15 Jan

Skylights and Solar Tubes: The Natural Light

kitchen with skylight for natural light

In the 30+ years we have proudly served the communities of Frisco, Plano and throughout DFW as a trusted roofing and exterior services company, we’ve seen countless roofing trends come and go. Materials, colors, design … it changes with the season, but one constant has been a fondness for natural light.

Everyone loves natural light, and the research backs that up. Wal-Mart even did extensive research on the benefits of natural light at its flagship store in Plano. The result was people buying more of specific products positioned under natural light compared to other locations. Right now, when our sunlit hours are short, there’s nothing like a sunny room to add some cheer.

However, as many skylight owners know, these portals for natural light also come with a dark side. Incorrectly installed skylights or solar tubes add to energy bills and cause moisture problems. Having them professionally installed and maintained by a reputable Frisco and Plano roofing company is the long-term key to happiness.

What’s the difference between skylights and solar tubes?

The main difference between skylights and solar tubes is where they are installed. Skylights are placed directly on the roof’s surface. Light shines into the home/business interior either directly or down through a light shaft. By contract, a solar tube has three components: a light collector installed on top of the roof, a light refractor on the ceiling, and a reflective tube that connects the other two. For structures that require a long shaft between the roof surface and ceiling, solar tubes are significantly more efficient, because they refract the light through the reflective tube and do not cause harsh contrasts in light levels the way skylights sometimes can. In addition, solar tubes allow for angled installation to direct light where it’s needed the most.

As you can imagine, this makes solar tubes significantly more complex to install, and it is not a recommended DIY project. Peak Roofing and Construction has decades of experience installing natural light fixtures for homes and businesses throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Contact us any time for a free estimate.

What are the benefits of natural light?

The primary benefit for skylights/solar tubes is the feel-good factor. Unless you are a professional gamer, nightshift worker, or college student, natural light is a good thing. Experts agree the extra vitamin D it produces makes you more productive, healthier, and happier. Many homes built in the 1970’s included skylights in living areas, kitchens and bathrooms. Our team now replaces and maintains many natural light fixtures in in Plano, Arlington, and Lewisville.

The dark side of skylights

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that skylights also bring solar heat gain. However, if you are a natural light lover, I would not let this deter you. The high-quality manufactured products are insulated and have double panes just like energy efficient windows. There also is some heat loss during winter, like windows. This is primarily with skylights, and not solar tubes, because skylights are directly linked from the roof’s surface to the building’s interior. When selecting a skylight, pick one rated higher than standard building code to ensure better performance. One of the higher quality manufacturers popular with our customers is Velux.

Moisture collection and leaks can be a problem, too, especially with incorrect installation. Choosing a professional installer with good reviews and strong referrals is key. The intricacies of installation simply don’t exist in an instruction manual. It’s years of experience, seeing hundreds of good and bad examples that provide the knowledge needed for the best installation of your skylights or solar tubes.

Are you experiencing issues with your current skylights or considering upgrading to higher efficiency products? The professionals at Peak Roofing & Construction are here to help. Call us today or request a free estimate online.

About Peak Roofing & Construction

Peak Roofing & Construction is family-owned, with 30 years of experience. Bonded, insured and accredited, we provide roofing, gutter, fence, window and exterior facelift services. Guaranteed. Call (972) 335-7325 in Dallas-Fort Worth (residential & commercial) or 281-290-7325 in Houston (commercial roofing).

Joey Riss

Joey Riss

Joey is Peak Roofing & Construction’s “renaissance woman”. She is involved in all aspects of the business decision making as well as her office responsibilities and overseeing much of the marketing efforts. Although she lets Jeff climb the roofs, Joey has a thorough understanding of roofing, gutters, windows, fences and exterior painting. When not in the office you will find her focused on her favorite career, raising their precious son.
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