What Is the Best Way To Heat A Sunroom In Winter?

A sunroom is an excellent way to enjoy the outdoors from the comfort of your home – when it’s warm out, anyway.

A patio enclosure or home addition doesn’t often come with heating and cooling. As a result, these are often best used as three-season rooms. The temperature is usually too low to use it during the cold winter months.

However, there are plenty of ways to keep your patio enclosure warm all winter. Depending on how cold it gets, you can work on retaining heat from the main part of your home or install a solution to provide additional warmth.

In this article, I’ll walk you through why heating a sunroom can be challenging and then provide 12 tips plus my recommendation. I’ve been a product manager for the HVAC distributor Pierce Phelps for more than a decade.

In that time, I’ve worked with dozens of HVAC companies across Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Along with installing thousands of systems, we’ve also collaborated on the best ways to make patio enclosures and three-season rooms more comfortable year-round.

You can download our product guide to get ideas for what could work in your home. Or, if you live in one of the states I mentioned.


What Are The Challenges Of Heating A Sunroom In Winter?

The main challenge of heating a sunroom in the winter is that they often have poor insulation and single pane windows. These fixtures allow heat to escape easily when it’s cold out. And, with no HVAC coming from the house, you’re relying on what little heat drifts into this area.

12 Winter Sunroom Comfort Tips

I’ll go through the best ways keep a sunroom warm in the winter, starting with the least expensive options:

Keeping A Sunroom Warm Without HVAC

If you do not have a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system in your sunroom, there are still ways to keep it warm and cozy during the winter months.

Window Tinting

Window tinting can help to keep your sunroom warm by preventing heat loss. It also helps to block harmful UV rays from the sun during the summer months.

Weather Stripping

Weather stripping around doors and windows can help to keep cold air out and warm air in. This simple and affordable solution is an excellent way to keep your sunroom cozy.

Upgrade Windows

Upgrading your windows to more energy-efficient models can make a big difference in keeping your sunroom warm. Look for windows with double or triple panes, low-E coatings, and insulated frames.

Carpets and Curtains

Adding carpets and curtains to your sunroom can help to insulate the space and prevent heat loss. Thick thermal curtains are particularly effective in keeping the warm air inside.


If your sunroom is not well insulated, adding insulation to the walls and ceiling can make a significant difference in keeping it warm. Fiberglass batts, foam board insulation, and spray foam insulation are all options to consider.

Ceiling Fans

Add a ceiling fan to circulate warm air throughout the room. Set the fans to run clockwise in the winter to push the warm air down.

Sunroom Heater Options

When it comes to heating a sunroom in the winter, there are several heating options to choose from. Here are some of the most popular options for sunroom heating:

Fireplace or Stove

A stove or electric fireplace can create a cozy ambiance.. You can choose between a wood-burning, gas or electric stove, depending on your preference.

Baseboard Heat

Baseboard heaters are easy to install and provide a consistent source of heat. They’re inexpensive to install but use a lot of electricity.

Radiant Floor Heater

Radiant floor heating provides even, comfortable heat throughout the space. It uses electric heating elements or hot water tubes under the floor to warm the room. However, you’ll have to rip up the floor to install a radiant heating system like this.

Ductwork Extension

If your home has an HVAC system, you may be able to extend the ductwork to heat your sunroom. But, this is costly and can weaken the airflow through the rest of the house.

Mini Split

Mini-splits provide both heating and cooling and are energy efficient. They use an outdoor heat pump attached to a wall-mounted or floor-mounted air handler. There’s no ductwork necessary, so installation is fast and easy.

Best Heater For A Sunroom: Mini Split

A mini split is the best heating option for a sunroom in the winter season. It provides the most customization and does an excellent job circulating air through large living spaces and rooms with high ceilings.

These systems also provide cooling, which comes in handy during the hottest summer days. While the installation cost may be high, a mini split uses less energy than traditional cooling and heating solutions.

This all makes it a cost-effective way to create true all-season sunroom.


Do sunrooms stay warm in winter?

Sunrooms are typically not well-insulated, which can cause them to feel colder than other rooms in the house during winter. However, there are ways to keep your sunroom warm, such as adding insulation, installing a heating system, or using draft stoppers.

How do I add heat to my sunroom?

There are several ways to add heat to your sunroom, such as installing a space heater, using electric radiant floor heating, or connecting it to your home’s HVAC system. It’s important to choose a heating option that works best for your needs and budget.

Can a mini split heat a sunroom?

Yes, a mini-split system can be a great option for heating your sunroom. Mini-splits are energy-efficient, easy to install, and can be controlled independently from the rest of your home’s heating system. They also provide both heating and cooling, making them a versatile choice for any season.

Are you ready to learn more? Get a free consultation to learn more about expert mini split system installation in Cherry Hill, NJ or anywhere in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware or Maryland.