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How to Brighten Your Eco-Friendly Home Using Solar Tubes

by The Urban Specialists 08/15/2021


Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Does your home have a dark space that could use a little natural light? A solar tube could be the answer. Solar tubes provide a source of natural light in areas where extra windows and skylights aren't options. Solar tubes are typically less expensive to install than skylights, too. This makes them a popular alternative for homeowners who have limited home-improvement budgets.

What Is a Solar Tube?

Your contractor may be more familiar with other common terms for solar tubes such as sun tunnels, tubular skylights, or daylight tubes but they all describe the same feature - a type of metallic tunnel that connects your space with your roof's exterior. Usually around 10 to 14 inches in diameter, the interior of each tube is reflective. It collects the light that passes through a plastic dome on your roof and reflects it through the tunnel to your interior fixture. Before the light enters your home, it passes through a diffuser which softens and disperses it. In this way, a solar tube can function more efficiently than a skylight.

What Are the Benefits of Solar Tubes?

The benefits of solar tubes are many. Not only are they a cost-effective way to brighten a dark room, but they're energy efficient, too. They're powered completely by the sun and contribute zero dollars to your utility bill. They provide warm, natural light that's a good source of vitamin D. They're easy and economical to install as well. The average cost of adding a skylight could be as much as $2,000. Comparatively, a solar tube typically runs between $500 and $1,000.

One of the biggest benefits of solar tubes is that they work where other options won't. If you have an attic above you or limited exterior roof space, a skylight may not be possible. Solar tubes are small enough to fit in cramped spaces, and their tunnel-like designs pass easily through attic spaces.

How Much Light Will I Get from a Solar Tube?

Solar tubes come in several sizes. According to EnergySage, if you purchase the 10-inch tube, expect the same amount of light you would get from about three 100-watt light bulbs. If you opt for a 14-inch tube, you can expect enough illumination to brighten a space approximately 300 square feet in size.

There are some limitations to solar tubes, however. They won't shine as brightly on overcast days or during winter. They also don't provide the view of the sky that a skylight offers. Still, they're free to operate, and once you have one professionally installed, it's basically maintenance-free. There are even DIY kits you can buy if you feel confident enough to install a solar tube yourself.

If you're searching for an affordable way to bring more natural light into your living space, consider investing in these tubular skylights. Not only are they affordable, but they're eco-friendly and suitable for most spaces, even the smallest and darkest corners of your home.

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The Urban Specialists

CITY RESOURCES The great thing about urban centers is just how much stuff you find around you. Your favorite restaurants, cultural activities and museums are within walking distance of your front door. It's convenient and adds to how much you get out of your place. For more info on New Haven, check out these links: Info New Haven Visit New Haven We are passionate about the environment. We are eager to help you to add value to your current home, save money on utilities, make your lives more energy efficient and eco-friendly, and generally live a "greener" lifestyle, all without sacrifice. For more info on green living in New Haven, visit these sites: CT DEEP Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven USGBC's Green Home Guide We care about historic properties and their communities and wish to encourage preservation of our community's architectural and cultural history. For more info on New Haven preservation, check out these links: CT Trust for Historic Preservation New Haven Preservation Trust Historic Homes Downtown Areas Neighborhoods Green Homes Bethany Branford Guilford Hamden New Haven North Haven Orange West Haven Woodbridge Olivia C. Martson Olivia Martson is a long time resident of New Haven. She lives and works in downtown New Haven and is thoroughly familiar with the pros and cons of urban living. From 1992-1997, she served on the New Haven Board of Alderman as the elected representative for Ward 2, the downtown neighborhood immediately west of Yale University. Fore more : Biography - http://media.mlspropertyfinder.com/418613/preview.jpg