Skylight placement in living room


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Old 03-15-10, 07:13 PM
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Skylight placement in living room

I don't have as much light in my house as I'd like (few windows) and I'm interested in installing skylights. I'm going ot hire someone but i want to have an idea of where i could locate them.

Here are three rough sketches that I'm considering:

Login to a private Photobucket.com album

My questions:
1) can you locate skylights in the same 'channel' but on opposite slopes of the roof and have a large open chamber in the living room?

2) how do you avoid condensation building up at the bottom edge of the skylights and running down the drywall (or worse, getting behind the drywall and messing stuff up)?

3) my house was built in 1977 and I think it has engineered trusses. Does that mean that if i place two skylights on the same slope that i would have to have them seperated by a 'channel' and thus need two seperate chutes/chambers coming up from the living room or could I place them in adjoining channels and cut the exposed truss (at the ceiling level and any exposed supports extending from ceiling 2x4's up to the roofline) between them?

Trust me, I'm not going DIY. I'm asking really basic questions, I know. I'm not assuming anything.

Thanks,

Chris
 
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Old 03-15-10, 07:26 PM
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your pictures are password protected, you might want to change your photobucket settings to make them public.
 
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Old 03-16-10, 04:48 AM
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Dang, that was stupid. Ok, the guest password 'crbpics' should work. Thanks!
 
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Old 03-16-10, 04:00 PM
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I'm not much of a framer, so I'll acquiesce to anyone here with more experience... but as I see it, there are a couple limiting factors.

With truss construction, you are limited in the width of the skylight you select. Assuming 24" OC trusses, (with 22 1/2" between them) your skylight can probably be no more than 22" wide. You are also limited in the positioning of the skylights, since they must fall between your existing trusses, where ever they may be. So if you are wanting them in an exact location on the roof (left or right) or centered in the living room you probably are stuck with a position that is in 24" increments.

As far as the open space between the two, I don't see why that wouldn't be doable, provided you don't have any structural cross-bracing in the trusses that couldn't be cut and moved. (this is where you'd want the advice of a structural engineer to sign off on your plan and say that everything is okay. By paying him to do that you have an insurance policy of sorts that relieves you of any liability should HIS plan fail.)

As trusses are installed, some bracing is installed to keep things straight during construction. Some of this gets left in place just because it doesn't pay to go back and remove it. Other time, the bracing is there by DESIGN and needs to stay... it just depends on the structural plan.

The skylights would obviously be separate for the first 16" or so because you'd want to frame and insulate a new ceiling between the two extension jambs. You'll also want to think about adding insulation to the sides of the trusses on each side, or you will have cold sidewalls.

Condensation is a problem sometimes but if you get the best quality low-e glass (obviously NO SINGLE PANE!) that will help. Adding a cold air return or a heat register up there is not a bad idea either. And if that's not possible the least you could do is to install some inline circulation fans. (basically just a duct that goes from the ceiling below up to the side wall of your chute that has an inline fan in it... which helps circulate your existing conditioned air.) Keeping the air moving is usually all that is needed to prevent condensation from forming on cold walls or cold glass.
 
 

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