So you’re ready to kick back, relax and enjoy an additional light-filled living space—congratulations! Between beefing up your home’s value and creating your own personal retreat, adding a sunroom is one decision you’ll never regret. But before you start building, be sure you have an idea of what you want for yourself, and your home. Here’s how to pick the perfect sunroom:
STEP 1: Choose your type.
Three-season sunroom, or all-season? If you live in an area with a milder climate and temperate weather, consider going with a three-season. They’ll provide an additional bug-free, rain-free living space, but without the added insulation of an all-season sunroom. All-seasons can be more expensive, but you get what you pay for. High quality energy-efficient glass, protection from the elements, and all the required insulation of a regular room—you won’t even need a door separating it from the rest of your house! Of course, whether you go with three-season or all-season, you’ll want to opt for a style and size that will complement your home’s architecture, and best suit your needs. Gable, studio, conservatory or solarium—the choice is yours!
STEP 2: Select your materials.
What sort of climate do you live in? How will you use your sunroom? These questions will help you decide what materials are best for you. Go with vinyl if you plan to heat or cool your sunroom during extreme temperatures. It’s durable, energy-efficient, and perfect for year-round use. On a budget? Vinyl is also usually the more affordable option. Aluminum is another available choice; it’s both lightweight and strong, but typically doesn’t insulate as well as vinyl.
STEP 3: Get a grasp on glass.
Glass is arguably the most important component of a sunroom, for obvious reasons! But it’s not just about letting in the light. The type of glass coating you choose will also affect energy-efficiency. Double-glazed glass provides durability, insulation, and glare reduction. Applying a "low-E" coating helps the glass reflect heat and ultraviolet rays, saving energy. Argon filling is a great choice for those who are even more energy-conscious. All glass walls should always be silicone double-sealed, A-rated and labeled, “tempered safety.” And pay attention to the U-value of the glass—the lower the number, the less heat passes through, and the more energy-efficient your sunroom will be.
STEP 4: Consider your options.
There are all sorts of options you can add to personalize your sunroom. Having windows or skylights that open will aid airflow and prevent your room from feeling stuffy. Or install a sleek ceiling fan to keep things breezy—just choose a model with forward and reverse speeds for seasonal use. Chic window treatments will help temper the afternoon sun, while adding texture to your space. And for winter use, radiant floor heating or a beautiful fireplace will really take it up a notch.
STEP 5: Decide where to put it.
Now that you know what kind of sunroom you’d like, it’s time to decide where it should go. Most homeowners choose to add their sunrooms to the back of their house, which may also be ideal for you. But do consider your climate and preferred light exposures; in northern climates, a southern exposure is best since it will receive the most light each day. In the South, however, an eastern exposure provides sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon.
Ready to relax in an all-season sunroom? Champion can help. Custom-designed and built to match your home's architecture and your ideal use, Champion sunrooms let you enjoy the great outdoors, indoors. Plus, each one comes with a lifetime glass and seal warranty†, and roof system that's the strongest in the industry.