Sustainable or green building structures are designed, built, and operated in an ecological manner. They are created with a motive, to protect the health of the occupants, improve productivity, and make efficient use of energy, water, and natural resources. Among all these, efficient use of natural light is one of the most important components of green building construction. Unlike earlier, today the Indian construction industry faces this major challenge of inadequate space which is somehow stealing the concept of natural light from the building structures. Hence there is this great need to use innovative methods in building designs which can draw in more natural light and one such innovative and green idea is to use Skylight.
Skylight – Time To Bring In Natural Light Into Your Building Areas
The scarcity of land has made the space for proper ventilation and lighting restricted. Apart from that, sometimes, homeowners consider safety reasons and choose to have fewer window openings in the walls. In such conditions fixing skylight in the roofs is the best solution as Skylights bring natural light and air into areas that normally wouldn’t have windows.
According to a study by VELUX America, building structures that utilize skylights, in combination with vertical windows, tend to be more energy efficient. Skylights help in making a major contribution to energy efficiency and comfort, it can admit more than three times as much light as a vertical window of the same size and distributes the same evenly resulting in savings in energy and improving the overall visual comfort levels of the occupants.
Skylights also increase the convenience of internal spaces which otherwise are dependent on supplementary artificial ventilation or lighting. They permit added flexibility in the architectural design. Also, even under grey conditions, the use of skylights ensures that the spaces are mostly lit by natural light, with very little or no extra artificial lighting.
- Top Reasons To Install Them
Let’s list done briefly the intangible benefits of adding daylighting in living spaces through skylights.
- Energy Efficiency – Had to be number one benefit as it cuts down on the need for electric lighting and the earth’s emissions naturally.
- Save Money – Low energy bills result in less expenditure.
- Optimal Natural Light – Skylights helps in balancing the light in the living area, reduces glare and transforms the areas into a more open and safer zone.
- Ventilation – Apart from supplying ample of light, skylight also acts as open-air conditioners. With chimney/exhaust effect, these skylights draw the warm air up and vent it through the skylight resulting in a cool and fresh environment.
- Safety and Privacy – Since building structures are being built closer to one and another today, it imposes security and privacy issues. Skylight in such cases serves as one great solution.
- Adds Life – The conventional incandescent bulbs create a dull ambiance with that unnatural yellow glow, on the other hand, skylights bring bright, white, healthy daylight into the rooms.
- Good Health – Skylights bring in natural light which plays an important role in improving health and work efficiency.
- Business & Education – Natural light helps in increasing concentration, gain better health and increase overall performance, this is applicable for both students and working professionals.
- Materials and Design
Skylights are mostly rectangular; however, they can be designed using innovative designs like a dome, pyramid or a conical slant roofs. Also, the materials used to build skylights can vary depending on the design and budget, one can choose from a variety of materials like toughened glass, sandwiched glass, fiberglass, or polycarbonate material.
Skylights are of three main types, ventilating also called roof windows, tubular and fixed. They also come in different shapes, flat, domed, and pyramid are few to name.
- Important Factors To Consider
Energy efficiency, sound reduction, water tightness, and other factors like wind and load resistance are important factors which require due attention when installing a skylight. Also, one should explore additional options like shading, ventilation and UV coatings.
Maintenance of the skylights includes regular cleaning of the external roof and visible internal surfaces. Maintenance is even more important to the ones which are exposed to harsh environments, like close to industrial pollution or the sea or in heavily wooded areas. The exteriors of the skylights located in such areas should be cleaned every six months. In normal settings, it should be done every 24 months. For ventilating and operable skylights like combined skylight/roof ventilators and openable roof windows, occasional lubrication of the moving hardware is advisable.
The concept of eco homes and buildings is spreading rapidly in India. Builders, architects, and interior designers are increasingly making use of skylights to ensure adequate natural light flows into the spaces they create. Skylights are an important architectural and design tool which can completely transform the look of a building structure. So, let all that natural light flow in…. create a healthy atmosphere in your buildings and contribute to saving energy with Skylights.
Curated by editor at Wienerberger India