What to Watch for – and Watch Out for – When Buying a Sunroom

What to Watch for – and Watch Out for – When Buying a Sunroom

Do higher gas prices and clogged highways have you spending more time at home? Do you wish you had a great space for your kids and their friends to hang out? If you’ve had the idea to turn your deck or patio into that wonderful sunroom addition, now is a great time to add a sunroom.

Not all sunroom dealers and manufacturers are the same! When buying a sunroom, Betterliving really does mean better living sunrooms!

Here are some things that you should know before buying a sunroom, along with how Betterliving sunrooms responds to these concerns.

1. Compare the cost and value of a sunroom

Make sure the dealer offers a free, no obligation consultation and measure at your home to provide you with an exact cost for your project. Consultants can offer great ideas on how to utilize your current deck or patio as a foundation for your sunroom addition. Watch out for contractors who offer sunroom costs over the phone. This can hide the true cost of a sunroom project. Scheduling an appointment will be the only true way to be sure you can compare the sunroom cost and value of each product before selecting a sunroom company.

Betterliving Patio Rooms of Pittsburgh offers free in-home design consultations and to-the-penny price with no hidden sunroom costs.

2. Ask about the electrical raceways

Would you live in a home where the electric system was not up to code? Be sure the sunroom has electrical raceways that meet national codes for approved wiring systems. Electrical raceways are not only safe but they shouldn’t interfere with the sunroom décor. Watch for contractors who only offer electric as an afterthought by using awkward surface mount electrical boxes and conduit to run wiring and mount outlets.

Betterliving sunrooms meet national standards for electric wiring with built in electrical raceways that keep a consistent look throughout your house and don’t distract from your sunroom decor – some others don’t!

3. Check the roller wheels on windows and doors

When building a sunroom, the sunroom windows and doors are of critical importance. The quality of the windows and doors not only provides the outdoor feel but they’re a key factor in a fully insulated sunroom that allows you to entertain for four seasons. To maintain durability, it’s the rollers that keep the windows and doors operating smoothly for the long term. Steel wheels on stainless steel tracks are the best system for heavy windows and doors. Be sure the wheels are covered under the warranty.

The windows and doors in Betterliving sunrooms have dual rugged steel wheels that run on a stainless steel track and have a 50 year warranty.

4. What about Energy Star?

ENERGY STAR is a national program that rates the energy efficiency of consumer products. You’ll hear the term four seasons sunroom used frequently and it refers to sunrooms designed for year round heating and cooling. These sunroom designs are eligible to earn the ENERGY STAR. If you are considering a four season sunroom, be sure the roof system is ENERGY STAR qualified in all 50 states.

All Betterliving roof panels with white exteriors are ENERGY STAR qualified in all 50 states. You can go to the ENERGY STAR Partner List web page and search for “Craft–Bilt” to confirm our status as an ENERGY STAR Product Manufacturers Partner.

5. Ask about insurance

Workers compensation insurance is a big expense that many contractors don’t want to absorb, so they cut corners by hiring sub–contractors to do the installation. If an uninsured worker is injured on your property, you could bear the liability and the original sunroom cost presented by the contractor becomes a huge loss.

Betterliving Patio Rooms of Pittsburgh carries workers compensation insurance on all employees and does not use sub-contractors to install a sunroom.

6. Screens should be glare free

Many companies will show you pictures of sunrooms and screened porch photos that have fiberglass screens. Black aluminum screens minimize the obstruction of your outdoor view and are stronger than fiberglass screens.

Betterliving sunroom screens are long-lasting black aluminum and are glare-free.

7. Check out the handles

Your sunroom will get lots of use, so the door handles should be strong and easy to use. Screen handles should be full size and well fastened.

Betterliving uses color matched handles with locks and full size handles on all the screens.

8. Be sure you get the right permits and the necessary inspections

Identify what permits will be required and how they will be processed. Find out who will schedule the inspections required by your local building department.

Betterliving Patio Rooms of Pittsburgh handles all permitting from start to finish.

9. What type of warranty is included?

How long is the labor guarantee and what does it include? Ask about the manufacturer’s warranty and who stands behind it.

Craft-Bilt Manufacturing Company, a leader in home improvements since 1946, stands behind our 50 year warranty, and the authorized dealers stand behind the labor guarantee!

10. Does the sunroom meet national building standards?

Your sunroom is part of your home and must meet the building standards established by national code councils. Sunroom components should be tested in an independent engineering laboratory to assure that these standards are met.

Betterliving sunrooms are tested in a certified, independent engineering test lab, and the sunroom design is upgraded continually to assure that wind load, snow load, and water penetration standards are met.

Compare apples to apples when looking at prices. The sour taste of poor quality lasts longer that the sweetness of a low price.

Benefits of Installing an Aluminum Patio Cover

rrererreWhen you choose a starter program from Betterliving Patio & Sunrooms, we install an aluminum patio cover that can be built upon later. It’s perfect for those that are thinking about adding a sunroom, but don’t want to make the financial commitment right away. Here are three benefits of aluminum patio covers in Pittsburgh, PA.

Cost-Effective

Patio covers can help you enjoy the extra living space, shade, and shelter that you would get with a sunroom, but at less cost. The cover is quick to install, too, making it a simple and cost-effective addition to your home.

Can Be Built Upon

There is a reason aluminum patio covers are part of our starter package. If you want to upgrade to a sunroom at a later date, it will be very easy to convert the existing structure. And, because the base for the structure was already there, it will cost you less than if you wanted to build a new shade room from scratch.

Makes a Good Car Port

If you don’t want to make your patio cover into a shade room, you can ask us to install it as a new car port. Car ports are great for people who don’t have a garage, or who do not have enough space in their garage. It keeps your car safe from weather conditions, keeps it out of the sun so the interior stays cooler, and greatly reduces the amount of scraping you’ll have to do in the winter.

Contact us today to learn more about our starter program.

Solar Shade Videos by Betterliving Patio & Sunrooms of Pittsburgh

Solar Shades by Betterliving Patio & Sunrooms of Pittsburgh®

The most efficient way to block the heat of the sun is from the outside – before it has a chance to heat the glass windows and doors! Exterior solar shades can block the sun’s heat while still providing visibility to the outside. Betterliving Solar Shades pay for themselves year after year by reducing energy costs and protecting your furnishings from harmful UV rays that may cause fading. They also add privacy to your outdoor living space.

 

Watching Solar Shades in Action from inside a Betterliving Sunroom

 

Watching Solar Shades in Action from outside a Betterliving Sunroom

 

Click here for a Solar Shade Brochure