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Differences between a 3 season room and a 4 season room

June 9, 2023
3 Season Room - Suncoast Enclosures

What is the difference between a 3 season room and a 4 season room?

A 3 season room and a 4 season room, also known as a sunroom or a screened-in porch, differ in their design and functionality, particularly in terms of their ability to be used comfortably throughout the year.

Here's a breakdown of some of the key differences:


3 Season Room: Designed to be used during three out of four seasons, typically spring, summer, and fall. It provides a sheltered space with protection from the elements, such as rain, wind, and excessive sunlight, while still allowing a connection to the outdoors.

4 Season Room: Designed to be used year-round, regardless of the weather conditions. It is built to withstand temperature variations, including extreme heat, cold, and precipitation, allowing you to enjoy the space during all seasons.

Insulation and HVAC:

3 Season Room: Typically do not have heating, ventilation, or air conditioning (HVAC) systems. They may have large windows or screens to provide ventilation, but they are not designed to maintain comfortable temperatures during colder months.

4 Season Room: Constructed with proper insulation, including insulated walls, windows, and doors, to regulate the temperature inside. They are also equipped with HVAC systems to provide heating and cooling, allowing you to enjoy the space comfortably throughout the year.

Window Options:

3 Season Room: Usually have large windows or screens that can be opened or closed to control ventilation.  Suncoast Enclosures utilizes both fixed and retractable screen options.  Typically, these windows may not provide adequate insulation against extreme temperatures.

4 Season Room: Typically feature double-paned or insulated glass windows that offer better insulation and energy efficiency. These windows help to maintain a consistent temperature and keep the room comfortable in all seasons.

Construction Materials:

3 Season Room: Often constructed using lighter materials, such as aluminum frames and lightweight glass or screens. Suncoast Enclosures are designed for North American winters to withstand heavy snow loads and extreme weather conditions. 

4 Season Room: Built with sturdier materials, such as insulated walls, thicker glass, and stronger frames. These materials provide better protection against the elements and help maintain a comfortable interior environment.

Suncoast Enclosures 3 Season Room

What is the difference in pricing between a 3 season room and a 4 season room?

The pricing difference between a 3 season room and a 4 season room can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the room, the materials used, the level of insulation, the complexity of the design, and the region where you live.

Generally, 4 season rooms tend to be more expensive than 3 season rooms due to their additional features and construction requirements. Here are some cost considerations:

Construction and Materials:

4 season rooms often require more robust construction materials, such as insulated walls, double-paned windows, and stronger frames. These materials are typically more expensive than those used in 3 season rooms, which may use lighter materials like aluminum frames and standard glass or retractable power screens.

Insulation and HVAC:

The insulation requirements for a 4 season room are higher compared to a 3 season room, as they need to maintain a comfortable temperature year-round. This may involve additional costs for insulation materials and installation. HVAC systems, including heating and cooling, are also typically incorporated into 4 season rooms, which adds to the overall cost.

Design and Customization:

If you opt for a customized design or specific features in your sunroom, it can affect the overall cost. Complex designs, unique architectural elements, and additional amenities such as built-in lighting, electrical outlets, or specialized flooring can increase the price of both 3 season and 4 season rooms.

Regional Factors:

Pricing can vary depending on the region, as labor and material costs differ in different areas. The local climate and building codes may also influence the cost, particularly for 4 season rooms, which require compliance with stricter insulation and structural requirements.

Considering these factors, 4 season room are generally more expensive than 3 season rooms.

It’s important to note that the terminology and definitions can vary regionally and among different sunroom and patio cover builders. Therefore, it’s recommended to consult with your local Suncoast Enclosures dealer to provide specific details and options for your 3 season room based on your needs and local climate.

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