|A Conservatory for Your Home
|Conservatories are traditionally room additions
with glass roofs and walls that let the outside
light stream into the home. They differ from
working greenhouses (which are designed to allow the gardener
to care for plants) in that conservatories
are extensions of indoor living spaces and
are meant for seating and eating areas. A
well designed conservatory will not only
increase the pleasure of living in a house,
it will also add exterior architectural distinction
(think "the Conservatory" in the
popular game of "Clue"). Conservatories
are can be custom designed, but they are
also available as kits. |
If you are thinking of adding a conservatory,
consider the following:
- The most popular and least costly conservatories
are made from walls whose glass panes are
framed with UPVC (also known as PVC-U or
hard PVC). These make excellent, highly insulated
structures that require virtually no maintenance.
Look for walls that are between 1 to 2 inches
(3 to 3.5 mm) thick that have also been reinforced
with aluminum or galvanized steel.
- Aluminum framed walls are more expensive
than UPVC, and they do not
insulate as well.
They are, however, extremely
strong, so aluminum
may be the most appropriate
choice for larger
- Hardwood framed walls are very traditional.
These conservatories are the
and historically authentic.
The wood can
be painted or stained in a
wide range of
colors. Wooden conservatories
maintenance than other types,
and they are
the most expensive. Look for
sturdy wall thicknesses. Many
this type of conservatory using
and tenon” joinery.
- The roofs of well built conservatories should
be constructed from aluminum,
steel or timber.
Look for models whose roofs
have been made
specifically for them rather
than being pieced
together from pre-existing
as these will be susceptible
A quality conservatory will
have the same
warranty for the roof as it
does for the
Conservatories come in many different
and styles from traditional to
that is being added to an existing house
will be most successful if it harmonizes
with the architectural style of the house.
It is important to carefully check out the
ornamental details of any conservatory you
are thinking of installing, as many companies
use terms such as “Victorian” very loosely.