Invest in Operable Skylights with Shades

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for Direct from the Designers

Even those who want the natural lighting that skylights can provide don’t always install them. They might remember leaky versions of the past or worry about not being able to control the sunlight streaming in. Well, you don’t need to settle for plain, solid ceilings—today’s skylights are leakproof with proper installation and give you more control than ever before. Here’s why skylights that open and have shades are worth the investment!

VELUX Solar-Powered "Fresh Air" Skylights

Solar-Powered “Fresh Air” Skylights make a great choice anywhere because they charge a battery using a built-in solar panel and don’t require any wiring. Here, they open to cool and refresh a bonus playroom, keeping it comfortable for all-day play.

Skylights That Open for Ventilation

Homes are stuffy these days. Not only have we made them more airtight to improve energy efficiency, but we rely on HVAC systems for climate control. This means most people don’t even think to air out their homes like they did in the past. It probably seems unnecessary to open up all the windows to refresh indoor air, but pollutants get trapped and build up inside without proper ventilation. So, more efficient homes and heating and cooling actually led to an overall decrease in average indoor air quality.

Luckily, you can effectively vent your home through the roof! Given their positions high on the ceiling, skylights that open are perfectly placed to release hot, stale air and carry pollutants out with it. You’ll feel the difference immediately, but healthier air will also contribute to better sleep and general well-being. If this sounds good to you, venting skylights are the way to go—they’re way more efficient at ventilation than windows, and you can open them at the touch of a button on a remote control or on your smart device through an app.

VELUX Skylight Shades

Skylight shades can be blackout or light-filtering and come in a variety of colors to match your décor. This bedroom features blackout shades in a neutral color to completely block outside light when they're drawn down. It’s a great choice for those who want to decide whether to rise with or sleep through the morning sun.

Light-Controlling Skylight Shades

Most people don’t enjoy having harsh sunlight streaming down from above while inside their homes. That can count as a point against skylights, especially if the house is oriented in such a way that glare is unavoidable throughout the day. Additionally, strong light brings heat along with it—not what you want to deal with in the hotter months! The solution isn’t to forgo skylights entirely, but to take control of them with shades.

Just as with windows, you can and should outfit skylights with shades as a light-control measure. There are different types—you might like blackout shades in the bedroom so you can sleep in, but light-filtering shades for living spaces so you can cut glare while still taking advantage of diffused natural light. Skylight shades come in a variety of colors to support your interior design and offer simple manual or remote control depending on their placement, allowing you to adjust them at will to keep your home comfortable no matter the hour or season.


VELUX ACTIVE with NETATMO allows you to take a hands-off approach. This smart system monitors your interior conditions and operates your skylights and blinds to refresh your air and maintain your preferred temperature. It couldn’t be easier to get the most out of your skylights!

Automatic Skylight Optimization

Did you know that modern skylights can be part of a smart home system? That’s right—you don’t even have to lift a finger to have them operate to your liking! Smart skylights can be set to open and close on a schedule and/or in response to interior conditions thanks to temperature, humidity, and CO2 sensors. They’ll also close at the first hint of rain, so you don’t have to worry about monitoring the weather. Once you have electric or solar powered skylights in your home, you can set up this smart system in minutes and enjoy the benefits of a healthier indoor environment!

Check out VELUX® if you’re looking to add skylights to your home! They offer a range of products for all sorts of roof and ceiling pitches, including nifty roof windows for egress and adaptable Sun Tunnel skylights that bring sunlight down through attic space. Those looking for typical skylights will find them in fixed, manual, electric, and solar-powered formats, so you can install whatever works for you. Schedule a consultation with a local installer to get the process started today!

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