Skylights can be a useful addition to your shed project. In this article we discuss what you need to know about skylights.
Does my shed need skylights?
Skylights are commonly used in machinery sheds, workshops, shearing sheds, horse arena covers and yard covers. So, if you are building one of these sheds it is worth considering including skylights.
Benefits of skylights
- In enclosed machinery sheds, skylights allows you to find your way to machinery without having to turn lighting on and off. It is also common in machinery sheds where there isn’t power to the shed.
- Skylights can be installed over the working areas in a yard cover and is a practical option if there is no power nearby for artificial lighting.
- While it is not normally advisable to have skylights directly over the shearers, skylights are very common in shearing sheds as having a well-lit shed assists with sheep flowing in efficiently. Having the area above the grating well-lit also limits issues with light coming up through the grating.
- Skylights can be installed in both the walls and the roof of a shed. Installing skylights in the roof obviously provides the most light, however installing it along the top of the shed walls will potentially mean less glare as it won’t get direct sunlight.
- Skylights block up to 99% of UV. This means the paint on machinery stored within a machinery shed or a workshop with skylights won’t fade.
Which skylights are best?
There are a number of skylight products available including ‘ice clear’ and ‘opal.’ We would generally use ‘opal’ as it diffuses the light well, meaning that it limits the glare. It also means that no shadows are cast under yard covers and in shearing sheds so it won’t affect the flow of sheep through these sheds. We would also recommend using this product in horse arena covers for this reason.
Skylights versus hi-bay lights
Both skylights and artificial lighting like hi-bay lights have their benefits and the best option for you will depend on how you plan to use your shed.
Skylights can be installed in the roof and walls to take full advantage of the available natural light, helping you to save on power costs.
The effectiveness of skylights does depend on the orientation of your shed and the time of the year.
Some wool producers prefer artificial lighting in their yard cover as it can make classing easier.
Hi-bay lights can be easily suspended from the truss structure and allows you to safely work in your shed at night or during low-light hours.
For projects like workshops and shearing sheds we generally recommend using a combination of both to get the most out of your shed, make your shed safer and make detailed work like machinery maintenance easier.