Upgrading your conservatory

In the 1970s conservatories were used as occasional garden rooms. When the weather was hot it was too hot in the conservatory and when the weather was cold it was too cold in the conservatory. Taking a harsh view one could surmise that they were not fit for purpose compared to todays expectations.

 While it may be impractical to upgrade a 1970s aluminium conservatory.  uPVC structured conservatories were introduced in the 1980s and these provided better insulation and were more adaptable. There may be things you can do to bring it up to date so it can be used all year round.

First, look at simply replacing the glass in your ageing conservatory. These days, the latest glass coatings make window panes much less prone to extremes in temperature. The technology keeps conservatories cooler in summer by reflecting heat away and warmer in winter.

You may not be able to do away with the sliding doors at the far end of your conservatory (building regulations probably won’t let you replace them because you’ll lower the room’s thermal efficiency and put a cold spot at back of your house, which means even higher energy bills). One solution might be to replace the roof. You could have solid tiles or a combined glass and solid roof, making your conservatory a seamless, open-plan part of your house – not just a bolt-on. One of the many advantages of a total or part solid roof is that it produces shaded areas where people can use laptops and phones, or watch TV.

Replacing the roof on an older conservatory, you have to be mindful of the weight. What you don’t want is your elderly conservatory collapsing under an unexpected dumping of snow.

The frame itself is the final element to consider when upgrading your conservatory. While you’re improving the roof you can improve your wall frames with brick to give more of an extension look. People care more about what conservatories look like. Originally frames were either white or aluminium, but today you can opt for contemporary colours such as on-trend anthracite or chartwell green.

Conservatories used to be ‘bolted onto’ the house. Nowadays care is taken to blend in the conservatory so it looks part of the house. Dwarf walls can run around the perimeter of your conservatory, so you could match the bricks of your dwarf wall to the original house. Terraces can be extended to include the conservatory structure

Finally, rather than have an all-glass conservatory, corner pillars would transform your glass cube into a more elegant orangery type structure. Having created a solid structure with high-level insulation, you can then balance the room’s temperature all year round.

From uluminium bolt on to solid roof or oprangery conservatories have progressed a long way since 1970

Contact us for further conservatory advice