New Home Designs

Top 8 Conservatory Roof Systems For Protection And Style

April 26th, 2017

Whether you want a dining room with a view, a well-lit study, a sanctuary for your plants or just a spot for your family to relax, conservatories fit the bill. Light streams in through the wide windows creating a bright space for any activity and you’re just a hop from your garden. Up above, conservatory roofs keep out the elements and add a grand sense of style.

Adding a conservatory is the perfect way to extend your home but you need to pay special attention to the roof. One key reason is, of course, the weather. There are many different types of roofing systems that you can choose from such as:

Victorian Conservatory Roofs

The most traditional conservatory style produced today in the UK, the Victorian conservatory roof can be firmly traced back to the elaborate Victorian styles incorporated in many public and private buildings seen across parks and landscapes in Britain.

The Victorian roof is based on the styles seen during Queen Victoria’s reign from 1837 to 1901, a time of great change in the home. Mass production meant more goods were available to buy and the newly emerging middle classes took great pride in their homes which they saw as a reflection of status. This elaborate and flamboyant style carried through many areas of construction particularly the design of glass roofs.

The Victorian conservatory roof has distinguishing architectural features such as a bay front, steeply pitched roof and ornate ridge details. Style variations can include a 3-facet Victorian where the bay front has three main windows, widely angled for maximum space and is suitable for the majority of locations or a 5-facet Victorian which is a bay front with five main windows, creating a pleasing period profile with a subtle rounded appearance which offers the ideal blend of space and classical looks.

Georgian Conservatory Roofs

The most popular conservatory roof adding maximum living space, Georgian conservatory roofs are typically flat fronted and gracefully understated variants of the Victorian conservatory. Georgian conservatories offer a clean and simple look with strong bold lines.

The full square corners on the Georgian style maximise the interior floor area as opposed to the more rounded corners associated with a Victorian. The style is based on The Georgian period. Typically this design period runs from 1714- 1830 and is heavy influenced by a tax which was brought in on the number of windows a property had, the more windows a property had, generally the more affluent the occupants and the higher tax paid.

A typical Georgian property of the eighteenth century was elegant and formal in style which clean understated lines and a style which stands the test of time. The Georgian Conservatory Roofs fabricated by Specialised Conservatory Roofs stay true to this original class and style offering cleanliness and understated appeal.

Edwardian Conservatory Roofs

Offering an elegant look, giving your maximum living space; Edwardian era design is characterised by strong, clean lines not dissimilar to that of the Georgian, in fact some conservatory roof companies do not distinguish between an Edwardian Conservatory Roof and that of a Georgian Conservatory Roof. Buildings and interiors of the Edwardian era were explicitly designed to achieve the effect of expensive simplicity.

Houses generally had wider frontages and were built to accommodate lots of space for sunshine and air. Colours and detailing were lighter than in the preceding Victorian period, instead returning to Georgian style aesthetics of a century earlier.

The Edwardian conservatory roof offers an elegant look with strong bold lines and gives maximum living space for any given area. It is completely adaptable to suit all house styles and bungalows. For bungalows and other height-restricted situations, a hipped-back roof with box gutter is normally supplied. The result is a conservatory focused on maximum use of floor space and maximising the availability of light.

With its bold square-fronted projection, the Edwardian-style conservatory maximises the available space whilst delivering a clean style. Designed to reflect the elegant and dignified simplicity of the Edwardian architectural style, this type of conservatory is often the most practical and efficient way to extend a home and create a practical living space.

Lantern Conservatory Roofs

The perfect finish to a stylish large conservatory; if you want the perfect finish to a stylish large conservatory then there is no other real option other than a Lantern Roof.

Lantern conservatory roofs consist of a roof in two tiers with the different levels separated by a row of small windows. This additional level of small windows adds height and presence to the overall construction whilst also increasing the sense of interior space and in addition, the openers for these smaller windows can be incorporated to increase ventilation.

To add that little extra to the whole appearance, it is possible to include decorative glazing to this tier to add colour or a clear design feature and not only do lantern roofs add a feeling of height to the conservatory, but they also give an enormous feeling of space and allow extra light to flood in.

Ultralite 500 Conservatory Roofs

Described as the original roof in a box the Ultralite 500 from Ultraframe is an unique low pitch roof system with 500mm wide panels, you can choose from either PVC panels or polycarbonate. Designed for use at just 2½ degrees, Ultralite 500 can be used on almost any property – even bungalows and awkward-shaped dwellings – plus it has a wide range of benefits for you, the installer, and to your customers which give it a significant advantage and enhance its performance.

The Ultralite 500 is a free-spanning conservatory roof system, with integral aluminium strengthening bars which makes it perfect for homes and large commercial properties.

The system has excellent light transmission properties and includes built-in sun diffusion and boasts a unique controllable ventilation system. The combination of these features ensures an interior climate that is cool in summer and warm in winter – the perfect conservatory.

Ultralite 500 has been designed with clean, uninterrupted lines – ideal for a contemporary Mediterranean-style conservatory. The roofs are designed to be as fitter friendly as possible and are packaged in colour coded boxes in order to remove as much time from installation as possible.

As well as being beautifully designed, exceptional value for money and easy to install, the Ultralite 500 roof system also has a BBA Certified ‘Life expectancy of at least 25 years’, a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty (on the white system) and has been subjected to stringent fire safety rating tests.

Elevation Conservatory Roofing

Increased flexibility that can be easily modified to smaller sizes
The Elevation lean-to system is available in two style options, the elevation and the elevation plus. Elevation is a direct replacement for Ultralite 500 and has all the convenience of Ultralite 500 but due to increased flexibility can be easily modified to smaller sizes.

The Elevation roofing system offers a choice of styles and is completely configurable to suit almost every property offering the choice of the more traditional lean-to style or hipped wing glazing bars to maximise on light able to enter the conservatory and provide a more contemporary appearance. Elevation uses Clicklock technology which makes it very easy to install.

The glazing bars simply click into place along the ridge & eaves. This means 90% fewer fixings and 75% fewer installation steps, you simply locate and click which in turn means no drilling, no nuts and no bolts, just simple and secure.

To further assist with fitting, Elevation has an integrated spirit level in the ridge, meaning that fewer tools are needed for installation and your hands are free to get the job done. The invertabar glazing bar reverses traditional glazing bar proportions by making a simple yet radical design change.

This allows for glazed areas to be maximised, creating a much lighter, brighter look, which is appealing to homeowners.
The Invertabar configuration means that Elevation boasts un-matched thermal performance – the internal temperature is isothermal, meaning that the bars are the same temperature as the polycarbonate. Polycarbonate is available in 25mm or 35mm.

The Clicklock technology stretches all the way down the glazing bar to the eaves beam connection, as does the PVCu cladding that makes this roof so thermally efficient. As there is no exposed aluminium on an Elevation roof, cold bridges are eliminated meaning that condensation areas that can occur on other roofs are eliminated.

Elevation Plus

Elevation plus is a totally unique product that due to its design features, ease of installation and overall appearance will give you a significant advantage over your competitors and lead to more sales. The revolutionary hipped wing design floods the conservatory with light, overcomes the need for firrings and creates an open and airy roof area which will sit stylishly with any property.

Elevation Plus can span up to 4 metres making it perfect for both domestic conservatories and commercial applications and it is specifically designed to work with Ultraframe’s unique Conservaflash.

The installation time of Elevation Plus in vastly reduced delivering one of the fastest installation times of any roof system.
Elevation Plus has a robust eaves beam all the way around for enhanced structural support particularly over the doors and the thermally efficient design meets current and future anticipated regulations.

Elevation Plus is available in White, Deeplas, Light Oak and Rosewood to match existing door and window finishes and is a suitable for timber, aluminium and PVCu frames.

Portal Conservatory Roofs

For conservatories that are extremely large and require extra support; conservatories that are extremely large and require extra support to take the weight of the roof and provide additional stability are known as large span or portal framed conservatories.

The uses for portal roofs are endless – from magnificent swimming pool enclosures to large commercial extensions; anything is possible due to the flexibility and advanced engineering of the large span system

A portal frame is an aluminium box section ‘skeleton’ used to support a roof. It sits on the inside of the cill line and the windows and doors form a cladding to the outside of the portal.

The aluminium is usually powder coated to complement the windows, doors & surrounding buildings. A portal frame is required when the roof may exceed the sizes set out in the design guide or when the design of the roof cannot be supported by the window frames.

Classic Conservatory Roof System

Combines state-of-the-art technologies with contemporary designs, the classic conservatory roof system combines state-of-the-art manufacturing technologies with elegant, contemporary designs.

The aluminium roofing system is strong, lightweight and rigid and has been developed over 18 successful years of use with ongoing improvements and enhancements being introduced to the system over the years.

The main advantage of the classic is its flexibility to deal with all sizes and configurations of roof giving a fully bespoke solution to unique designs. It’s fair to say that the Classic Roofing System has set the standards in conservatory roofing from design through to installation offering the flexibility, structural integrity and aesthetics that are required to satisfy the requirements of customers and consumers today.

The flexibility of the Ultraframe Classic Roofing System allows it to be used for various applications: swimming pool enclosures, glasshouses, roof-lights, home extensions, gazebos, summerhouses, shops, porches, hotels and restaurants.

The design of the classic roof system is based on the Classic Victorian style used on many of today’s conservatories. As with all roofs fabricated by Specialised, the roof can be personalised to include many variations of finishes, glazing materials, vents and so on.

The system offers a complete range of polycarbonate and glazing options (including 24, 25, 32 and 35mm) and profile colour options including white, deeplas, brown, mahogany, light oak and rosewood.

Bathroom Windows – Using Glass Block To Get The Privacy, Beauty And Style You Desire

April 23rd, 2017

Finding the right type of bathroom window in remodeling or new construction can be tough. Here are two problems many homeowners have with their bathroom windows:

1) A remodeling bathroom window challenge – Your existing window is sitting right in the middle of a bathtub or shower area and the window frame is rotted or rusted out. You want privacy, you want the window to look good, and you don’t want the constant maintenance of having to re-caulk the window or rework the wood framing around the window.

2) A new construction bathroom window challenge – You’re building a new home with a soak tub or Jacuzzi in the corner of the master bathroom that has windows above the tub at eye level which are clearly visible from your neighbors property. You want a high privacy and good looking contemporary style window, but don’t really want to invest in expensive blinds.

How can you solve these two problems with style while maintaining your budget? One answer – bathroom glass block or acrylic block windows. This article will explore the benefits of these types of windows for your home.

Glass Block Window Benefits for your new home or remodeled bathroom

Here are the 8 benefits you’ll realize by replacing your existing bathroom windows or installing blocks in your new home bathroom window:

1. Increased privacy – With homes being built closer together as land costs continue to escalate finding a cost effective window that provides privacy in your hall bath or master bathroom window can be difficult. With block you can pick a high privacy pattern like Icescapes or Delphi from Pittsburgh Corning or Ice or Pristal from Mulia to let light in, yet maintain the privacy you need.

2. Reduce your heating and cooling costs – Most existing bathroom windows have old aluminum frames or deteriorated wood frames with a single pane window glass inside. They are inefficient windows which frequently fog up, required a lot of effort to maintain, and cause your heating and air conditioning costs to be higher. Block glass windows are 10 times more energy efficient than single pane glass and provide a combination of obscurity and style many vinyl replacement windows do not.

3. Increased Security/Ease of Gaining Entry into the Home – Existing window are flimsy, usually held in with caulk and are an easy target for break ins. New glass brick windows are mortared in for most remodeling projects, making them difficult and time consuming to attempt to break through. New construction glass block windows come with a vinyl frame and nailing fin providing excellent security.

4. Cut Maintenance takes time, money and energy – Single pane metal and wood windows need to be repainted and caulked to keep the elements out and to prevent rust and deterioration. With block bathroom windows there is no maintenance needed since the windows are either mortared in or nailed into the framed walls in the property.

5. Easy to clean – These windows can be cleaned with soap and water or window cleaning solution.

6. Windows will become easy to operate – Existing bathroom windows are sometimes rusted shut, or cannot easily be opened making a bathroom retain excessive amounts of moisture, allowing mold spores to grow. New block windows can be combined with fresh air vents or power exhaust fans to make your bathroom healthier for your family and friends.

7. Easy to open– Acrylic block windows can open completely (there is a casement window available in multiple frame and glass styles for bathrooms) and glass windows can be combined with vinyl hopper style air vents which open very simply as well.

8. Old Windows don’t fit your new design style – Glass block bathroom replacement windows now are available in colors, different tints, satin finishes, decorative patterns, beveled edges, and many custom architectural designs to match a contemporary, traditional, or transitional design style.

Your master bathroom or hall bathroom window no longer needs to be an eyesore. With a new glass block bathroom window you can get an easy to clean, easy to maintain, cost-effective/ energy saving window, and add to the style and value of your home at the same time.

Remodeling Ideas For Your Kitchen And Basement

April 20th, 2017

The kitchen and basement are two areas in your home that can really drive up its resale value. Unfortunately, remodeling a kitchen or the basement can be quite expensive. However, there are ways to reduce costs significantly without sacrificing the look and feel of a quality room. If you’re searching for a basement remodeling idea, or how to remodel your kitchen without taking a big chunk out of your savings, here are some great tips that will help you.

Kitchen Remodeling

Kitchens can be as cheap or as expensive as you want them to. With the following tips, you can create an expensive looking kitchen without breaking your budget.

1. Instead of replacing cabinets, you can remodel the doors and repaint the basic frames. You can also find door handles that look expensive but are actually quite cheap. For top cabinets, consider open shelves than a full cabinet. Open shelves can look stylish and can actually improve the overall design of the kitchen.

2. Many kitchen remodeling projects are necessitated by old appliances. If you want to replace the kitchen appliances, consider energy saving appliances. These are common and can really save quite a lot on your power bills. In addition, the new designs will fit in well with any type of kitchen.

3. If you’re tired of your counter top and want a stone finish, a cheap alternative is stained concrete or laminated wood. Both of these have finishes that can match those of stone counter tops.

4. If you’re planning a kitchen remodeling project, consider replacing your floors. Cork tiles for your kitchen flooring can definitely increase the value of your kitchen, not to mention a soft surface to walk on. The prices of cork tiles have gone down significantly over the years.

5. You also might want to look at molded ceiling designs. These can add to the beauty of the kitchen, but make sure that the design will complement the overall theme.

Basement Remodeling

Basements that have been converted to special rooms, like a home theater or recreational area definitely increase the value of the home. Here are some basement remodeling ideas that can help you create a perfect room without getting you broke.

1. A great basement remodeling idea is to do the job yourself. You’ll be able to save a lot on labor, which is the most expensive part of the whole project. If you’re not a DIY type of person, try to find a contractor who can perform the work at a relatively lower price.

2. Another excellent best basement remodeling idea is to use alternative materials. You’ll find plenty of them in the market and these can be a lot cheaper than traditional materials. For instance, instead of installing hard wood floors, consider cork tiles as a replacement. These are cheaper than wood and can really spice up your basement, thus reducing your remodeling costs without sacrificing quality. There are plenty of other alternative materials, just take the time to search or ask for guidance from the experts.