Frequently Asked Questions

Below you’ll find the most asked questions and our answers. If you don’t find the answer to your question, feel free to contact us. We offer free consultations.

General Questions

ECCO Sunroom and Awning is committed to helping you achieve home improvement goals. In addition to accepting cash, check, Visa, Master Card, American Express, and Discover we offer financing options to assist you with your home improvement project (pending credit approval).  Depending on your credit approval, you may qualify for a finance options.

The payment schedule is typically broken into thirds. We typically require one third of the payment at the time the contract is signed, one third at the time the project begins, another payment at the roof or glass set, and the final payment upon completion of the project.

ECCO Sunroom & Awning requires an hour and a half of time allotted for our free in-home design consultations. During this meeting we will evaluate your space, hear your dreams for the project, review all options for your project, develop the design for your project, and provide you with a quote. That is a lot to cover in an hour and a half!

Each sunroom project we build is customized and designed to meet your unique specifications. You choose every element and detail of your project – from the color and design of your room to the type of glass and frame materials that are used. In order to fully realize the scope of your project by all who will enjoy the sunroom, we require all decision-makers attend the initial in-home design consultation meeting.

Having all decision-makers (both spouses/significant others) involved in the consultation at the start of the project brings another point of view and opinion to such a large home improvement project. The more details of your sunroom project that can be worked out in the consultation phase, the better. Everyone agreeing to the scope of the project and details of the new sunroom at the initial meeting leads to a sunroom that meets everyone’s needs at a more accurate quote.

ECCO Sunroom & Awning requires an hour and a half of time allotted for our free in-home design consultations. During this meeting we will evaluate your space, hear your dreams for the project, review all options for your project, develop the design for your project, and provide you with a quote. That is a lot to cover in an hour and a half!

Sunroom Questions

The actual work of building a complete sunroom can be done in two weeks. However, there are additional factors that will determine how long it takes to build your particular sunroom. Building your new sunroom will require building permits. Depending on your city of residence, and how backlogged the city’s Building Permit department is, will impact the time needed to acquire necessary permits. Engineered drawings are also required as part of the permit process. Start date for your project is around 8-10 weeks from the day the permit is issued.

Material availability is another determinant of the time it will take to build your sunroom. These timeline estimates are when all necessary materials and products are in stock. Stock availability impacts the time it will take to build your sunroom.

We estimate 8 weeks for the engineered drawings and permit process in addition to the 2 weeks construction time for a completed sunroom install in Hampton Roads once all products and materials are in stock.

As with any home addition project, the cost of building a new sunroom to your home is complex. While a general estimate is impossible, without a thorough idea meeting and consultation, there are general ranges to guide you. The cost of the construction of a sunroom addition ranges anywhere from $15,000 to $80,000 with the average just over $40,000. We recommend setting up an appointment for us to come out and give a free quote for your project.



Yes, building permits are required in all cities and states. ECCO Sunroom & Awning handles all facets of obtaining your Building Permit including engineering and drawings.

If it is built correctly, it is possible to build a sunroom onto an existing deck. However, most of the time we find that the existing deck requires an upgrade to bring it in compliance for a sunroom addition. We prefer to remove the existing deck and replace it altogether. When our team rebuilds the deck as well as the sunroom addition, we can warranty our work from the ground up. If we build a sunroom addition onto an existing deck, we cannot warranty the deck and sunroom foundation structure.

Generally, customers want the finished floor of their new sunroom to be the same level as the house. The foundation we use for your sunroom addition will mirror your home’s existing foundation type. If your house is on a concrete slab, typically we build a monolithic slab foundation with footings for the sunroom addition. If your house is on a crawl space, we build a deck foundation for the sunroom addition.

Yes. In fact, 40% of the sunrooms that we build include heating and air conditioning. Adding an HVAC element is typically what you would call a year-round or four seasons sunroom. In addition to an HVAC system, a year-round sunroom includes insulated glass, and extra insulation in the roof and foundation.

Across the Tidewater and Peninsula region, we enclose lots of screen rooms – converting them into Three Season sunrooms with windows and doors. Our customers find they can only use the screen room about three months out of the year because of pollen, rain, wind, and cold weather. Converting a screen porch or room into a three season sunroom (with glass and screen walls), you can use the sunroom 10 to 11 months out of the year as the room will naturally collect solar heat in the colder months. Three season sunrooms also keep the wind, rain, and pollen out – which our customers love! Converting a screen porch to a three season sunroom is a cost-efficient way to maximize the use of your space.


The main difference between a three season sunroom and year-round sunroom is the number of months you can comfortably use the space each year.  A Three Season sunroom can be used 10 to 11 months out of the year. While a year-round sunroom, including heating and air conditioning, can be used all year long. The main differences between the two sunrooms is that a year-round sunroom has elements that allow you to better manage extreme heat and cold temperatures. A year-round sunroom includes: insulated glass, insulation in the roof and the foundation, and a heating and cooling system.

Yes, depending on the type of sunroom you choose, and your geographical location, your sunroom can be used year-round. ECCO Sunroom & Awning offers several styles of sunrooms which are designed to be heated and cooled – making the room comfortable throughout the year.

Our aluminum and vinyl all season (four season) sunrooms are designed with thermally engineered, energy-efficient frames, double-pane insulated glass and our Energy Star® rated 6″ insulated roof to keep you comfortable all year long.

Our solariums are also designed to be heated and air conditioned in accordance with local building codes.

During your initial consultation, ECCO Sunroom & Awning will discuss options to help you make your dream a reality during the free, no obligation, in-home design consultation.

Unfortunately, no, you cannot heat your new sunroom with an existing furnace. If you desire heat in your new sunroom, we can install a separate zone heating and air conditioning unit – depending on the type of room you choose.

Yes! ECCO Sunroom & Awning sells custom shading systems that will help maintain the perfect indoor temperature for your new sunroom. During your initial consultation, ECCO Sunroom & Awning will discuss the various styles and types of shades and blinds that are available for your project.

We confidently offer the ECCO Limited Lifetime Warranty on all our sunrooms, solariums and screen room. This warranty covers all manufactured products including glass, roof panels, framing, sealing and more. Ask your design consultant for more information.

Awning Questions

Not only are retractable awnings a feature to add beauty to your home, they are also practical as well. Retractable awnings provide you with shade when you need it and sun when you want it. In addition to giving you shade on demand; retractable awnings block up to 94% of the sun’s harmful UV rays. Making your time outside more enjoyable, and safer.

The use of awnings outside of your home provides the additional bonus of energy efficiency inside your home. The elements on your home most likely to be the source of lost energy are glass doors and windows. In fact, on a hot summer day, more heat energy enters your home in one square foot of glass than an entire insulated wall. When you utilize an awning over the windows or glass doors of your home, you reduce the solar heat your home absorbs. Reducing the sun’s ability to heat up your home in the summer means your home’s cooling system works less. The less your air conditioning system runs, the lower your utility bill and the smaller your carbon footprint. Installing retractable awnings to your home will save you money and energy come the hot summer days from Virginia Beach to Williamsburg, the Eastern Shore and the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Awnings are designed with a primary goal as a sun shade, not a rain cover. As such, the awning fabric is designed so you don’t swelter while under it using a fabric that can “breathe.” Our Teflon® coating helps repel moisture, but it is not waterproof. A light rain is okay – but water should not be allowed to collect in an extended awning. Keeping the awning extended during a heavy rain is not advised. It will cause water to collect in the fabric and could cause damage to the awning or event cause it to collapse.

ECCO’s awnings come in more than 300 options including solid, stripe, and tweed. Our awning fabrics are solution dyed acrylic fabrics. These fabrics will not mildew or rot like the old-fashioned canvas awnings. All of ECCO’s awning fabrics are covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. Selections in the Craft-Bilt collection include a 12-year warranty and have a Teflon® coating which helps repel dirt and water without reducing the air permeability. Selections in the Sunbrella collection include a 10-year limited warranty and have earned both the Skin Cancer Foundation’s seal of approval and the GREENGUARD’s gold certification for low chemical emissions.

ECCO’s patio awnings extend up to 13 feet. Our estate awning can be as wide as 40 feet. We offer Slim Fit Awnings that can be as narrow as 7-feet. Schedule an in-home consultation to learn which awning is best for your project.

The mounting height is determined based on the size of the awning projection. A minimum of 80 inches is needed from the front bar of a fully extended awning to the ground. The mounting height must be higher. The height difference is dependent on the distance of the awning when fully extended. Schedule an in-home consultation to learn more about awning mounting height requirements for your project. Another way to mount awnings and add height is by mounting the awning to your roof.

If you get tired of the color of your awning fabric or want it replaced for another reason, we can accommodate. When you purchase a motorized awning from , our professional awning installers can replace the fabric of your awning at your home. The awning fabric can also be shipped back to the factory for replacement.

No, unfortunately ECCO’s professional installation team only installs awnings and motorized awnings for customers who purchase the product from ECCO. We would not be able to honor warranties for products that come from another source.

Sunroom Maintenance

Keep Windows Clean. A prominent component that makes sunrooms unique is the amount of glass and windows that allow for an outdoor feeling in the comfort of an indoor space. As with any window with exposure to the elements, they require regular cleaning and maintenance. Along with your regular cleaning of windows, plan a deeper cleaning in the spring in preparation for the season change.

Keep Screens Clean. Keep screens clean on a regular basis, and when you notice dirt and debris. Remove the screens from windows and clean with a gentle brush and mild cleanser. Rinse and dry thoroughly before replacing the screens.

Use Mild Cleaners On Vinyl. For vinyl that may be used on the interior or exterior of your sunroom, avoid scratches. Use cleaning products that are not abrasive. Avoid bleach, chlorine, and ammonia cleaners on your vinyl. Use a soft-bristle brush or cloth (rather than steel wool or scrubbing sponges) to clean vinyl and avoid scratching. Power washing can be problematic, so steer clear of power washing your sunroom.

Keep Gutters Connected With Your Sunroom Cleaned. As with the entire gutter system of your home, those connected with your sunroom addition require regular maintenance. Keep your gutters clear of leaves, pine straw, and other debris. Ensure that the downspouts flow easily, without obstructions, and the outflow of rainwater is drawn away from the foundation of your home. These maintenance measures will ensure that water does not collect along your roofline or your foundation. Water collecting in these areas could cause greater damage to your sunroom over time.

Keep Handles, Locks, Doors, and Deadbolts Clean. Lightly clean handles, locks, deadbolts, and doors with a damp cloth. If these metal components are squeaking, then add a light machine oil lubricant to keep them working smoothly and quietly.

Read Our Blog About How To Clean And Maintenance Your Sunroom

If you experience windows that leak or have fog between the glass panes, then your seals have broken and the insulated glass unit will need to be replaced. Once you see water vapor on the inside of an insulated window there is no way it can be repaired without replacing the insulated piece of glass.

If your window screens are damaged, have holes or rips in them, then your sunroom will be prone to debris making its way inside your sunroom, and pests and bugs will also have access inside. If your screen has a small hole or scratch, then you may be able to repair it with a melding kit. If the damage is greater, then the screen should be entirely replaced.

Do regularly clean and maintenance your sunroom including the windows, glass, screens, flooring, guttering, and locks and handles.

Don’t lean a ladder on the exterior of the sunroom, its walls, or windows.  

Do maintain the landscaping surrounding your sunroom. Overgrown plants, trees, and bushes could cause structural damage to your sunroom over time. Additionally, unmanaged landscaping surrounding your sunroom could obstruct your sunroom’s view of the outdoor. Always make sure that the level of your beds and lawn outside the sunroom are not above the floor level of the sunroom as this will allow water to get in and cause damage.

Do check for leaks surrounding windows, doors, and sealed areas. Leaks and excess moisture could cause greater damage to your sunroom over time.

Don’t use harsh chemicals or pressure washing to clean your sunroom. Harsh chemicals and cleaning materials can scratch and permanently damage the materials of your sunroom.

Read Our Blog About How To Clean And Maintenance Your Sunroom

If your window frame is bent, cracked, or damaged, it will need immediate repair. A damaged frame can cause water damage inside your sunroom’s windows as well as provide an access point for pests and bugs. Repair and maintenance of your sunroom’s frame is dependent upon the frame material. Wood frames should be regularly stained or painted to refrain from splintering and breaking. If a portion of the wood frame is cracked or damaged, then that section should be replaced completely. Vinyl and aluminum frames require less regular maintenance than wood. However, if your vinyl or aluminum frame is bent or damaged, then it should be replaced immediately.

Awning Maintenance

If you notice a stain on your awning, work to remove the stain immediately. Use a soft brush or cloth and clean the awning fabric with lukewarm soapy water. Once cleaned, lightly rinse with a garden hose. Never pressure wash your retractable awning. For more detailed information about caring for your awning fabric, visit Fabric Care.

We recommend that you lightly clean the fabric of your awning regularly. Outdoor substances such as dirt, pollen, tree sap, bird droppings can become embedded in the fabric if allowed to accumulate. Clean stains on your awning immediately with household soap and water using a soft brush or cloth. For more detailed information about caring for your awning fabric, visit Fabric Care.

In order to store your awning for icy winter months in Hampton Roads, first keep your awning retracted. If you also have a hanging valance on your retractable awning, remove the valance. To remove your hanging valance slide it out from the front bar of the awning. Store your valance in a well-ventilated area until you are ready for usage in the spring. Never store awning elements, such as the hanging valance, in plastic. Storing in plastic can trap moisture and cause mildew and mold on your awning material. Do ensure that where you store your awning valance is out of reach to wintering rodents such as squirrels and mice who could cause damage to your awning.

Our retractable awnings have a slight variety in motors. If the motor isn’t working the first step is to review your operating instruction manual that came with your awning. A common mistake is causing a thermal overload to your awning’s motor. Thermal overload often occurs as a result of repetitive use. Make sure that children do not play with the remote control nor the operation switch. The motor will automatically shut-down for a 15-20 minute cooling window if the motor thermally overloads. This safety feature prevents severe damage to the motor caused by overheating.

Our retractable awnings include aluminum components with a durable finish. The joints are self-lubricating and should not require maintenance. However, you should clean the framework moving into spring, summer, and fall. To clean, hose the framework off with a regular garden hose and wipe it with a soft cloth. Once a year you can lubricate the moving parts with a dry silicone spray to ensure your awning continues optimal, quiet operation.

If you do hear unusual creaking sounds when operating your retractable awning, do lubricate it. The area that can be prone to needing lubrication is at the end of the roller tube, on the side opposite the motor or gear. Simply apply a small amount of spray lubricant on the axle bushing to eliminate any noises. Refrain from getting any of the spray lubricant on the awning fabric.