Conservatory FAQ’s

Everything You Need to Know About Conservatories

Whether you have an older style conservatory that you are thinking of updating or wanting to add a conservatory to your home or property then our Conservatory FAQ’s will help.

What is a conservatory?

Traditionally, a conservatory was always a glass structure attached to a property which was built as a space to grow plants. They were built using glass or polycarbonate structures to act as a greenhouse environment where plants would thrive and grow. These days your conservatory walls can be panelled or have a dwarf bricked wall, glass is the most popular choice for a conservatory roof but you can also get a tiled insulated roof.

Home and property owners today use conservatories as extensions to their homes, offering additional living space.

What can conservatories be used for?

Conservatories are so versatile and can be used for anything you want ranging from;

  • Lounge
  • Snug
  • Dining room
  • Sun room
  • Kitchen
  • Playroom
  • Study/Office
  • Bedroom
  • Extension to your kitchen
  • Cinema room
  • Utility room
  • Inside garden

Why would you have a conservatory?

A conservatory gives you an additional area or room in your property which can be used for anything you need it for. You can separate them from your property with an internal door or you can open up your home into a conservatory making it flow from one area to another with an open plan feel. This is now the preferred option and is possible as new conservatories are very thermally efficient so you won’t waste energy bills with heat escaping through the structure, doors, windows and roof. A conservatory is normally a very light and open space that offers you easy access and views to your garden and the outside.

Can you use a conservatory all year round?

A new style conservatory that is modern looking inside and out and thermally efficient can transform your home’s living space offering an extra room that can be used all year round. In the past, most conservatories were too hot to use in the summer and too cold to use in the winter due to their polycarbonate or glass panels, however, new style conservatories are now built using bricks, panels and glazed glass (solid tiled roofs also available) making them great all year round.

What are the new style conservatories made from?

New style conservatories are made from either uPVC, aluminium or SIP panels which are pre-constructed panels produced to your specific design and measurements.

Can you have bi-fold doors on a conservatory?

You can have bi-fold doors fitted to a new conservatory and they are a popular choice now due to their opening versatility and ability to open your home into your garden and vice versa, along with allowing a huge amount of natural light into your conservatory.

What are old-style conservatories made from?

Older style conservatories are made from polycarbonate or dated glass structures which can make them difficult to keep clean as well as making them cold in the winter and hot in the summer.

What is the difference in a new style conservatory?

A new style conservatory will be thermally efficient due to the latest building techniques and products used enabling them to be used all year round as well as seamlessly fitting into your existing home and its layout. They can be designed to match your existing brick and tiles, or standout, whichever you prefer.

Can you have a solid tiled roof on a conservatory?

Yes, planning regulations changed in 2010 which now allows conservatories to have solid tiled roofs without the need for planning permission. Some local authorities, however, can be strict with changes you make to your home which may affect the wider environment or neighbours so it’s always a good idea to check with them first before you start any updating work.

What are the benefits of an insulated tiled roof?

A new insulated tiled conservatory roof will make your conservatory extremely energy efficient and these roofs are better at keeping it warmth in the winter and staying cool in the summer.

How can you update an old-style conservatory?

A professional and reputable conservatory company will be able to advise you if your existing conservatory structure can be updated to incorporate a new solid tiled roof. They will assess if your existing structure is strong enough and be able to advise you of the benefits and cost of a new tiled roof.

What are the benefits of updating an old-style conservatory?

  • New look and feel to your conservatory inside and out
  • Increased energy efficiency, allowing you to use your conservatory all year round
  • Increased soundproofing
  • Added value to your property
  • Improved appeal to any potential house buyers if you are going to sell your property
  • Added longevity of your conservatory

What conservatory styles are there?

There are 4 main conservatory styles include:

  • Victorian
  • Edwardian
  • Gable
  • Lean-to

All other conservatory styles are variations of these and include:

  • P-shaped
  • L-Shaped
  • T-shaped

Can you have a bespoke conservatory designed?

Yes, a good and professional conservatory company will design your conservatory to your measurements and specification, including windows, doors, lighting and inside and outside finishes.

What is the difference between an extension and a conservatory?

A conservatory is normally a cheaper option of adding a single-storey extension to your home. The difference in price depends on how big the structure is, how complex it is to build and the quality of materials used. An extension needs planning permission and building regulations whereas a conservatory can be built under permitted development if it is within the government’s guidelines.

Is a conservatory classed as an extension?

As a home-owner a good and well-built conservatory is seen as an extension, however, they are different when it comes to planning and building regulation requirements. The government’s definition of a conservatory is different from an ‘extension’ as they can be built under ‘permitted development’ rights, making them exempt from planning permission, subject to size exceptions. Always check your local council for regulations affecting your area.

Does a conservatory need foundations?

Most conservatories do not require planning permission or building regulation approvals and therefore they are often built with minimal foundations. The size of a conservatory will depend on the foundations needed and a good and reputable conservatory company will be able to advise you on this and guide you through any planning processes needing to be followed.

What are the benefits of a conservatory?

  • Added value to your property
  • Additional space
  • They bring your home into your garden and vice versa
  • Additional natural light
  • A room that can be used all year round if thermally efficient

Can a conservatory be used all year round?

A new style conservatory will transform your home by giving you additional living space that can be used all year round due to their thermal efficiency. Older style conservatories tend to be too hot to use in the summer and too cold to use in the winter due to their polycarbonate or glass structures and roofs.

Will a conservatory add value?

A well-built conservatory could increase your home’s value by around 5% dependent on its size, design, internal and external finish and its flow with the rest of the property.

Is a conservatory cheaper than an extension?

A conservatory is normally cheaper to build compared to a single-storey extension of the same size. The difference in price will depend on the structure size, the complexity of its design and build, the quality of the materials used and its internal and external finish.

How long does a uPVC conservatory last?

Modern installation methods and the high quality and fully insulated materials used in building a conservatory means you can now expect for a conservatory to last around 25 years if it is well maintained.

Can you change your conservatory roof?

You can replace the roof on your conservatory to change it from an old-style glass or polycarbonate roof to a solid tiled roof and it normally doesn’t need planning permission. A good and reputable supplier will be able to advise you of this and we would always advise you to check with your local planning authority just to make sure.

Do I need planning permission for a new conservatory roof?

Most new build conservatories with either a solid, tiled or glazed roof don’t require planning permission as they are covered under what is known as a ‘permitted development’. Building Regulations and Planning Permission does apply if you are building a completely new extension on your home, but not for a conservatory under a certain square meterage or for a replacement conservatory roof, if specific conditions are met.

Conservatories are exempt from building regulations when they are built at ground level and are less than 30 square metres or if the conservatory is separated from the house with external, doors or windows.

Planning regulations changed in 2010 which now allows conservatories to have solid tiled roofs without the need for planning permission.

Some local authorities can be strict with changes to your home that may affect the wider environment or neighbours so it’s always a good idea to check with them first.

What is a Guardian Roof?

A Guardian Warm Roof system is a solid tiled roof specifically designed for conservatories and extensions. They have the appearance of an extension rather than a typical polycarbonate conservatory roof and are lightweight enough to be fitted to new and older style conservatories.

They are a roof replacement that will transform the look and feel of your conservatory or extension so that you can use it all year round due to its outstanding thermal efficiency.

The Guardian Warm Roof system is designed to replace an existing glass or polycarbonate conservatory roof with a solid, tiled and insulated roof to its existing windows, doors, frames and walls.

Replacing your old glass or polycarbonate roof will result in a transformed extension or conservatory that looks brand new, giving you additional living space that the whole family can enjoy in the spring, summer, autumn and winter.

Why would you have a Guardian Roof?

Many people who have an older style conservatory which has a dated glass or polycarbonate roof don’t use the space as its too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter so space subsequently gets used as storage and become cluttered areas.

Guardian Warm Roof will create a new living space that can be enjoyed by all the family, all year round that is no longer cold, hot or noisy.

Replacing your conservatory roof with a Guardian Warm Roof will dramatically improve its appearance inside and out and make it a room that is thermally efficient with a regulated temperature which can be used every day.

What are the benefits of a Guardian Roof?

If you have just moved to a house that has an old-style conservatory or you have had one for years that you no longer use then it can be frustrating that you have a room in your home which can’t be used. Replacing a whole conservatory can be extremely expensive so by simply replacing the roof you can have the same outcome as you would do with a new one.

  • Designed and manufactured to your conservatory or extension measurements
  • Pre-assembled, factory-engineered roofs of a superior quality
  • Thermally efficient keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer
  • Outstanding energy-efficiency with a U-value of 1.0 W/m2K
  • Manufactured to your design and specification, and delivered pre-assembled which offers a quick and hassle-free roof replacement
  • Wide range of roof styles available
  • Wide range of roof tile styles and colours available
  • Designed to your own specification and can be matched to your existing home or property style
  • Planned, designed, manufactured and installed by your Guardian supplier
  • Full 10-year guarantee
  • Cost-effective solution compared to replacing your existing conservatory
  • A minimal mess is created when your roof is being installed due to it being manufactured to your specification and delivered pre-fabricated to site
  • Airtight
  • Soundproofed
  • Increases the value of your property
  • Velux roof window options
  • Spotlight options
  • Internal plastered finish

Why would I replace my conservatory roof with a Guardian Roof?

If you are finding your conservatory is unbearably hot in the summer and cold in the winter then it is probably time to think about replacing its roof.

Replacing a old glass or polycarbonate conservatory roof is much more cost-effective than replacing it completely and it doesn’t take as much time or mess to install. A good and professional company will remove an old conservatory roof and replace it on average in just 3 days.

You will know if you should think about replacing your conservatory roof if it is:

  • too hot in the summer
  • too cold in the winter
  • there are drafts in the winter
  • condensation inside of the windows
  • cold and damp smelling
  • leaking roof
  • looking old and tired, inside and out

By replacing your existing roof in just a couple of days you will have a room that is usable all year round and one which you can relax and unwind in rather than use it as an untidy storage space.

Many people use their conservatories as a defined room; a garden room, dining room, breakfast room, lounge, snug, study, playroom, cinema or a games room and it’s a good idea to decide on this so you can plan its décor and furniture.

A new solid tiled Guardian Warm Roof will ensure it is pleasant and has a consistent temperature all year round and you will make savings on your heating bills.

Will a new conservatory roof look out of place on my existing conservatory?

A Guardian Warm Roof can be designed to blend in with your existing home or completely stand out, whichever you prefer. You choose the style, design, tiles and colours and a good and professional Guardian Roof company will help you with this. If you think about older style conservatories with glass or polycarbonate roofs you often think they look a bit out of place and outdated. A new roof will completely transform the way it looks and will make you feel like you have a completely new conservatory.

How will my energy bills reduce with a new Guardian Roof?

Many people don’t use their conservatories in the winter, however, they still heat them. Independent research by AECON found the savings in energy spend are approximately £200 per year on a typical property.

Will a new Guardian Roof add value to my property?

Without a doubt, wherever you are in the country and whatever house prices are doing, a new conservatory roof will transform the look of your home and its attractiveness to house buyers as well as increase its value. A lot of people will view a house with an old conservatory and see it as a waste of space and a money pit, however, with a new roof it will give them additional living space as well as blending in to the house, much like an extension, looking brand new, making it more appealing.

How much disruption will there be when replacing a conservatory roof?

You can consider this as a big and dramatic home improvement job but with little disruption when you have a new Guardian Warm Roof, which is solid, thermally efficient and tiled, looking amazing inside and out. After an average of just 3 days, with very little mess it will look like you have had a brand-new extension added to your home. Even knocking two rooms together can take longer than this and with more mess.

Where can Guardian roofs be fitted?

Guardian roofs can be fitted to ground and first floor extensions, orangeries and conservatories.

What colours can Guardian Roofs come in?

The Guardian Warm Roof is available in many colours, subtle shades and tile finishes and will match the rest of your property seamlessly. If you use a professional and reputable Guardian Roof supplier then when designing your new roof, you can see what it will look like and try different colours and shades using design programmes so you are confident with your choice.

What other choices are there when it comes to a new Guardian Roof?

A Warm Guardian Roof can have capping’s and trims to really finish it off and it is entirely down to you if you want this addition.

What is the difference in a Guardian Roof to a conservatory roof?

A Guardian Warm Roof is thermally efficient, blends into your home much like an extension with its solid tiled roof which is easy to maintain and clean. Glass and polycarbonate conservatory roofs aren’t as thermally efficient and will make your conservatory hot in the summer and cold in the winter as well as being difficult to keep clean and looking nice.

A new Guardian Warm Roof can have easy opening Velux roof windows or other skylights and a modern plastered finish inside.

How long does it take to install a Guardian Roof?

Removing an old conservatory roof and installing a new solid, tiled Guardian Warm Roof can take as little as three days for an average-sized conservatory.

Can I have Velux windows in a Guardian Roof?

Velux Roof Windows, also known as skylights are a great way to keep the natural light shining into your conservatory with the added benefit of being able to open them up as wide as you want to get a cool breeze coming through. You can also add spotlights and other lighting options to give you a brand new, modern and contemporary finish which most homeowners enjoy.

How is the inside finish of a new Guardian Roof?

You can decide to have Velux Roof windows incorporated into your Guardian Roof design, along with spotlights or lighting and a plastered, clean finish.

Why would you change from your Glass or Polycarbonate Roof?

There are a lot of problems with insulation and heat retention with glass and polycarbonate roofs.

Any debris, moss or build-up, including snow will slide from a new Guardian Roof into the guttering and these can be cleared as regularly as when your house ones are done. You can easily hose down your Guardian roof tiles when they need it and this prevents dirt build up on the tiles.

What are the different Guardian Roof Styles and Tiles?

The Guardian Warm Roof comes in a full range of colours and styles and is designed to fit your conservatory or extension perfectly. Whether it’s Victorian, Edwardian, lean-to or another style there will be a roof to match, making it look like modern and an extension to your home rather than the look of a bolt-on conservatory.

You pick the tiles, tile finish, style and colour when you are designing your new roof and then it is fabricated and manufactured in an off-site factory and delivered to your property ready for installation, making it quick easy with minimal disruption.

Can I have a guardian roof on my new extension?

Yes, lots of people are now using Guardian Warm roofs on their new extensions as they are fabricated off-site, delivered, easy and quick to install with minimal mess, as well as amazing thermal efficiency.

Will I save money on my energy bills with a new Guardian Roof?

A new tiled roofs’ greater thermal efficiency can lead to energy bill savings of around £200 a year on a typical property according to independent research by AECOM.

What is the U Value for a Guardian Warm Roof?

After years of development and research, the Guardian Warm Roof offers one of the most energy-efficient conservatory roofs on the market which produces a U Value as low as 0.18.

What are U-Values?

U-values, measure how effective a material is as an insulator. Thermal performance is measured in terms of heat loss and is known in the construction industry as a U-value or R-value. U Values help us keep track of our emissions and is something that the Government uses to assess buildings during their design.

Polar Bear Guardian Warm Roofs

  • Designed to your specification
  • Easy installation with minimal disruption
  • Strong and lightweight aluminium frame
  • Insulated soundproofing
  • 100% weather-tight
  • Ventilated roof
  • Superior U-value of only 0.18 W/m.K
  • Guardian tiles or slate options
  • Thermal Efficient with an A+ Energy Efficiency Rating
  • 10-year Product and Installation Guarantee
  • 10-year Security Pledge
  • 0% finance available

At Polar Bear, we understand that for many people it’s the same issue, they love the idea of their conservatory but it’s either too hot, cold or noisy. Most of the issues are down to one element, the roof. By replacing the glass or polycarbonate roof with a stylish Guardian™ Warm Tiled Roof you don’t just improve the appearance, you will have a fully insulated soundproofed roof that is exactly what you always wanted. Modern, light and airy inside, and substantial and impressive on the outside.

By removing your old conservatory and replacing it with a tiled roof you’ll completely change the appearance of your home and garden. Your conservatory will look like a proper extension and by choosing tiles that match your house and then possibly adding one or more roof windows you will get all the benefits of a ground floor extension, along with the convenience and style of a conservatory.

Polar Bear Conservatories

  • Designed to your specification
  • Easy installation with minimal disruption
  • Strong and lightweight frames
  • Insulated
  • Multi-point locking systems on windows and doors
  • Soundproofing
  • 100% weather-tight
  • Ventilated roof
  • Superior U-value of only 0.18 W/m.K
  • Extensive roof style options
  • Extensive exterior style options
  • Thermal Efficient with an A+ Energy Efficiency Rating
  • 10-year Product and Installation Guarantee
  • 10-year Security Pledge
  • 0% finance available
  • Modern, light and airy inside
  • Substantial and impressive on the outside

Security and Durability

Our multi-point locking (Anti-Bump, Anti-Pick, Anti- Drill, Anti-Snap, Anti-Extraction) system come as standard. All our conservatories come with a 10-year security pledge which means we will replace any damaged window or door which has been forced open via the locking system by an intruder.

We are experts in the conservatory industry and offer award-winning service with bespoke conservatory design and installation.

About Polar Bear Windows & Doors

We have over 30-years’ experience in the door and window industry and we specialise in guardian roofs, conservatories, bi-fold doors, composite doors, double glazed and triple glazed windows (uPVC and aluminium), using industry-leading suppliers to bring you nothing but the best.

We have been voted the best in Bristol for customer satisfaction based on our customer’s reviews and we have achieved this by always providing award-winning service, quality assured products and money-saving deals to all our customers.

Our ethos is to improve our customers living standards by delivering great products and providing amazing customer service, and every one of our team is committed to this.

We offer a free, no-obligation home or business visit with one of our expert designers along with free, no-obligation quotes. You can pay a small deposit for the work to commence and we offer a 0% finance option.

If you are looking for a new conservatory or extension roof in Bristol, Bath or anywhere in the South West then contact us on 0117 327 0127 and one of our team will be happy to help with any questions you may have.

Voted the best in Bristol
for customer satisfaction

We achieved this by providing an award-winning service, quality assured products and money saving deals to all our customers. Ratings below are correct on 15th November 2021.