What to Consider Before Designing a Sunroom

Do you enjoy entertaining outdoors? If you are like many homeowners, you’d love to serve your guests dinner under the evening stars, but you haven’t figured out how to do so in all types of weather, and under all conditions. For instance, how do you deal with bitter cold nights or days that are uncomfortably hot? And what about those pesky bugs…how do you work around them? Well, the answer may well be to opt for a sunroom!

A sunroom is a separate screen-enclosed room that is connected to your house. Your guests will love it. In the summer, the sun shines through the floor-to-ceiling walls and windows; the greenery is perfectly visible through the screens; and the seclusion provides a perfect getaway. Visitors can even hang around on snowy days, counting the falling snow flakes in your comfortably heated sunroom.

For all intents and purposes, a sunroom is a big “camping tent”, only more luxurious…and much more durable. With that in mind, you may ask, how is it that the floor stays dry? The secret to a moisture-proof floor is an insulated floor system.

Insulated Floor Systems Keep Sunroom Floors Dry

The best sunroom floors are generally made out of a 6″ plank with 2 pound expanded polystyrene between two surfaces of 7/16″ O.S.B. (Oriented Strand Board). This floor can be installed at any level above grade level. If you use a Fiberglass reinforced plastic surface laminated to the bottom side, it creates a superior moisture barrier unmatched by other floor systems.

And don’t worry about leaks from a rainy day. “With today’s sophisticated structural bonding processes, you don’t have to worry about leaks,” says a dealer.

Now what sort of siding or eaves should you choose for your sunroom?

Straight Eaves – Plenty of Space

You can’t beat the spaciousness of a straight eaves sunroom. Place a sliding door near the front, center, or near the house, and there’s space galore for you and your guests to mingle. Many designers/owners add a ceiling fan.

Curved Eaves – A Posh Respite

If you want more see-through glass and less siding, a sunroom made of curved eaves will provide a look of refined elegance. The aluminum or wood eaves frame tempered, curved glass panels that stretch ceiling to floor. The glass treatments include laminated, tinted, reflective, solar cool, and clear. Roof exhaust fans are usually an option.

This option is often used when you’re considering a built-in pool for your sunroom. And with the customized sizes that span from 8′ by 12′ to 16′ by 20′, there’s plenty of room to walk comfortably and safely around the edge of your pool, too.

Aluminum and Vinyl Siding Cool and Heat Your Sunroom

To coordinate nicely with vinyl sided houses, vinyl framing systems and vinyl replacement windows are available, nowadays. Both vinyl and aluminum systems can be comfortably air conditioned or heated. Your sunroom foundation can be above-ground, too. As long as your designer arranges for proper compliance with your local government boards, steps can be added from the ground to your sunroom. Your guests will be able to stay comfortable while taking in a bird’s eye view of the scenery.

Security Should Be Considered

At night, or when you are away, you should provide for your sunroom’s security just as you would for the rest of your house. Fortunately, security is never an issue with the lock features currently available. Consider a dual-point locking system and secondary night latch. That way, you you’ll be able to keep your guests company way into the night, while enjoying the cool breeze.

Get It Together Quickly!

Eager to start entertaining? Most sunrooms take only a day or two to put up, depending on the foundation. Pre-manufactured panel systems are custom built for you, in the factory, before they’re delivered on-site. Of course, you have to factor in the dealer’s schedule, weather, and the permits that have to be obtained, but, in most cases, you’ll be revelling in your very own sunroom alongside family and friends while the idea is still fresh in your mind!

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