Skylight Windows: The Pros and Cons

Skylight Windows: The Pros and Cons

It’s undeniable that a skylight brings a special kind of atmosphere into a room. Not only do skylights add natural light to a room during the summer season, but they also give an exclusive viewpoint of the falling snow and starry sky during the winter season.

And, if you’ve ever seen first-hand the beauty that a skylight brings to a room, you are probably not surprised that these have featured in architecture for centuries. This is why people are ready to pay the extra money to have them installed in their homes, regardless of the potential problems that skylights are prone to.

Before you commit to having a skylight installed, consider all the pros and cons that come with it:

Skylight Windows: The Pros

As stated above, skylight windows are aesthetically pleasing, can change the whole appearance of a room and can provide a beautiful view of the sky. But skylight windows are not limited to only those benefits, they also provide additional functionality and benefits that you may not even be aware of. And to make an informed decision it would be good to know more about those benefits before looking at the cons and the cost implications of having one installed.

1. They Offer Better Ventilation

Venting skylight windows can provide fresh air to a room and are perfect for certain areas of your house that tend to be darker or in those rooms where moisture builds up and needs to be circulated. An example of such a room would be the bathroom.

In warmer months, a venting skylight can provide additional, natural cooling and can help in lowering your utility bills.

2. They Increase Natural Lighting in the House

In addition to offering better ventilation, skylight windows also provide extra lighting and are perfect in areas of the house that are usually dark and dreary. The light that it allows in interior rooms that otherwise don’t get light adds aesthetic appeal. This can be done by installing it in an area of the room where it can provide a spotlight onto a showcase area, or a beautiful vista into the sky above.

3. They Can Give Indirect Solar Heating

When installed adequately and in the proper place in your home, a skylight can introduce additional indirect solar energy into your house. Moreover, if installed on the northern side of your home, it can bring you pleasant warmth in the winter month while if installed on the southern end of the house can provide indirect solar heat in the winter.

Skylight Windows: The Cons

Now that you are aware of the benefits conferred by the installation of skylight windows, let’s look at the cons. While there are several advantages to having a skylight fitted, there are just as many drawbacks which we believe you should be aware of before you dive in head-first. We’ve included those because we not only want to help you make an informed decision, but we also don’t want to you be unpleasantly surprised by the ongoing costs involved with the installation of one.

1. Roof Damage Risk

The installation of a large skylight in your home could potentially compromise the structure of your roof. You run this risk especially if you have a truss roof. If you don’t know what it is, talk to an experienced roof installer. Because it is not easy to modify a truss roof, it would be better to skip skylights altogether. On the other hand, if you have a standard roof frame you can go ahead with the fitting of the windows.

2. Risk of Interior Damage

Skylights can cause interior damage in three ways. Firstly, it can damage your furniture, curtains, carpet, and floors because of the extra light that’s entering through the window. Secondly, the furniture and floor can be damaged by water because of roof leaks. Finally, if the installation is not done properly, the skylight will become a hazard to you and your family as it can fail at any moment.

3. Expensive Installation and High Overheads

The cost involved in getting a skylight fitted is not the only thing that’s sky-high. This type of window is expensive to maintain and will also affect your utility bills. Besides, they can gradually create wear and tear in your house leading to even more expenses.

Takeaway

If you ask us, we are all for window skylights. We believe it is worth the investment as long as the installation and maintenance are done properly. So, now that you are ready to commit to the undertaking, remember to start by contacting an experienced roofing contractor to find out what kinds of costs you are looking at. This will enable you to budget accordingly.

Also, do not hesitate to ask for feedback from their previous clients to ensure that they know what they are doing and that you get only the highest quality of service.


How Can I Keep My Bathroom Clean and Fresh?

Bathrooms smell. All bathrooms smell. It’s usually the room that smells the most in a house. And it’s quite normal considering what everyone does there… As much as we hate talking about it, this is where we go to do our business – which is pretty disgusting and smelly. But again, these are bodily functions and cannot be stopped – it’s totally normal, everyone has to go!

But it is not easy to clean the bathroom on a daily basis. We all have busy schedules, and we can’t spare hours every day to clean the bathroom from top to bottom. We hear you. But it’s also crucial that this high-traffic room stays clean.

So, to help you out, we’ve come up with a few simple ways to keep the bathroom clean for longer, keep the odours at bay and ensure the bathroom smells fresh naturally. Read on find out how to get more mileage out of your efforts:

Step 1: Keep moisture away

The leading factor to pungent smell is bacteria growth. And the best way to have bacteria grow in your bathroom is to let moisture sit in the bathroom for a long time.

Moisture can accumulate in a bathroom after a shower. Notice how condensation covers the tiles, mirrors and bathroom counter after you get out of the shower? This condensation is caused by the steam of your shower. In addition to making the bathroom smell, this moisture can also cause mildew stains to form in your bathroom.

Solution:

Ensure the shower stays dry. There are a few ways of doing that:

  1. You can wipe down the walls, tub, faucets and shower doors with a squeegee once you are done in the shower.
  2. Use bathmats and dry the floor once you step out of the shower.  (Wash those rugs on a regular basis so they do not harbour any smell.)
  3. Crack a window or the door open while showering. This will help dissipate the moisture.

Step 2: Keep plumbing fixtures and faucets clean 

While hard water deposits do not cause any odour, it does not look attractive, makes the bathroom look dirtier than it really is and, worst, impairs the function of your fixtures.

Because of the high moisture rate and water collection in bathrooms, faucets tend to quickly accumulate hard water deposits. No matter how new the faucet is, these deposits will make it look old and dingy.

Solution:

Everyday cleaning won’t cut it when it comes to hard water deposit – You can’t remove buildup with just water. While you still need to clean the faucets and fixtures regularly in a specific way, you don’t need to get any special cleaning products.

To keep them looking nice and working correctly, do the following:

  1. Pour regular white vinegar in a container.
  2. Soak a clean piece of rag in the vinegar.
  3. Carefully drape the rag over the faucet so the rag covers the areas that have hard water deposits.
  4. Wait 30 – 60 minutes before removing the rag.
  5. With the help of a non-scratch sponge scrub vigorously, while focusing on areas with the most buildup.

Step 3: Keep the grout clean

We can all agree that well-installed tiles can make any bathroom look modern and classy. They are also ideal for bathrooms since they are very resistant to moisture. But there is one downside to having tiles installed, and that is Grout.

It is used to keep the tiles together and looks beautiful when fresh. But because it is porous, it absorbs dirt, debris, and liquids easily and is more prone to staining. If it is not cleaned properly, it will become stained and mildewed, and can even crack. Dirty grout can have a certain smell to it and can make your bathroom smell strangely.

Solution:

To maintain grout in the bathroom and extend its life, follow these simple steps:

  1. Use a squeegee to wipe down the tiles on the walls after your shower. It will help remove excess water.
  2. Lightly spray the tiles with a mild shower cleaner.
  3. Every two weeks rub water and baking soda paste on the grout using a grout brush or an old toothbrush.
  4. Rinse with clear water.
  5. Dry using a squeegee.

Step 4: Keep the shower curtain free from buildup

Since shower curtains are in contact with water from the shower on a daily basis, they can develop mildew and odours if not scrubbed regularly. 

Solution:

  1. If you have a vinyl shower curtain, spray the bottom of the liner with a bleach-containing all-purpose. Do this several times a month to keep soap scum, water minerals, and mildew at bay.
  2. If you have a cloth shower curtain, put it in the washing machine every month.
  3. Coat the shower curtains with a water repellent.

Checklist for Planning a Renovation

Regardless of size, home renovation is a huge undertaking not meant for the faint of heart. On top of that, if you choose to DIY the whole project it will be even more tiresome and grueling than one that involves hiring contractors. And hiring contractors does not mean that you can be completely hands-off. Far from it – you will have to be involved in every stage of the project.

But since these projects can improve the condition of the house, make your home safer or boost its market value, home renovations can be extremely rewarding. Additionally, with proper planning, you can save time and money and still make the remodeling totally worth the hard work. To reduce cost and make the process less daunting, we’ll walk you through the important factors you need to consider well before hammers start swinging.  

Below is a checklist that can make the remodeling project as smooth as possible and help you keep everything on track:

Step 1: Make a list.

There are several types of home renovations projects, such as:

  • Whole house restorations
  • Home additions, such as home offices or family rooms
  • Interior remodeling, such as kitchen or bathroom remodeling
  • Finished attics or basements
  • Exterior remodeling, including roof change or replacement and insulation of siding and trim
  • Porches, sunrooms, patios renovation/addition

Once you’ve decided on the type of renovation you want to get, you can start drafting a list. Draw two columns on a piece of paper or an Excel sheet. The first column will consist of the things you NEED, while the second column will contain the list of things you WANT. This will not only help you in the preparation of the budget stage, but it will also come in handy if you ever need to make tough choices. With this list in hand, you will be able to prioritize in case of budget overruns.

Step 2: Plan a budget.

A ballpark estimate will help you determine if you will need to apply for a loan as well as what you will need to cover with your contractor and architect. A word of advice: consider adding a 10% padding to your budget to err on the side of caution. This surplus will act as an added precaution in case of any unforeseen circumstances.

Use the list from step 1 and prioritize the ‘needs’ above the ‘wants’. At this stage, you want to consider things you are ready to compromise on and things you want to splurge on. Using the same Excel workbook, you can create a new spreadsheet where you’ll list everything that needs to be done and its estimated cost. Remember to account for labor and materials cost, including for small things such as paintbrushes, nails, hammer or tape.  

Step 3: Set a target date.

You can’t plan for a home renovation without setting a deadline. Can you imagine planning a roofing overhaul during the winter season? Precisely. Look at the size of your project and decide by when you want it done.

But be realistic.

A complete house renovation cannot be done within 3 months. While it might not be impossible, it will be extremely challenging and costly. You will not only put a lot of pressure on the contractors but also, due to time constraints, you will inevitably have to sacrifice a lot of things and compromise on others.  

Instead, plan properly so you schedule the demolition and/or renovation at the right time. Since home renovations are meant to last for a long time, set a timeline that is feasible, affordable and that does not lead to you regretting the whole project.  

Step 4: Consider how the renovation will impact your day-to-day life

Once you know for how long the project will last, start thinking about how you and your family will cope with the noise, dirt, and the comings and goings in your home. There are two options you can choose from when finalizing household arrangement:

  1. Delimit a room or a set of rooms that will remain relatively untouched. Plan accordingly so you can stay there for the entire duration of the project. Remember to reserve storage space for furnishings,
  2. If the project won’t last long, consider booking a hotel room or renting a flat on a short-term basis. You can also book a hotel room for the days on which you will have no access to water or electricity.
  3. On the other hand, if you know the project will last for a relatively long period, consider moving in temporarily with your parents or staying at a friend’s place.  

You are now ready to start looking for contractors and/or architects. Remember to not rush this process either. Consider asking people you know for recommendations, interviewing each


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