Conservatory heat problems ? window film?

3 Mar 2010
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United Kingdom
Hi, hope this is in the correct forum for this question (mods feel free to move)

Despite the fact that we live in Scotland, my daughters south facing conservatory is way too hot during the summer (a common problem I know). Winters are fine because she has a log burner in there now but we were wondering if anyone had any experience of successfully finding a way to lower the temperature caused by direct sunlight. The options seem to be: a) an aircon unit, b) some form of heat reflective film, c) window blinds or d) a new roof (i.e. the nuclear option and preferrably avoided). She could struggle on but there's a baby on the way and the whole downstairs of the house gets way too warm. So any experience of someone successfully tackling this problem would be really useful to know about. It's a polycarbonate roof btw.
Cheers, Steve
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To my knowledge, window film shouldn't be used on double glazing, I'm 99.99% sure it states that on the instructions. It can cause the glass to overheat and crack. So you are down to blinds for the windows. For a solid roof on a conservatory, you will need to check any planning implications, and you will certainly need building regs. Clear roofs avoids the planning check and having to obtain building regs.
Sorry, should have been clearer, the roof is polycarbonate and it's just the roof we were hoping to do something with.
I've been fitting solar reflective film for a while now and its only good for about 2 degrees, it works best in conjunction with aircon. Its true that it can crack DGU's IF filmed inside so always best to film the outer pane - there are internal and external grades available, blinds can also overheat and crack the glass by trapping heat between the blind and glass, all purely academic though as you have polycarb and unfortunately not really a lot you can do with that, your options are limited to a solid roof or aircon
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Need to cover outside not inside.
Seen companies tile conservatory roofs now.
To fix throw a large trade quantity dust sheet over with plastic bottles filled with water to hold down corners is cheap short turn fix. I've done that when working inside them in summer although now I avoid that type of work
Weirdly that's along the lines of what I'm thinking now. Not a dust sheet but if there was a big sheet of reflective material, a bit like what you use on car windscreens that could be attached via hooks in the brickwork on the house just above the conservatory and then again at the far end of the conservatory, it might work. There would be the faff of attaching it and taking it down again but as I said, we're in Scotland, there aren't THAT many scorching sunny days where we would have to do this. With a bit of planning and thought it could probably be made quite neat and practical. Probably a crazy idea but watch out for me on Dragon's Den in anycase! Thanks for all the replies.
Daughter and her partner have just had a rep from this company round and seem keen to go with it, any thoughts? Seems to be quilted aluminium foil sheets on the inside (!) of the windows held in place by tongue and groove upvc boards cut to size, reviews seem okay but I'm not convinced given previous comments here.

Seems to be quilted aluminium foil sheets on the inside
I'm afraid I can't vouch for the system, but I can say that standard polycarbonate is transparent to Infrared. This means it doesn't suffer from the 'greenhouse' effect in the same way that glass does.
So having reflective foil insulation on the interior side should (hopefully!) be almost as effective as if it were on the exterior face :)

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