Build Your Own Sunroom

If you decide to try to build your own sunroom, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Carefully assess your existing deck or patio. What are it's limitations? Should it be modified or strengthened before starting?  How will you tie the sunroom into the existing structure?  
  • Look at some professionally built sunrooms, at dealers' showrooms and in pictures. Dealers usually have lots of pic's of sunrooms they have built, and you can find lots of pic's on the internet as well. This will give you some ideas about different styles and features.
  • Be patient. Don't expect to have it done in a few weeks. I built mine over the course of two summers. Unless you know where you can get all of the glass you'll need, you're going to have to do some careful looking.
  • Plan ahead. Think about your next steps. For example, when planning the roof, allow for the height of the front wall so that it will meet the roof without leaving a gap on the top.
  • Try to maximize the ventilation capability. Glass rooms can get very warm on sunny days, even in the spring and fall. In the summer they can be unbearable unless you've got lots of airflow. I built mine with at least one sliding door on each of the three walls.
  • Be creative with materials. For example, I found that foam pipe-wrap insulation, cut lengthwise, was perfect for sealing the gaps where my side walls meet the house's vinyl siding.
Don't expect perfection. You're not spending $20,000, so don't expect it to look like the one from a dealer. You'll still experience almost all of the benefits of that $20,000 sunroom, and the fact that it cost you just a fraction of the price will make it even more enjoyable.

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