Skylight / July 11, 2018 / Nicolas Charlebois
A skylight is like a window which has been placed in your roof. It has a frame specially designed to withstand rain and prevent leakage from rain and snow. To maximize a skylights use of natural light to illuminate a room or its passive solar heating potential you will want to take into consideration how a skylight is positioned. Facing north your skylight will provide fairly constant illumination but will not provide a lot of heat. Facing east it will provide the maximum amount of light and solar heat gain in the morning. Facing west your skylight provides afternoon sunlight as well as heat gain. A skylight facing south provides the greatest potential for winter passive solar heat gain than any other location but will often allow unwanted heat gain in the summer.
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.
It is recommended that the skylight size should never be more than five percent of the floor area in rooms with many windows and not more than fifteen percent of the rooms total floor area for spaces with very few windows. Skylights on north-facing roofs provide cool illumination while east-facing roofs provide maximum light and heat in the morning. West-facing skylights provide afternoon sunlight and heat. South-facing skylights provide more passive solar heat than any other location. Skylights are an excellent way to bring more natural light into your home. Just one skylight can dramatically transform your room by adding 30% more natural light than a window. This helps you save energy and makes your home warmer during the winter.