The bioclimatic greenhouse is a “relative” novelty: the origins of the solar greenhouse or capturing greenhouse date back to Roman times. Likewise, the German ” winter gardens ” have been a reality for years. Nevertheless, in Italy there are still few houses with this corner of covered greenery. In fact, to create them, specific technologies, space and specific authorizations are needed.
In this article we will see together why it is still worthwhile to create a habitable bioclimatic greenhouse . We will examine all the characteristic points of this type of structure, how it works and what you need to do to make one in your home:

  • What is a bioclimatic greenhouse and what is it for
  • Bioclimatic house: what are the technical criteria
  • A bioclimatic and habitable greenhouse
  • What the legislation on the bioclimatic greenhouse says
  • What are the costs of a bioclimatic greenhouse

What is a bioclimatic greenhouse and what is it for?
As the name suggests, a bioclimatic greenhouse is an environment with a roof and glass walls . The glasses convey infrared rays and light inside the room, so as to keep it warm even in winter and without heating. Precisely this is the main difference compared to verandas, which are not designed to capture the sun’s rays .
A bioclimatic greenhouseit can be either integrated within the building or adjacent to it. The important thing is that it respects the particular orientation and structural characteristics. Without these, in fact, it cannot collect the sun’s rays and accumulate heat to be released into the environment.
If designed according to rules and regulations , a bioclimatic greenhouse is to all intents and purposes a green building structure . In fact, its presence helps to improve the thermal comfort of the house, regulating the temperature in a completely natural way. In winter, it draws heat directly from the sun’s rays; in summer, take advantage of the sun screens to stimulate ventilation. All in a clean way.
To all this is added the possibility of having an extra environment, usable in summer and winter. For the question of the habitable bioclimatic greenhouse, however, we refer you to the next paragraphs. Bioclimatic house: what are the technical criteria
We have said that a bioclimatic greenhouse must have certain characteristics. If the environment does not respect specific technical criteria , it cannot be considered a bioclimatic greenhouse in line with the legislation. This can lead to both functional and bureaucratic problems.
The criteria are as follows.

  • Orientation preferably to the south, to have a better exposure. If this is not possible, other solutions can also be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Full sun exposure throughout the day. To achieve this, you usually need a south-east or south-west orientation.
  • Roof and three sides on four windows .
  • Roof and façade glasses that allow irradiation and facilitate the capture of the sun’s rays .
  • Glazing on the sides (usually facing east and west) that reduce heat dispersion .
  • Dimensions equal to 15% -30% of the surface of the house, depending on the permit requested.
  • Mobile shielding systems to avoid overheating in the summer. Instead, fixed shielding systems should be avoided.
  • At least one window that connects the habitable bioclimatic greenhouse to the rest of the house.

A bioclimatic and habitable greenhouse
From a purely practical point of view, the answer is quite obvious: a climatic and habitable greenhouse . Inside you will find plenty of natural light all year round, air filtered by plants and rich in oxygen, warm in winter and cool in summer. The answer becomes more complicated if we look at it from the bureaucratic point of view: a bioclimatic greenhouse affects the calculation of the volume of the house
To create a solar greenhousemainly gardens, balconies and terraces are exploited. This way you take advantage of an otherwise unusable space, at least in winter. This confuses many people, who wonder if building a habitable environment means increasing the square footage of the house.
Provided we respect the technical points seen above and those that we will see in the next paragraph, the answer is no: a bioclimatic greenhouse is not a habitable space, but a technical area . From a bureaucratic point of view, it is comparable to a boiler room. Consequently, its construction does not increase the living area of ​​the property from a cadastral point of view.
This does not mean that to create a bioclimatic greenhouse you have to respect onevery precise legislation . What the legislation on the bioclimatic greenhouse says
In order for everything to be in order, a bioclimatic greenhouse must respect these points:

  • be without air conditioning ;
  • be separated from the house by an opaque wall ;
  • occupy an area equal to or less than 15% of the property. To exceed this percentage, you need a specific permit;
  • reduce the energy requirement of the space to which it is connected by at least 5%;
  • have a minimum glazed surface of 50%;
  • have a maximum depth of 1.6 meters;
  • allow a correct ventilation ratio to the adjacent environment: the window overlooking the greenhouse cannot be the only one in the room.

Pay attention to the area occupied by the greenhouse. According to the regulations, a bioclimatic greenhouse can reach 30% of the useful surface. So why above we talked about 15%
Because up to 15% you just need the DIA or Notification of Business Start ; 15% to 30%, you have to apply for the building permit. The legislation is the same for everyone
The big problem is that all these points vary from region to region or even from municipality to municipality. For example, the Municipality of Monza requires that the transparent surface be 100%, with the exception of the profiles. In Milan, however, bioclimatic greenhouses must be less than 1.5 meters deep. Although the two municipalities are close, they therefore have very different regulations.
To avoid abuse and sanctions, you should rely on an experienced professional. He will know how to decipher the rules of the place, will give you an idea of ​​the costs of the bioclimatic greenhouse and will help you design it. Otherwise, you risk getting an unsatisfactory result and running into problems that would be easy to avoid. What are the costs of a bioclimatic greenhouse
A bioclimatic greenhouse has higher costs than those of a veranda, since it requires four phases.

  • Analysis . An inspection is carried out to determine if your home has the characteristics necessary to create a bioclimatic greenhouse. In this phase, an energy certification is also performed , which will be used to access any bonuses.
  • Project , to decide the materials and technical aspects of the environment. In this phase, the orientation that the room should have is also determined, if it is not possible to place it to the south.
  • Bureaucracy : request for all the necessary permits to carry out the work.
  • Real construction of the greenhouse. Costs vary according to the size and type of windows chosen.

The basic price of a solar greenhouse starts at 150 euros per square meter, excluding works and surveys. Depending on the materials chosen, it can rise quickly. You do not have to worry, however: as long as you improve the energy efficiency of the house, you can deduct 50% of the costs of the bioclimatic greenhouse . The savings will be spread over 10 years of deductions, but will still make a good chunk of the amount spent back into the cash register.

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