With energy prices on the rise, a growing number of businesses are looking at low-cost alternatives to traditional heating and air conditioning. Many have invested in energy-efficient heating and cooling systems in order to reduce their energy bills.
Others have implemented policies aimed at decreasing energy usage, such as light use of air conditioning or heating during periods of mild weather. Both choices are intelligent solutions to a financial problem that’s affecting many global businesses.
Both solutions, however, are short-term fixes aimed at a problem that’s best fixed using a long-term solution. Daylighting is a low-cost, sustainable way to reduce the amount of energy your office, factory, or retail store uses over the long term.
Daylighting and Light: How Daylighting Lowers Electrical Usage
According to the Energy Information Association, electrical lighting makes up about 13 percent of the United States’ total electricity consumption. This means that most offices spend around 13 percent of their bills just to remain illuminated.
While daylighting systems may not light your office well into the night, they can lead to a significant decline in daytime electrical usage. Because of this, many businesses are reducing their dependence on artificial lighting in favor of natural daylight.
Daylighting and Heat: How Daylighting Traps Heat In or Out
One of the most common objections to the installation of daylighting is that it lets too much heat into a building. This argument, although it may have been correct in previous decades, simply isn’t important in the context of modern daylighting.
Modern skylights and daylighting systems use a combination of filters that prevent heat from entering the structure that they’re installed in. Many also use heat filters to prevent heat from escaping a structure during the cooler winter months.
This means that heat transfer is minimal – both heat transfer from outside to the interior of a building, and heat transfer from the inside out. When it comes to heat retention, daylighting is a very practical and affordable solution
Daylighting and Cooling: How Daylighting Improves Air Conditioning
Much has been made of how daylighting systems can retain heat. Despite this, one of the biggest benefits of daylighting systems – that they can help your building retain an absence of heat – is largely unknown.
As well as minimizing ambient heat transfer from strong sunlight, double glazing is an excellent solution for keeping cool air inside your building. The added insulation of a modern daylighting system enhances air condition, instead of compromising it.
Many of the concerns about daylighting and heat gain are based on fears from past generations, in which daylighting systems weren’t as energy efficient. With modern glazing and window treatments, daylighting results in minimal heat transfer.
Daylighting and Sun: How Intelligent Daylighting Eliminates Sun Heat
If your building is situated in a part of the country that’s affected by intense sunlight during summer, you may have doubted the value of daylighting. After all, wouldn’t a daylighting system simply drench your office or retail store in even more sunlight?
One of the biggest benefits of daylighting, in fact, is its ability to reduce the amount of unwanted sunlight that enters your building. With careful planning, a daylighting system can maximize sunlight in dark, north-facing rooms while reducing unwanted sunlight in west or east-facing parts of your building.
When daylighting is approached as a core part of your building’s design rather than an optional extra, its results can be incredible. Using strategic window and skylight placement, energy efficient materials, and modern daylighting techniques, you can achieve a large reduction in your business’s heating and lighting-related spending.