Pros & Cons of a Skylight in Your Home

Skylights are a cost effective way to light up your home. Since these windows face up to the beautiful sky, they allow natural light to enter you rooms. This way you won’t need as much artificial lighting. At the end of the day, you not only have more comfortable interiors but you also make significant…

Skylights are a cost effective way to light up your home. Since these windows face up to the beautiful sky, they allow natural light to enter you rooms. This way you won’t need as much artificial lighting. At the end of the day, you not only have more comfortable interiors but you also make significant savings on your energy bills.

That said, here are some of the pros and cons of installing skylights:

Pros

  • Unlike lights from the windows, skylights are even – Near the windows the light is strong, but as you move away it gets dark. In fact, the side directly opposite the window is usually completely dark. Skylights distribute light evenly across the room without the window glare.
  • Keep your indoor plants healthy – If you love indoor plants and have a few within different rooms, skylights will be an invaluable addition to the home. Plants will love the natural light coming in through the skylights and it will benefit them no end. You’ll no longer have to huddle plants around the window. Also, as soon as you have skylights the number and variety of plants you can grow indoors increases.
  • Aesthetic appeal – Natural light brings out the true colors of your walls, floors, and furniture. If you’ve spent the past few years trying to coordinate colors within the home, maybe skylights will be the final piece to the jigsaw. In fact, you may never have to invest in accessory lighting again.
  • Brighten your home – Natural light radiates the home, fills you with energy, and brings the outdoors in, all while protecting your privacy. With skylights, rooms remain bright throughout the day without having to worry about any added cots to your energy bills.
  • Skylights don’t depend on the position of the sun – Unlike windows that are heavily reliant on the position of the sun, skylights will bring light into your rooms regardless of the sun’s position. So, say bye to your East facing rooms being dark in the afternoon and reaching for the light switch every time you enter North facing rooms.
  • Finally, in addition to the aesthetic and psychological advantages, skylights are very practical energy saving additions. Being passive solar collectors, they allow free light into your rooms, which offsets heat that might possibly be lost through conduction.

Cons

Even with so many advantages skylights have several shortcomings;

  • Leaks – Well, the whole roof can leak but most leaks occur along the flashing where weather, age, and harsh sunlight combine to corrode or damage the skylight. The skylight may also leak if it wasn’t installed properly.  Without proper sealing, the line between the roof’s shingles and the skylight casement can easily be compromised especially in adverse weather. In most cases, the skylight will leak from the top as water runs down the slope of the roof.
  • They let in too much heat or too much cold depending on the weather – Skylights can let in too much heat in the summer or too much cold and drafty air in the winter. This generally depends on the positioning of the skylight. Fortunately, some skylights now come with built-in shades or blinds to block out excess heat in the warm seasons.

Summary

In general, skylights can be an invaluable addition to any Virginia home. As long as you install the right skylight that allows you to control how much light enters your rooms, the only other thing you need to do is ensure that the skylights are positioned strategically and that they are properly sealed to avoid leaking.

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