Why the frame does not play a secondary role in rooflights, and why the use of stepped glass and the element construction method pays off.
Whether on a flat, pitched, monopitch or barrel roof, rooflights allow rooms to be flooded evenly with daylight. What I always notice during consultations is that it’s not so much the glass element that gets people talking, but rather the surrounding structure. With modern insulating glass – we use 95 percent triple glazing – there is usually no need to discuss u values. What remains important is how to deal with the many interfaces around the glass. Keywords: insulating frame and insulation frame. In our oecoline elements, a sandwich wood construction is used that is tailored to the specific requirements. In my view, the decisive factor is that the complete roof window element is prefabricated under controlled conditions. It is painted ready for use and already fitted with any cable ducts, for example for ventilation, NRWA or concealed lighting strips (LED), which we also install. Our credo: The more we can prepare in our factory in Lungern, the better the quality and thus also the quality of the on-site interfaces.
Intensive preliminary clarifications, fast construction time
HP Gasser AG specializes mainly in rooflights that deviate from structural standards. The preliminary clarifications are often complex and detailed. In the case of renovation projects, soundings are sometimes even necessary in order to avoid any unpleasant surprises during installation. These are all efforts that are made up for by the fast element construction method during assembly. A case study: As part of the conversion of the Trilapark (formerly Trilacolor) into the “Zofingen Industrial Park”, a thermal refurbishment of the characteristically jagged shed roof (sawtooth roof) became urgent last summer. The old wire glass windows made way for oecoline vario glazing. Preliminary sounding revealed that, for structural reasons, certain concrete girders could not be drilled into because of tension cables. In order to avoid these neuralgic points, the window elements, some of which were up to nine meters long, were designed to be self-supporting in the factory. On the construction site itself, things again went quickly: within six days, the glazed roof superstructures were in place (a total of 700m2). Our assemblers thus managed over 100m2 a day!
Why stepped glass?
This was also one of the reasons that convinced the client and architect. What was required was the work organization consideration for the progress of the interior construction as well as for the tenants who had already moved in (restaurant, dance studio, fabric dealer). To put it simply: the hole that was opened in the roof in the morning had to be closed again in the evening! In addition, the client wanted window elements with stepped glass – something that not many companies offer yet. With this stepless frame construction, rainwater runs off unhindered. This is a significant improvement over the conventional version, where a clamping strip seals the glass and sheet metal, causing standing water that can stain the window or even penetrate the structure.