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Things to Consider when Building a Sunroom

You should know that all sunrooms are not alike. This makes it very important that you know what you are looking for when you purchase a sunroom. There are a number of sunroom products on the market today and many offer lower quality than others. Make sure that you are looking for a well-manufactured and sturdy product when buying a sunroom.

If you are using a contractor for your sunroom, ask if there is a showroom available where you can see models that the company has built. Some contractors may be able to show you homes where they have installed sunrooms. This allows you to see a bit of their past work and gives you the opportunity to speak with other homeowners to see if they were happy with the contractor.

Doing a comparison is important. When comparing, think about both value and cost. While you certainly do not want to pay more than you have to for your sunroom, it is important that you do not choose the cheapest contractor simply because they offer the lowest cost. You have to consider the quality of the room that you will be adding to your home. Most sunroom contractors will offer a no obligation consultation for free. This gives them the opportunity to offer a pricing quote for building your sunroom. Beware of gaining pricing quotes or estimates over the phone as this does not give the contractor the ability to truly judge just how much your sunroom will cost. The only way that you can truly know what your sunroom will cost is to schedule an appointment to compare value and cost with each contractor that you consider.

Find out what type of insurances the company has in place. Worker’s Compensation is often an expensive insurance for contractors to purchase but without it, they may simply hire subcontractors who do not have insurance at all. If one of these workers is injured while working on your property, you could be held liable.

Find out if the company offers UL approval and Energy Star products. If your sunroom will be designed to accommodate comfortable temperatures throughout the year it is essential that any products used in its design are Energy Star approved. All windows and doors should bear this approval in order to help you to keep your energy costs down once your sunroom is completed.

Roller wheels are an excellent choice on doors and windows. The rollers in these products help to ensure smooth operation for many years. Find out if window rollers are the same quality and size as door rollers. The best system for heavy doors and windows is steel rollers on stainless steel tracks. Rollers need to be adjustable and should be covered under your warranty. Be certain that the frame is sturdy and well-built. There are a number of sunroom and patio doors and windows that use a roll formed aluminum frame. These frames are not nearly as strong as extruded frames and can cause your sunroom to give out long before its time. Frames have to be high quality and strong in order to last for many years and bear the constant use of doors and windows in the sunroom.

The handles on your windows and doors need to be high quality as well. They should be easy for you to use but offer strength. When visiting the demonstration model, take the time to try out all of the door and window handles to check their strength and durability.

Screen material is typically nylon or fiberglass. These materials however are easily stretched and can be burned or torn easily as well. The screens that you use should be free from glare in order to keep sunlight from being a burden when you are sitting in the sunroom. Flat black aluminum is a good material for sunroom screens as it lasts much longer than nylon or fiberglass and deters glare from sunlight. Aluminum screens are designed to be durable and will not burn, tear or stretch. They require replacement much less regularly than other materials and are often the most attractive choice for sunroom windows and doors.

When you choose a contractor you have to know who will be on your property working on your sunroom. Find out if subcontractors are typically used by this company and which specific part of the work these subcontractors will be performing. If they are used, make sure that they are fully insured and that the sunroom company you hire stands behind the quality of their work.

Getting the right permits and inspections is essential. Find out first what permits are required for building in your area and how those permits will be processed. Also find out who schedules the inspections for building and when those inspections are scheduled.

You have to carefully consider the floor channel when adding a sunroom to your home. Most sunroom floor channels are either attached to the foundation or to a deck. Water can easily collect in a channel that is flat. You want a floor channel that has a slope toward the sunrooms outside. If water does get inside it will flow toward the front of your sunroom and not simply sit in the channel or worse, back up into the sunroom itself. The floor channel should be thoroughly sealed in order to prevent water from seeping under it. You should also ensure that the same type of channel is used under the main frames of the windows.

Weep holes are another consideration in controlling water in your sunroom. These are elongated holes that the factor pre-punches to prevent water from clogging. Weep holes that are drilled in the factory are more favorable than those drilled onsite because drilling can be better controlled in the factory. Drilling through the aluminum onsite can cause dirt to clog the holes.

Find out from the sunroom contractor what types of house gutters are used and look for an aluminum gutter that is extruded and fits into the roof when finished. Extruded gutters are more durable than standard gutters and can be purchased to perfectly match your sunroom roof.

Finally, find out what warranties are available and how long they last. You want to know what type of manufacturer’s warranty is available and who stands behind this warranty.

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