For help and advice call 0800 840 0565 or email david@hitg.co.uk

New Roof FAQs

Q: My glass roof panels are misted/ discoloured. Why is this & do they need to be replaced?
A: Double glazing units are made with a perimeter /spacer bar that creates the gap between the glass panels; this contains a desiccant that dries the air between the two panes of glass. Over time air, which naturally contains water vapour, diffuses through the edge seal and the moister it contains is removed by the desiccant. However the desiccant has a limited capacity to remove moisture, and once this reached it is saturated with water. Further diffusion of moist air occurs and the water it contains condenses on the panes of glass. Further ingress of water can dissolve some of the desiccant ( a process called deliquescence ) which is leached out of the edge bar and stains the glass with white streaks.

Once a glass unit becomes misted it has lost its efficiency and needs to be replaced. We can replace the unit like for like. But for very little additional cost install a high insulation unit which will cut heat loss by up to 60%

Glass panels typically have a maximum life of fifteen to twenty years on a roof and fail for the reasons stated above.

Q: My roof panels have slipped and in some cases only prevented from falling into the garden by the gutter. What can I do?
A: For Glass roofs: There are two possible reasons for this.

1) The glass units have reached the end of their lives and the top pane of glass has separated and slid into the gutter. In this case it is likely that the panels are old and therefore you should consider replacing all the glazing panels, and as a minimum all the other panels on that side of the conservatory. Normally the south facing panels will separate first; they are subject to greater heat from the sun which degrades the double glazing seal between the two panes.

2) The locking plates that should have been fitted at the end of the glazing bar/ rafter were not installed, or have failed leading to panel slip. In this case the panels need to be refitted into their top rebate and new locking plates installed.

A: For Polycarbonate roofs:

Slipped panels are often encountered on Polycarbonate roofs as many designs rely on friction between the cappings, that clip down on the panels, to hold them in position. Over time with expansion and contraction, the effect of the Sun that makes cappings brittle and lose their elasticity, panels can slip. We have designed a screw clip which we install on all our work that guarantees a secure fixing after the panels have been re-positioned.

The above situations are often accompanied by leaks because a slipped panel leaves a gap at the top through which rain, leaves, and debris can enter the conservatory.

Q: One of my Glass panels has cracked or shattered. Can this be simply replaced?
A: This is a fairly straightforward repair. Once the glazing bar cappings have been released the old panel and its debris are removed. You have then the option of replacing like with like or for a small additional cost you can fit a high performance panel that will cut winter heat loss by up to 60%.

Q: My conservatory is too hot in summer and I would also like to install new panels so that I can use it in comfort as part of the house in winter and summer. Can you help?
A: We can refurbish you conservatory with new high performance roof panels containing transparent heat reflectors. These will eliminate the problem of summer overheating by excluding 80% of the sun’s heat. In winter they will cut heat loss by up to 60%, and provide you with economic heating. Our objective is to give you full year round comfortable usage of the conservatory. So that you can add the conservatory to your living space.

Q: My conservatory is too cold in winter, I do not have a summer overheating problem as it faces north. Can you install new roof panels to solve this problem?
A: We can refurbish you conservatory with new high performance roof panels that will cut winter heat loss by up to 60%, and provide you with economic heating.

Q: My Polycarbonate roof is fifteen to twenty years old and is discoloured. Does it need replacing?
A: The longevity of a Polycarbonate roof is achieve by the incorporating an Ultra-violet protecting surface that shields the polycarbonate from deterioration due to the Sun. This surface has a life of between fifteen to twenty years depending which way the conservatory faces as this influences the amount of Sun on the roof.

Etching or discolouration and a consequent reduction in light indicates that the protective surface has reached the end of its life and the polycarbonate is deteriorating. Failure normally goes through three stages: discolouration and etching, crazing, and finally cracking and disintegration.

It is wise to install new panels once etching and discolouration are evident. We recommend installation of high insulation panels that cut winter heat loss by up to 60% compared to traditional roof panels, and where required, if high summer temperatures are a problem, our new panels exclude 80% of the Sun’s heat.

Q: There are flies and debris in my Polycarbonate roof panels. Can these be removed?
A: Polycarbonate roof panels are normally sealed with an Aluminium Glazing tape at the top, and a breather tape at the bottom. If one or other of these has not been installed insects and debris can enter the hollow flutes.

If there are few flies and the roof has a steepish pitch the insects and debris will slide down to the bottom of the panels out of sight if the panel is vigorously banged from below with a soft object. If this does not effect removal then it is necessary to remove the panel and treat in a similar way, unfortunately this physical method does not always guarantee removal and installation of a new panel may be necessary.

Q: There is condensation in my Polycarbonate roof. How can this be removed?
A: The general cause of condensation is inadequate sealing of the end closure at the bottom of the panel, and or the use of an end closure that has no drip bar or drainage holes below. As a consequence the breather tape becomes saturated with moisture and when water drains from the roof it can flow under the end closure into the flutes of the polycarbonate.

Assuming that there is no debris or vegetation at the end of the polycarbonate flutes a new end closure fitted in the correct way can be installed. However it will take some time for residual moisture to evaporate and exit the panels before a new enclosure can be fitted.

Polycarbonate roofs are recommended to have a minimum pitch of 10 degrees, If this is lower then diffusion of water vapour can occur through the Polycarbonate directly into the panel.

Q: I would like to have much more light in my conservatory as it is dark and I need to have lights on in the adjacent room. Can you products help to solve this problem?
A: When roof panels reach the end of there lives they become discoloured and cut out light, also there are many conservatories that have been fitted with tinted roof panels that block out the light.

We can install high light transmission panels to overcome this problem which can incorporate heat reflectors to exclude summer heat, and provide high performance winter insulation.

Replacement Roof Panel FAQs

Q: My Polycarbonate conservatory roof is twelve years old and some of the roof panels have discoloured to a beige appearance.
A: Polycarbonate roof panels should not discolour in such a short time unless the panels have been fitted upside down. The polycarbonate achieved its longevity with a ultra-violet protecting layer on top of the outer surface of the panel. If the panel has been mounted upside down there is no protection.

Q: One of my roof panels has slipped sideways and there is a gap to the side which is allowing water to enter the conservatory.
A: The panel is too narrow and does not fit correctly between the glazing bars. You reuire a new roof panel of the correct size. When this is measured it would be prudent to check for correct sizing of the other roof panels.

Q: There are flies and debris in the flutes of the polycarbonate panels which are unsightly.
A: Unfortunately it is virtually impossible to remove debris which has entered the flutes because the panels top seal has failed. A new panel is needed.

Q: I have noticed that the top of one of the glass panels is protruding into the gutter.
A: The double glazing unit appears to have separated; this is a dangerous state of affairs because if the gutter gives way the panel will slide off the roof. It is first necessary to make an urgent visit to secure the glass pane, and following this to replace with a new glazed panel.

You should also consider the condition of the other panels on the roof and the fixing of a retaining lug in case this situation occurs with other roof panes.

Q: There are holes in the outer surface of my polycarbonate roof panels. My conservatory is fifeteen to twenty years old.
A: The roof panel has reached the end of its life. The holes are probably due to the impact of hailstones on a roof panel that has become brittle due to the action of the sun. This could be due to its age, or if there has been premature failure because the panel has been mounted upside down with no solar protection to the outside.

Q: A hammer has been dropped onto my glass roof panel and it has cracked is there any immediate danger as the panel appears to have retained its integrity.
A: Put your mind at rest there is no danger since it appears from your description that the roof panel is made from laminated safety glass. It is unlikely in the short term that there will be any leaks unless the panel has become deformed, but clearly the panel should be replaced at the earliest opportunity.

Q: There is a build up of moss and algae at the bottom of my roof panels which is unsightly.
A: It is likely that the gutter below is blocked and or the end closures on the panels have become detached or displaced leading to a build-up of debris and vegetation growth. If the panels are polycarbonate then it is likely that this has entered the hollow flutes in which case the panels will need to be replaced. If the panels are glass then it may be possible to clean the panels.

Q: There are holes to the outside of my Polycarbonate panels and melted black marks due to fireworks/rockets landing on the roof. Can the panels be repaired?
A: It is not possible to repair this type of damage and new panels will be needed.

Q: Builders working on next door's roof have dropped a scaffolding pole onto my conservatory roof and dislodged a roof panel and possibly damaged the roof supports. What should I do?
A: It will be necessary to replace the damaged panel and undertake an inspection to determine the identity of the roof supports/glazing bars. There are several roof systems and we can source the correct parts once we know the manufacturer.

Leaks and Repairs FAQs

Q: I have a leak from the ridge/ top of the conservatory that is dripping down. How would you deal with this?
A: There could be several possible causes, failure of the ridge flashing, a leak around the finial, or a slipped panel that has left a gap through which the rain can enter just below the ridge.

Other possibilities are: panels that were too narrow when installed and these were positioned on the glazing bars so as just to provide a seal. Over time they have moved leaving a gap.

Q: I have a leak around the roof-vent or adjacent to a joint between the glazing. Can you please advise me?
A: This is a common problem caused by poorly fitted joint between: the roof-vent and the glazing , or two glazing panels. It can be rectified by repair, or replacement of the seal and joint.

Q: I have a leak down the house wall to the inside of the conservatory. Can you please advise me?
A: The cause of this is likely to be failed flashings at the house interface, and these need to be re-newer or repaired.

Q: There is dampness on the brick wall to the side of the conservatory. Can you please advise?
A: You could be having water ingress due either a failed coping (which protects the top of the wall from the weather):  a coping that does not have a drip bar allows water to run down the wall and seep through the brick onto the internal plaster or wall surface. A failed or poor flashing would also cause this problem.

Q: My end closures and caps seem to have disappeared. Can you replace with new?
A: Yes we can replace missing components, or in the case of obsolete models source replacements.

Q: My doors and window catches are stiff and ill fitting. Can you service them when you visit to undertake other work?
A: We can lubricate and adjust these as part of our other work to your conservatory.

Q: I have a leak below the valley gutter which is running down the inside of the roof and polling water on the window sill. What should I do?
A: There could be several reasons for this: blockage of the gutter due to leaves and debris entering below the top cowling of the gutter; break-down of the of the seal between the glazing panels and the side of the valley gutter; glazing panels that are too large which have flexed and caused a breakdown of the seal. It will be necessary to remove the cowling and undertake an inspection to diagnose the cause and determine the solution.

Q: The top elements of my conservatory, I believe they are called the crest and finial, are loose and move in the wind. I am concerned that they may become dislodged.
A: It will be necessary to remove the crest and finial and either re-position correctly and secure, or install new securing clips and supports. This is straightforward.

Q: The upstand covers that clamp over the edge of the roof panels have slide down and are protruding into the gutter?
A: This can be a problem with plastic Glazing bar covers because over time they lose their elasticity and become stiff. They are then unable then to press down onto the roof panels, and if the end have caps become detached there is nothing to prevent Glazing bar covers from sliding down the glazing bar.

Q: One of the gutter joints is leaking and leading to staining of the outside of the conservatory and occasionally I have noticed water on the inside window sill. I have tried to seal the joint but my repairs have been unsuccessful?
A: It will be necessary to thoroughly clean out the gutter adjacent to the joint, treat with inside with a primer, then install a flexible liner over the joint, and finally above this fit an in-situ membrane.

Services FAQs

Q: Conservatory 'MOT'. Why is this necessary and what does this involve?
A: Conservatories are normally neglected until a problem such as: a leak, failed or slipped roof panes, blocked gutters and downspouts, panel movement causing leaks, failed flashing etc. occurs.

Ideally a conservatory should be inspected, much like a car, every two years to identify and undertake maintenance needs.

Regular maintenance and cleaning will ensure that the conservatory keeps its sparkle and new appearance and there are no expensive surprises.

We are happy to undertake an inspection and provide you with a free and no obligation report on our findings together with a quotation.

Q: Conservatory Cleaning. What does it involve and why is it necessary?
A: The build up of dirt and algae can damage the surfaces of your conservatory and lead to premature failure of the roof panels, and seals. Our cleaning process involves a roof clean to inhibit the growth of Algae to brings the sparkle back to the roof, together with a dressing on the Upvc surfaces to help remove grime and staining.

Q: Do you have Technical Help and Support Service?
A: We provide a full Technical support service and advice including heat flow calculations and specifications not only on our products but to assist customers in progressing Building Control and Planning Applications. For change of use of conservatories to home extensions, heat loss calculations for commercial and residential buildings etc.

Q: Some of the panels on my conservatory roof have slipped and I can see daylight at the top of the these. Consequently rain is entering and I have also noticed debris and leaves. I have tried to push the panel back into place but it keeps slipping down. What can I do to solve this problem?
A: In order to provide a long term solution it will be necessary to remove the panel and reposition the top gasket which has currently slipped down and is preventing the panel going back in place.

Once the panels are reposition we fit retaining screw clips that anchor the panel so that it will not slip again.

Q: I have a leak. How long will it be before you are able to visit to solve this?
A: We aim to visit you within a few days of your call to diagnose the problem and determine a solution. If resolution is urgent and the problem is relatively straightforward we will deal with the issue when we call, or within a few days of your confirmation of acceptance of quotation for the works.

Q: I have had several companies visit to resolve my problems but none have been successful. How do I know that you are able to help?
A: We come across this situation frequently and find that the companies, or handymen, involved simply do not have the experience and specialist materials necessary to accurately diagnose and deal with the problem.

Our team have a twenty five year experience of dealing with these problems and our whole focus is working with conservatory roofs. There is little we have not seen before and it is this long experience that enable us to confidently resolve all manner of conservatory roof problems.

Q: I have leaks due to my gutters overflowing and I think that this is due to excess of water draining from the house roof onto the conservatory roof. How would you deal with this problem?
A: This is not an unusual situation. Many conservatory company fitters, in order to reduce costs, simply drain a house roof downspout onto the conservatory roof, into the conservatory gutter. Disregarding, or not appreciating, that the conservatory drainage system is only designed to drain the conservatory roof.

When we undertake service work of this type we re-route drainage from the house roof directly into the main rainwater system bi-passing the conservatory roof and gutters.

Order FAQs

Q: How long is the delay between ordering and fitting?
A: Generally we aim to complete the work in around four weeks from date of order.

Q: How long will your men be on site undertaking the work?
A: This will depend on the nature of the work. For straightforward repairs, Mot, or Cleaning on a normal conservatory up to a day. Roof replacement around two to three days. On large conservatories or roofs the timescale will be longer.

Q: When your Technical surveyor visits to inspect and to explain what is required how long will his visit last?
A: Generally the visit is 30 mins to one hour depending on the situation.

Q: How can I confirm an order?
A: Our Technical Surveyor, who is also an installer and will be one of the team that undertakes your work, will explain the details of the work required during his visit. After the visit you will receive a written report comprising of several sections: A condition report explain what he has found, recommendations and specifications, and prices.

At the end of the report is a form which you can complete and return in a post paid envelope if you wish to have us undertake the work. You will receive two copies of the report as we wish to ensure that there is no ambiguity about the specification as we will both have a copy of the report.

HTG’s David Anderson On The Road…

Bird Watching With One Way Vision Laminates

Mr Jones had his glass conservatory fitted with a new high insulation roof and we refurbished his conservatory back to a new condition. He noticed that the glazing panels give good light but also had some one way vision properties. Therefore he called me to see if we...

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Energy Survey and SAP Report

Ms. Summers recently decided that she wished to return from Spain to the UK after spending many years in Seville. She wanted to be closer to her family; especially her mother, and feels a great affinity for her home country Wales. She purchased a small house in a...

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Cat Rescue!

Imagine my surprise when I arrived at 8am to early morning call to survey Mrs Hieter's conservatory, for a new roof, to find two fire engines, and a police car outside her house both with their flashing blue lights illuminating the street. She explained that her Grey...

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Danger! Wasp Nests In Conservatories

August is normally the time for wasps, but this year imagine our surprise when fitting a new roof onto Mrs Jones' conservatory we were confronted with a very active wasps nest in the space between the top of the windows and the roof glazing. We were just remove a...

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