Q. Do I need planning permission
A. Under new regulations that came
into effect from 1 October 2008 adding a conservatory
to your home is considered to be permitted development,
not needing an application for planning permission. However,
there are a number of ''limits'' & ''conditions'' that
have to be adhered to. To find out if you will need planning
permission please request a FREE
Site Survey by clicking here.
Q. I have a bungalow, can I still
have a conservatory ?
A. Yes you can have a conservatory.
We specifically design conservatories with low pitch roofs
especially for bungalows. These come in varying styles such
as Edwardian, Harrogate and Lean to styles.
Q. Are PVCu conservatories maintenance
A. There is no such thing as a maintenance
free conservatory nor indeed is there any such thing as a
maintenance free material used in a conservatory structure.
Q. So why do businesses claim them
to be maintenance free ?
A. Having said above, we would
not argue that with the contention of a uPVC company that
they are producing a "maintenance free product".
If something goes wrong with such a uPVC building in the many
years after it's sale and installation then it is indeed maintenance
free since no-one is able to maintain it. Put quite simply,
the offending article , frame or indeed whole conservatory
has to be totally scrapped and replaced.
Q. Which is the best position for
my Conservatory ?
A. In the Northern Hemisphere a
south-facing conservatory will gain more heat and retain it
longer than an east or west facing conservatory.
A north facing conservatory will naturally be cooler, possibly
too cold for everyday use in winter without heating.
These factors should be considered carefully when deciding
where to locate your conservatory and when specifying materials.
Q. What Ventilation should there
be in a Conservatory
A. Allow enough opening window area
to ventilate the building, preferably generating a through
draught by positioning the windows correctly.
An absolute minimum for the side frames is 5% of floor area
as opening window area. An opening top vent (fanlight) is
about 0.2m², so a 4m x 4m conservatory would need at
least 4 opening fanlights.
Some buildings (typically glass roofed or south facing ones)
are likely to accumulate heat in the roof area, and roof vents
should be considered in addition to ventilation in side frames.
To avoid internal condensation, minimise sources which might
generate moisture inside the building.
Q. What materials should be used
for the side frames and doors ?
A. Glass should be safety glass
(i.e. toughened or laminated).
Heat loss from the building can be reduced by incorporating
a low 'e' glass, such as Pilkington 'K', and using argon gas
filled double glazed units.
If screening or privacy is needed, frames can be glazed with
obscure glass in various patterns, or even a solid PVCu panel.
PVCu panels incorporating moulded patterns are also available.
These are frequently used in the lower part of a frame or
Q. What materials should be used
for the roof ?
A. Polycarbonate is light in weight,
strong and less costly than glass.
Various different products give different degrees of light
transmission, thermal insulation, and shading. Recent products
give excellent heat reflective qualities.
Aluminium faced insulated panels are available where a totally
opaque material is needed (not available for UK).
Glass used in roofs should be safety glass. Low 'e' glass
and argon filling reduce heat losses.
Solar control tints (anti-sun) give improved shading characteristics
to glass. Without a tint, or supplementary blinds, glass roofed
buildings area invariably hotter than buildings using polycarbonate.
Note that glass is substantially more expensive than polycarbonate.
In addition, being much heavier, it often requires the use
of stronger and more costly roof structures.
Q. Where should the door be positioned
A. Think carefully about where to
position the door on the conservatory. Valuable internal space
can be lost by inadvertently creating a'corridor' between
the conservatory door and the house door. Plan the way you
expect to use the floor area of the conservatory.
Q. Should I incorporate a wall
A. Many conservatories incorporate
a low wall (dwarf wall in the UK, or pony wall in the USA)
in the construction of the side walls, using rock or brick.
In the UK these are commonly 375mm, 450mm or 600mm high.
They add a little privacy to a building and allow internal
window cills (window boards) to be installed as shelves for
A full height wall in brick or another material on one or
more sides provides an internal feature and adds a degree
A wall ¾ height (about 1.75m or 69" high), with
glazed frames positioned on top provides both light and privacy.