If you are trying to decide what is the best way to bring natural light into your home, then you have a few choices ahead of you. These include choices about what type of lighting installation you want, where you want to put it and other design and specification choices.
There are a few different types of daylighting systems on the market, so it is important to do your research and consider which options will work best for your space. In this blog, we’ll discuss the difference between Aspirational lighting versus Functional lighting installations.
When we refer to aspirational and functional lighting, what we mean is the following:
Aspirational lighting – Referring to daylighting systems that are intended to be a statement, design piece in your space. Your eyes are drawn to them as they are a visually appealing installation, but they also bring natural daylight into the home. Sometimes referred to as “feature skylights” or “feature lights”.
Functional lighting – Referring to daylighting systems that are intended for function rather than as a design feature. Typically used to solve issues in dimly lit rooms that don’t have windows and don’t get natural light. Sometimes referred to as “task lighting”.
Functional lighting is intended to illuminate the dark spaces in your home by bringing a consistent flow of bright daylight into areas such as your windowless bathroom or dark hallways. This type of lighting is usually less expensive and requires minimum work for installation as there is no structural work, plastering or painting required.
One example of functional daylighting is a tubular skylight. A tubular skylight works by capturing the sunlight on top of the roof with an innovative dome component, which is then reflected down a highly reflective tube to the diffusing fixture which is installed in the location of your choosing (e.g. above the kitchen bench or the dim-lit bathroom or laundry). A basic skylight works in a similar way with the skylight on the roof, reflective light shaft and a diffuser at ceiling level.
Functional lighting fixtures may often resemble that of a regular electrical light, but at Belle Skylights we understand that it’s not enough to bring brilliant daylight indoors if the lighting fixture delivering that light isn’t equally as impressive. We offer a range of decorative lighting fixtures to complement the interior style of your home.
If you are looking for a statement piece, then perhaps an Aspirational daylighting installation is more your style. Aspirational lighting seeks to add an extra unique design feature to your space, whilst still letting natural sunlight flow into your space. An example of Aspirational daylighting is our double glazed glass skylight, the EcoLiteTM PLUS (pictured below) or Velux skylights. Aspirational lighting often requires direct access from the roof to the sky and can be pricier as installation may require framing work, plastering and painting.
Where a Functional daylighting installation usually diffuses and delivers daylight consistently throughout the day, the volume of daylight that Aspirational daylighting delivers may change throughout the day as the sun’s location moves overhead, but this is a worthy trade for incredible views of the sky.
For further tips on choosing the best daylighting solution for you, take a look at our guide on How to Pick a Skylight. For questions or more information regarding anything in this blog, get in touch with the daylighting professionals at Belle Skylights on 1300 168 374.