Sustainability Corner: Daylighting
Natural light not only gives depth and brightness to a space, but will also cut down on your energy bills! Through careful design windows and skylights can fully illuminate a space during daytime hours. Windows need to be placed strategically in order to maximize light gain and minimize heat loss. Completely covering a wall in windows is not always the best solution. South facing windows will allow the most direct sun into a space, whereas North facing clerestories allow diffused light in without creating too much heat or glare. Careful design of window heights and overhangs will allow plenty of direct sun to penetrate during the winter and plenty of diffused sun to penetrate in the summer. By allowing light to penetrate from multiple sides, glare and dark spots will be greatly reduced. Notice the difference of light distribution in the two images below. The small band of clerestories makes a huge difference in the feeling of the space. Skylights are a good option when rooms are not exposed to exterior walls or views outside are unfavorable. A proper skylight and floor opening can even allow natural light to penetrate to basement spaces. It is important to size skylights appropriately in order to maintain good enough insulation in your roof, so consult a professional. © Steve Keating Photography. Photo via ArchDaily © Ken'ichi Suzuki. Photo via ArchDaily Photo via Houzz Photo via Houzz
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