The best solar tubes are deemed the best options for buyers wanting to add a little lighting with more efficiency.
Did you know that these tubes are specifically designed to distribute indirect light inside different types of homes?
However, while these lighting units are highly recommended, with limitless options available on the market, getting the right model for individual requirements can be tricky.
For this reason, we have listed some of the top-rated solar tubes sold today. Let’s start checking out their unique features, and compare the brands to see how they differ. Hopefully, our picks can give everyone an idea of what to look for.
Table of Contents
- Top-Tier Solar Tube and Skylight Reviews
- What to Look for When Buying Solar Tubes
- Where Should Solar Tubes be Placed
- How Many Solar Tubes Do I Need
- How to Install Solar Tubes
- Are Solar Tubes Better than Skylights
Top-Tier Solar Tube and Skylight Reviews
1. Solar Blaster Solar Light for Shingled Sheds
Are you planning to install a solar tube light for home? Luckily, there’s no need to worry about solar tube costs because this option is one of the most affordable ones. This light tube is particularly built for sheds. Unlike other solar products, this version is not troublesome to set up. The product includes the installation guide upon purchase.
What we liked about this sun scope is that it emits natural light to shingled-roof sheds. The transparent dome is set up on the roof. This captures the sunlight that is delivered to the shed via a short reflective tube. The reflective tube is linked to a diffuser situated inside the ceiling of the shed.
In particular, we find this lighting tool a great solution to getting natural sunlight. Since the time we had it installed in our dark shed, it has brought a relaxing difference to our place. The transparent acrylic dome is unrivaled in accumulating more sunlight to light up our shed. And we noticed that it’s quite durable against terrible weather conditions.
Best of all, what makes this model a more prominent alternative is its trim design that flawlessly weaves into the shingles. Its way of allowing ample sunlight to be delivered into our shed is impressive too.
2. Natural Light TSF-10 Tubular Skylight Kit
As a homeowner in Florida, what we want to ensure is having wonderful natural sunlight into our home. So, we discovered this 10-inch sun scope that is primarily built for flat roof applications. This 10-inch tubular skylight can light up to 150 square feet, and it is equivalent to 300W. This is a perfect option for us because it is approved for Florida code requirements.
Not to mention, the kit contains a domed prismatic diffuser and 4-feet tubing. Crafted using super durable components, this tubular skylight can withstand inclement weather conditions.
It also includes the assembly instructions, and we are impressed because it is certified by NFRC for its energy efficiency. Since we prefer using clean energy products, this sun tunnel made our life easier.
This light tube kit is regarded as one of the most outstanding models for solar powered lighting for flat roofs. Homeowners who wish to go for maintenance-free tunnel lights will find this alternative a smart purchase. Once assembled, you won’t have any other serious matters to deal with.
More importantly, your investment is in good hands because this product is manufactured by one of the most trusted solar lighting systems brands. Meanwhile, if you’re wondering what are the drawbacks to solar tube lighting, one of them is that some lights are meant for a specific application only.
3. VELUX TMF 014 0000 Sun Tunnel
When planning to purchase a tubular skylight, it pays off if you’re going to conduct thorough research. And, since we researched the top-rated sun tunnel options, we came up with this brand. This 14-inch sun scope features an acrylic dome, flexible tunnel, and a cutting-edge pitched metal flashing.
It is interesting that the flexible tunnel of this tube light allowed us to assemble it painlessly around the attic barriers. When it comes to diffusing sunlight in shorter tunnels, this solar tube can work like a charm. We don’t live in a hurricane-prone area, but we got this daylight pipe because we found it a heavy-duty unit for its purpose.
Keep in mind that this sun tunnel is precisely crafted to be assembled on low-profile roofing materials and shingles. We consider this tubular skylight a good investment because it serves as our great buddy in generously lighting up our housing space during the day.
4. Solar Blaster SBLT-CNX-067 Solar Tube Skylight
There’s no denying that sun tunnels are eco-friendly and energy-efficient; however, the right tube skylight options are oftentimes a bit challenging to find and may cost more. The good news is that this light tube works excellently for its purpose but does not cost an arm and a leg. It’s good to know that lighting up the inside of our container is no longer a serious struggle nowadays.
For buyers looking for a tubular skylight kit that is designed for Conex brand containers, this is worth checking out. It is painless to set up, and once installed, you could see and feel the difference it can bring inside your dark container. The user manual is included in the kit.
The kit also contains two exterior acrylic domes that are assembled in aluminum trim. Once on the roof, the transparent dome will begin capturing more light, and this will be transmitted to the container via the short reflective tube. This tube is linked to the diffuser within the ceiling of the container.
What to Look for When Buying Solar Tubes
Most solar tube kits come in diverse sizes and shapes. In the same way, they are designed for different applications and are set up on different types of roofs.
To add, most solar tubes are specifically built with an ample amount of lighting to appropriately illuminate an area.
Here are some of the buying tips you need to check out:
The Type of Roof
Take note that not all solar tubes are appropriate for all types of roofs. Most high quality sun tunnel options available today are manufactured merely for roof types that are engineered using asphalt.
Nonetheless, if your roof is constructed with metal or tile, it is possible to make them compatible with the aid of a flashing adapter.
Fortunately, a huge amount of these tubes come with one as a component of the kit. Please note that you’ll need a flashing adapter if your roof is designed with a slope between 15 to 60 degrees.
Flexible or Rigid
The two types of sun tunnels available include those that are flexible and rigid. You might want to pick the appropriate natural light energy systems for your home depending on the distance you prefer the light to transmit.
For example, a rigid sun tunnel can diffuse more illumination since it can provide a straight path down to the room. But, these options are usually pricier.
Meanwhile, a flexible sun tunnel is typically more recommended for houses with flat roofs and is ideal for short distances only.
Weather Conditions in your Area
The best sun tunnels are generally UV-protected. Hence, it is unnecessary to worry about sun damage within your residence.
Nevertheless, if you reside in a location with harsh weather conditions like extreme winds and snow, a more durable option is recommended.
Fortunately, plenty of solar light tubes have been all-weather-tested so that they can tolerate inclement weather conditions.
Fundamentally, you need to ensure that the solar tube’s dome is built using polycarbonate.
The Size of the Room
It’s worth noting that solar tubes that are sized differently are adept at transmitting distinct amounts of illumination.
Hence, it is important to consider what room you wish to illuminate. For instance, gauge how large your kitchen, bathroom, living room is per square meter.
In doing so, you can determine what size tube you will require. For example, for industrial places, a tube between 18 to 21 inches is required.
In general, a 10-inch light could commonly illuminate around 150 square meters.
Where Should Solar Tubes be Placed
Generally speaking, the common spots where solar tubes are placed include stairways, laundry rooms, hallways, bathrooms, kitchens, and walk-in closets.
When looking for premium quality solar tube kits, it matters to consider the light collection dome location in your house’s roof.
Chiefly, this is quite important because it can allow more natural light to penetrate and be collected in the solar tube.
Once this factor’s determined, you can envision the light source’s brightness in the room. You’ll be able to enjoy your solar tube even more with a suitable placement.
Also, ask yourself if you prefer to position the light tubes in the same spot as your electric light fitting.
I suggest setting up the solar light tube in the middle of the room to ensure more light coming in.
How Many Solar Tubes Do I Need
Sun tunnels are a lot smaller and can be set up in many different areas on a house’s roof. If you’re thinking about the number of solar tubes to put in your house, you can install more for better results.
Consider buying the biggest solar tube you can. And, you can set up 1 to 2 solar tubes in the middle of your room.
Alternatively, installing a few smaller solar tubes that are evenly spaced around the room is also a good idea.
The best thing about solar tubes is that they are appropriate to use for any room. And, they won’t appear out of place.
How to Install Solar Tubes
It is essential to consider that installing solar tube lights can vary from one model to another. In short, it’s not a one-size-fits-all rule.
Aside from this, many distinct designs only fit asphalt shingle pitched roofs while others are meant for flat roofs.
Due to this, it is strongly suggested that you pick the suitable light according to the type of roof your house is built with.
From there, all you need to do is to carefully adhere to the specific guidelines that are written in the product’s user manual.
You might want to check out some videos showing how to install solar tubes as well. You can get more ideas from doing so.
Are Solar Tubes Better than Skylights
Solar tubes work as light tubes. They are also referred to as sun tunnels. Essentially, these tools function as tubular forms of skylights that are engineered using acrylic or polycarbonate materials.
They are specifically designed to work by capturing the sun light that’s reflected down on a rigid or flexible metal sheet tube. From there, it gives off illumination in the interspersing lens that is situated in a room’s ceiling.
As for the solar tube’s sizes, the options range from smaller to larger versions, and some come in 14-inch or 10-inch sizes.
A skylight, on the other hand, is made using an acrylic, polycarbonate, or glass set of windows that are set up on the roof of the house.
A skylight generally comes with a frame and is linked to the house’s roof. As for the sizes, skylights are made with a large rectangular-shaped area, or 12-inch by 12-inch squares.
Which type is better depends on your preference. Skylights are harder to set up and are more costly, but they offer a nice view of the sky, which solar tubes don’t have.
To sum up, it pays off to look into the things that you should search for when comparing the best solar tubes.
The solar tube models we have included in the list are some of the chart-topping alternatives sold on the market today.
Surely, installing a premium quality solar tube can effectively light up a location in your home without spending extravagantly. These products are eco-friendly, energy-efficient, and require little to no maintenance.
We hope that you can come up with a more insightful final buying decision by checking out the product reviews and shopping guide we have shared.
I am Kathleen Miller, staff writer and reviewer of the Avasolar team. Working with the team has been a pleasure for me so far, I hope to bring readers useful information by creating detailed and easy-to-follow contents.