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Sun tubes / light tubes

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Drifthopper, Apr 10, 2008.

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  1. Drifthopper

    Drifthopper Member

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Messages:
    92
    Can anyone recommend any sun pipes / tubes.

    I've lots of info and brochures, seen them at shows etc, but very short on practical experience. This would be for the roof over the kitchen. The roof is getting replaced, and thinking about adding one when it gets re-shingled.

    Any key points to look out for?

    Any recomendations.

    Any types/manufacturers to avoid?

    Cheers for any info or insight on these. :)

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  2. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2008
    Messages:
    4,755
    Loc:
    Northern MN
    Put our first one in last spring, Solatube brand. It appears to be one of the pricier ones, but also was well made, not too difficult to install if you're handy. This was a 10" tube, and light input into an interior bathroom is absolutely amazing. Will never pay its way in electricity saving, but really brightens the bathroom and normally need no lights on in the daytime. Even with a bright moon at night, and the result is a romantic moon-lit bath.

    My concerns were the roof flashing (no leaks through summer rain and now winter snow melts, and the tube faces the prevailing wind direction so it gets everything); fogging in the winter with high bathroom humidity and a cold attic (-30F is not unusual for us in the winter, and no noticeably fogging); possible condensation in the tube (none noticed); diminished light quality over time (nothing noticed after one year, the tube connections seal quite well and little if any air should be getting into the tube, probably just enough for some venting). After one year, it gets an "A."

    I have no knowledge of other brands. We are considering adding another to a back hallway that is quite dark, and I will check out other brands this time due to cost, and the knowledge of one that's worked well so far. I should be able to compare quality, etc.

    We could not be more pleased so far on the performance.
  3. d.n.f.

    d.n.f. New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    504
    Loc:
    Nelson BC
    Solatube is a quality brand. Have helped put in two of them. Nice construction on them.
    Looked at some knock-off and I wouldn't buy it. Probably some other comparable brands now?

    They are way better than a skylight and they don't leak or need recaulking.
  4. Drifthopper

    Drifthopper Member

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2007
    Messages:
    92
    Thanks Guys!! i just spent some time searching the web and reading up on these, and i just from what i read the Solatube appears to be a good unit. i'll look at them a bit more ,,but they seem to be a better manufacturer.
  5. sylvestermcmonkey

    sylvestermcmonkey Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2008
    Messages:
    80
    Loc:
    The Land that Time Forgot
    Ditto Solatube. Simple construction and no problems after two years. The light you get, even moonlight, will surprise you.
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