Lighting in a zero energy home

Lighting is a primary target for energy savings, because of its largest individual use of power. Lighting is responsible for 25-40 percent of energy consumption.

Natural light

A well designed zero energy home maximizes the use of natural lighting.

Benefits of natural light:

  • visual – Natural light also provides a perfect white light
  • health benefits
  • financial benefits – the energy savings could be considerable by allowing more natural light to penetrate and controlling both its light and heat components

Possible negative aspects of natural lighting:

  • glare
  • overheating
  • limited variability
  • privacy issues due to transparent materials
  • reduced insulation value of windows – unless the zero energy home is specifically designed to utilize passive solar heating, energy saving windows should not exceed 15% of the wall area because they have a lower insulation value than walls.

Solar tubes

Solar tubes are not skylights. Solar tubes refracts and reflects the sun’s light into zero energy home, decreasing the need for artificial lighting. They can be installed in most homes providing natural light and reducing energy bills for lighting.

How solar light tubes work?

solar light tube

solar light tube

Solar tubes capture sunlight on the roof through a small dome and reflect the light down a tube. Light is then bounced through a coated metal tube to a diffuser lens in the ceiling. They simply convey sunlight through the roof to the inside of the house

How to install solar light tubes?