Daylighting is the practice of using natural light for indoor lighting in the daytime. In today’s post, the window and roof replacement contractors at ExteriorPros explain how the right combination of window features such as size and location can help you get the most out of daylighting.
What Are the Benefits of Daylighting?
The most immediate benefit of daylighting is it provides indoor lighting during the day, which can eliminate the need for daytime electrical lighting and help you save on your energy bills. A naturally-lit home looks more open and spacious and has a generally cheerful feel. It also makes colors look more vibrant, which is great for showcasing your home decor.
Daylighting also has certain health benefits. There are various studies that point to how it can help regulate the human circadian rhythm. People who regularly spend their daytime hours in naturally-lit environments are found to have regular sleep-wake cycles, as opposed to those who work in windowless offices, or live in poorly-lit homes. Daylighting promotes healthy sleep cycles that not only helps ensure restfulness, but also helps improve alertness and memory retention.
How to Optimize Your Windows for Daylighting
You can optimize your windows for daylighting by doing the following:
Choose the right window orientation — Windows in the north-facing walls are the ideal windows for daylighting because they receive soft and even lighting. Comparatively, the south-facing walls receive harsh sunlight, which may work for smaller windows. The windows that face the east and west are better suited for capturing views of sunrise and sunsets, respectively, as they can drench the house with a strong orange glow that some people find unappealing. For areas where window installation isn’t an option, ask your roofers about skylights.
Measure the window height — The daylighting “zone” — the indoor reach of natural light — is determined by window height. That is, the depth of the daylighting zone is about twice the window head height.
Install bottom-up window treatments — Window treatments typically cover the top half of the window when partially closed. You can optimize your windows for daylighting by choosing window treatments that can be closed from the bottom up, and leave the top half open.