Skylight Design Considerations

Before choosing a skylight for your home, you need to decide what kind of sky light will work best and where you can improve the energy efficiency of your home.


First of all, it is a good idea to understand the energy efficiency of skylights if you do not. Then you can decide what energy levels you need for your sky light based on your climate and home design.

In order to label energy-efficient skylights, ENERGY STAR has developed a condition for measuring minimal energy efficiency. However, this process does not include home design. So, if you are building a new home or remodeling something big, you should also take the opportunity to incorporate your skylight design and selection as an integral part of your whole house design – a way to build energy saving. at home.


The body size of the sky light greatly affects the light intensity and the temperature of the lower space. As a rule of thumb, the maximum light intensity should never exceed 5 percent of floor space in rooms with large windows and should not exceed 15 percent of the total space of a room with few windows.

You should also consider the location of the sunlight if you want to increase daylight and / or solar energy doing nothing. The skylights on the north-facing roof provide a constant but cool light. Those on the east-facing roof provide high light and get the sun’s heat in the morning. West-facing skylights provide an afternoon sun and heat gain. The south-facing skylights provide the maximum heat benefit of the desired winter sun than anywhere else, but generally allow for the desired warmth in summer. You can prevent unwanted sunburn by exposing sunlight to shady trees or by adding a removable window cover inside or outside the sky. Some units have special light that can help control the gain of solar heat.


When choosing a skylight for your home, it is important to consider what type of glazing you should use to improve the energy efficiency of your home. Based on a variety of skylight designs — such as its shape and weather — you may want different types of shiny sky glazing throughout your home.

Skylight glazing usually consists of plastic or glass.

Plastic Glazing

Plastic glazing is usually less expensive and less prone to breakage than many other glossy materials.  Many plastics also allow excess ultraviolet (UV) radiation to penetrate (unless the gloss is covered with a special film), which increases the permanent damage to the furniture. Acrylics and polycarbonates are the most commonly used filters for plastics. Acrylics are weaker than polycarbonates, but less expensive. Although polycarbonates provide high impact resistance, some are yellow due to age.


Glass is often found in the most expensive skylights. The Glass lasts longer than plastic and does not change. All glass used for sky lighting should be made of “safety gloss,” a common name for both cooled and laminated glass. Solid glass is the one that can withstand the greatest impact. Glazed glass is made of a thin layer of plastic embedded near the center of the glass. Both keep the glass from cracking into large, sharp pieces. This system provides high impact resistance while protecting the interior of the falling parts of the glass.


Because skylights are located on the roof, they can cause a great deal of unwanted summer heat benefits as well as loss of winter heat. Manufacturers use various filters to minimize these effects. The most common technologies include those used for window polish:

  • Heat-retaining tiles
  • Unchanged gloss (double-glazed, triple-glazed)
  • Ventilation (Low-E) clothing.

Some manufacturers even incorporate translucent insulation material into a few coarse layers to create an efficient thermal insulation.


The latest developments in “high technology” amplify the sky light to illuminate during the day. The “element” on the roof becomes a place where the sun shines. It may be a sun-track cylinder, open at the sides; something as large as a lens; or a standard sky light with a mirror on a mirror placed next to it. This space may be connected to a mirror tube, or “light pipe,” with a separating lens that sits on or is reclined on the attic below. Most tubular skylights have this feature.

These skylight designs, related to similar traditional skylights, effectively reduce excess heat during the day and heat loss at night, but do not provide ideas or atmosphere.


Skylights can provide a little air and light. Inhaling air into the building by turning on the light from the sky emits the hot air that accumulates naturally near the ceiling. Ventilated skylights are usually open to the outside, some more than others. Some units come out with a small, hollow panel. One design uses a sloping inner belt with a protected air vent. This can reduce the chances of rain or snow coming into the room when the vents are open.  Automatic units with electric motors or air devices are available. Some models incorporate moisture sensors to automatically block the light from the sky when it is raining.

Roof windows are usually located within a few meters of the floor.


In extremely cold climates, light from the sky is more likely to cause water vapor to condense as it glows. The accumulation of water may drip into the room. The best skylights usually have an internal channel.

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