Architectural Dormers are functional pieces that add a prominent architectural touch to commercial and industrial projects. Louver dormers create effective ventilation of attic areas while window dormers can also be used as skylights, adding natural lighting to your space.
- Available with louvers for ventilation, windows for light, or plenums for exhaust.
- Styles include half round, gable, round top, and eyebrow, as well as custom built. Sizes range from 18\" wide up to 14 foot wide, two piece units.
- All flanges are fully welded or soldered and are available with receivers for standing seam.
- All standard dormers are available in larger sizes and include self contained internal structure.
- Units are shipped to your job site ready to install.
Louvers and vents allow effective ventilation and natural lighting while adding a distinctive architectural touch to residences and commercial projects. These elements are constructed to add striking design while providing practical and functional purpose.
Louvers and vents are available in a wide range of materials and sizes to fit your project needs.
What is a Dormer
A dormer is a structural element of a building that protrudes from the plane of a sloping roof surface. Dormers are used, either in original construction or as later additions, to create usable space in the roof of a building by adding headroom and usually also by enabling addition of windows.
Often conflated with the term "dormer", a dormer window is a window set into the dormer. Like skylights, dormer windows are a source of light and ventilation for top floors, but unlike skylights (which are parallel to the roof surface) they also increase the amount of headroom in the room and allow for more usable space.
A blind dormer or false dormer is a dormer that can only be seen from the outside of the house: it is roofed on the inside, and does not provide any extra space or light. These are often used to make the house appear more impressive.
A dormer is often one of the primary elements of a loft conversion.
The main types of dormer are:
- Gable fronted dormer: Also called simply a gable dormer, the front of this dormer rises along a flat plane to a point at the ridge of the dormer roof. It is also known as a dog-house dormer (due to its visual similarity to same).
- Hip roof dormer: This style of dormer is an analogue to the hip roof—its roof is composed of three sloping planes that converge at the ridge of the dormer.
- Flat roof dormer: The roof of this dormer is flat and parallel to the ground with a frontal eave that parallels the main roof eave.
- Shed dormer: This dormer also has a flat roof but the roof slopes downward at an angle somewhat less than that of the surrounding roof. Its front eave line is, again, parallel to the main roof eave line. Shed dormers can provide more attic space and head room than gable dormers, but cannot be the same pitch as the main roof and may therefore require different roof sheeting. Often used in gable-roofed homes, a shed dormer has a single-planed roof, pitched at a shallower angle than the main roof.
- Wall dormer: This is a dormer whose face is coplanar with the face of the wall below, breaking the line at the cornice of the building.
- Eyebrow or eyelid dormer: "A low dormer on the slope of a roof. It has no sides, the roofing being carried over it in a wavy line."  The bottom of an eyebrow dormer is flat and the top is curved.
- Link dormer: This is a large dormer that houses a chimney or joins one part of a roof to another.
- Bonneted dormer: This is an arched roof dormer, rounded in shape when viewed from front. Popular in Victorian homes, especially in certain areas, like the Southcott-style row-houses called Jellybean Row in St. John's, Newfoundland.
- Nantucket dormer: This is a complicated dormer structure composed of two gable dormers connected by a shed dormer.
What is a Louver
A louver (American English) or louvre (British English) is a window blind or shutter with horizontal slats that are angled to admit light and air, but to keep out rain, direct sunshine, and noise. The angle of the slats may be adjustable, usually in blinds and windows, or fixed.
Louvers originated in the Middle Ages as lantern-like constructions in wood that were fitted on top of roof holes in large kitchens to allow ventilation while keeping out rain and snow. They were originally rather crude constructions consisting merely of a barrel. Later they evolved into more elaborate designs made of pottery, taking the shape of faces where the smoke and steam from cooking would pour out through the eyes and mouth, or into constructions that were more like modern louvers, with slats that could be opened or closed by pulling on a string.
Modern louvers are often made of aluminium, metal, wood, or glass. They may be opened and closed with a metal lever, pulleys, or through motorized operators.
Some modern louver systems serve to improve indoor daylighting. Fixed mirrored louver systems can limit glare and of redirect diffuse light. Such louvers may be integrated in between two panes of double glazing.
Louvers are rarely seen as primary design elements in the language of modern architecture, but rather simply a technical device. However, there are examples of architects who use them as part of the overall aesthetic effect of their buildings. The most well-known example is Finnish modernist architect Alvar Aalto who would create aesthetic effects in the facades of his buildings through the combination of different types and sizes of louvers, some fixed some moveable, and made mostly from wood (e.g., the various buildings of the Helsinki University of Technology). A second example, taking influence from Aalto, is the second-generation modernist architect Juha Leiviskä.
Louvers may be used as a type of flood opening, usually covered by one or more moving flaps. They are designed to allow floodwaters to enter and leave the building, equalizing hydrostatic pressure on the walls and mitigating structural damage due to flooding.