Hello all! It’s been quite a while, I know. It’s been busy here at DBS in Poughkeepsie! However, we are back and better than ever. We have a clearer understanding of what we want to give you, and what you are looking for. SO, happy reading and it’s nice to see you!
It might seem a bit ironic that we are blogging about sunrooms / three-season rooms / patio enclosures at the onset of winter, but really it makes complete and perfect sense to us! And I will make it make sense for you too. The point of a three–season room is that you use it for three seasons, with winter being the fourth season. So why not build your structure around the season that it’s technically not supposed to be used? Why would you want to ‘lose’ a season during construction when you could get it done and over with, and ready to use come spring?! To us, it’s a no brainer; and of course we will help you understand our position on this. So let’s begin!
First off, three season rooms, are also known as sunrooms, and are also known as patio enclosures; but for the sake of making this blog much shorter than it has to be (also sparing your precious time), and less filled with the same things over and over, we will carry on from here calling it a three season room… as long as you know we are actually talking about all three. Now that that’s cleared up, let’s move on, shall we?
Let’s begin with exactly what you’re thinking. The placement of your new three season room! The most popular place to construct a three season room is on the back of the home. Often times, DBS’ clients that have added on one of these rooms call it ‘their favorite space in their home’. The whole idea of this type of room is to have the feeling of being surrounded by nature without actually being outside. You will reap all the benefits of the wonderful, warm sunlight while staying safe from pesky bugs. You can enjoy a nice thunderstorm with friends and family while staying cozy and dry! This is a great way to gain more space in your home without the costly addition. This is possible because when adding a three season room to your home, since it is not heated (we will dabble in this later), it is not classified as “habitable living space”. Here, you skip being taxed for more habitable square footage on your home. Who doesn’t love that idea?!
Next we’ll discuss your options with foundation. There are two options that you have as a homeowner to build on. The first option is a block foundation; where your contractor will dig into the ground and fill the space with concrete so that the three season room’s foundation matches the house, which is a huge plus for some people. This is a guaranteed approach to a foundation, however it does take more time, as well as being a bit more expensive. Your other option (which is popular) is to construct your new three season room on piers. This method has a few pros versus the block foundation, as well as a few cons. The pros are as follows: it is absolutely cost effective, in that is does prove to be less expensive than the block foundation. The pier foundation is quicker to construct, as well as being less invasive to your lawn/home. Instead of digging up a large area of your yard and laying concrete, there would be only a few holes where the piers would be secured into the ground. However, a few of the cons are as follows: because your three season room is suspended, air is allowed to pass underneath the room making for a chillier space. Also, a con of the pier foundation is that the three season room no longer looks‘flush’ with the rest of the home, and the room tends to look like it was added on. There are different types of piers for different looks, for example, choices of cinderblock or wood. Also, there are all different styles of skirts that can be added so that the room doesn’t seem suspended, such as lattice, or maybe wood. Three season rooms should be constructed with like materials that match the existing structure.
As promised, we will discuss the idea that there is no heat in the structure, and as mentioned before, this is because it is not considered an addition. This room is made to hold heat in (chiller months) / let heat out (warmer months) by using the efficiency of windows and insulation. Windows in a room like this are meant to be abundant so that you can get the very most amount of sunshine possible! However, these windows must be efficiently insulated so that they are not expending heat that is present in the room. In the summer, you want plenty of windows for ventilation and to get the air moving throughout the room.
Floors, walls and ceilings also have to be chosen carefully. Because the temperature of your three season room is constantly changing with the seasons, it is smart to choose materials that are conducive to this type of environment. Some ideas would be to use wooden tongue and groove paneling for your wall/ceiling, that expands and contracts with the temperature as opposed to sheetrock, that tends to crack under extreme temperature changes. Along those same lines, choosing the right flooring is just as important. What tends to work well is wood, as well as tile, because they will adjust to the changes of the room.
A few side notes when talking about three season rooms are:
- Some people like to incorporate a deck onto the room
- Adding skylights can increase your amount of sunlight to the room as well as dress it up a bit (there are even electronic opening skylights and skylights that have a sensor and close with the rain)
- When thinking about screens, there is such a thing as ‘glare free screens’ for your windows
- On the topic of windows, will yours glide, or open out?
Check out our three season room / sunroom / patio enclosure portfolio on our website, or call/email us to learn more/ask questions! 845.485.8343