Ten Benefits of a Polycarbonate Greenhouse

Before we get into our list of the ten benefits of a polycarbonate greenhouse, a quick science lesson: Not all light is the same, be it sunlight, fluorescent light, white light, UV light, etc. And light is made of particles that are also waves. When sunlight passes through greenhouse glass, it is bent or refracted, so it comes in at an angle with high intensity. But when sunlight passes through a polycarbonate greenhouse, the light is diffused. That means it shines from all directions simultaneously, wrapping around the plants with softness and without shadows — and polycarbonate naturally blocks harmful UV light. This has been sunlight 101.

What Is the Best Greenhouse Material?

The best greenhouse material is polycarbonate. It provides up to 60% better thermal insulation than greenhouse glass and is nearly impossible to break. Its flexibility is builder-friendly, and it costs less than its competition. With the light advantages to your plants, why would you build with anything else? One more time: "What is the best greenhouse material?" The answer should be clear, but here are ten benefits in descending order:

10. You Can Design Any Shape or Size Imaginable with a Polycarbonate Greenhouse

When people ask, "Can you use polycarbonate for greenhouse material?" the answer is, "What else would you use, glass?" Polycarbonate can be bent and flexed without breaking, so it'll work on almost any design. Each panel is able to withstand torque that glass can't mimic, so the greenhouse is yours to custom-build. And without the long delays that come with made-to-order greenhouse glass.

9. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse is Easier to Set Up

When you buy a pre-made or designed glass greenhouse, the frame will be metal. Heavy, difficult to maintain and harder to personalize — why choose that? But a polycarbonate greenhouse almost always has a wooden frame. Easy to carry and paint or stain, a wooden frame allows for greater expression of style. A polycarbonate greenhouse is right at home in natural wood.

8. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse is Easier for DIYers

When you're building with polycarbonate, you can do it yourself, usually in one or two days. You won't be able to quickly set up a glass greenhouse, possibly needing professional installers who'll cost time and money. Many polycarbonate greenhouses come prefab in modular designs that'll have you up and growing in no time.

7. More (Polycarbonate) Greenhouse for Your Dollar

A Polycarbonate greenhouse used to be expensive, but costs have dropped, while the value has continued to climb. The chemistry behind the manufacture of polycarbonate has been refined and streamlined, driving prices down, while types and styles of modular polycarbonate greenhouses have grown and improved. From classical to modern to do-it-yourself, there is a new era in greenhouse design and materials. Large or small, a greenhouse adds a beautifying quality to your landscape.

6. Polycarbonate Greenhouses are Shatter-Resistant

Accidents happen, so it's better to have a structure with hard plastic roofing and walls that can hold up under intense pressure. Weather elements such as hail and wind can easily damage glass. Baseballs thrown too far or the occasional careless moment tending plants can break or shatter glass, too. But polycarbonate stands up to the most stringent tests. And corrugated polycarbonate panels are virtually indestructible.

5. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse Outlasts Glass

Even if accidents don't happen often, how long do polycarbonate panels last? The answer is: longer than glass panels. The polycarbonate matrix makes it tough enough to stand up to temperature extremes, environmental changes and human accidents. Two hundred times stronger than glass, polycarbonate gives you peace of mind. And if you have to replace a panel, you can handle it quickly, whereas if a glass panel shatters, you probably need to call a contractor.

4. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse Insulates Better

The whole reason to have a greenhouse is to keep plants warm and promote faster and longer growth. As mentioned earlier, sunlight diffuses with polycarbonate but refracts with glass. That light spreading throughout your polycarbonate greenhouse creates heat and retains it longer than greenhouse glass. You won't have to move plants inside to ensure they're in the sunlight. And you won't need to add illumination to the inside to help the plants not in the Sun's rays stay warm or provide internal heating for "cold spots."

3. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse Requires Less Maintenance

Glass gets dirty, smudged, blackened by BBQ pit smoke and more. It needs to be cleaned often. But polycarbonate panels require very little maintenance, perhaps once or twice a year. And being plastic, they're lower in weight in case you need to replace one. Greenhouse glass, however, is heavy and breakable.

2. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse Means a Longer Growing Season

With that warm, diffused light, plants stay green and grow longer than they do in a traditional glass greenhouse. That's great news to the average gardener and even better news to commercial growers. It's clear which greenhouse will provide a better return on investment for everyone.

1. A Polycarbonate Greenhouse Diffuses Light From the Sun

88%! That's the light transmission in a polycarbonate greenhouse. That light is diffused or spread about, so everything in the greenhouse benefits. Sunlight coming into a glass greenhouse is refracted — it changes direction when coming in at an angle, providing direct light and warmth only to part of the greenhouse at any given time. Diffused light fills a polycarbonate greenhouse and provides warmth for every plant, no need to rotate. Besides, polycarbonate naturally stops harmful UV light in its tracks, unlike glass, making it safer for you, your family, and delicate plants and vegetables.

A Polycarbonate Greenhouse: The Only Choice

When you look over these ten benefits of a polycarbonate greenhouse, we think you'll agree it wins, hands-down. A greenhouse should be warm and filled with light, and that warmth and light are exactly what you get with polycarbonate panels. Greenhouse glass can't compete. Isn't it time you made the move to a polycarbonate greenhouse? Let A&C Plastics deliver the best, most efficient greenhouse polycarbonate sheets available, and see the difference for yourself. Our variety of multiwall polycarbonate sheeting gives you plenty of ways to make the best greenhouse for your needs. Looking for more custom options? Request a quote for your project today — we're ready to help!

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