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Old 06-11-2008, 08:38 PM   #1
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


We are looking to try and update and repair our patio that's been enclosed as a sunroom (even though it's North and West facing). I've attached a GIF of an elevation (looking on from the North). The space is approx 400 sf. The house was built in 1956. Not sure when the room was added, but the concrete looks to be 3 separate pours (with the last one being as high as the overlay, up under the window in thae back).

I'm looking for ideas on what to do along several lines. I'm being told to NOT spend too much for now (so I can't replace the floor nor the posts like I'd like to do). To that end my ideas/plans/priorities:

- 1st: Floor
1) removed the broken up overlay (cementeous dirt+straw).
2) discovered concrete slab with good size cracks in some of it.
3) prep'd the cracks (using chipper gun)
4) at this point...
a) choices: not sure whether fill/repair with cement (hard), or "mastic" or 2-part epoxy (both been told are called "soft"). I understand we need to do any pest control/treat for termite or ant "highways", and fill the cracks with sand up to 1/2 inch before we repair the cracks.
b) finish ideas: do we paint?, epoxy coat? or stain? I understand we need to pressure wash, and "finish grind" (with what?) the concrete before we do any of these options. OR do we look into hardwood/ipe decking? or even rubber tile? (as these have also suggested to us so far)
Any help you can give me on 4) a) and b) is MOST greatly appreciated.

- 2nd: Redwood and Fixed Windows.
The outside is 8, 4x4 Redwood posts and 6 2x4 ones all holding up the light-metal roof and framing 5'x5' plates of glass with redwood boards nailed vertically under each window (inside and outside).
What do I do with this?
- I think I can/ought to sand, prime and paint it at a minimum.
- Also I'll need to rip and put some kind of redwood/cedar under about half of the wall as a support since it was resting on the overlay.
What else?
- Can I do any more to "finish" the lower sections/boards of redwood?
- Can I add vents below the fixed windows to give the room some breeze/breathing venting?
- Split 5x5 windows have been priced at $220 each (for 6 of them). That seems like a lot of work and maybe cost more than I want to do for now.

- 3rd: "interior" Walls.
These are stucco in a sort of "knock-down" texture. These are even more open to whatever ideas anyone can give.
- I'd like to patch all the penetrations made by previous owners of this former exterior as a minimum (holes for shelves, holes for plant hooks, holes for cables {Cable TV, telephone, speakers, etc.} strung under the house, etc.).
- I've also thought about re-texturing 2/3rds of it so it is "smooth" and matches the adjoining interior rooms.
- The other 1/3 could be paneled up about 32" high (and knock-down stucco above that)
a) with hardie-panel (vertical to match the redwood on the exterior of the sunroom), or
b) with old-brick (to continue the theme on other parts of the exterior and raised garden-bed walls, or
c) with ipe wood (as one friend has suggested)
What would you even consider, much less do?

Finally, do we add heating and either venting or A/C just to this room? If so how? Its cold in the Winter and buring up/stuffy in the Summer.
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Old 06-13-2008, 03:22 PM   #2
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


As far as the floor, I think the first thing you need to know, or to find out, is if the cracks in the slab are dymanic, meaning are the slab pieces created by the cracks moving in any fashion. Are they subject to freeze / thaw cycles, or expansion / contraction? If they are not moving, then patch with a hard material. If the cracks absorb any motion, then use a polyurethane caulk to seal them. As far as finish, if this is a slab on grade, then stay away from an epoxy coating. Epoxies don't "breath" and vapor pressure in the concrete is likely to cause the finish to fail. A latex floor enamel may work, as they are breathable. Indoor / outdoor carpet could be an option. As far as windows, if you pick a fairly standard window you could do one or two at a time as you can afford.

Last edited by Maintenance 6; 06-13-2008 at 03:25 PM.
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Old 06-16-2008, 06:09 PM   #3
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


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As far as the floor, I think the first thing you need to know, or to find out, is if the cracks in the slab are dymanic, meaning are the slab pieces created by the cracks moving in any fashion. Are they subject to freeze / thaw cycles, or expansion / contraction? If they are not moving, then patch with a hard material. If the cracks absorb any motion, then use a polyurethane caulk to seal them. As far as finish, if this is a slab on grade, then stay away from an epoxy coating. Epoxies don't "breath" and vapor pressure in the concrete is likely to cause the finish to fail. A latex floor enamel may work, as they are breathable. Indoor / outdoor carpet could be an option. As far as windows, if you pick a fairly standard window you could do one or two at a time as you can afford.
Thanks, I had a concrete contractor out to look at it. He does NOT think they are active/dynamic, and our freeze is both very infrequent (1-3 times per Winter) and short (1-3 days) so he said we should patch with hard patch/cement.

Re. windows, I've since gotten a "why do anything?" look and a "but when there's a breeze, it can be quite strong through there" (and both doorways are open). So I'm now looking at just one additional vent-way above one of the doors on the right with 2, 9" window fans for exhaust or blowing in when needed.
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:24 PM   #4
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


I'd have the concrete repaired and let it sit for one year. You should know if they are active. Outdoor carpet or tile are good options if not active.
You stated you have a thin metal roof over this area. Is it insulated? This is a big loss of heat in the winter and heat gain in the summer.

Do not take this the wrong way, but it appears you and someone else don't see eye to eye on this remodel. Fix the floor, insulate the roof and fix the holes and paint for now. In my opinion it appears that your other is currently overwhelmed and small positive steps will get them interested in the project.

Good luck
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:07 PM   #5
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


No the roof is not insulated. So how would I add insultation to a corrugated metal roof since the top's exposed to the environment and the bottom is visible within the sunroom?

In Korea, I saw (some years ago) quoset huts covered with foam that was then plasticoated and painted. I don't think that's what you have in mind nor would I expect it to be available now/locally.

I've also seen the very thin foam sheets and reflective rolls at HD/Lowes. Is that what you're thinking about?
- If so, where and how would we apply them?
- - Glue? ...& with what?
- - Also how'd we keep them from being visible if they are installed on the interior side and what's the height of such an install?
- And how much bang (benefit) are they for the buck/effort of installing them?


------------------
BTW: Thanks for the bonus marital advice in addition to remodel advice. Yes, I tend to be the big picture and economy of scale one, and I leave the small details and finishing to my better-half. So we are tending to eventually balance each other within the schedule and the scope of our DIY/Home Improvements.
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Old 06-17-2008, 02:11 PM   #6
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


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BTW: Thanks for the bonus marital advice in addition to remodel advice. Yes, I tend to be the big picture and economy of scale one, and I leave the small details and finishing to my better-half. So we are tending to eventually balance each other within the schedule and the scope of our DIY/Home Improvements.
This sounds familiar

Does the under side of the roof have any strengthening ribs? One way is to fill that space with closed cell insulation or glue polystyrene sheets and a vapor barrier. Wait until you are sure about the concrete then cover the ceiling with tounge & groove boards secured into the ribs. This may sufficiently temper the space and you may not need to install windows, heat, AC...
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Old 06-17-2008, 04:00 PM   #7
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


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Does the under side of the roof have any strengthening ribs?...
Good question. I need to go and look again. Your idea sounds great.

OK, looked when I got home. Hmmmm, so now what do we do?
- The roof has a box around it. I think its for structural support.
- and 3/4 is covered with panels except down at the low point where it is open. This open area also functions as the gutter. But one section/side of the roof has no covering panels screwed down to the ceiling/roof "beams".
- the roof/ceiling looks something like...
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Last edited by 1655graff; 06-18-2008 at 01:10 AM.
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Old 06-18-2008, 11:58 AM   #8
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


Does this 'structural' box it line up with your posts? This could be just a wrapping of aluminum concealing the actual structure. Look at it carefully for seams, joints, fastening... Where are the walls in respect to these finished panels? Pics would help.

Mike
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Old 06-19-2008, 05:18 PM   #9
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


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Does this 'structural' box it line up with your posts? This could be just a wrapping of aluminum concealing the actual structure.
yes, it does.

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Originally Posted by 47_47 View Post
Look at it carefully for seams, joints, fastening... Where are the walls in respect to these finished panels? Pics would help.
Oh well, I tried to draw this in the on-end diagram of what I'll call its U-tubes. Let's try to 'xplain more...
1) every 2nd "seam" ( _^_ ) is a real one between 2 U-tubes
2) every U-tube overlaps its neighbor at the top along their flat, left-facing lips
3) and the U-tubes are fastened together at the top along this overlap with what appear to be machine nuts and bolts (all exposed to the sky).
4) these same machine nuts and bolts are used to fasten down the panels that cover most of the U-tubes.
5) the covered U-tubes match up (pretty much) to the walls of the sunroom. The opening at the bottom of the top-down diagram is overhang beyond the walls and is about 10 in.

I also see this time (since I went up in sunlight/during the day) that there is a 1/2 of polystyrene sandwiched between the panes and the U-tubes. Take a look...
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Old 06-19-2008, 05:31 PM   #10
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Sunroom Update/Repair with questions


Now that I'm looking at this, I wondering if expanding closed-cell foam would cause mildew up under the panels?

I'm also wondering if
- improved ventilation (at what CFM?) and/or heating (e.g., spot radiant)
- patio door/window insulation kit (attached to the outside of the single-pane glass) or the other kind of plastic add-on films
- any other measures
might be a better option for countering the heat flux of Summer and the cold of Winter.

I've read that silicone around window panes helps reduce drafts. DOes it help insulate?

What kind of heat transfer barrier is used between wood walls and concrete slab floors? Would HD or Lowes know what's needed (and they sell) asking them this question? Would a heat transfer barrier do anything helpful for this sunroom?
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