Arrangement of balconies
Everyone wants to make the most of the functional area of their home, especially when it comes to small apartments. In this case, do not underestimate such a room as a balcony or loggia. Having connected imagination and skillful hands, they can be turned into very useful part of the apartment or a country house. How? Learn from our article.
In fact, there is a huge amount of options for arranging a balcony. It is only necessary to take into account all the nuances and peculiarities of your room, since if you would like to arrange, for example, a winter garden on a cold balcony without glazing and insulation will not work, as it will not work and place a lot of furniture in a very small area.
Let's consider several possible options for arranging a balcony:
If your apartment is located on the ground floor and its planning does not imply a balcony, you can try to make a balcony extension.This structure requires mandatory coordination with the authorities and utilities. It will be necessary to collect a package of necessary documents and wait for the decision of the administration (up to 45 days). However, there are many restrictions on such a construction, so be prepared for failure.
But, let's say, a positive decision was made. Then your next steps are as follows:
- prepare a detailed drawing of the future design, taking into account all the necessary parameters;
- Next you need to lay the foundation of the future balcony. If you live in a climate with cold winter temperatures, be sure to find out how much the earth freezes. This information will help you determine the depth of laying the foundation - it should be below this mark. The material used is well suited blocks of reinforced concrete;
- install the slab. The most commonly used reinforced concrete slab. It will become the floor of your balcony;
- we construct walls of a balcony of a brick. They should be rather thick (from 25 cm and more), and their height should be equal to the height of the structure, although from the level of the windows and to the roof you need to leave empty space for the glazing.Their exterior decoration must be in harmony with the general style of the building;
- when installing the roof, remember that it is installed slightly at an angle to the building for the free flow of water. First, a frame, often wooden, is mounted, then a roofing material is laid on top. To insulate the roof, use mineral wool or other insulating material;
- Further, it is necessary to disassemble the window frame and part of the wall to get a doorway through which the balcony will be accessed. The balcony door should open to the inside of the room. After its installation, the installation of the window sill, the sills, ebbs, balcony glazing and repairs are made inside the received room;
if you want to install a suspended balcony on the frame, remember that the stability of the whole structure depends on the reliability of the fasteners, so do not do this work yourself, but contact the experts who will do everything efficiently and will give a guarantee on the work performed.
On the renovated balcony, you can install a chest of drawers for storing various things, arrange a greenhouse or study - this depends on the level of insulation of the balcony room.
If you are the owner of an apartment in the so-called "Khrushchev", then the size of your balcony leaves much to be desired. What to do in this case? Do not be discouraged, a small room can also be very functional, the main thing is to competently approach its arrangement in accordance with the desired purpose. Before starting repairs, be sure to check the quality of the floor slab - after all, such buildings are very old and their balconies may well be in poor condition.
With good quality plate, you can proceed to the glazing and insulation of the balcony.
A large enough balcony or loggia (from 3 to 6 meters) will be a great place to relax if you put a sofa, chairs or a bench with a coffee table there. You can also arrange a hookah in the Oriental style there: put a thick mattress on the floor, wicker rugs and bright pillows, put a hookah next to it and decorate the walls with motifs from “A Thousand and One Nights”.
If you like sports and stick to a healthy lifestyle, arrange a mini-gym on the balcony by installing a pair of simulators and allotting a corner for sports equipment.
Perhaps you are tired of the city bustle and you are attracted by the comfort of country houses - well, then you can implement the project of a house with a terrace or a veranda.Their main difference is the presence of a roof over the room: the veranda always has a roof, the terrace - sometimes remains open and is used as a place for hanging out in the open air. For example, on the terrace you can set up a barbecue, a closed veranda will serve as an excellent place for arranging a winter garden, a living room, a game room or a gym there.
The terrace can be not only in the cottage, bath or sauna can also be equipped with this functional extension. There is quite appropriate a small pool, lounge chairs, a table with chairs, etc.
The arrangement of the corner balcony has its own nuances. As a rule, corner balconies have a layout in the shape of the letter “G” and a slightly larger area than the standard ones. Therefore, when planning its intended use, try to come up with the most functional application possible. For example, it is very cool to use it as a personal office, to equip it with exercise machines for sports or to install a dining area and turn it into a dining room, especially if it has access to the kitchen.
Increased usable area
With the help of a balcony or a loggia, you can increase the usable area in an apartment by dismantling the window-door unit and the partition between rooms. Do not forget that in order for this redevelopment to be considered legal, it is necessary to obtain permission for it from the relevant authorities.
If for this procedure you need to remove the battery from under the window, move it slightly to the side, it is not recommended to install it on the balcony. This is possible only with a special permit, otherwise such a transfer will be considered illegal.
After carrying out the above dismantling and expansion of the doorway, you will be able to install wide glass sliding doors. At the same time the room becomes integral and divided at the same time.
If the standard size of the balcony unit does not allow your imagination to wander, you can resort to increasing the area of the balcony itself. There are two ways: expansion through the remote glazing of the balcony and expansion of the perimeter of the slab-overlap. The first method is more visual than functional - when the glazing is taken out of the balcony, its area remains the same, but from the inside it seems larger. This option does not require coordination in the administration.The second method is more expensive and time-consuming, requiring mandatory documentation; however, it will allow you to expand your balcony about 1/3 of its original area.
The balcony, located on the ground floor, is easier to physically enlarge - for this, the initial construction is simply disassembled and another large one is erected in its place. To carry out these works it is also necessary to obtain a mandatory permit.
If you live in a wooden house, but in the evenings you want to relax on your own balcony in a hammock, your option is to extend the balcony to the house. It can be produced in two ways:
- with issues. This technology involves the release of beams at a certain height for the design of a balcony. The ends of the beams of the beam are fixed in the wall of the house, the issues are produced at 1.5-2 meters. After they are fastened together by a beam, they are first made boardwalk, and then - laid flooring;
- leaning on racks. This is a more popular technology related to the reliability of the resulting structures. It is assumed that the balcony is based on a kind of pillars (racks) of a bar or log.
High-quality glazing of balconies and loggias is an act of extreme importance. The glassed-in balcony will be reliably protected from the vagaries of weather, increased noise, as well as dust and various foreign objects brought by the wind or fallen from the upper floors.
How can I glaze a balcony? First, determine its intended use - based on this, the type of glazing is selected. It can be cold or warm. When choosing a cold type of glazing, your balcony will be protected from the vagaries of weather and pollution by street garbage, but the temperature on it will not be higher than the temperature outside. This type of glazing is good if you want to use a balcony room, as a warehouse for things or a seasonal resting place.
Warm glazing will help keep the temperature on the balcony and allow you to stay on it even in the winter months. It is only necessary to supplement it with thermal insulation on the walls and floor, then the room will turn into a functional small room.
As for glazing materials, they are the following:
- Plastic frame. Very beautiful and popular type of glazing.Such frames are most often equipped with double or triple glazing and therefore are used for warm glazing. They have a high level of noise and waterproofing, in the closed position, they are completely sealed. However, before installing them, you should check the condition of the parapet of your balcony and strengthen it if necessary - such frames are very heavy and require reliable support;
- Wooden frames. They were used before the appearance of other glazing options, are in demand to this day. The advantage of such frames - environmental friendliness. The tree lets the air through and the frames “breathe” as it were, helping the circulation of clean air on the balcony. The disadvantages include their comparative fragility due to cracking and rather complicated care (annual painting, impregnation with varnish, water repellent);
- Aluminum frames. Perhaps the most common type of glazing. They are loved for durability, low cost, good light transmission and resistance to many adverse effects. The design of aluminum has a fairly small weight, so with its help you can glaze a large surface, set the frame "take-away".The disadvantage of this design is a low level of sound insulation, as well as a not too high level of tightness, as a result of which some water may get into the room due to precipitation;
- Frameless glazing. If you like modern design solutions, pay attention to the glazing that does not require installation of frames. Window shutters are attached at the top and bottom to the rails. These windows are made of very durable, thick glass, they allow the maximum light to pass into the room, have an original appearance and are suitable for any balconies. The downside of this type of glazing is the inability to install mosquito nets, poor sound insulation, the lack of insulation of the balcony;
- French (panoramic) glazing. Its feature is glazing from the floor of the balcony to the ceiling, i.e. all walls become transparent. A very interesting and original version of the balcony design that does not require additional finishing. The undoubted advantage of French glazing is the creation of an increased level of illumination of the room, visually increasing the area.However, if you find a balcony on the sunny side, the apartment will be very hot. And, perhaps, the most serious drawback is the lack of privacy; from the street and houses opposite you can see everything that is happening on your balcony.
Sometimes there are so-called "common" balconies - when one balcony is divided between two adjacent apartments. If you want to glaze your half, you first need to install a partition that blocks your half from half the neighbors. The material for the manufacture of such fences will serve as foam blocks or bricks.
For glazing attic in a country house, use only strong plastic frames with double or triple glazing, especially if you choose a glazing method in which the windows are installed directly on the roof at an angle. Windows should occupy from 1/8 to 1/10 of the total area of the attic room.
Protection against water is necessary not only to avoid damage to property located on the balcony, but also to prevent the destruction of the balcony itself. It is no secret that the constant impact of moisture destroys the concrete slab, as a result of which the reinforcement is exposed and rusting, losing strength.
There are the following methods of waterproofing:
- Laying waterproofing material on the floor;
- To protect the ceiling, a polystyrene plate is attached to it from the inside with glue or special brackets;
- Treatment of the entire balcony: sealing of the junction of the wall and balcony walls, silicone treatment of the space under the drainage and cornice;
- Additional device visor in the panel house, laying a layer of insulating material on the roof of the balcony when the apartment is on the top floor.
Have you decided to turn your balcony into an office, dining room or game room? Or maybe you want to arrange there a cozy corner for recreation at any time of the year? In this case, you can not do without additional insulation of the balcony room.
Mineral wool is most often used for warming hinged balconies and loggias. It is laid in a metal grid pre-fixed on the walls of the balcony, and then it is sheathed with lining, sheets of drywall or wood panels. Plasterboard plasterboard can be additionally decorated with false stone or decorative plaster.
To insulate the attic floor and turn it into a full-fledged residential floor, expanded polystyrene and polystyrene are used, as well as ecowool, mineral wool, fiberglass.Each of these materials has a number of advantages and disadvantages that must be studied before choosing one of them.
Inside. In order to qualitatively and functionally finish the room from the inside, you must either have a number of building skills yourself, or invite an experienced master. The floor, walls and ceiling of the loggia must be repaired, for this it will be necessary to calculate the area of the room and, based on the data obtained, the number of materials selected.
As a flooring you can choose linoleum, make laying laminate or floor tiles. For wall cladding choose plastic or wood panels, eurolining, block house (to imitate the walls of the timber). If you live in a brick house, you can simply paint the brick wall in any color that appeals to you. In the absence of such a desire, you can improve the original brickwork by hanging on the walls of suitable paintings or climbers. Walls made from plasterboard are suitable for later decorating with artificial stone under painted brick or with imitation of natural stone; also haveoption to use such walls for painting, apply liquid wallpaper or decorative plaster.
Outside. As a rule, the exterior of the balcony is made for the purpose of additional insulation of the room. Independently perform it is quite problematic, on all floors, above the first. Therefore, if you still decide on the exterior, be sure to invite experienced professionals.
If you live on the first floor, installing extra protection from outside penetration in the form of a grid that needs to be fixed on the windows will not be superfluous. It does not have to be boring and tasteless. Now, with the help of forging, absolutely stunning decorative grids are being performed, which will not only help protect your home, but will also give it an aesthetically appealing look.
Examples of interesting design
When your balcony is fully prepared, proceed to its design. Here are a few examples of how you can perform a beautiful improvement of a balcony room:
- To create the illusion of relaxing on a tropical beach or visually expanding the space, you can glue wallpapers with an appropriate picture on the balcony.Put a bench or couch in front of you and admire the beautiful views in pleasant company or alone;
- If you have prepared a balcony for placing a personal account in it, install a desk, hang a shelf for documents above it, place a computer or laptop;
- If you have a balcony with a small area, get a transforming furniture that will not clutter up the room and you can easily remove it if you wish;
- Be sure to consider lighting your balcony. These may be small spotlights, wall sconces or festoon. Also, some people hang fluorescent lamps on the balcony ceiling, but they do not decorate it too much and it is better to refuse them if possible;
- If your balcony has access to the kitchen, you can install a soft corner on it for a family meal, hold hoses to install a washing machine, or arrange a mini-bar.
- If the balcony is rather small, place a small table with twisted legs in the English style there and use this room for a pleasant morning tea party;
- When combining the balcony room with the room, you have the opportunity to "play" with unusual forms for the doorway.The arch, an exclusive balcony door with colored stained glass and a shell handle, will fit very organically between the two rooms;
- For registration of a greenhouse, you will need a warmed balcony room. Put flowers on the floor in large floor vases, hang pots not on a wall with climbing plants, you can install a couple of small boxes on the windowsill and grow spices for your table;
- If you own a balcony with a bay window, you can use it as a separate room, or you can - as a natural extension of the room. The bay balcony is very well suited for equipping a home cinema, game room, study or dining room area there.