Acrylic Windows on porch - should you air condition the space

peabody1March 12, 2008

We have a porch that is open on one side. We were going to have acrylic windows (not glass, not vinyl) installed. We were planning to leave the sliding glass door open from the house onto the porch so that air or heat would flow out there. BUT I have been told by an air conditioning company and by one company that sells acrylic windows that I do not want to put acrylic windows out there. They said they are not energy efficient. We are in the hot, humid South. Does anyone have experience in such a climate with acrylic windows? Our electric bill is high enough. We see that they sell alot of these windows down here in Florida.

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theporchguy

peabody1,
If you are planning on closing up the one wall to totally enclose the porch to make it living space and leave open the sliding doors to allow A/C to go into the room, acrylic is a mistake. The heat will radiate right to the inside and your A/C will probably work overtime. More electricity.

I am curious what the other walls are? Knee wall with windows above. If so, what kind of windows. What are the dimensions of the room? What do you plan on using it for?

More info on the existing construction and which way the porch is facing? Is it in the sun all day? What about the roof?

Please post some additonal info for the best advise.

All the best,

The Porch Guy

    Bookmark   March 12, 2008 at 8:55PM
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peabody1

Porch Guy,

Here is some additional information as you requested.

The wall the acrylic windows would go in has a knee wall and currently there is just two screen openings there. Two of the other walls are sliding glass doors and the 4th wall is concrete block with a stucco-like finish. The room is about 9-1/2 feet x 16 feet I'm guessing off the top of my head. Our dogs would be out there when we go somewhere. They have a doggie door that goes out from the porch so they can go out to do their business. I eventually hope to have a treadmill and tv out there.

The porch is facing north. The roof is shingle and I am pretty sure the ceiling is insulated.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2008 at 7:18PM
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theporchguy

As you know acrylic panels scratch easily and are difficult to keep clean. Over time they will show wear and tear more than glass would. Further research will establish acrylic to be at the bottom of the list for energy efficiency ratings.
Try insulated glass, with low E and argon gas between the glass as your ultimate choice for energy efficiency. You'll save on your electric consumption.
Hopefully your sliding doors are double paned insulated glass as well.

All the best,
The Porch Guy

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 9:07PM
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