The construction of a greenhouse made of old windows has a bit in common with a mosaic or a puzzle. A sufficient number of identical old windows is rarely available. In order to optimally combine the different stocks, an individual support structure must be created.
Elaborate and attractive puzzle
Anyone who builds a greenhouse needs a stable basic structure. In the special case of building the walls and possibly also the roof from old windows, the base must be designed accordingly. Even if old windows are of different sizes, certain standard dimensions appear repeatedly in width.
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When planning the structure of the greenhouse, the vertical elements should be considered first. Normally, vertical pillars, beams or columns are anchored in the ground. The placement of the old windows can be planned in "lanes ". Even if the greenhouse looks like a very light structure due to the high degree of transparency of the wall elements (panes), it is considered an enclosed space and, depending on the size, requires a building permit.
What to look for in the greenhouse
- Allow ventilation so that air can be exchanged without a draft. Many plants cannot tolerate drafts
- Plan shading for each window element. Blinds and roller blinds help to perfectly dose the incidence of light
- Thoroughly examine old windows for traces of mold and make them mold-free before installation
Heating, insulation and frost protection
Both the insulation and the heating is a very individual challenge for structures made from old windows. The following measures protect against frost:
- Eaves with a large overhang (at least twenty centimeters on both sides
- Maintained pane-frame joints (silicone or joint putty)
- All-round forest protection channel under or in front of the lower edges of the walls
- Mulched ground
- Foils or textiles hung from the inside or outside for wintering, which help with regulation in the event of severe frost by means of an air cushion on the panes
Note water drainage
Particular attention must be paid to avoiding waterlogging when designing the roof. Condensate, rain and snow water remain on every horizontally or diagonally positioned window. The elongated puddles that form on the frames have a particularly destructive effect on diagonals. They permanently wet the joint between the pane and the frame strip.
Ideally, roofs are not covered with old windows. If the roof surfaces are also composed of old windows, a high angle of inclination (greater than 35 degrees) must be constructed. Rainwater can only run off completely from 45 degrees. Drainage holes in the lower frame strips can serve as eaves and prevent the build-up.Tips & Tricks You should also think about cleaning the greenhouse in advance. Apart from the aesthetic aspect, dirty windows only let little light shine through. Get a puller that fits the width of the smallest pane size of all windows. Detergent helps against limescale stains from the dried water.