Energy efficiency

It's In Our Nature campaign photo of mountain landscape with sun and sky.

Building owners, occupants, and code officials are increasingly sensitive to energy use (and costs), and are demanding more and more efficiency from the products they buy and endorse. 

The ever-growing “sustainable living” movement serves to reinforce this fact. VELUX has been ahead of the curve, and intends to stay there. With more than 90% of our production ENERGY STAR qualified in Canadian climate zones, you can specify our products confidently and proudly. And we want to hear from you if you have specific suggestions on how we could do even better for your clients. 

To reduce CO2 emissions and optimize energy performance, it is necessary to consider the building as a whole, not just the sum of its components. 

Energy efficiency needs to be incorporated into the very design of the building and natural available resources, such as the sun and wind, should be exploited to a maximum.

For instance, windows should be considered as energy contributors. They should be placed at strategic locations to allow for solar heat gain and optimum natural ventilation; different types of windows should be used for north and south-facing installation. The combined effect of these two factors can be enhanced by adding blinds that provide a flexible building envelope that keep heat in on cold winter nights and out in summer.

Intelligent houses of the future will be designed to control the indoor climate automatically; smart enough to know when to insulate from cold, when to protect from heat and when to provide ventilation. 

What is an
ENERGY STAR® label? 

A marketing designation developed by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). A product with the ENERGY STAR label must meet certain energy performance criteria. The ENERGY STAR label is the simplest and fastest way for a consumer to ensure product performance for their region of the country. Since the energy performance of windows, doors, TDD's and skylights varies by climate, products are labelled for all US and Canadian climate zones. Skylights and TDD's receive a different rating than windows and doors. Most VELUX standard skylights meet the ENERGY STAR requirements for Canadian climate zones. 

What’s required for a manufacturer to have a product ENERGY STAR® labelled? 

  • Product must be NFRC certified and labelled
  • Product meets ENERGY STAR® requirements for the labelled climate zone(s)

Energy codes

The cost of energy continues its upward trend. There is more and more pressure on architects to design energy efficient buildings and on builders to use highly energy efficient products, both residentially and commercially... while keeping costs down!

It is a challenge for the construction industry to understand and comply with the energy efficiency guidelines that have been written into the latest International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and other state and local energy codes. In some cases, when lower quality fenestration products are selected, these codes limit the area of windows and skylights that can be installed in any given building.

The overall energy performance of the building "envelope," or the U-factors of its components, must meet strict minimal values in order for a construction permit to be granted. One of the traditional ways to meet energy efficiency requirements while still designing bright, airy buildings is to use ENERGY STAR qualified products. 

Most VELUX products are ENERGY STAR qualified for US and Canada, which means that they meet criteria set by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ENERGY STAR fenestration products must have their heat loss, heat gain and light transmittance tested and then certified by the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) in order to qualify.

By specifying or using ENERGY STAR products, architects and builders can use more windows and skylights, bring more daylight inside and create more attractive buildings and more livable spaces while still meeting the local energy codes economically.

In warmer climates, there is great potential for lighting energy savings using emerging control technologies in combination with more effective daylighting products like VELUX skylights and VELUX SUN TUNNEL skylights. Find energy code and regulation documents related to VELUX products.