With the frequent beautiful weather in Southern California, skylights and solar tubes are extremely popular. We’ve put together this guide to help you determine the difference between solar tubes vs skylights, and which option is right for you.
Traditional skylight windows have been used for decades now, to let light into your attic rooms. They’re a great way of bringing in natural light, but are they the best for your home?
Solar tubes are becoming more and more popular with homeowners, so what’s the difference?
Solar tubes vs skylights: Is one better than the other?
Let’s find out.
Solar Tubes Vs Skylights: The Differences
First of all, you need to know the difference between a solar tube and a skylight.
The traditional skylight is a window that sits on your roof, to allow natural light to come in. It can be opened to allow air in, and if there’s a good view outside the window you’ll get to enjoy that, too.
A solar tube is a device that’s designed to allow light in, much like a skylight, but amplify it at the same time. It works in very much the same way as a periscope.
The light comes in from a plastic dome on your roof, and comes in through the pipe into your home.
The opening of the pipe on the roof is often coated with reflective materials, to amplify the light that comes through.
The light comes out through an opening in your ceiling, to diffuse the natural sunlight in much the same way a light bulb would work.
The Benefits Of Skylights
If you want to decide which is best for you, you need to know the benefits and drawbacks of each. There’s a reason why skylights have been so popular for so long.
They’re a surprisingly simple way to allow more natural light into your home. Installing skylights onto your roof will allow more light into a room in an unobtrusive way.
– Air Circulation
Skylights are also great for circulating the air in your home.
If you find the air quality in your house isn’t as good as it should be, opening your sky light allows you to cycle the air around, letting fresh air in and stale air out.
Finally, they’re a natural way to light your home.
Having a skylight in a room that’s often dark during the day will save you a lot of money in the long run.
You’ll be paying less in electric bills, as you won’t need to turn your lights on until it gets dark at night. In that way, a skylight can pay for itself.
The Benefits Of Solar Tubes
So a skylight works well in bringing light into your home, so what makes the solar tube different?
Their design is basically the logical progression of the traditional skylight.
It makes the most of the light that comes through them, especially with the reflective material. It’s very simple, but it gives the light a boost that you wouldn’t get through a regular window.
The light is diffused when it comes through your ceiling, in a very similar manner to a light bulb. In fact, some solar tubes give out the same amount of light as 3 100 watt bulbs.
That’s a lot of light to get just from one tube, and of course you can have more than one installed.
Some home owners have reported they keep trying to turn the lights off when they leave a room, as they feel as though they’ve got the lights on. In fact, it’s just the natural light coming from their solar tubes.
What’s really great about solar tubes as opposed to skylights is that they’re easier and cheaper to install.
They take about four hours to install, depending on how large the tube is and where you’re installing it.
There’s minimal inside work to be done, such as cutting or painting. Once they’re installed, there’s no risk of damages of leaking thanks to the design of the tube itself.
The Drawbacks Of Solar Tubes And Skylights
Of course, there are some drawbacks you need to keep in mind as you decide between skylights and solar tubes.
Skylights are a good option for natural light, but along with that natural light comes heat.
If you’re trying to keep your home cool during the summer, this will pose a challenge for you.
That unfiltered light will also lead to the fading of furnishings or carpets over time, too. It’s an insulation weak spot as well, so you’ll lose heat through the window during the winter months.
With a solar tube, you’ll find that unlike a skylight, you won’t be able to open them like a traditional skylight in order to let air in when you want to.
Because they’re a sealed system, you’ll also find that you can’t see through them, which is a problem if there’s a good view outside.
Which One Is Best For You?
As you can see, when deciding between solar tubes vs skylights, it comes down to a matter of personal preference.
Skylights have always been popular, and with good reason.
They let the light in, allow you to circulate air, and create bright spots in an otherwise dark home. They’re a great option if you want to be able to see outside, too.
A solar tube, on the other hand, takes that natural light and amplifies it. They’re perfect for dark spots in your home that you always have to light using electric lights.
Their simple design minimizes the risk of leaks and damage, too. They’re quicker to install, making them less of a disruption to your home while the installation is being done.
You now have all the information you need regarding solar tubes vs skylights, so now you’ll need to get one installed.
Start looking around for quotes on the job, and don’t forget to check out reviews of the work companies do online.
You can have that extra natural light in your home sooner than you’d think.
Solar tubes and skylights both offer the chance to get extra natural light into your home, without being obtrusive.
Pick the one that works best for you and your home, and get it installed today.
All Climate Roofing offers both skylight and solar tube installation and repair. Contact us today.