If you are undertaking a home extension, you may be wondering how you can maximise the natural daylight entering your home. Natural light has the ability to change the atmosphere in the finished room, and if done well, can often make the space feel larger. There are lots of different ways to maximise natural light, both with external techniques, such as large Velux and glass doors, as well as some internal changes, such as internal windows and use of reflective surfaces.
It is important to consider different factors when opting for an extension which uses a lot of glazing. We have highlighted some factors you should to consider when determining your final design.Aesthetics
Glass Extensions often look very beautiful and delicate, and they produce an airy and spacious feeling by creating a seamless connection between the interior and exterior areas. As well as this, glazing can now be made in large bespoke sizes with different types of framing. When opting for glass, you may want to think about some window treatments as too much light can cause glare and make it difficult to enjoy certain activities such as watching TV. Anti-glare systems and treatments can be designed with your desired style in mind.
It is key to be realistic with your budget as it can really impact the type and size of glazing you include in your extension. Glass is more expensive than using traditional materials such as bricks and block work, especially when working with large bespoke sizes. If you are trying to maximise the amount of glazing whilst keeping the costs down, it may be worth looking into openings and skylights which come in standard sizes, such as Velux windows. You’d be surprised at the effect a large Velux window can have on your room, and if finished well it certainly doesn’t have to look like the budget option.
Structure and Support
Having a glass heavy extension may have structural implications, as larger slabs of glass can be incredibly heavy, and it will need to be fitted with appropriate supports in place. New extensions are typically constructed with a cavity wall, which is a good thing for your glass roof as the cavity can hide a steel column if required. Your contractor will also need to consider practicality in terms of getting the glazing to the correct place onsite, as large slabs of glazing may not fit through a typical hallway. There are always options, and some careful planning can ensure that costs are kept down.
Practicality and Maintenance
Building Control will be interested in the thickness and quality of your glass, particularly if you’re opting for floor to ceiling windows or large glass doors. It’s worth thinking about how you intend to clean an all-glass roof, both for aesthetic purposes but also in terms of safety. The glass roof will need a minimum slope of 1% to allow rainwater to run off the surface and remove dirt build up. Depending on the design, you may have to call in a specialist to clean the glass extension.
Heat Gain and Heat Loss
Glass will heat your room, particularly on sunny days – think of the ‘greenhouse effect’. In the summer, you want to prevent excessive heat gain. Your Building Control Officer might request a set of SAP calculations, to ensure the glass has been specially adapted to prevent heat penetration.
If you are considering an extension and are interested in the benefits of an all glass extension – give us a call and book a site visit. Our Design Team are happy to help and talk through any questions you have. To book your site visit, get in touch with our team today on 0207 242 5353.