Help & Advice
We know that there’s a lot to think about when you’re considering a conservatory, so we’ve compiled a guide to answer any questions you may have about how to choose a conservatory.
From roof options and frame colours to planning permission and security, we cover all the frequently asked questions, as well as guiding you through the finer points of conservatory design.
If you have any additional questions or would like more information on our conservatories, please call, visit our show space or fill in our contact form.
Q: What is the difference between a conservatory and an extension?
A: Conservatories are mostly glass-built single storey structures, that often feature glass roofs to provide an additional downstairs living space.
Extensions are single or multiple storey builds designed to increase space and are normally used to either increase the size of a room or to create space for kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms and living areas.
Q: Are conservatories cold in winter?
A: Older style conservatories can be cold in the winter or too hot in the summer, an issue that’s largely contributed to/caused by the style of roof glazing material.
In addition to traditional glass roofs, we use the Guardian Warm Roof system, which can be fitted on a brand-new conservatory or to replace your existing roof. The Guardian Warm Roof system is lightweight, well insulated and highly energy efficient, so your conservatory stays cool in the summer and retains the heat in the winter.
Q: How long does it take to build a conservatory?
A: Build time differs from project to project and is subject to a number of different factors, such as the level of the ground and the weather. On average, it takes around 2 weeks to build a conservatory. We can provide more detail of this once a design has been agreed upon and the site has been assessed.
Q: We have an odd shaped space; can we still have a conservatory?
A: Absolutely! As all of our conservatories are bespoke, we can design something to fit your available space perfectly.
Q: Is planning permission necessary?
A: New planning regulations came into effect in October 2008, so adding a conservatory to your home is considered a permitted development (I.e. Something that doesn’t need planning permission), providing its subject to the following terms and conditions, as stated by Planning Portal:
- No more than half the area of land around the “original house” would be covered by additions or other buildings.
- No extension forward of the principal elevation or side elevation fronting a highway.
- No extension to be higher than the highest part of the roof.
- Maximum depth of a single-storey rear extension of three metres for an attached house and four metres for a detached house.
- Maximum height of a single-storey rear extension of four metres.
- Maximum depth of a rear extension of more than one storey of three metres including ground floor.
- Maximum eaves height of an extension within two metres of the boundary of three metres.
- Maximum eaves and ridge height of extension no higher than existing house.
- Side extensions to be single storey with maximum height of four metres and width no more than half that of the original house.
- Roof pitch of extensions higher than one storey to match existing house.
- No verandas, balconies or raised platforms.
- On designated land no permitted development for rear extensions of more than one storey; no cladding of the exterior; no side extensions.
Please note that if you’re proposing work to a listed building, listed building consent may be required.
Q: Can I build a conservatory on the front of my home?
A: You require planning permission to build a conservatory on the front wall of any property, so this kind of build can only be carried out once permission has been granted by your local authority.
Q: Are building regulation approvals needed?
A: Building Regulations are typically only needed if the conservatory exceeds 30sqm, is comprised of less than 70% translucent material and/or is open to the property (I.e. If there aren’t any doors between the house and the conservatory).
Q: I live in a bungalow, can I still have a conservatory built on my property?
A: Yes, lean-to conservatories work well on single storey properties and double hipped conservatories were originally designed for use on bungalows and other height restricted properties.
Features & Functions
Q: Are conservatories secure?
A: Conservatories are generally as secure than your existing home windows/doors (This is dependent on age) and in most cases, are more secure. Our conservatory glazing is all internally beaded, so the glass cannot be removed from outside. All windows are lockable, with night vent facility. All our doors feature 5 point -multi locking.
Q: What should I take in to account when planning my conservatory?
A: Consider factors such as:
- How much sunlight does your garden receive and at what time of day? – This could affect where your conservatory is built, the kind of glazing used and your choice of décor.
- How often will you use the conservatory? – Consider whether you’ll be using the conservatory daily or as more of an occasional room.
- How big do you want the conservatory to be? – Whilst it may be tempting to opt for a large build, make sure that you’re not taking up too much garden space. Conversely, don’t choose a very small space if you won’t benefit from adding it to your home.
- Is your chosen style in keeping with your property? – It’s important to choose your conservatory with the exterior and interior style of your home in mind. A modern conservatory may be your dream, but is it best suited to the period and design of your home?
Q: What kind of glass do you use?
A: We use Celcius Elite Performance for conservatory roofs, as it’s a high-performance glass that enhances the colours of your garden without darkening the room.
In the conservatory frames, we use Warm Edge glass, made by a local Cornish supplier. This glass aims to minimise energy loss through your windows, helping to keep your conservatory warmer and reduce your energy consumption.
Q: Can I choose the colour of the conservatory frame?
A: Yes, in addition to the classic white, we offer a wide range of frame colours including:
- Anthracite Grey
- Smooth Anthracite
- Golden Oak
- Chartwell Green
- Black Brown
- Irish Oak
Q: Can I have a conservatory and still retain my privacy?
A: Yes, various options to help you retain your privacy are available; such as incorporating a full height wall into the build, installing obscure glazing or internal window blinds.
Insurance & Cost
Q: How much does a conservatory cost?
As every conservatory we build is different, we provide a design and quote service and don’t have set prices. We can work within your budget to design and build your perfect conservatory. Simply visit our show site or call us to discuss your design and get a free, no obligation quote.
Q: Will my buildings insurance cover my conservatory?
A: We advise speaking to your insurance provider to get a definitive answer, but generally, conservatories are covered.
Q: Do you offer guarantees on your conservatories?
A: Yes, all conservatories come with a 10-year comprehensive, insurance backed guarantee for your complete peace of mind.
Need some help or advice? We’re happy to help
"We shopped around quite a few in the Plymouth and surrounding areas, Crownhill Conservatives were very competitively priced, great quality, no pushy salesman, friendly team where nothing was too much trouble...I would highly recommend absolutely loving our conservatory which is now my favourite room in our property"
"Steve B was so helpful and accommodating at every stage of the conservatory project, from the initial consultation and planning right through to the plumbing and plastering. We had quotes from two other bigger companies but wanted to keep the business local. Nothing has been too much trouble. Would definitely recommend them to anyone."
"We are delighted with our "Guardian" replacement roof. Steve C. did an amazing job removing the old one and fitting the new. A tricky job, but expertly accomplished to our complete satisfaction. Our conservatory has been transformed. Competitively priced and promptly fitted. Would we employ Crownhill Conservatories again? "yes please"
"They came to us highly recommended by personal contacts and created a brilliant new conservatory for us. Their work is meticulous and nothing is too much trouble. If you are looking for a local company which specialises in conservatories and who also offer realistic quotes and trusting terms, contact them now."
At Crownhill Conservatories at the Plymouth Garden Centre, we supply & fit top quality conservatories to suit all types of home in the Plymouth area & across Devon & Cornwall.
All conservatories come with a 10 year, insurance-backed guarantee.
Contact & Opening Hours
Crownhill Conservatories Ltd
Fort Austin Avenue
Plymouth PL6 5NU
Just inside Plymouth Garden Centre, Crownhill
Mon-Sat: 9am - 4:30pm
Sun: 10:30am - 4pm