Conservatories have a relatively short history, as it is only within the last one hundred years or so that they have become more affordable and commonplace. Until the mid 1850’s, glass for windows was spun as a thin disc about 1.2 metres across. Panes were then cut from the outside edge, leaving the whirled centre of the disc to be sold off or thrown away. It was only with the advent of good sheet glass that conservatories became increasingly popular; this coincided with the growth of colonial travels, as returning gentry demanded conservatories to germinate and cultivate the exotic plant species they had found abroad. With the advancing industrial revolution, cast iron became the favoured material to make impressive arched glass structures, which culminated with the erection of the Crystal Palace in London in 1851.
Conservatories have come on in leaps and bounds since then and modern home owners can now choose from aluminium, rigid UPVC, hardwood or treated softwood structures, as well as a variety of modern and vintage styles. Double glazing has also vastly improved previous drafty designs and some conservatories now come with environmentally friendly solar panels too.
If you have a conservatory, you will want to take good care of it. The best way is to employ a professional conservatory cleaner who can clean your conservatory inside and out at least twice a year. After the winter months, you are sure to see smudges of the season’s rain on the window panes and decaying leaves gathering in the gutters. A professional conservatory cleaner will be able to remove all this and leave your glass house sparkling like new again.
You can also take steps to clean the conservatory yourself. The roof and frame should ideally be washed down every couple of months with warm soapy water to remove grime and deposits. Avoid using any chemical or strongly abrasive cleaners, as these might damage the surface of the frame. Your conservatory may also have hinged windows or skylights that open – keep these well oiled and in good working order.
Even if your conservatory is clean, you still cannot protect it from wayward stones or unexpected objects that might crack or break the glass. Thankfully, your household insurance is likely to cover the cost of breakage or damages to conservatories, as well as other windows in your house. It is worth remembering, however, that any loss or damage to your conservatory may not be covered on your home insurance if your home is unoccupied or unfurnished at the time. conservatory roof replacement