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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Finishing Enclosed porch

    I want to add insulation and paneling to the inside of my aluminum framed enclosed porch room. I can use rigid foam insulation to the frame recesses but I do not know the best way to attach the panelling to the aluminum framing - screws, nails, adhesive?. I will have to cover the seams and edges with wood trim of some sort and will need advice on attaching this as well. The room is exterior, unheated but mostly dry.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago
    Posts
    1,941

    Default Re: Finishing Enclosed porch

    John,

    I would ask how you intend to use this room and in what climate you live? If you live in a cold climate, this room will never be comfortable in winter. Your windows appear to be little more than "storm" windows, having only single glazing, as is the door.
    Further, the floor appears to be concrete on grade. This will always be foot cold.

    Should you decide to proceed, I would fasten horizontal boards at the floor level and just below the windows using self-tapping metal screws. A ledge could be fastened to the top board to form a window sill. I would use pressure treated wood where contact with the cement is necessary. Paneling or drywall could easily be fastened to the horizontal boards. This would also give a little more clearance for insulation and possible electrical. Also, do not let whatever you use as wallcladding touch the concrete. Concrete passes moisture upwards and will rot out drywall or wood in contact with it. If the room is not to be heated, I would prefer not to use drywall at all.

    I would personally check the local building codes to make sure this retrofit is allowed. For instance, in a cold climate, that concrete slab would have to have a foundation under it if a structure were to built on it and attached to the house. Technically, anytime you are working with heating and electrical, a permit is necessary.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Finishing Enclosed porch

    Thanks for your reply. We live in a cold climate (NJ) but use the room only in the summer as an enclosed porch. The sun heats the side aluminum walls making the room too warm to use. I would like to add some insulation to keep the temperaure down and then some surface panelling to make the room more attractive. No electric will be run on these walls. One wall of the room is the back wall of the house and is covered with siding. It has electric service that I intend to extend for a ceiling fan and possiby a small room air conditioner. The screened windows are single pane and can be opened for ventilation but not all can remain open all the time as wind driven rain will get in.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago
    Posts
    1,941

    Default Re: Finishing Enclosed porch

    JohnVT,

    I can believe that you have a lot of heat gain in your room. My guess is the majority of the gain is coming through the windows and the roof. You might consider window tint film on the glass. I am not sure how to handle the metal roof which probably only has minimal, if any, insulation.

    You might try increasing ventilation by putting louvered vents in the highest part of both of the triangled upper side walls. I suspect the heat is getting trapped in the upper portion of the room. Some greenhouses have such ventilation. Also, if your windows are double hung, with the upper glass lowerable, try leaving them slightly lowered and the lower panes lifted. This creates the cross ventilation which was the original intent of double hung windows.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Finishing Enclosed porch

    We tried keeping the top half of the windows open for ventilation and it helps some but the room is still warm. We do open the side windows for cross ventilation when we are going to use the room and there is no chance of rain but the room still is much warmer than the outside temperature. The roof is sloped and I'm sure it traps some of the summer heat in the room. The roof is made up of double panels with some insulation inside but does not really get hot to the touch even in the sun. The walls, however, are very hot to the touch in the sun. They were originally colored a medium blue on the outside and I painted them white. This helps somewhat but they are still transfering a lot of heat to the room. The two side walls get the morning and then the afternoon sun and get very hot while the long outside wall is shaded and stays relatively cool. We put up venetian blinds on the side windows and that helps a bit and also adds some privacy. I like your idea about window film and will try that in addition to adding insulation to the side walls.

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