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Polycarbonate Greenhouses

I would love a greenhouse but the prices of a decent glass greenhouses are to expensive for me.
I find polycarbonate greenhouses are much more affordable, I would love to hear opinions on the pros and cons of polycarbonate greenhouses I am fed up using my 2.5m x 2m polytunnel and saving up for a proper greenhouse.


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,877
    edited August 2021
    look on freecycle. 
    You often see "free to dismantle and remove" 
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,895
    I have a small one but they don't offer the same level of protection as glass. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Hi there.  I've had a 10x6 polycarbonate greenhouse for ten years.
    Good points are that it helps with shading as it isn't 'clear'  like glass and that helps protect against scorch in sun.
    It is quite strong if anything hits it.  You do have to put extra clips to hold the panels in place.
    The one thing I don't like is the panels go brittle after 6/7 years, so need replacing.
    But I like mine as I cannot have glass due to a path running past my garden and the occasional stone being thrown at it.
    Hope that helps. 

  • RedwingRedwing Posts: 1,502
    I have a poly carb lean to. It's pretty bad in a windy site.  I've lost track of the numbers of times we've repaired it, including panes being wrecked by hailstones; the plastic was so thin the hail made holes in it!  If you live in a windy location, I wouldn't advise buying one.  Much better to find a second hand glass one.  There are many offered free for the dismantling.
    Based in Sussex, I garden to encourage as many birds to my garden as possible.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,895
    Mine is attached to the wall. Has to be as I live in a windy location.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • I have had glass and polycarbonate,and found the glass was better. My polycarb one had some panels blown out in a storm,and one was eventually found in a field a mile away.
    The whole truth is an instrument that can only be played by an expert.
  • WibbleWibble Posts: 89
    edited September 2021
    I bought a small polycarbonate one second-hand a few years ago. Problems I found were:
    -panels cracking
    -panels warping and fixings not fitting them tightly to the frame so it leaked badly
    -panels discolouring/going translucent and substantially reducing light (might be beneficial if you need shading, but mine needs all the light it can get)
    -made an awful noise in the wind

    i replaced the polycarbonate with glass at the start of this year and it is vastly improved. I did get thick plexiglass for the roof as I was slightly concerned about glass overhead, though I’m probably just being paranoid. The panes of glass cost £2 each from a local glazier. Plexiglass was the expensive part at about £60 for the roof. I would not go back to polycarbonate.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,895
    Mine must be a better quality then. I've had it for about 5 years, and apart from a very tiny hole in one roof panel, it's been fine. 
    I'll probably replace the polycarb. with glass when they start to fail though. The panels do tend to get dirt etc in them over time. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Thank you for all your comments I think Glass has to be a winner.
  • After buying a lacewing greenhouse in lockdown  waiting ages for it to arrive instructions were appalling the frame is so flimsy lost count of clips purchased to keep panels in each one has 12 
    Don't waste your money on one they are awful get an old second hand one made with thick aloy with glass panels to be honest I'm thinking of skiping it primrose have not been particularly helpful 
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