Garden room, solarium, conservatory and sunroom all refer to a structure (usually glassed-in) that is either integrated or connected to a home, office or restaurant. It often serves as protection during adverse weather or a place to enjoy the surrounding landscape from the comfort of your living room.
3 Common Types of Sunrooms
There are many kinds of sunrooms on the market these days. Here are three of the most common in San Antonio, Texas homes:
- Four Season Rooms – These types of sunrooms are designed for year-round purposes. They are fitted with appropriate climate control systems and gadgets. Four season sunrooms can be heated when the weather is cold or cooled when the weather is hot.
- Attached Greenhouses – The structures and fittings of these greenhouses are similar to that of four-season rooms. Light, humidity, and temperature can be regulated to levels suitable for all-year-round plant survival, but not human living. Attached greenhouses allow humans to be closer to nature and enjoy the aesthetic
- Screen Room or Porch – These sunrooms use mesh, rather than glass. This offers a breath of fresh air without insects. It is cheaper to make than most other sunrooms and can be inhabitable during adverse weather.
Components of the Sunroom
A sunroom structure can be made from any of the following materials:
- Vinyl – The most common and cheapest sunroom material used today. Vinyl requires the least maintenance, is strong and offers optimal insulation.
- Aluminum – This insulation is not as effective as vinyl and is costlier. Aluminum is often used along with vinyl to improve the strength of the roof structure.
- Wood – Costlier than the other sunroom materials, yet more suitable for screen rooms. It allows easy attachment of screen mesh to the lumber. Wood requires occasional maintenance.
The Walls of Your Sunroom
The walls of a sunroom are made of glass, while the roof can be of glass or polycarbonate (a strong and transparent thermoplastic). Either way, the U-value is important when choosing the roofing material. It reflects the degree to which material handles heat.
Finding the Right Location for Your Sunroom
A sunroom can be an attached room customized for a specific purpose or one created as a new standalone structure. The first step in the process of adding a sunroom is deciding the optimal location.
In northern regions, southern areas are better since they will receive light most of the day. In the south, however, using a southern location means extra cooling will be needed during hot days. And, that can be costly.
Western alignment may require shades since they are exposed to the afternoon sunlight. Eastern alignments, on the other hand, will require less cooling since it receives sunshine in the morning and shade throughout the day.
Customizing Your Sunroom for a More Comfortable Home
To improve the comfort of the room, consider the following customization options:
- Install a ceiling fan to improve air circulation in the room, selecting only fans with adjustable speeds
- Add operative skylights to function as heat dumps when the room is excessively warm
- Regularly allow several windows to remain open to help with optimal airflow
- Consider installing gas wall heaters for the cold days, with a more luxurious option being to use radiant floor heating
- Fit exterior roof shade tracks to support exterior sunscreens
River City Deck and Patio is a premiere industry leader in the San Antonio, Texas area. We’re local experts that know sunrooms, and we know San Antonio homes and businesses.
Get your sunroom upgraded, or build a brand new one. Either way, we’ll help you customize a sunroom that’s perfect for your family and lifestyle. Click here to content River City Deck and Patio for your free consultation today.