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Conservatory Roof Replacement – Transform Your Space with a New Roof

Conservatory roofs are replaceable, and with the correct replacement system, you can swap them out easily.

Most conservatories have an aluminium roof structure although some older ones with polycarbonate sheets have a timber structure – both can accommodate a lightweight, solid roof providing it is engineered for the structure.

By “engineered for the structure,” we mean the replacement roof should be made-to-measure rather than off-the-shelf.

Prefabrication of solid roofing systems following professional measurements is the only way to ensure factory-level tolerances are met during the build stage.

The end result of your conservatory roof replacement should be a highly insulated, airtight roof that appears to be an original installation.

The problem with conservatory roofs

Glazed and polycarbonate conservatory roofs are cheap and easy to build – perfect for the companies flogging them with large profit margins, but they aren’t the best fit for those who actually use the space (i.e., you).

Modern glazing with a solar reflective film is an enormous upgrade over standard glazing, but even this system lets through a fair amount of solar gain, and it won’t eliminate all the glare that makes the space horrible to be in.

Here are the common complaints we hear:

  • My conservatory is too hot in summer and too cold in winter.
  • Excessive sunlight is causing uncomfortable glare.
  • Neighbours can see into my conservatory at night.  
  • Rain, hail, and other weather conditions create disruptive noise.

If these are familiar, your glazed or polycarbonate roofing system is the reason behind it all – and replacing it is the only way to fix it.

Solid conservatory roofs

Now imagine if your conservatory had a roofing system similar to that on your house – rafters, insulation panels, and solid roofing tiles.

What a difference that would make to the look and feel of your conservatory, and the good news is you can achieve it with a prefabricated system built to spec.

The Leka System is one such example of a high-quality solid roof – it uses GRP rafters, rigid boards, Celotex insulation, waterproof outer sheets, and tiling in its construction to create a perfectly insulated warm roof for your conservatory.

Other solid roofing systems exist, but the premise stays the same: lightweight and solid, with no timber or aluminium construction in sight.

The reason we want to replace timber is because it isn’t the lightest material and is susceptible to dry and wet rot over long periods, while aluminium is also heavier than GRP and has a slimmer profile less suited to solid roofs.

Benefits include:

Temperature regulation

Solid roofs help regulate the temperature inside your conservatory more effectively with insulation, making it more comfortable to use year-round.

Energy efficiency

The improved insulation of a solid roof can lead to significant energy savings by maintaining a more consistent temperature – your conservatory will require less heating and cooling, reducing your reliance on energy-consuming electric heaters.

Noise reduction

Solid roofs reduce outside noise from rain, wind, and traffic (not to mention noisy neighbours and barking dogs), giving you a more peaceful and quieter atmosphere inside your conservatory.

Glare reduction

Excessive sunlight causes uncomfortable glare and can damage your furniture and furnishings through UV exposure – -solid roofs cut down on glare, providing a more controlled and diffused light that’s easier on the eyes and less harmful to your belongings.

Design versatility

Roof tiles come in a variety of styles, materials, and colours to seamlessly match your home’s existing architecture and enhance your property’s curb appeal.

Durability and longevity

Solid roofs are robust and long-lasting, designed to withstand the elements and offer maximum protection against leaks, cracks, and other forms of damage over time, providing peace of mind and potentially save you money on repairs and maintenance in the long run.

Increased home value

Upgrading your conservatory with a solid roof can be a wise investment that adds value to your property because a well-insulated, comfortable, and attractive conservatory is likely to be more appealing to potential buyers.

Building regulations and conservatory roof replacement

You might have read that if you want to retrofit a solid tiled roof, you may do so without adhering to any building regulations if the conservatory meets the ‘permitted development’ criteria set out by the planning authority.

This is BAD ADVICE.

Not all conservatory roofs need to follow Building Regulations, but solid conservatory roofs do because they are classified as permanent fixtures.

That does not necessarily mean a series of site inspections – you can bypass these with a system that has pre-approval from an Approved Building Control Inspector.

The Leka Roof is a prime example, approved by MFA Building Control and requiring only one post-completion inspection to get a certificate.

Solid roofs pre-approved by a building control inspector like the Leka Roof meet building regs, provided they are installed by a professional.

Planning permission and conservatory roof replacement

Planning permission isn’t necessary when replacing a conservatory roof, but there are a few rules under permitted development:

Your conservatory cannot be transformed into an extension and must remain a separate outbuilding connected to it.

It must be separated from the main house by external walls, windows, and doors (for example, bi-fold doors) and have separate heating. 

Retrofitting a solid roof does not infringe on permitted development rules, provided that the structure is kept separate from the house.

If you intend to make your conservatory a true extension – solid, insulated walls and fully integrated with your home – you WILL need planning permission. Your first port of call, in this case, is your local planning authority.

Retrofitting compatibility

Most conservatories (>95%) are compatible with a retrofit lightweight solid roofing system without modifications to the walls or foundation.

The few conservatories that require reinforcement have polycarbonate roofs and undersized supports compared to modern builds – polycarbonate structures older than 20 years are more likely to require additional support.

What does that look like? Reinforcement usually only involves the replacement of support posts or columns with meatier units or a ring beam that runs along the top of the building to provide support for the new roof.

It’s rare for foundations to need reinforcement, but it may be necessary if the foundation isn’t sound, usually from improper installation but usually from movement – either way, it will need sorting before conservatory roof replacement.

Excavating around the base of the conservatory and adding concrete or other reinforcing materials will create a more robust foundation.

Conservatory roof replacement prices

How much does a solid conservatory roof cost? More than £7,000 but less than £18,000 is a good benchmark across different supplier systems.

We can’t say how much yours will cost because we don’t know the roof’s specification, but we can break down the cost factors:

Size

The larger your conservatory, the more materials and labour will be required to install your solid roof, increasing the overall cost.

Most quotes use square footage as a cost benchmark, so a larger structure will generally result in a higher price tag.

Style

Leon-to roofs are cheaper than Victorian roofs, and Edwardian roofs are more expensive than gable roofs (as a general rule) – basically, design complexity drives the costs up, and so a simple roof design will save you money.

The engineered tiles also play a significant role in costs, accounting for around 15% of the price – look for cost-effective engineered tiles to save.

Engineering prowess

The best conservatory roof replacements are specified and built by engineers, not salespeople. They have disclosed materials and are made in a factory in the UK to order without the use of generic components.

Do not cheap out on something made in China or an off-the-shelf product – we guarantee it won’t deliver the desired quality.

Summing up

Replacing your conservatory roof with a solid, insulated system is the best investment to transform your conservatory into a liveable space.

Forget knocking your conservatory down and building new—roof replacement is nearly always the better choice—and it costs way less when you factor in disruption to your life and the cost of landscaping where it once stood.

But don’t just take our word for it – check out our case studies to see how the Leka roofing system looks and performs for real.