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Everything you need to know about skylights

Annie Everill

Annie Everill

What is a skylight?

A skylight is a window or opening installed on the roof of a building to allow natural light to enter the internal spaces. Used to enhance the aesthetics and energy efficiency of a building skylights are typically made of transparent or translucent materials, including glass or acrylic, and are crafted to provide daylight and sometimes even ventilation.

These frames can come in several shapes and sizes, including rectangular, circular, or even custom designs, and are commonly found in homes, businesses and other commercial buildings. 

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Things to consider when installing a skylight

Before you go ahead and install a skylight, there are essential factors to consider to ensure your final choice and installation are effective and successful. Planning where and what the installation will involve will ensure you make the right choice and will help you enjoy your skylight for years to come. Here are some of the key things to consider when installing a skylight. 

  • Location: North-facing skylights typically offer the best light without heat loss or gain whilst south-facing skylights lead to heat gain in the winter and heat loss in the summer. East-facing skylights offer the greatest amount of light and heat gain in the mornings while west-facing skylights lead to heat gain in the afternoons.
  • Size: Knowing what size skylight you need is crucial when deciding on which model to choose. To do this, measure the square footage of your room and then divide it by 20 to give an approximate square footage.
  • Weather: If you live in an area with severe weather conditions, it’s important to opt for skylights rated for intense weather that can withstand pressures and extreme temperatures.

Types of skylights

When picking the right skylight for your home or space, there are many different options to consider, including their size, location, and special features.

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Ventilating skylights

Ventilating skylights also referred to as roof windows, can open and close either manually or electrically, so you can install them on high ceilings with no restrictions. 

Ventilated skylights are also the best option for any room in your house with high moisture such as kitchens or bathrooms. 

Fixed Skylights

Fixed skylights do not open or close, so they do not provide any ventilation. These are easy to install and are best placed on high ceilings. You might opt for plastic domes for additional protection from potential moisture.

Tubular Skylights

Tubular skylights work best in small spaces like hallways and wardrobes. With these styles of windows, sunlight travels down a light well that’s highly reflective, which then travels through a diffuser before entering the space. These work best in bright environments and don’t cause as much temperature fluctuation as other versions.

Center-Pivot Skylights

Center-pivot skylights offer a great amount of fresh air due to the entire window panel swinging open and shut on a centre pivot. This can be a good option for attics, rooms above garages, and other areas with low ceilings.

Metal-Framed Skylights

Metal-framed skylights offer a wide range of design options, making them a good choice if you’re looking for something aesthetic or specific. These are usually made with single- or double-walled polycarbonate translucent panels and typically feature a triangular design.

Benefits of a skylight

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Negatives of a skylight

  • Loss and gain of heat
  • Repairs and maintenance can be costly 
  • Poor installation could result in damage or leaks
  • Labour-intensive
  • Difficult to clean and access

Aluminium windows by ABS

Are you ready for a new set of windows or looking for a more energy efficient solution?

Providing excellent performance and improved aesthetics for your home or commercial building, ABS can custom-make your aluminium windows in a range of shapes, sizes and colours.

Based in Nottinghamshire, we operate across the UK and Ireland in aluminium window manufacturing.

Please get in touch either by dropping us an email or giving us a call on 01623 259173 for further help or information.

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