Do-it-yourself earthen cellar in the country: Step by step + Video and Photo

Do-it-yourself earthen cellar in the country: Step by step + Video and Photo How to make an earthen cellar with your own hands. It is almost impossible to imagine a private one with its adjoining territory without a cellar, since it is here that the owner of the house keeps all the harvest and conservation. Not every refrigerator can become a full-fledged replacement for a cellar - it is in this place that a comfortable temperature and the desired level of humidity are maintained, which allow vegetables and fruits to remain juicy.

It's great if there is already a cellar or shed under the house. But what if you don't have such a room? It doesn't matter - you can easily build an earthen cellar in the country with your own hands.

We will tell you about the features of the construction, as well as the installation rules, in this article.

Characteristic features of an earthen basement

Today, many options for buildings for a basement are known: cellars, aboveground structures, glaciers and storage sheds. These can be structures that are complex in terms of architecture, and the simplest, from the material at hand. It is to the simplest structures that an earthen cellar can be attributed.

Note that this structure is not suitable for every site - construction is possible only under the following conditions:

  1. Do-it-yourself earthen cellar in the country: Step by step + Video and Photo The occurrence of groundwater in the area is at a low level - measurements can be made in the spring, when precipitation is the most.

    For the construction of such a cellar, the depth of the groundwater must be at least 2 m.In the case when the water is at a level slightly above the minimum, the problem can be solved in two ways: reducing the height of the ceilings in the cellar or creating a dump of sand and gravel so that the basement floor is slightly raised.

  2. On the site in winter, the soil does not freeze deeply, since otherwise it will be necessary to maintain a positive temperature inside the earthen cellar (and ideally it should be +2. + 4 degrees).
  3. The earth must be dense and dry.

    It is difficult to hold loose soil, so you will have to start strengthening the walls and ceiling, but even in this case, there is a high probability that underground water will penetrate inside.

  4. The place for such a cellar must necessarily be on a hill, and there must be flat and dry ground.
  5. If the construction site is located in an open area, then due to strong winds hypothermia may occur and, as a result, there is a possibility of destruction of the cellar. To prevent it, it is advised to plant powerful shrubs around the perimeter of the cellar.

Please note, that trees must not be planted near the earthen basement, as the walls of the building may be damaged due to their powerful root system.

It is generally accepted that it is in an earthen cellar that it is easy to maintain a pleasant microclimate, which is excellent for storing potatoes, turnips, carrots and beets. Thanks to the natural moisture, vegetables do not wrinkle or dry out, and even in spring, last year's harvest will be healthy and appetizing.

The process of creating an earthen cellar

Where to start

Although the design is considered simple, the question "how to make an earthen cellar? " still does not lose its relevance. You don't have to be a professional builder to do this, as even beginners can handle this task. You should start by creating a drawing / sketch, and it should be carried out taking into account the scale, and also indicate on it all the dimensions of the cellar and its elements.

It is important to remember the following important factors here:

  • The internal dimensions of the building should be indicated.
  • There should be a distance between the pit and the cellars - at least 50 cm more. In the future, this gap can be filled with clay, which must be mixed with straw - this will create a side lock, which will prevent the walls from getting wet and the liquid from seeping from the ground into the basement.
  • Usually the entrance to the earthen basement is tried to be made from the north side in order to minimize the loss of cooled air when opening the door in summer.
  • Be sure to provide for the conduction of electricity to the basement, and in the construction plan, draw the electrical wiring, and take care of the input and connection.

  • Ventilation is also required for such a structure. It should also be developed during design.
  • The thickness of the embankment on the outside must also be calculated at the planning stage. But the thickness should be selected taking into account the climate in the region, the level of precipitation and the strength of the wind.

You should know that it is best to engage in such construction in the summer, when the groundwater level will be at a minimum and nothing will interfere with the work.

Creating the foundation

So, when everything is verified and calculated, and the location is selected, you can start the construction itself. You should start by digging a base - a pit / pit, which will act as a storage for fruits and vegetables.

For the cellar, you can dig a hole without using special equipment, since it is usually made small in size - about 200 * 200 * 300 cm.You can reduce the height, this is especially important when the groundwater lies close to the surface ( 150 cm).

It is also important to remember that the pit itself needs to be made more than the construction site by 50 cm.

With manual digging, you will be able to maintain the density and relief of the soil and thanks to this, the walls will not crumble. The shape, namely the inverted trapezoid, will help protect the basement surface from collapse: the distance between the opposite walls should be less at the bottom than at the top.

Now let's think about how to make a floor in an earthen cellar. It can be different:

  1. The earthen floor in the cellar is considered the most profitable in economic terms, since no materials are needed for its construction. But such a floor is appropriate only when the ground is dense and dry, it lends itself well to ramming (clay soil is an excellent option).

    Nevertheless, the owner must assess the risks and understand that during spring floods there is a high probability of groundwater rise and floor wetting. In this case, you will have to pump out water and make racks on a hill. But the advantage of the rammed floor is that it will perfectly keep the temperature and humidity level, and the vegetables inside the cellar will be fresh and beautiful.

  2. Do-it-yourself earthen cellar in the country: Step by step + Video and Photo Adobe floors are the best option. The fact is that clay is an ecological material, and unlike the same land, it will not allow mold and mildew to develop, it will not let moisture through even during floods.

    But it is difficult to make such floors, since the process is long and laborious, and good quality clay is not easy to find.

  3. Concrete Screed on this list is the most popular option for any kind of basement. The screed is easy to make: you need to fill a pillow of gravel and sand at the bottom of the cellar, and then spread the polyethylene in several layers or roll out strips of roofing material. Such insulation can be poured from above with concrete, which must be more than 40 mm thick, otherwise the screed may spread. The simplest option is to fill in the lighthouses, which can be metal or wooden slats.

    After the concrete is leveled by the rule, and the next day the lighthouses are removed, and the voids are sealed with concrete. Such a floor perfectly protects the earthen cellar from moisture - groundwater will not penetrate inside, and there will also be no capillary seepage of water.

  4. Brick floor in the cellar, or natural stone floor looks beautiful, but this pleasure will cost you dearly. In order to realize the idea, lay stone material on the floor of the cellar, and then fill it with liquid clay or use a stiff brush to hammer the cement solution into the cracks. Such floors are no worse than concrete ones in terms of efficiency.

  5. Wood is rarely used to create a floor in an earthen cellar, since this material is prone to decay. But in a dry basement, you can use it in the form of boards. First, make a sand and gravel cushion, then lay waterproofing, lay beams / logs and on top of the board. In advance, all wooden elements should be treated with an antiseptic.

Tip! If the earthen floors get wet in this case, then make all the pallets and racks on a hill.

For example, you can assemble wooden lattices, and put boxes and boxes on them.

Walls for an earthen cellar

Do-it-yourself earthen cellar in the country: Step by step + Video and Photo When everything is decided with the foundation, you can start building walls. The ideal option is to leave the earthen walls, but this method is available only to those who have dense and dry soil on the site, and even in this case, you will have to deal with waterproofing and protection from crumbling.

It will be much cheaper to sheathe the walls with planks, vines or croaker. First, you need to hammer in wooden piles - these are logs, which should be at least 0.

5 m deep in the ground.

Please note that when erecting concrete or stone floors, the supports must be poured prior to pouring the base.

After that, you can start nailing the transverse beams along the perimeter of the base, which will hold the supports and serve as an excellent basis for the lathing. The best thing for this purpose is to use boards that have been previously knocked down into small shields. With this design, it will be possible to disassemble the cladding in the summer in order to check the condition of the walls, dry the wood and treat it with an antiseptic.

Often, to create a capital earthen cellar in the country with their own hands, it is sheathed not just with wood, but in addition they use insulation. Wall insulation can be done with any board material, for example stone wool or extruded polystyrene foam.

Often such basements are lined with bricks for exterior decoration. In this case, half brick masonry will be enough, but then both surfaces of the walls will have to be insulated with bituminous mastic or roofing material.

Important! Gas silicate brick, foam concrete, cinder block and other materials porous in structure are not suitable for cladding, since after some time water will seep through them, which can cause walls to be destroyed.

The roof of the earthen basement

Most of the heat loss goes through the roof and ceiling of the cellar, and for this reason it is important to pay as much attention as possible to this element of the building. The ceiling needs to be strengthened so that it does not collapse. In bulk basements, wooden poles or woven vines are often used for this, but more resistant materials, such as boards or stone, can be used.

But you will have to tinker with the roof, and first to insulate it. The structure above the earthen basement should be gable.

Thanks to this, rainwater will drain quickly and will not penetrate into the cellar. Insulation and waterproofing should be laid on the very base under the roof. By the way, roofing material is perfect as insulation, and you can insulate the roof with any material that is not afraid of moisture (foam plastic, mineral / stone wool, glass wool, etc.).

Waterproof plywood, metal sheet or OSB should be placed on the roof.

The angles on the slopes should be 45 degrees. For the best protection of the basement from freezing, it is advised to cover its roof with a layer of peat (about 25 cm), and then cover it with another insulation (roofing material or film) and cover 12 cm of fertile soil.

Good advice! Sowing low-growing grass like lawn or moss into the ground can provide your roof with additional protection from cold and wet weather. In addition, greenery will make the roof look spectacular and give an unusual, sophisticated, antique look.


As with all storage facilities, even an earthen cellar must be equipped with a ventilation system.

If this is not done, then there will be stale air inside, and it will not be possible to store vegetables there, since it is in such conditions that fungus and mold feel best. The rules for creating ventilation in an earthen cellar in the country are as follows:

  • Use metal or plastic pipes, the diameter of which will be more than 10 cm. You can make ventilation boxes out of wood.
  • The inlet pipe should be located just above the floor level, and from the outside it should go no lower than 0.5 m above the ground.

  • The hood should be located just below the ceiling, and the outer edge is brought out 150 cm from the ground.
  • Both pipes must be covered with a protective cap to prevent atmospheric moisture from entering.

Important is that in a small cellar, you can install only one supply and exhaust pipe.

Finishing the basement from the inside

In the earthen basement in the country house, everything can be arranged the way its owner wants, since everyone has different needs: who- then they store potatoes in it, and someone wants a storage for wine. In this case, the storage is usually divided into two zones - on the right there are bins, where there are wooden boxes / compartments for apples and other things, and on the left there are racks for preservation and wine.

The shelves should be 0.5 m apart, but the size may vary depending on the height of the cans.

The material of the shelves is different - metal, wood. In the first case, the racks should be protected from corrosion by regular painting, and in the second, the wood should be treated with antiseptic agents or covered with oil enamel in a timely manner.

An irreplaceable attribute is a ladder.

It must be safe and durable, and it also needs to be processed on time so that there is no corrosion or decay.

The final stage is the supply of electricity. Do not forget about the microclimate and safety standards - in such rooms only lamps with a low voltage level should be installed!


An earthen cellar is the best way to create storage for crops and conservation. This basement will not only last for many years, but also will not require repair and additional maintenance, since all surfaces will be protected by a layer of earth.

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