We dream of how we’d like things to be. The challenge is to bring our dreams to life. If you’re like most people, you’ve dreamed of a sunroom addition, especially one that seamlessly connect the indoors to the outdoors. Dream no more and put these three ideas to work to design the perfect sunroom addition that suits your lifestyle.
Connecting the indoors to the outdoors
Illinois’ four-season climate puts on a show for the senses. Wintery white snow covered trees, spring sunshine yellow daffodils, summer sounds and smells, and fall picturesque orange foliage. This also means cold, wind, rain, bugs, heat and humidity.
Sunrooms can maximize the pleasures and minimize the harsh realities of Midwest living.
Categorized as three or all-season rooms based on whether the sunroom can be used in cold or very hot weather, sunrooms connect the indoors to the outdoors in three different ways.
1. Do you want a central room completely open to the sunroom?
2. Do you want the sunroom viewable using oversized glass doors?
3. Do you want the sunroom to be a separate room altogether?
Open up the existing room
Use your imagination to design the space that will connect the indoors to the outdoors. Depending on the space, here are some suggestions to consider in your plan. If you open a wall to the main structure of the house obviously, heating and cooling considerations will be part of the design. This means that all openings, such as windows, doors, or skylights will need to comply with additional requirements for air infiltration and water penetration resistance, thermal performance (insulation) and structural requirements. Plan carefully to ensure that the sunroom addition doesn't significantly impact the temperature of the rest of your home and that you can keep the sunroom temperatures comfortable without overly relying on artificial heating, cooling or cause unnecessary transfer of heat or cold throughout the rest of the house.
Opening an entire exterior wall to connect an existing room to the sunroom is one of those projects that win awards in home magazines because it's transformative. Select a style, materials and finishes that make the room feel as if it was always a part of the original home.
Oversized glass doors
Sunrooms that connect the indoors to the outdoors using oversized glass doors is one of the hottest trends today. This style allows the sunroom to be more self-contained than completely opening a wall to the sunroom because the room is thermally isolated from the rest of the house.
This design is heated or cooled by a separate temperature control. Energy performance, water filtration resistance and structural requirements still need to be carefully considered for your project.
Today’s selection of patio style doors from Marvin, Andersen and Pella come in expansive widths and heights, which can give you a seamless transition and expansive views between your home and the sunroom.
Door connects the sunroom
Adding a sunroom with easy access from main living areas, which gets adequate sunlight can be difficult for some homes. In these instances the sunroom maybe a retreat off the master bedroom or a den at the end of the hall. This design can be finished as either a three-season room or all-season room like the aforementioned spaces. Three-season rooms may use screens in place of glass, may use less insulation, and may not have heating or cooling units. All-season rooms will give you the added choice of using the room all year. This design is isolated from the rest of the home with far less potential to affect the integrity of the other structure.
Let your imagination run wild with these three potential designs to connect the indoors with the outdoors. Which option best suits your dreams, needs, your home, and your budget?
Sunrooms have become a much sought after item by homeowners, so we’ll devote several blogs to ideas for sunroom additions and cover the important things you need to know.
• Location strategies
• Energy efficiency
• Structural requirements
• Optimizing sunrooms for less desirable locations
• Woodland Exteriors sunrooms