Today, the world is witnessing a shortage of resources. In light of this, there have been—and should be—attempts to use more renewable sources of energy. And the first that comes to mind is solar energy. As you may already know, solar energy is the most abundant resource. It is basically radiation from the sun that is used to create thermal or electrical energy.
What is a Solar Room?
A solar room is a space used to make maximum use of the sun’s energy. They are built in a way to maximize solar gain but also minimize loss of heat. Solar rooms usually face south instead of facing east or west as this helps to receive and preserve maximum heat.
A solar room is basically a passive solar energy system that is enhanced by the addition of thermal mass. The easiest candidate for a solar room would be an existing porch or deck that already has supporting structures in place.
An efficient solar room would have sloped glazing to allow for more sunlight entry. While building solar rooms from scratch can be expensive, you can simply use the existing wall area to design a solar room at minimal cost.
Types of Solar Rooms
There are different types of solar rooms. Some common examples include the popular greenhouses, sun porches and solariums. While each of these is targeted towards a specific purpose, a solar room generally will help with the conservation of energy, which is its ultimate aim.
A greenhouse is a structure made of glass walls and a glass ceiling. While solar rooms have several functions, a greenhouse is used to grow plants. A greenhouse preserves warmth from the sun to create the ideal climatic conditions for plants to grow in, even during winter.
However, a conventional greenhouse is usually made of a single glass layer, which means it loses as much heat and light as it absorbs during the day. So, they might need costly auxiliary heat to keep plants warm. Solar rooms or solar greenhouses are constructed to maximize solar gain.
A sun porch is similar to a greenhouse, only with a different overriding purpose. It features more windows than walls to receive large amounts of sunlight. It is usually built around the main entrance of a house or building and helps create a well-lit space to entertain inhabitants and guests.
A solarium is entirely made of glass and has complete access to heat and light from the sun. They provide unobstructed views of the outdoors, serving as an energy-efficient stylistic feature in homes. Now that there is mental health awareness, people prefer solariums to access natural sunlight, known to reduce depressive symptoms.
Benefits of a Solar Room
Now that you know what is a solar room, let’s shed some light on the numerous benefits of incorporating one in your home. Interestingly, a solar room isn’t just limited to environmental benefits but can also enhance the look and experience of the house and its inhabitants respectively.
Reduce Electricity Bills
Electricity bills are an unavoidable part of owning a home. Naturally, you need light to see. While you can’t completely escape it, there are ways to lower the overall cost. With a solar room, you’ll find that the space is flooded with sunlight, evading the need for electricity during the day.
Even on overcast days, there is enough light. This is the ideal room to redirect all your family activities, so you can experience a significantly lower electricity bill. No matter how minute, a solar room will bring a monetary benefit to the overall cost of owning a home.
Perfect Space for Plants
Whether you’re a plant enthusiast or not, you can always benefit from having plants in your home. Health experts now claim that plants can purify air quality, and so, living in an energy-efficient building can extend unintended benefits to you and your loved ones.
Often, homeowners find that their home is not conducive to the growth of plants. Fortunately, greenhouses are an extension of solar rooms, and therefore create the perfect setting for plants to thrive and grow. A solar room will minimize heat loss and create a balmy atmosphere that the plants will love. If your home didn’t receive enough sunlight previously, this is an added reason to install a solar room in your house.
Boost Real Estate Price
A solar room is not only there to enhance the look of your home; it actually helps increase the real estate value of your property in case you want to sell your house in the future. There are several reasons for this.
Now that homes are actively becoming more energy efficient, any modern homeowner would love the addition of a solar room. This also serves as the ideal space for recreational activities and growing plants, both of which are in line with better health. Most importantly, access to natural light and thermal energy helps keeps utility bills low.
Keep Your House Warm
If you live in colder climates, you might need to spend a significant sum on keeping your house warm. However, the addition of a solar room caters to this problem without taking up your utility bills. The excess heat from the solar room is enough to keep your house warm without the installation of a central heating system.
Since a solar room minimizes heat loss, heat can be stored for use even after the sun sets. Solar rooms are always warmer than the outdoor temperature, creating a comfortable space during colder months.
Our Final Thoughts
If done right, a solar room can enhance the aesthetics of your room and help conserve energy. Whether you need to decrease utility bills or grow plants, a solar room extends many benefits to a homeowner. Use details and tips to maximize the use of the sun’s energy and install the perfect solar room that matches the design of your home.