How to Build Your Own Conservatory

Written by april kohl
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How to Build Your Own Conservatory
Conservatories can be as simple or as grand as you want, providing you get planning permission. (conservatory image by Hilma Anderson from Fotolia.com)

A conservatory is a popular addition to many homes. Not only do they provide an additional room, but the sun and warmth make them popular places to relax, even on cold and windy days. In addition, a well-built conservatory will add considerable value to your home as well as providing years of trouble-free enjoyment.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Planning permission
  • Hardcore mix
  • Damp proofing
  • Insulation
  • Bricks
  • UPVC windows
  • UPVC doors
  • UPVC roofing
  • Flooring
  • Shovel
  • Rake
  • Spirit level
  • Plaster
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Design your conservatory on paper, recording measurements to help you plan the area to clear, as well as the size of windows and doors. Submit this to your local council's planning department and gain planning permission before proceeding. When permission is granted, order the UPVC doors, windows and roof.

  2. 2

    Clear the ground where your conservatory will stand and dig at least 85cm down below where the walls will stand and 30cm down everywhere else. Make the wall foundations 15cm wider than the wall will be on either side. Level the bottom of your foundations using a shovel, rake and spirit level. Add the hardcore to a depth of 60cm for the wall foundations and 7cm elsewhere.

  3. 3

    Lay a double wall with cavity insulation as the foundations of your wall and cap with a perpendicular row of bricks at ground level. Cover the wall and exposed hardcore with the damp proofing course. Lay insulation along the floor and exposed wall, then add hardcore up to the final row of bricks on the wall. Lay the conservatory's floor. Build a dwarf wall approximately 60cm high with cavity insulation as the base of the conservatory.

  4. 4

    Cap the wall with a row of bricks arranged perpendicular to the main wall. Install the UPVC windows. Install the UPVC door at this stage for stability. Build steps up to the door if necessary using spare bricks or breeze blocks and a concrete or cement covering. Install the conservatory roof. Render the inside walls of the conservatory with plaster to give a quality finish. Paint and decorate as required.

Tips and warnings

  • It can take a while for the UPVC parts you want to be delivered.
  • In the event of delays, cover your part-built conservatory with a decent tarpaulin to preserve your materials.
  • Building a permanent structure on your property or an addition to an existing structure without planning permission is an offence. If you build a conservatory without first gaining planning permission, you may be required to stop building until permission is granted or even required to remove the conservatory altogether.

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