Skylight / July 12, 2018 / Odo Vaillancour
If the room you intend to illuminate with the skylight has an open ceiling with no attic space above you can install the skylight without needing to construct a light shaft. This is by far the simplest installation and it offers the maximum amount of light and a view of the sky. For ceilings with an attic space above a light shaft must be constructed that connects the skylight to the room. Skylight shafts take one of three forms: Straight in which the shaft drops vertically from the roof to the ceiling and is the same dimension as the skylight itself. This type is the easiest to construct but because of its offset angle relative to the skylight offers the least amount of light.
There must be a clear opening in the area where the skylight is to be placed. A skylight that faces the East lets in plenty of morning sunshine while one that faces the West brings lets in the afternoon sunshine. It is important to know the amount of light and the type of light your skylight lets in. Afternoon sunlight can become uncomfortably hot if you live in a warm and dry place. The size of the room also has a bearing on the effectiveness of the skylight on your roof. If the room is small your choices are severely limited as skylights are best suited for large rooms. If you still want a skylight for a small room it is best to opt for an elegant pyramid skylight. This gives the illusion of space.
The acrylic dome is typically mounted in an aluminum frame which is in turn mounted on a box called a "curb." Once the hole is cut in the roof to the manufacturers specifications the curb is typically constructed on-site to raise the skylight above the level of the roof sheathing. Site-built or factory-supplied flashings are used to seal the roofing around the curb. Domed skylights are available in clear smoked bronze or other tints. Some domed plastic skylights are flush mounted which means that the lens piece and flashing piece are both made of plastic and then placed on the roof without a curb. The problem with this type is that they are loud and very susceptible to leakage.