Outdoor Living Spaces: A Quick Guide to Adding a Sunroom

Sunroom with double-glazed windows added as an extension to a home in Sidney, AU

What are sunrooms?

Sunrooms are screen- or glass-enclosed spaces attached to your house with access to the garden. They offer the best of both the outdoors and indoors, offering shelter from the elements while keeping you connected to the outdoors. These transitional spaces are usually filled with outdoor furniture, and they make perfect areas to relax and enjoy some natural light, views, and fresh air. They make great additions to the home, especially if you’d like more outdoor living areas.

Here, we take you through the different types of sunrooms and why sunrooms make a fantastic addition to your home. We also offer some tips and considerations that will help you when you’re designing a sunroom addition.

What are the types of sunrooms?

There are two main types of sunrooms: three-season and four-season sunrooms. With a three-season sunroom, you have what’s also known as a solarium or conservatory. These are usually enclosed in glass and designed for the milder seasons. The point of distinction is they’re not insulated and not connected to your main temperature control system and so aren’t as comfortable during summer.

On the other hand, you can enjoy a four-season sunroom all-year-round because these are connected to your central heating and cooling systems. Four-season sunrooms may also use thermally engineered materials or double-glazed glass that make them comfortable in any season.

Sunrooms also come in different designs:

  • Conservatory Sunroom

A conservatory usually has a downward-sloping roof featuring a beam in the middle. These sunrooms typically use glass or polycarbonate roofs and panelling, so they use a lot of glass, making them best for cooler regions. 

  • Enclosed porch

This type of sunroom is a porch that’s been enclosed with walls and windows. 

  • Screen room

Screen-room or porch-style sunrooms typically have mesh-screen windows and/or walls instead of glass. This lets you enjoy the fresh air and views without worrying about insects. 

What are the benefits of having a sunroom?

Sunrooms offer great benefits that can enhance your standard of living. They could even increase the value of your home.

  • Boost health and mood

Having a dedicated relaxation space like a sunroom lets you retreat to the outdoors and get close to nature while protecting you from the elements. The natural light can boost your health and mood. Sunlight gives you a dose of Vitamin D and is associated with lower cholesterol and blood pressure and a stronger immune system. Also, sunlight can be easier on your eyes than artificial light, so go ahead and relax with your book or move your workstation to the sunroom if you’re working from home.

  • Enjoy increased real estate value

Adding extra living space to your home is likely to increase the value of your house. What’s more, flexible, semi-outdoor spaces like sunrooms could be sought-after features for buyers. This can also increase your property sale price if eventually, you decide to sell.

  • Soak in the natural light

One of the best things about sunrooms is how they give you a chance to soak in the natural light. Natural light brings with it warmth and comfort. It also helps clear out odours and freshen up your space.

  • Enjoy outdoor living

There’s probably nothing more annoying than flies and mosquitoes interrupting your relaxation time. While insects are an important part of the ecosystem, they affect the comfort and liveability of your home. With a sunroom, you’ll be able to enjoy outdoor living without having to worry about insects.

Designing a sunroom extension to upgrade your home

What are the design elements you should consider when you’re extending your home with a new sunroom? Windows, walls, heating, and cooling have the biggest impact on aesthetics, comfort, and enjoyment.

1. Windows and walls

With a four-season sunroom, consider using double-glazed glass for energy efficiency so you can use the sunroom all year round. If your chosen design is the screen-room style, consider using high-quality fly screens. This type of sunroom might not feature walls or a significant amount of wall coverage. However, you stay protected against insects by installing these screens wherever you have gaps or windows and doorways.

2. Heating and cooling

If you’d like to enjoy using your sunroom throughout the year, introduce heating and cooling. This could be connected to your house, or it could be something as simple as a small wall heater. If budget is of no concern, radiant floor heating is great for cold regions. Ceiling fans can improve air circulation in your sunroom. If you’re using glass, double-glazing is a good idea. You can also consider alternating insulating roof panels with glass panels. Also, make sure you can open any windows for better airflow.

Sunrooms make functional, appealing living areas

Sunrooms are a fantastic addition to your property, increasing your livable space and quality of life. They can let you get closer to the outdoors, enhance health and mood, and even raise your property value. When adding one, you’ll want to get to know different options and designs like screen rooms and enclosed sunrooms. Also, be clear about the walls and windows and how your choice of materials for these can impact the utility of your sunroom. Finally, heating and cooling features will also have major implications for comfort and enjoyment. As long as you carefully consider each of these elements, you’ll likely end up with a sunroom that’s right for your needs.

Artilux has been Australia’s leading supplier of high-quality retractable fly screens for the last 30 years. If you’d like to find out more about installing our products for your sunroom project, contact our friendly team today.