Sun room options

The term sun room has different meanings and connotations. Archadeck of Charlotte is a custom sun room design/ build company and even we use sun room as a term loosely. This blog will break down the options for you and the implications.

  1. Traditional Sun rooms are integrated into the back of the house and are heated living spaces. When they are added to a home, they count as square footage towards both your taxes as well as your property value. More simply put, they have a nice return on investment if you sell your home when the market is up due to the fact the room has heat and air and is therefore part of the home. They are another room in your home that simply have more windows than the others. They are used for entertaining and relaxing.
  2. There are several companies that “manufacture” sun rooms. These are very similar to the option above. The primary difference is they are pre-fabricated off site, often have energy-efficient windows and doors, but do not look like part of the house. It is obvious they were added on after the fact.
  3. Archadeck designs and builds sun rooms that fit the definition of the first type above by using “stick – built” construction on site and integrating the room into the existing house seamlessly.
  4. Archadeck also designs and builds sun rooms that do not have heat or air conditioning but are more of a “3 – Season” room. These rooms are designed to provide all of the qualities of the above spaces but are less costly. Not only do you save on the fact that you will not pay for HVAC, this room also does not require insulation, termite treatment, vapor barrier, and so forth.

For more information of sun rooms, visit

Can I build a sunroom with HVAC?

Building a “sun room” without HVAC is possible. Defining a “sun room” varies by person that is asked.

Our definition of a  sun room is a room that is primarily glass but is not necessarily heated and cooled. Some people refer to a screen porch as a sun room. Others refer to any room on the back of the house as a sun room. A more classic definition of a sun room is a room that is used for recreation and escape and allows maximum light exposure to make you feel more like you are outdoors!

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

Archadeck of Charlotte builds classic stick-built construction that is designed to match the architecture of your existing home.

The only legal way to build a sun room with out heating and air conditioning it in Charlotte, NC and the surrounding area is to leave the existing door from the house intact completely. Once you modify the opening in anyway, the code then calls for the room to be completely insulated and HVAC installed to code.

For more information on sun room design and building codes, go to


Enclosing my screen porch with glass

We have designed and built thousands of screen porches over the past 28 years in the Charlotte, NC market. A recent trend is to enclose the porch with glass. The best rationale we can gather from this trend is people get tired of pollen, dirt, and water getting in the porch.

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

The options are plentiful to achieve this. We can purchase windows that are fixed, called picture windows that can be custom made. We can also install sliding glass windows and/ or doors to allow for maximum ventilation when you want to allow air flow. There are Casement style windows (crank outs) that can be installed in porches as well. Finally, the most common window is called a double-hung, and these are most likely what you have on your home currently. They slide up and down and can tilt in for easy cleaning.

To differentiate between a 3-season room and a 4-season room, you would need to add heat/ air to the room to truly make it a 4 season room. If you want to simply enjoy an outdoor space but can live without the heat and air, the glass option works fine. Local building codes dictate that if you want to add glass, you can do so without adding heat and air as long as you do not change out the back door of the house leading into the room. Once you “break the seal” of that entry, the code requires you to add heat/ air to the new space.

custom built sunroom in Charlotte

Energy-efficient custom built sunroom with lattice under deck

To find an entire photo gallery on porches that have been glassed in, go to or for more information call 704-944-1350.


Sun City Lakes lives outdoors with Archadeck decks and screen porches

Travertine stone patio and landscape design in Charlotte

Archadeck of Charlotte stone patio and landscape design

Sun City Lakes, South Carolina is an active adult living community. The residence and Sun City have a great appetite for outdoor living and Archadeck of Charlotte has designed and built many decks, screen porches, and patios in the community. We feature many of the designs on our extensive photo gallery at our web site

The combination of vast experience of working with SCCL Architectural Review Committee and bringing 25 + years of design and build experience to the area have made for a great combination and value for residents. Whether the resident is looking to expand a deck, design a patio and fire pit/ fire place, or a unique screen porch, Archadeck has been a large partner in the outdoor living space at Sun City Lakes, SC!

How many months a year can I use my screen porch in Charlotte?

Screen porch with EZE Breeze windows in Charlotte

Archadeck of Charlotte designed and built this screen porch with Eze-Breeze retractable windows

We get asked often how many months out of the year can you use your screen porch in the Charlotte, NC area?

There are a few factors to consider when answering the question.

Is your backyard situated where you have no protection from wind? Do you get sun light on your porch? Have you installed a ceiling fan to circulate the air flow?

A great product that we distribute is Eze-Breeze windows that are retractable plastic windows that can convert your screen porch into a sunroom and right back again.

The primary difficulties of staying on your porch year around are the extremely cold days and hot days. To mitigate the heat, you can of course add ceiling fans or perhaps a mister system like are used at restaurants on their patios. To mitigate the cold, we often build outdoor fireplaces that are integrated into the screen porch. You can also purchase space heaters that are effective.

If you choose not to purchase these accessories, you can still use a screen porch in Charlotte about 10 months a year. By adding these, you can virtually live year around outdoors! To see great ideas for a screen porch, go to

What is the difference between a 3-Season Room and a 4-Season Room?

What is the difference between a 3-season room and 4-season room? While there are many differences in features and cost, the function can be similar depending on the climate you live in.

When you live in the Carolina’s (Charlotte, NC), the climate is rarely extremely cold and when it is extremely hot, a roof takes a lot of the bite out of the heat. A 4-season room would typically be additional heated living area (HLA) and have air conditioning as well. By most building codes, this also requires that a remodeling contractor insulate the ceiling, walls, and floors. It also makes it necessary to do a termite treatment, install a vapor barrier, temper any glass that is too close to the floor or doors, etc… All of these requirements drive up the cost to perhaps $150 – $200 per square foot depending on how large the space is and how many features you want included in the construction. ImageWhen we talk about 3-season rooms, we are typically talking about a screen porch or a porch with retractable windows like EZE Breeze. This is the consummate outdoor living room concept that still gives you the feeling of being outside and inside and the same time. These rooms can run from Imageanywhere from $50 – $75 per square foot again depending on the materials and size specifications.

So to recap the differences between the 3-season and 4-season room, there is a large price difference, feature difference, but if you live in a temperate climate, the functionality can be very similar!  To gain more ideas, visit to see hundreds of photos!

Do we really build screen porches for our pets?

It’s amazing how many of us design and build screen porches with our pets in mind. At Archadeck of Charlotte, we are constantly consulting with homeowners on making sure the screen porch will be suitable for their pets!

Charlotte Eze Breeze Porch with Trex Transcends decking

Charlotte Eze Breeze Porch with Trex Transcends decking

The most common concerns are the strength of the screen and the access of a “doggy door”. There are specialty screens like “pet screen” on the market that are resistant to tearing for a modest upcharge. Many people rely on the rail, which is built on the inside of the screen to be a detractor for pets ripping the screen. Mostly, we just love our pets and want to make sure there is a nice outdoor area for them without them escaping. Screen porches are fun and functional for both humans and our pets! To see some great screen porch ideas, go to