All About Skylights

A skylight can give the room more lighting, views, ventilation, and often even emergency egress. When your energy efficient skylight is properly installed, it can help minimize your cooling, heating and lighting costs.
What to consider for your skylights design
Before deciding which skylight you want in your home, you will need to determine what type of skylight is going to work best for you and where to put it in order to optimise its contribution to your homes day-lighting, energy efficiency and ventilation.
Skylight selection
It’s recommended that you fully understand the energy performance ratings of skylights so that you are able to select your skylight based on your home’s design and the local climate.
The actual size of the skylight your installing will greatly affect the temperature of the space below and the illumination level. As a rule, your skylight size should never exceed 5% of the rooms total floor area when there are already many windows, the skylight should also be no more than 15% of the rooms total floor area when there aren’t many windows.
It is also a good idea to consider a skylight’s position when maximising passive solar heating and/or day-lighting. If your roof is facing north, your skylights will provide fairly constant but cool illumination. Those that are on east facing roofs will provide solar heat gain and maximum light in the morning. When your skylight is south facing it will provide the best potential for desirable winter passive solar heat gain than all other locations, but it will also often allow unwanted heat gain when it’s summer. By installing a skylight in the shade of deciduous trees or by adding a movable window covering on the outside or inside of the skylight, you will be preventing unwanted solar heat gain. There are some skylights that have special glazing that will help control the solar heat gain.
At Sundowner Skylights we offer a wide range of skylights for all homes and buildings. Visit our website on www.sundownerskylights.com for more information on the installation process and the benefits that installing a skylight can have.

Six Great Reasons to Install Skylights

Energy Efficiency:
Skylights are a huge help when it comes to cutting down on the earth’s emissions and also the need for more electric lighting naturally. Using daylight as your home lighting not only helps reduce energy costs and consumption, but it also helps reduce the demand for unsustainable power that is challenging the health of our environment.
• Fortunately solar energy does not produce harmful emissions and it doesn’t require transportation or pipelines like your electric energy does.
• Solar energy is a unlimited resource
• Solar water heating systems that are installed in the U.S. assist in reducing our household energy consumption, along with the nation’s reliance on toxic fossil fuels.

Optimal daylight:
Most people try to find homes that have a lot of light, because we require 2-3 times more light to see by the age of 60 as we did in our twenties. All types of skylights can assist in balancing light in the rooms of your home or office, reducing the glare and also transforming living areas into more open and safer places.

Save Money:
When it comes to skylights, you will be saving money through lower energy bills. Energy efficient, high quality skylights are a very important part of creating today’s green homes. Skylights, sun tunnels and roof windows reduce lighting costs and energy consumptions. Venting skylights will minimize the need for an air conditioner and fans during the warmer months.

Ventilation:
An electric venting skylight will open in order to produce a “passive air conditioner”. Through the exhaust or chimney effect they create, the warm air gets drawn upwards through the venting skylight, providing a cooling effect and fresh air throughout your home.

Privacy:
Houses are being built closer to each other and the balance of providing privacy and sufficient natural light is becoming an issue. Which is why 65% of people who want to buy a home will ask for light form above through skylights in their bathroom, where privacy and light is usually very important.

Add life to small spaces:
The conventional incandescent bulbs will create a unnatural yellow glow, sun tunnel skylights will bring a brighter, white and healthy daylight into rooms where traditional skylights are not always an option. The reflective property of a tubular skylight in your home can also help in reducing your HVAC load by utilizing the natural power of the sun in order to bring passive light, light without the heat that is emitted by electrical sources.
For highly professional skylight installations in Cape Town, visit the Sundowner Skylights website on www.sundownerskylights.com

Why Our Eyes Need More Light As We Age

Are you increasing your text size on your phone or computer? holding your book farther and farther away from your eyes? welcome to the club. As you age, it is inevitable that your eyes and vision will begin to change. It is important to care for our sight and to responsibly exercise our eyes. One way to take better care of our eyes is to avoid dimly lit settings. As we get older, well-lit spaces will make reading and other tasks easier.

Lighting as we age

According to the American Optometric Association ,healthy eyes become much more sensitive to the light and glare as we get older. Aging eyes are going to require more contrast to see than before, as well as greater illumination levels.

There are certain types of light that can be beneficial to us as we age. For example, uniform ambient lighting between rooms help older eyes, as you age your eyes take longer to adjust to the changing light levels. Furthermore, as we age, our eyes start to restrict the amount of light absorbed and admitted and they become more sensitive.

Increasing light inside the home

When you are indoors, you should try to bring in as much natural light as possible. Whether you’re raising blinds, pulling back curtains or installing skylights. Allowing more natural light into your home will prevent eyestrain when you’re completing those close up tasks. Skylights will admit sunshine from above in order to achieve a more balanced, diffused light throughout the space. Installing skylights in the kitchen, hobby area or living room will be beneficial as these spaces are usually used for task-oriented projects and entertaining where substantial illumination is a must. A balance of ambient light and daylight, with the addition of table and floor lamps is going to make your rooms much more comfortable.

There aren’t many lighting options that will light up your home quite like a well placed skylight will. At Sundowner Skylights we assist in brightening up your home with the very best quality tubular skylights, a favourite among those who would like to maximise the natural light in their homes. For more information visit our website on www.sundownerskylights.com.

Artificial Light V.S Natural Light

The difference between artificial and natural light is highly for people to know, especially if their profession depends on it(i.e. photographers and farmers). Below is a breakdown of the differences between the two types of light, and the effects they have on us.

What are the properties of artificial light?

Artificial light is of course man-made light, which isn’t completely bad for the development of plants and humans. It differs to natural light because we can control it and we can monitor the quality of light, thanks to physics. It also doesn’t have the same spectrum of colours and wavelengths as natural light does. Therefore, if the frequency of the wavelengths is too high, it could be very harmful to humans and plants. Bridge fluorescent lights have also been found to aggravate some illnesses such as headaches nausea and eye strain.

What are the properties of natural light?

Natural light, also known as sunlight, comes in a spectrum of colours which are visible rays. Waves that aren’t visible to us on the colour spectrum are shorter wavelengths, named ultraviolet rays and higher wavelengths, known as infrared rays.

Exposure to sunlight can help build vitamin D in the human systems. However, it can also increase your energy, boost your metabolism and give the immune system a boost, which is all important for the body. Although, it is important to get the right balance as overexposure may cause problems to the human system, such as skin damage and cancer and cataracts.

Plants are great beneficiaries of natural sunlight. The light helps them grow, and the darkness that follows is just as important for them to rest, repair and rejuvenate. This light and dark effectively balances the cell activity.

Ideally, we would all like to be exposed more to the benefits of natural light without the fear of over exposure. Because this is not feasible, artificial light is now an essential part of our lives. Although it does not have the same benefits as natural light, with technology enhancing and becoming so advanced.

Companies like Sundowner Skylights specialize in the balance of natural light in homes, their unique skylights are made from solid reflective aluminum with your choice of a flat or curved diffuser or dome to collect and radiate sunshine, giving you access to more natural light for longer.

Reasons Why Schools Should Use Skylights

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Scholars across all levels spend a decent amount of their day inside the classroom. While in attendance, they are frequently more exposed to artificial light sources than they are to natural light. This may result in undesirable effects, such as poor eyesight and attention problems.

The advantages of sunlight are well-known, and finding ways for natural light to come into the classroom, such as through the use of a skylight, could prove advantageous to both students and educators. It could even produce positive results for the establishment itself. Here are six reasons why.

Lesser energy costs

One of the best things about natural light is that it is unquestionably free. It is also something that is readily presented for most of the year. When sunlight is able to enter into a room, there is not as much of a need for the use of artificial light.

By selecting to install more roof windows rather than light bulbs inside a schoolroom, schools will be able to save on energy expenditures. The cash saved because of these changes can, later on, be used for enhancements, facilities or programs that will benefit the campus community.

Better classroom performance

Studies have revealed that exposure to natural light helps improve a person’s attentiveness and focus. It also positively affects cognitive function, which pertains to brain activities linked to knowledge such as memory, reasoning, and language.

Healthier students

A lack of sunlight causes health problems such as Vitamin D shortage. Another is myopia, an eye problem which characteristically springs from reading and writing under poor lighting conditions usually caused by the absence of natural light.

When steps are taken to allow light from outside to enter into the schoolroom, students are met with a lower risk of obtaining these, as well as other associated health concerns, while they are in school.

Better ambience

Making sunlight accessible within the classroom through the use of commercial skylights can seriously boost its ambiance and its suitability for learning. Natural light is brighter than light produced by bulbs, resulting in a reduced amount of eye strain for pupils when reading and writing.

An improved quality of life

Overall, when a school uses natural light, it can lead to an improved quality of life for its whole community. Sufficient sunlight exposure results in better, more relaxing sleep. It has also been found to give people greater energy levels, and an inclination towards physical exercise or activities. Lastly, better class performance can mean superior confidence among students, while better moods may lead to improved relationships among educators and scholars.

Sundowner Skylights

For all your installations and maintenance of skylights in schools, colleges or businesses visit us at Sundowner Skylights today and let us help you improve yours, your students or your institution’s performance and productivity.

Natural Lights Positive Effects On Your Health

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An important point to make is that appropriate exposure to natural light has positive effects on our circadian rhythm and in turn promotes many aspects of health.

We evolved from contact to natural day lighting. The sun delivers a particular wavelength (blue range) in the early morning that lasts until early afternoon. At that point, a different light wavelength is created (red to orange range). We recently learned that the retina has a specific photoreceptor that identifies light and sends it to a distinctive part of the brain known as the supra chiasm, located near the hypothalamus. Once the supra chiasm is triggered, it sets off the hypothalamus, the master gland that in turn triggers the pituitary, thyroid, and adrenal glands of the brain and body. The hormonal response to light is what causes and encourages the assorted actions of the body and health.

The blue range of light helps our bodies come to be aroused, aware, attentive and focused. As the day continues and we enter the afternoon when the blue range of light changes to the red/orange range our bodies begin the procedure of slowing and ultimately sleeping. Our body decelerates in blood pressure and we go into the four stages of sleep including deep sleep. Melatonin is produced and growth hormones are activated.

The circadian rhythm (means roughly a day) is critically significant to our health as it has effects on our immune system, capacity to fight off disease, hunger and obesity, blood pressure, and intellect. It controls our sleep-wake cycle which is so vital for brain function and body regulation.

We have learned that there are design lighting structures that help to promote contact to natural light, to help set the circadian rhythm, and to promote human performance in the office and school. Natural lighting via design lighting systems such as skylights can also help of age adults residing in aided living or long-term care facilities. Older adults experience variations in their sleep-wake cycles and this gets worsened with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Studies support improved school performance by students, and reduced anxiety and increased sleep for older adults who work or study in environments with natural day lighting.

Sundowner Skylights

With all these medical benefits of natural light on your body and brain, why not contact us today for all your skylight installations and repairs.

Extractor fans for the kitchen

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Extractor fans have been designed to serve certain purposes. They are also called range hoods when they are fitted directly above your stove. They are vital in the kitchen as they provide ventilation.

Below are some of the functions of range hoods or extractor fans:

  • Removes grease from the air
  • Disperses any smoke that occurs
  • Reduces soiling of your walls and other surface areas
  • Extracts steam that rises from kettles or saucepans
  • It helps to eliminate cooking odors
  • Removes pollutants such as mildew, mould, carbon dioxide, dust mites, pet hair, paint fumes, bacteria etc
  • Reduces moisture levels in your kitchen
  • Captures by-products of frying and baking as well as steam-carried particles.

Tests have shown that indoor pollutants can measure at concentrations fifty times higher indoors than they do outdoors. With an extractor fan, your home will help prevent this and ensure that your home is safer and cleaner to live in.

It is important that your range hood or extractor fan vents to the outside of the premises. You should ensure that it never vents into a ceiling or wall, the moisture and grease in the air can cause serious structural damages over some time.

When it comes to keeping your range hood or extractor fan clean it is not as difficult as it may seem. There are many that can be dismantled and cleaned using your dishwasher, you need to ensure that the interior as well as the exterior of the range hood or extractor fan is wiped down regularly. After removing the filter cover it should be washed in hot soapy water. There is an ammonia solution that you can use to clean the fan blades. The metal mesh filters can be cleaned whenever needed.

The filters for arecirculating range hood are going to have to be replaced every 3 to 6 months, depending on the type of cooking that is done and also how often the kitchen is used. A charcoal filter should never be washed as this will reduce the filters effectiveness.

There are many different types of extractor fans available, below are three types available at Sundowner Skylights in Cape Town:

  • Domestic extractor fans
  • Commercial extractor fans
  • Industrial extractor fans

You can contact Sundowner Skylights in Cape Townto find out more about the wide variety of ceiling- and wall-mounted extractor fans that we supply. Whether you need a wall-mounted chimney, a large industrial extraction fan or a kitchen extractor fan,Sundowner Skylights supply it all. With Authorised Distributors nationwide.

Benefits of Skylights

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Benefits of Skylights

Studies have proven that people who are exposed to natural sunlight on a regular basis tend to be more positive, productive and also achieve a better sense of well-being. Sunlight can act as a mood enhancer and can also improve performance. These are some of the many reasons why having a sunlight installed into your home is always a good idea, offering efficient lighting solutions and helping the environment.

There are many benefits that come with having a skylight. To name just a few, it is an eco friendly efficient lighting solution, it comes without the cost of a electricity bill, gives your home, office or building a beautiful appeal, reduces mould build up and helps us do our part for the environment.

Energy-efficient appliances, homes, and apartment buildings provide enormous cost savings and health benefits, and make us feel good about our efforts to reduce our energy consumption and therefore the carbon footprint. Sundowner Skylights provide naturally energy-efficient lighting solutions that will help you cut down your monthly electricity bill, as you no longer need to rely so heavily on electric lights.

Skylight designs can be any shape or size – it all depends on the client’s requirements. Some of the features of a skylight are as follows:

  • Motor venting systems
  • Rain sensors
  • Hurricane resistant glass
  • Temperature control options

Your skylight can be designed to achieve specific lighting effects on surfaces such as wall washes and soffits.

Your skylight will ensure that you have bright daylight in your home or office, unlike electric bulbs. You cannot help but love the natural beauty and feel that having a skylight provides. New designs are being developed because of the huge demand for skylights in South Africa, these new designs being more effective and efficient than ever before. This trend is ensuring that our environment stays clean and the rooms in our homes and offices stay beautiful.

With skylights having technological features it overleaps the digital world, allowing families to stay connected to each other as well as to Mother Nature.Install Skylights from Sundowner Skylights and Save the Environment as well as money.

The Green Light

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Everyone loves skylights because they bring so much light into any room, they can turn an ordinary Brakpan bathroom into a luxury room in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg. Skylights are a type of window that that is built into a roof to allow natural light to illuminate the interior of commercial, industrial and residential buildings. More often than not skylights are seen as a luxury addition to the home used to brighten interior spaces with natural light from the sun, this not only improves a building cosmetically but has the additional benefit of saving owners money by eliminating the need for costly electric lighting during the day.

The cost of electricity has gone up tremendously over the last decade (not only in monetary value but with regards to the environmental impact as well) and it is does not show signs of stopping anytime soon, in fact, it is estimated that from 2004 to 2016 the cost of electricity has gone up by a staggering 300%. By greening our electricity usage and using less energy in general we can lighten our footprint immensely.

Tubular skylights will significantly increase the natural lighting in your home, save you money and help you on your path to going green in the process. One of the benefits of tubular skylights is that not only can they be installed ion a house that is currently being built but they can also easily be installed in a finished house.

Tubular skylights are able to emit more natural light than traditional skylights and operate by bouncing captured sunlight through a highly reflective, mirror-like light pipe and are better able to absorb the harmful UV rays emitted by the sun.

A small tubular skylight of only 25 centimetres can yield the equivalent of 3 bulbs of 100 watts each, that is 300 watts. The larger version is great for big rooms and offices. Instead of expensive energy wasting florescent lights, the tubular skylight can fillthe room with sunshine equivalent to that of 1000-1400 watts of light.

 

Sundowner Skylights

With 20 years of experience in the industry you can be sure that Sundowner Skylights will provide you the very best when it comes to Tubular skylights. Sundowner Skylights has a 10 year waterproofing & component guarantee on skylights.