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Old four season sunroom as a greenhouse roof?

Jp Wildman

Joined: Apr 13, 2013
Posts: 4
Hi! New to the forum. I recently acquired an old for season curved glass sunroom. Similar to the one in the photo. It's roof and wall dimensions are about equal so that if I lay it on its side, it would make a pretty decent greenhouse roof, with the curved glass forming the peak. Has anyone done this? I've searched and search, but have yet to find an example of what I'm looking to do. Will the structure support itself configured this way? It seems as though it would hold up. The glass is insulated double pane. I'm looking to grow veggies all winter. (Northern Vt). Thanks in advance!


John Polk

Joined: Feb 20, 2011
Posts: 6883
Location: Currently in Seattle. Probably moving 1 hour north by end of the year.
Welcome to

My first concern would be: What kind of snow loads are you dealing with?

Jp Wildman

Joined: Apr 13, 2013
Posts: 4
I'm in northern VT, soooo I would say our snow loads are among the highest. Our snow tends to be heavy and wet. It's not uncommon to get several feet at a shot, and most of the time 'flurries' result in shoveling. However, the sunroom was set up just up the road from me on the side of someone's house and did fine. I just want to turn it 90 degrees and make it a roof.
Adam Poddepie

Joined: Nov 11, 2012
Posts: 68
My only concern is that the curved glass section will receive a different stress load than it was designed for. All of your support beams support it well as it sits now, but (assuming an "A" shaped roof) it will receive all of the load from both halves now, causing a bending action along the length of the curve. I would recommend reenforcing the ends, and putting a support beam along the length of the middle to accommodate anything nature might throw at you. Other than that, it sounds like a wonderful approach.

Are the panes vacuum sealed, or simply double paned with an air-gap? In the even that they are vacuum sealed, be very careful when moving the entire structure so you don't break the seals
Rion Mather

Joined: May 31, 2012
Posts: 644
I would also be worried about the pressure on the wall/ceiling. I'm curious as to why you don't want to use the room as an attached greenhouse. That is a great lean to greenhouse.
Jp Wildman

Joined: Apr 13, 2013
Posts: 4
That is my concern as well. I don't really have a spot to put it on my house. Plus, I was thinking that it would be really kickass if I could pull it off!
S Carreg

Joined: Mar 29, 2013
Posts: 260
Location: De Cymru (West Wales, UK)
I think I would try really hard to find a way to attach it to the south-facing aspect of the house, that way you can reap the rewards of greenhouse and passive solar heat for your home.
Cortland Satsuma

Joined: Mar 17, 2013
Posts: 319
Location: (Zone 7-8/Elv. 350) Powhatan, VA (Sloped Forests & Meadow)
I agree on the attach it to the house idea. We are toying with this idea for our south wall of a way too small (smart car sized) attached garage. Our plan is to use it in place of the existing raised bed. We have two windows on that side of the garage which we will turn into archways into the garage. The concept will be an attached conservatory used as a modified greenhouse for citrus and tropicals; and, for early spring starters. We will redo the garage to have a potting room, a canning room, and storage shed. This way we can avoid a bunch of haphazard buildings scattered around the property; and, use a badly designed area for something useful at a minimal remodel cost. I would love some feedback on this Idea! We are considering the different shapes that the kits come in as well. I am attaching a picture of the wall area prior to utilizing the bed area.

[IMG_0081 - Copy.JPG]

Jp Wildman

Joined: Apr 13, 2013
Posts: 4
Soooo, this is where I'm at. I should have the end walls done tomorrow and will take more pics. I have a ton of old wood sash windows to use for the sides and ends. As of right now, my only concern is snow load. But I think it'll be fine....

[Thumbnail for IMG_2371.JPG]

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