We’ve been in the remodeling business for a very long time (if you agree that 100 years is a long time). One of the remodeling treatments that we always find has a ‘wow’ factor – even for us who’ve seen it thousands of times – is the addition of a skylight.
There’s three benefits that you might consider, but let’s start with the obvious.
Simply put, skylights allow natural light into previously dark rooms. Opening up the room to outside lighting brings an inviting element to any room, a presence or warmth that makes you want to curl up with a good book. Regardless of the other renovations we’ve made, when we install a skylight in a customer’s home, it’s often one of the first things that they notice, and one that makes a huge impact on the beauty and feeling of a room.
Depending upon your current ventilation in the room and the type of room that you are installing the skylight, venting from the roof can make a huge difference in airflow and ventilation
When properly selected and installed, an energy-efficient skylight can help minimize your heating, cooling, and lighting costs. We’ll explore this further in the next article in this series.
Some rooms in the house are a perfect fit for more light or ventilation. Here are 5 places to add a skylight for its highest effectiveness.
Having a skylight in the bathroom is an excellent idea, as it’s great for natural light without having to worry about privacy issues (unless of course there’s a helicopter with a telescope hovering over your home while you are in there). Bathrooms, of course, are where the most water is used, and therefore may contain the most extreme moisture content. Moisture is bad for any house, and can create mildew, rot, and mold. Those results are not only bad for the home; they are also bad for your health. So, consider a venting skylight, a skylight that can be opened to ventilate the bathroom. If you have a tall ceiling where you can’t reach the crank, install an electrical venting skylight. In either case, vented skylights are better than any bathroom fan because they don’t require electricity to open. Some electrically vented skylights include a rain sensor to close the skylight at the first sign of rain.
First, light from above provides a kitchen with balanced lighting, for delicate cooking tasks like chopping and peeling. Nobody wants darkness when they have a knife in their hands.
Next, here’s one benefit of kitchen skylight that you might not have thought of: added kitchen space. A skylight installed in the ceiling allows you to use the wall space in your kitchen to add cabinet space without sacrificing natural light.
In kitchens, if you install a vented skylight, there are other benefits beyond simple fresh lighting. How about considering fresh air? If your cooking is like some of ours, cooking odors are ever present – not to mention smoke from bad frying. Choose “Fresh Air” skylights so you can release warm moist air and clear cooking odors from your home quicker and naturally.
Where else in the house will you be looking at the ceiling for most of the time you are in it? Instead of just looking at drywall, imagine drifting off to sleep with a view of the stars.
Additionally, like a bathroom, a skylight installed in a bedroom provides plentiful daylight without sacrificing privacy.
Finally, if you have a swing shift sleeper in your home, or you are someone who wakes up at the first crack of light, consider blackout blinds. Blackout blinds allow you to block the light – 98% to be exact. Blackout blinds can be manual, but most often they are closed by remote control.
A converted attic, sometimes called a loft conversion, is a great idea and adds a whole additional room to a home without paying for a full addition. Unless they are already dormer-style rooms, attic conversions almost always need to include a skylight. Because the roof is typically low and the ceiling is within reach, choose a manually operated skylight called a “roof window”.
In these spaces, skylights also offer better ventilation than vertical wall windows, especially with summer heat.
Finally, in addition to providing daylight and fresh air, roof windows qualify under most building codes as a point of emergency escape and egress.
Family rooms and bonus rooms are often the rooms where people just ‘hang out’, even when it’s nasty outside. Because these rooms are used among varying light conditions – you don’t want the sun to blast that one spot on the couch that you want to take a nap in during the summer, choose skylights with blinds for full control over the light. Raise the blinds for full lighting and to help save on your electricity costs; lower the blinds for dimming the light while watching television. Here’s a cool idea: consider a solar-powered skylight that opens for natural cooling and that doesn’t use electricity.
Bennett Contracting has been installing skylights since there was sky. OK, not really – but we’ve been installing windows for 100 years. We like to think we’re pretty good at it, and our 99% satisfaction rating on Angie’s List tells us that our customers think so, too. For more information on adding a skylight to a room in your home, contact us!