Residential Construction Going Green

FORT MILL, S.C., Sept. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Green, or environmentally friendly, sustainable construction practices are rapidly moving into the mainstream.

A McGraw-Hill Construction/National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) survey defines the green homebuilding movement as one, "which applies innovative and environmentally sensitive construction techniques and products to reduce energy and water consumption and improve residential comfort and safety." One of NAHB's seven categories of Green building is indoor air quality. Residential Systems Magazine agrees, and identifies energy efficiency as another "hallmark of the green building movement."

According to Joe Patrick, senior product manager for VELUX America, both indoor air quality and energy efficiency can be enhanced with venting skylights. He says that they admit natural light from above to reduce energy costs and exhaust stale air, while transforming living areas into bright spaces.

"In bathrooms especially," Patrick says, "venting skylights reduce condensation build-up while providing a beautiful view of the sky above, without affording anyone the opportunity to see in. You get privacy plus the use of wall space, where a window isn't necessary, for decorating, storage, or another form of space utilization."

Patrick says that skylights admit 30 percent more light than vertical windows in dormers, and provide the drama of a sky view that can't be achieved with vertical windows. "And skylights, whether fixed or venting, which can be fitted with interior blinds and shades or exterior awnings, offer much more privacy than vertical windows," he says. There are also skylights available with electrochromic glass that can be tinted electronically by remote control to control light and heat gain while still providing the view to the sky.

Patrick adds that the modern skylights make one of the biggest fears of homeowners, leaks, a thing of the past. "Quality units offer separate, pre- engineered flashing kits for shingles, tile or metal roofing materials," he says. "They are designed to prevent leaks over the full life of a roof and, properly installed, simply don't leak."

For skylight selection literature call 1-800-283-2831 or visit . For government information on window and skylight energy efficiency visit , and for independent agency information visit or .

CONTACT: Keith Hobbs of VELUX America, +1-919-844-0064,

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