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Skylights - Choosing the right one

KrslovicHere are some tips to help you choose the right skylight.

With such a large range of skylight options, we understand that choosing skylights can be difficult. Knowing what style, type, or even where to put a skylight in your home can be confusing. With over 50 years of experience, you can trust the professionals at Belle Skylights to help make choosing a skylight easy! Call Belle now to discuss your daylighting needs.

It is important to first consider the purpose of your new skylight. Skylights can be selected as a functional source of daylight for a dark room or they can be used as a feature to turn a dark room into the best room in the house.

Skylights can make a significant contribution to energy efficiency and comfort in any building by providing “cool light” - a skylight can deliver over three times as much light as a vertical window of the same size!

Humans, like plants thrive under natural daylight. Our bodies are designed to operate in line with the sun’s natural daylight schedule – rising with the sunlight in the morning and sleeping after dusk. This helps to set our body clock and circadian rhythm.

Daylight can affect productivity and performance!

  • Students concentrate better under daylight
  • Worker productivity is increased under daylight
  • Retail sales are greater in day lit areas.

Skylights provide flexibility in architectural design. A small dark room with no windows can be transformed to feel “larger” by bringing daylight into the room. loungeBathrooms and ensuites benefit by bringing light in through a skylight in the roof, eliminating the need for a window and allowing extra wall space to be used, improving the design of the room.

Here are some tips to help you choose the right skylight.

1. Skylight vs. Roof window

Skylight types include round, square and rectangular and can be glazed with moulded domes or glass. A traditional skylight includes a reflective light shaft from the skylight to the ceiling and is closed off at the ceiling with a diffuser. This type of skylight provides an excellent functional light source.

A roof window has clear glazing that you can see through and is typically installed with an open plaster or timber light shaft. Roof windows are a great way to enhance the look & feel of your home.  They provide a clear barrier bringing daylight and nature into your home.

Roof windows can also come in a range of manual or electric opening to allow any room to be filled with light and ventilation, making them useful for kitchens or bathrooms

Advanced tubular daylighting devices (TDD) have highly reflective tubing, allowing amazing levels of light to be transmitted over distances and into spaces that until recently would have been impossible.

2. Position


The positioning of your skylight is key to ensuring that the correct amount of light will enter the space at different times in the day. It is also imperative that you carefully consider the roof structure and any electrical wiring or plumbing that may be in the roof space which could be in the way of the skylight. Skylights in bedrooms will need some form of blind or dimming device to prevent light from entering the room too early in the summer months.

3. Space

Skylights can be as effective in smaller spaces as they are in large ones. Whether it is a small bathroom or a large scale living area, natural light can be focused through the use of a skylight to give a great feeling of depth and space in your home. Natural light is also very useful in separating rooms and living areas, and can make any room feel more spacious and inviting.

4. Shape and size

The shape of your skylight can greatly influence the theme of your home. For a more modern house, square or rectangular shapes can add complexity to the aesthetics of a room. Curved stairwells can be highlighted by a circular feature skylight. Keep in mind that not every room can have a skylight installed in a central position due to the building structure. Tubular skylights can be installed in an “off centre” location and lessen the visual impact of this. Choose a shape that says something about your home and adds a unique aesthetic quality!

5. Type

At Belle Skylights we offer an enormous variety of skylights for every application. Energy efficient skylights like the Belray Ecolite and the Belray Selectolite; economical solutions for any budget application such as the Belray Opallite or Belray Suntube, the full range of VELUX skylights and roof windows, and the advanced Solatube daylighting system range.

6. Glazing

Skylights can come with moulded acrylic (perspex) or polycarbonate domes. They can also be single glazed in glass or have double glazed, low-e, insulated glass. Low-e is an invisible microscopic coating on the internal surface of the glass panel that blocks infra-red heat and increases the insulation properties of the skylight. Glazing is important to consider when thinking about the energy efficiency.

When selecting any energy efficient double glazed glass skylight it is important to select a product that has the lowest u value (the ability of the glass to retain warmth in the room), the lowest solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC - the ability of the glass to block solar heat from entering the room) and the highest visible light transmission (VT).

For more tips give the professionals at Belle Skylights a call on (03) 9555 2388.

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