Conservatory Jargon Buster

The definitive guide to common terms used in the design and installation of conservatories.


For over 20 years now Ultraframe has been the acknowledged market leader in the design and manufacture of conservatory roof systems. With over one million Ultraframe roofs already installed throughout the UK, the pedigree and quality offered by our roof systems is second to none. During this time Ultraframe have developed a widely recognised set of guidelines by which conservatory roofs are designed, specified, ordered and installed.

Ultraframe have complied this manual to explain and translate much of the jargon used in the conservatory industry. We have listed many of the commonplace words and terms used daily in connection with conservatory design and installation.

Each reference includes a list of possible alternative words (“also known as”), a full description of the product/component and a full colour picture, where appropriate, to illustrate its relevance.

To find the explanation for your jargon term just browse the terms alphabetically below or Search Our Site.

 

Safety glass

Safety glass

Also known as: Toughened glass, laminate glass or Georgian wired glass

There are different types of safety glass but the most prevalent is toughened glass. Toughened glass is made by quickly heating the pre-cut sheet glass and air cooling it rapidly, changing its molecular structure. Laminated glass is produced by permanently bonding two pieces of glass together with a tough plastic interlayer (polyvinyl butyral) under heat and pressure. The benefit of laminated glass is that if broken, glass fragments adhere to the plastic interlayer rather than falling free and potentially causing injury. Georgian wired and laminated glass are not used very often in conservatories.

Sand Blinding

Sand Blinding

Also known as: Levelling material

Layers of sand that cover the compacted hardcore within a base.

Screed

Screed

Also known as: Levelling compound

Layer of concrete floor to level for the fitting of floor tiles.

Sealant

Sealant

Also known as: Low modulus, Rotabond, Gutterbond

Special sealants are used by installers for achieving leak-free conservatories. The two main types are as follows: Low modulus neutral cure silicone

Sealed unit

Sealed unit

Also known as: Double glazed unit, IGU

See Double glazed unit, IGU.

Secondary seal

Secondary seal

Also known as: Hot melt

A secondary seal on an IGU. See page 17

SHGC

SHGC

Also known as: Solar heat gain coefficient

Solar heat gain coefficient refers to heat from the sun which penetrated glass units, resulting in heat gain. It is expressed as a fraction; i.e. 0.40 = 40% of the sun's heat penetrates the conservatory.

Slotted end

Slotted end

Also known as: Fabricated end

See fabricated end (the image shown is a slotted fabricated end for a lean-to). Formed from aluminium.

Snow load

Snow load

Also known as: Snow drift

Snow load refers to the amount of snow that should be able to settle on the roof of a conservatory without it collapsing under the resulting weight. Conservatories in Britain are typically designed to a snowload of 0.6Kn/m2 (equivalent to 2 foot of snow per m2).

Soakaway

Soakaway

Also known as: Runaway

A hole that's dug typically 5m away from property for water to run into.

Soaker

Soaker

Also known as: Weathering tray, lip, upstand

A preformed upstand which lead or conservaflash is pressed into.

Soffit board

Soffit board

Also known as: Under eaves board, Roofline

A soffit board is the horizontal board that lies at 90 degrees to the fascia; i.e. parallel to the ground.

Soft coating

Soft coating

Also known as: Sputtered microscopic layers

Soft coating is the coating applied to the outside face of the inner pane to significantly improve unit thermal performance. Pilkington K is a hard coat product, St Gobain (the other leading glass manufacturer) produces soft coat products.

Soil Vent Pipe

Soil Vent Pipe

Also known as: Foul Stack

Main vertical pipe which waste water and foul water run into

Solid floor

Solid floor

Also known as: Slab, plinth

A concrete floor slab constructed and supported directly from the ground.

Spacer

Spacer

Also known as: Spacer bar

A spacer is a packer (usually metal) which forms a cavity width within a double glazed unit.

Spanning performance

Spanning performance

Also known as: Span

Spanning performance is the term used to describe the ability of a structural member to carry snow and wind loads between fixed points; e.g. glazing bars, ridges. The larger the span, the more demanding the specification is the achieve the span.

Speedlock

Speedlock

Also known as: Spider arms

A speedlock is the device used to connect square cut glazing bars to the ridge end.

Splayed Bars

Splayed Bars

Also known as: Angled bars

Glazing bars that cross (& fasten to the eaves beam) at any angle other than 90 degree.

Split valley

Split valley

Also known as: Bent valley, Cut valley

A split valley occurs where the valley meets the eaves beam. If the external angle exceeds 90 degrees the valley wind (on the facet side) will need to be scored, folded and then bolted to the eaves beam, to enable the glazing material to lay flat.

Squint bricks

Squint bricks

Also known as: 135degree formed bricks

Typically formed at 135 or 150 degrees to offer 'feature' corner facets to a brickwork dwarf wall.

Staggered Jacks

Staggered Jacks

Also known as: Stepped jack rafters

Jack rafters either side of a hip bar that are not back to back.

Starter bar

Starter bar

Also known as: Wall bar, end bar, gable end bar

The starter bar is the end bar on a roof which either sits tight to a wall or fits on each end of a lean-to roof.

Stockist

Stockist

Also known as: Outlet

A conservatory roof stockist is someone who simply stocks conservatory roofs to sell them non via a trade counter to installers; i.e. they do not manufacture or install products.

Stop end outlet

Stop end outlet

Also known as: Wall outlet

A stop end outlet is used when a run of gutter stops with a rain water pipe outlet.

String Line

String Line

Also known as: Setting out point

Used by bricklayers to form set out lines for straight brick work building (corner to corner).

Structural bar

Structural bar

Also known as: Glazing bar

See 'Glazing Bar'.

Structural integrity

Structural integrity

Also known as: Vertical and lateral stability

A well designed conservatory has structural integrity; i.e. it takes account of wind and snow loads and incorporates features to make it fit for purpose, e.g. includes TBRK, Bolster, etc.

Surveyor

Surveyor

Also known as: Super hero!!

A surveyor is the person responsible for site evaluation and measurement to ensure the conservatory to be manufactured and built will be suitable for the site conditions.

Suspended floor

Suspended floor

Also known as: Floating floor, block and beam

A suspended floor is a floor construction raised and suspended above the internal ground level and generally supported by the perimeter cavity walls, with possibly load bearing internal masonry walls to reduce the span of the floor.