Who doesn’t like having the natural look and warm, ambient glow of sunlight cascading through a home? Placement obstacles no longer prevent you from accomplishing this environment. Natural light is very important but is often a struggle to accomplish with skylights due to low ceilings and narrow hallways, for example. Now properly installed and well-placed sun-tunnel skylights can achieve this desired healthy, natural setting.
Photo courtesy of Velux
In particular, additional wintertime hours spent inside your house and in a home office can lead to the “winter blahs.” Studies show natural, full-spectrum sunlight greatly contributes to increased productivity alongside an overall feeling of well-being. Sunlight deprivation can lead to a condition titled "Seasonal Affective Disorder," also known as S.A.D. By bringing light from the sun into your residence or home office, a sun tunnel or skylight can help you feel better, naturally.
Lower Energy Bills
You will also be pleased to learn you will save on energy-consumption bills. Acrylic skylights have been shown to significantly reduce these costs through the benefits of daylighting. With proper design, the cost of skylights is paid back -- often in less than two years -- because high visible light transmittance acrylic skylights allow artificial lighting to be turned off on average 70% to 80% of the time. Also, the energy savings achieved from reducing dependency on electric lighting far exceeds any heat gain or heat loss in the vast majority of applications.
Skylights excel at letting in light and can also allow ventilation. There are both operable and un-operable styles. Additionally, this choice typically provides less heat than electric lighting. This is why you should choose a skylight with superior visible light transmittance in lieu of selecting a skylight based solely on thermal values. But what about those rooms without direct access to the outdoors through the roof, which is needed for skylighting installation?
Sun tunnels are high-performance, daylighting, skylight systems that use advanced optics to significantly improve the way sun is harnessed. Sun Tunnels or Sola Tubes are a great solution in places where the installation of a traditional skylight would be difficult. Keep in mind they do not provide an option for ventilation.
This option creates a big impact for any project in any room. Limitations such as attic obstructions and long shaft runs from the roof to the ceiling are easily overcome and the beauty of natural light is still delivered to your room. These tunnel skylights can take the darkest room -- regardless of the location, size and shape -- and brighten it while eliminating the harsh color shifts of incandescent and florescent bulbs. A tubular daylighting device can be installed almost anywhere including tight spaces and rooms without direct roof access.
The (2) rings in top center of photo are 10" Sola-Tubes
The light output is incredible, providing as much light as you would expect from a skylight many times its size. The cost-effectiveness of this system is also considerably less than other daylighting options, such as windows and skylights, including both product and installation costs. You can literally transform your room with natural daylight from above, delivering a big impact at a small price. Two lines we prefer to use are VELUX and Solatube International Inc.
When you decide to light up your home using nature’s resources, work with a professional to do it right. Then sit back and enjoy the increased well-being and benefits for many years to come. Remember, if you are aiming to take care of this before winter arrives, now is an optimal time to get in the lighting queue.