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Building a new home - and planning for a sunroom

Building a new home - and planning for a sunroom


Old 12-28-05, 09:54 AM
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Building a new home - and planning for a sunroom

We are in the process of building a new home, we didn't start yet, so all options are still open. We want to have a sunroom with a hot tub in the next couple of years. The sunroom dimensions would be about 15x15 and will be 3 seasons (we are in Ottawa, Canada).

What should we do now that we are building the home to accomodate the sunroom in the future. The builder/contractor is Recommending two sets of 3 concrete posts in the ground at 4 feet deep (the frost line up here). Is this enough or should we spend the money right now to add a 4 feet foundation and footing instead. Even if the sunroom is 3 season, I would like to have the floor insulated, is it possible to insulate without the foundation?

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Old 12-28-05, 10:14 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
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Building a new home - and planning for a sunroom

If you put in a continuous footing and walls around the perimeter, you will have more flexibility on the framing or type of structure you use for the future sunroom exterior walls.

Before backfilling you could put in rigid insulation along the inside walls. Not necessary, but cheap at the time of construction. You will still be able to insulate directly under the slab, but you will have something extra around the sunken tub area.

Old 12-29-05, 01:17 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 948
i've never heard anyone complain about having the access a full foundation gives when it's time for a repair or upgrade to the electric or water systems. the cost now is an investment that will pay off later
Old 12-29-05, 02:14 PM
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I've built sunrooms on sonotube piers, (LVL's setting on 2 rows of 3) as your builder has recommended, and it works okay... but it limits what you can do. For instance, the floor will need to be framed and insulated. It won't be as warm as the rest of your house, that's for sure, hence "3 seasons". You might also have trouble setting a hot tub on the floor- your building inspector would be able to tell you what the codes are for that. You also have the problem of the sheathing on the bottom of the room to consider. How long that sheathing will last under there is a question mark and depends on how close it is to the ground, how humid it is, whether it gets wet, etc.

A poured footing could be insulated, and some people even put heat in the floor so that the cement stays warm, a good idea if you plan on getting out of a hot tub in the wintertime. If you duct forced air out there, or put in supplimental electric heat, you have a 4 season room, which in my book is well worth the money to be able to use that room 365 days a year. It's also solid and as the other pointed out, leaves future potentials open and is a wise investment now, since 20 years from now it will cost 2 or 3x as much to do it then. So I agree with the others than a poured floor and footing is well worth the money now.

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