For Electric Customers
Placing windows and skylights in areas to maximize the benefits of natural light and temperature control to save energy on heating and lighting. Today’s energy-efficient windows and advances in lighting choices give us an opportunity to reduce the need for artificial lighting.
The size and locations of windows should be based on direction (north, south, east and west) instead of their effect on the cosmetic appearance of the building. South-facing windows are better for daylighting and for average seasonal temperatures. They allow most winter sunlight into the home but little direct sun during the summer, especially when properly shaded. North-facing windows are also better for daylighting, allowing even, natural light, producing little glare and almost no summer heat gain which saves energy used for air conditioning.
Although east and west facing windows provide good daylight penetration in the morning and evening, they can cause glare and allow unwanted heat in during the summer. East and west facing windows also contribute little to solar heating during the winter.
If you're building a new house, you may want to consider daylighting as part of your whole-house design - an approach for building an energy-efficient home.
Visit the Department of Energy website
for more on daylighting.