Most people expect to have a ventilation system installed in their conservatory for summer. They expect this is included in conservatory prices and in order to maintain a proper comfort level, they are needed.
It is important to note that your conservatory is designed to be used year-round. The ventilation must be adequate for summer and winter months.
Why is a winter ventilation system needed?
If you do not have a good ventilation system in winter, the conservatory will have problems with condensation. This is excess moisture in the room. The windows and floors will feel damp or wet. Furniture is susceptible to mold and mildew. This can be dangerous to people who are very young, elderly, or people who have breathing problems. This can be very dangerous and could result in serious illness.
Note: if you are seeing signs of mold and mildew, do not use the room until proper ventilation has been installed and mold has been cleaned away or furnishings replaced.
WInter plants may die. Your conservatory will become a greenhouse and the temperature will be uncomfortable. Winter gardens are designed around a conservatory. Without proper ventilation, the room becomes too warm and the air stagnant. Winter plants will not thrive in these conditions.
The ventilation in your conservatory will consist of roof vents that open and close. How many vents you need is dependant on the size of the conservatory and the way it faces. Roof vents are opened and the air is pulled from the lower windows to the upper section of the conservatory. The continual motion of the air circulating gives you the air quality you need for comfort and to protect the integrity of the conservatory.
If the conservatory has low ceilings, roof vents (properly placed) will probably be all you need for circulation. However, if the ceilings are very tall, you may need the addition of ceiling fans.
Ceiling fans are common in a conservatory. They look nice and in summer months they move air providing a comfortable breeze. But, they are also great for winter use. By reversing the fans, the blades push heat down to help keep the conservatory warm. Cooler air is moved out the vents and this flow of air allows you to maintain a comfortable temperature in the room.
Conservatory prices are not inexpensive, but they are a good investment into the value of your property. Like anything else, maintenance is cheaper than replacement. You should have your conservatory inspected twice a year. You should ask for an inspection just before summer (heat) arrives and just before winter (cold) temperatures dive. Adding ventilation is not difficult and it is reasonably priced. Not having proper ventilation is costly and can render your conservatory unusable.
If your conservatory is very old and if the vents are not in working order, you should contact a conservatory contractor for an inspection. They will explain the way your system should work, and give you a project price on correcting the problem.