Natural light is the best that you can get. No bulb or fixture can perfectly mimic the natural sunshine or the way that it can make you feel. Colours in natural lighting look exactly how they were meant to be seen while artificial lighting can distort colours. They can also create a sickly glow which can make you feel sickly. The sun has been known to improve that way you feel while decreasing depression. With all the benefits of natural light, you may be wondering how to get more into your home.
Natural Light Through Windows
This is the obvious choice for improving the natural light in your home. If you have the resource to add more windows, then do so. As long as it is within building code, privacy isn't compromised and it works with the buildings design, more windows will only improve the amount of natural light in the home. You may not be able to do this but there are still a couple things you can do to increase the light. One, make sure your windows are cleaned very well inside and out. You will not believe the difference a clean window will make. Dirt not only obstructs light but can also make a room feel dirty and cluttered. Two, change the glass to a coating that blocks less light. Most newer windows include a coating that reflects light away to reduce solar heat gain. If you can handle extra warmth you will also benefit from an increase in light. Replacing glass is also more cost effective than an entire window. Three, open your windows when ever possible. Not only will more light get through but so will the fresh air which in turn can make for a more inviting space.
Sun Tunnels and Skylights
Sun tunnels are great for a small spaces, can be put in any room and are highly efficient. They are also cost effective and you are likely to see the benefit in as little as a couple years. Now you know what they are good for, you may be wondering what they are. Its exactly what the name states, a tunnel that harnesses the sun. The natural sunlight is collected by a dome and shone down through a reflective tunnel to a light diffuser which then disperses the light into the room. These are particularly great for rooms with no windows like a bathroom or closet and are an added boost for any other space. On a bright sunny day the sun tunnel will produce enough warm light that flicking a light switch will not even be considered. A darker overcast day will still produce light but would not be enough for specific tasks.
Skylights are a special window installed into the ceiling of any room. You can get ones that open like any other window and are even available with an electrical opener for hard to reach spaces. These produce more light than a sun tunnel and can illuminate an entire room. They usually are more expensive then a sun tunnel and roof slope and height can restrict location availability.
Doing any one of these suggestions will give you a noticeable improvement in the amount of natural light that you get and will create a more inviting and warm space.
Word of the Day: Glazing Bead
A molding or stop placed around a window frame to hold glass in place by pressure.