Whether you already have a sunroom or are planning to add one to your home, keeping it comfortable year-round is likely a priority. Climate-controlled sunrooms allow you to experience the best of the outdoors while basking in the convenience of the indoors. You can enjoy long, sunny summer days without worrying about bugs or sunburn and brisk winter mornings without sacrificing comfort.
Fortunately, modern sunroom contractors build sunrooms with many climate-controlling features, like thermally efficient framing and tightly-sealed locking systems. If you already have a sunroom and are looking for ways to boost its climate-controlling ability, there are many things you can try.
Factors That Affect the Climate Control of Sunrooms
Before we dive into ways to keep your sunroom comfortable year-round, let’s start with some important considerations that influence how well your sunroom can maintain a comfortable temperature:
- North-facing vs. south-facing: A north-facing sunroom will receive little direct sunlight, which can be beneficial if you live in a warmer climate. A south-facing sunroom will receive the most light and heat, which is ideal for homeowners in colder climates.
- The type of windows you use: Energy-efficient sunroom windows will fit tightly in their frames and contain multiple panes of insulated glass to seal out the elements while keeping the comfortable temperature inside.
- The size of the room: Smaller sunrooms are more efficient to heat and cool than larger sunrooms.
How to Keep My Sunroom Warm in the Winter
Keeping your sunroom warm and cozy during the cold months involves heating the space and insulating the walls to keep the heat inside. Insulation keeps your space warm and helps cut down on heating costs. Below are a few ways to continue enjoying the benefits of a sunroom even when it’s cold outside:
- Control the climate with an HVAC system: If you live in an environment that sees particularly harsh seasons, using an HVAC system is an efficient way to regulate the temperature in your sunroom. You can extend your home’s existing ductwork into the sunroom or install a separate thermostat to manage the sunroom’s temperature. Using an HVAC system also allows you to add the sunroom’s square footage to your home’s total livable space, increasing its value.
- Take advantage of sunlight: Your sunroom can harness solar energy depending on how you position it in relation to the sun. A south-facing sunroom will receive ample sunlight and heat, allowing it to warm to a pleasant temperature on most winter days.
- Use weatherstripping: Weatherstripping is the process of sealing gaps in the exterior of your home from the outdoor elements. Weatherstripping materials include rubber, vinyl, silicone, foam tape and felt. Installing weatherstripping around the window frames in your sunroom can prevent warm air from escaping.
- Add insulation to your windows: Window insulation film is a transparent sheet of plastic that adheres to the surface of your sunroom windows to help keep cold air out. You can install this film during the colder months and remove it once it’s warm outside so you can open the windows easily. Window insulation can boost energy efficiency, particularly if your sunroom has single-pane windows.
- Apply window tinting: Tinting your sunroom windows allows sunlight to pour in but not escape, helping the room retain radiant heat. Tinting your windows can slightly diminish the view, but the added warmth you’ll enjoy may make this method worth it.
- Install a ceiling fan: Ceiling fans don’t add heat, but they do circulate the air already in your sunroom. As warm air rises, a ceiling fan will continually distribute it back down into the living space where you can feel it.
- Treat your windows with insulated drapes: Insulated curtains will help your sunroom hold onto warm air. Simply open the drapes during daylight hours to flood your sunroom with radiant heat and close them once the sun goes down to retain the warmth.
- Open the door that connects your sunroom to the rest of your home: Opening your sunroom to the rest of your home is a simple way to let the heat inside your home permeate the space. The warm air inside your house will naturally flow into the cooler area, balancing the temperature. Use this in combination with sunroom insulation measures to help keep your energy bills low.
- Supplement with a heat source: If your sunroom does not receive enough solar energy during the winter to keep it warm, you can use a portable electric heater or a baseboard heater to add warmth.
How to Keep My Sunroom Cool in the Summer
Summer is a lovely time to enjoy your sunroom. You can bask in long, sunny days and blooming flowers from the comfort of your home. However, all that summer sunshine means rising temperatures, and you may find your sunroom getting too hot to be comfortable. Below are a few ways to keep your sunroom cool in the warmer months:
- Track sun exposure: Take note of how much sunlight your space receives throughout the day to help you identify what times need cooling interventions. For example, if your sunroom gets full morning sun, you might consider closing the blinds or using curtains to keep out the heat during that time.
- Increase the airflow: It’s helpful to have ventilation openings in your ceiling to allow heat to escape when it rises. You can use floor fans to transfer the hot air upward or ventilation fans to draw the heat to the openings.
- Install blinds: Blinds can help block some of the sun’s heat. Close, open, partially crack or tilt them to control the amount of sunlight your space receives. You can use many types of blinds in your sunroom, from those that hang inside the windows to those that fit between the panes of glass.
- Use blackout curtains: If the summer heat is especially intense, blackout curtains can help. Although they will completely block the view from your sunroom, you can use them just during the hottest part of the day to keep the heat out then open them once things are cooler.
Let Evolution Sunrooms Build the Addition of Your Dreams
Evolution Sunrooms has been creating stunning spaces that invite the outdoors in for over 27 years. Our specialized building systems ensure your sunroom is energy-efficient and well-insulated so you can enjoy your space year-round.
When you partner with us to build your new sunroom, you can expect a thorough in-home consultation, knowledgeable designers, quality materials, factory-built precision and a double lifetime warranty. With a custom all-season sunroom, you can enjoy this comfortable living space no matter the weather outside.