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Do Skylights Open

Do Skylights Open?

We’re always asked, “Do Skylights Open?” by many of our installation customers. In this article we’ll review the differences between skylights that open and ones that don’t open.

What is the Difference Between Vented and Non-Vented Skylights?

When it comes to brightening your living space, skylights can make a huge impact. However, not all skylights are created equal. There are mainly two types of skylights: vented and non-vented, also known as fixed skylights.

Fixed Skylights: These are the most straightforward type of skylight. Once installed in your roofline, they remain closed, allowing natural light to flood into your home without providing any ventilation. Fixed skylights are particularly useful for rooms like bathrooms where privacy is essential, but natural illumination is desired.

Vented Skylights: Unlike fixed skylights, vented skylights open and close, enabling airflow throughout your home. If you’re a homeowner looking to regulate hot air that naturally accumulates near the ceiling, vented skylights can help. They’re well-ventilated options, excellent for rooms prone to mold and mildew, like attics.

Whether you’re remodeling or just considering skylight installation for your home, understanding the main types of skylights can help you make an informed decision.

What are the Benefits of Vented Skylights? Do Venting Skylights Work?

Now that you know the basic difference between vented and non-vented skylights, you might be wondering about the advantages of choosing a vented option. Well, vented skylights offer a plethora of benefits that extend beyond mere aesthetics.

Natural Ventilation: One of the primary benefits of vented skylights is improved air circulation. As hot air rises, these skylights expel it from your living space, making the environment more comfortable.

Energy Efficiency: Believe it or not, vented skylights can be energy-efficient. By letting out hot air in the summer and allowing cooler air to circulate, you can actually reduce energy costs. Just make sure to choose a skylight with energy-efficient features like low-e laminated glass.

Control Over Light: Vented skylights often come with the option of a blind, allowing homeowners to help control solar heat and UV rays. This feature makes vented skylights versatile, providing direct sunlight when you want it and shade when you don’t.

Reduced Mold and Mildew: Rooms like bathrooms and attics are more susceptible to mold and mildew due to lack of ventilation. Vented skylights can help alleviate this problem by expelling warm, humid air.

So, do venting skylights work? Absolutely. They not only bring in natural light but also offer practical advantages that enhance your home’s comfort and energy performance.

Energy Efficient Venting Skylight

Do You Lose a Lot of Heat from Vented Skylights?

One common question homeowners have is whether vented skylights lead to significant heat loss, especially during colder months. The answer largely depends on the type of skylight glazing you choose and how well the skylight is installed.

Glazing Options: Skylights come with various glazing options, either plastic or glass. For better energy performance, opt for laminated or low-emissivity (low-e) glass. This type of glazing also minimizes the risk of sharp pieces falling in case of breakage.

Professional Installation: A poorly installed skylight may compromise the structural integrity of your roof and lead to heat loss. Therefore, professional installation is crucial to seal all joints and prevent leaks.

Automatic Features: Some advanced vented skylights automatically close when they detect rain or extreme temperature changes, further reducing the risk of heat loss.

Latitude and Position: The latitude of your location and the position of your skylight on the roof can also impact heat loss. For instance, skylights positioned at more than 15 degrees can help minimize heat loss.

Energy Costs: While vented skylights can contribute to some heat loss, the impact is often negligible when compared to the overall energy costs of a home, especially if you opt for energy-efficient models.

In summary, while vented skylights can result in some heat loss, choosing the right materials and installation methods can mitigate these concerns.

How Do You Open a Vented Skylight?

Opening Manual, Electric, and Solar Skylights

If you’ve opted for a vented skylight, you’re probably wondering about the different ways to open and close it. Generally, there are three main types of opening mechanisms for vented skylights: manual, electric, and solar.

Manual Skylights: As the name suggests, manually operated skylights require physical effort to open and close. A long pole is often used for skylights installed in high positions. These are a budget-friendly choice but may not be convenient for everyone.

Electric Skylights: These skylights open and close at the touch of a button. They’re often equipped with sensors that automatically close the skylight in case of rain or other adverse conditions. While convenient, electric skylights do require a power source and professional installation.

Solar Skylights: Energy-efficient and eco-friendly, solar skylights use solar panels to operate. They also often come with a manual override and sensors to automatically close in case of inclement weather. These are particularly useful for homeowners concerned with energy costs and environmental impact.

Choosing the right type of skylight will work best for your needs depends on various factors like your budget, the location of the skylight, and your preference for convenience versus manual control.

Solar Venting Skylight Controls

When to Open Up Skylight Vents

Opening your skylight at the right time can maximize its benefits, from improving air circulation to enhancing energy efficiency. But when exactly is the best time to open up those vents? Here are some guidelines:

Cooler Mornings and Evenings: During summer, the air is cooler in the early morning and late evening. This is an excellent time to open your skylight and allow fresh air to circulate, ventilate the hot air that naturally accumulates during the day.

Avoid Peak Sun Hours: Direct sunlight during peak hours can heat your home quickly. Keeping the skylight closed during this time can help control solar heat gain.

Low-Humidity Days: Open your skylights when the air is dry to prevent mold and mildew build-up, particularly in rooms like bathrooms and attics.

Temperature Regulation: In winter, you might want to keep your skylights closed to minimize heat loss, especially if your skylight isn’t equipped with energy-efficient glazing.

Automated Options: If you have electric or solar skylights with sensors, you can set them to automatically open and close based on weather conditions and internal temperature, making life even easier for you.

Understanding the best times to open your skylight can greatly contribute to your home’s comfort and energy performance. Coupled with a well-thought-out choice of skylight type and professional installation, you’re all set to enjoy the numerous benefits skylights can provide.

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