If the walls are made of timber or brick, then the masonry will need to be additionally reinforced with reinforcement.

If the walls are concrete, then there are 2 types of construction - either from ready-made concrete blocks, or the installation of monolithic concrete walls by pouring. In the first case, ready-made concrete blocks of the required size are simply placed, strengthened and fixed along the perimeter of the walls. When creating a monolithic wall, the installation process is similar to laying a monolithic foundation for a building.

A wooden formwork is placed, either a reinforced mesh or iron rods are placed inside to strengthen the wall, then concrete is poured. Such monolithic walls are the most stable and reliable option, since the cellar will be protected from moisture.

After installing the walls and floor, you can install the roof and hatch if it is a recessed room. Walls can be finished and plastered. You can put boxes or shelves.

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Some important points of construction

When building a cellar, it is important not to forget about ventilation. For ventilation of the room, it is enough to install one or two pipes that will go outside.

The pipes can be additionally equipped with electric fans if the draft is small or if the room is of an impressive size.

For waterproofing walls, you need to use either lubricants or a waterproofing material, such as roofing material.

The cellar also needs to be equipped with electricity, if required.

Cellar construction cost

The cost will depend on many factors. First of all, this is the cost of the selected materials, depending on the size of the cellar.

Of course, a small compact cellar for a small family will cost less than a huge vegetable store.

It is necessary to take into account the cost of finishing and facing materials, waterproofing and ventilation system. It will be much cheaper to build a cellar yourself than to call a special team of builders.

Concrete cellars are slightly more expensive than brick ones. Concrete blocks are cheaper than installing a monolithic concrete wall. Installing electricity and equipping the basement with shelves and boxes is also included in its price.


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