Monday, July 12, 2010

Simple Survival Tips - Passive Solar Lighting

Passive Solar Lighting

One of the easiest ways to save money is by using passive solar lighting. Too many times we enclose ourselves in homes that provide shelter but then need an additional means to provide the light required to see what we are doing. By using the light from the sun, you can have the additional light required for your home to allow you to accomplish simple tasks during the day.

It won't help you very much when it gets dark as the sun goes down but it may help you from flipping that switch during the day that will cause the little dial on your utility meter to spin like crazy.

Got passive solar lighting?

Staying above the water line!



Anonymous said...

Skylights are great, but be sure they are flashed correctly - roof leaks are not fun to fix. Look up Solatube, a dome which has a mirror inside finished tube that goes down to your room. These can be retrofitted into existing structures. If you want to add skylights, a worthwhile consideration.

If no roof penetrations are wanted, clerestory window lighting is highly recommended. This is a window placed high up very near the room ceiling, so that light spills out across the surface of ceiling, spreading out light. Also helps prevent 'glare out', which is seeing a bright square of light surrounded by dark. Also allows much more options with furniture placement.

Good post sir.

Anonymous said...

I like using the sun when it us up, but there is a drawback. The temperature will rise, and down here in Texas that is a bad thing.

riverwalker said...

To: anonymous 8:05

I'm considering something quite similar to which you mentioned in an upcoming building project...small windows high up for lighting.

Thanks anon.


riverwalker said...

To: Namenlos

I too know only too well about the Texas heat...there may be some way to minimize the heat effect so I may need to do some more research.

Thanks Manenlos.


Anonymous said...

Your welcome sir - no problem. We used celerestory windows and high glass block panels in our own home - works great. Though in bedrooms, have to be careful to check code - fire emergency egress still is needed. This window location is great where you and your neighbor's homes are closest together - sooner or later, someone gets an eyefull, especially when windows line up - embarassing for both parties!

Another advantage of clerestory windows is because they are so high, your roof overhang helps keep that glass surface out of the sun, further helping preventing solar heat for building up inside. You Yankees might appreciate it in winter, but summers down in Texas are brutal.

I get a laugh when I see house additions build a breakfast nook with 3 sided windows, then later see them covered with foil. Solar gain folks - its real. They sell that solar cloth that looks like bug screen - that is a possible solution, though nothing lasts forever.

riverwalker said...

To: anonymous 5:18

Good things to keep in mind!



HermitJim said...

Good thoughts about using skylights to brighten a room! Sure can save on the electric bill!

Passive solar can be very useful, that's for sure!

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