Everybody would like a room that is filled with natural light. Installing a sun tunnel or a skylight is a good way of adding the natural light without too much renovation. Before deciding which option to go for, you should first understand the differences between the two.
Formerly the available skylights were the dark bubbles and leaky inserts. In the 1960’s the skylights available were the dripping skylights with an evolution to acrylic bubbles skylights in the 1980’s. Manufacturers have come up with new designs which provide buyers with a huge variety of no-leak, energy-efficient skylights and by just touching a button, you can ventilate a room.
The current skylights can also be used in corporation with solar blinds as a way to improve energy efficiency. These blinds can either be operated electrically or manually and are available in numerous varieties of light blocking or light diffusing materials.
Skylights are directly attached to your building’s roof and allow ventilation and sunlight to reach all the areas where you need light. Skylights tend to provide some warmth which in turn helps to cut of cost spent on lighting, cooling and heating the building. Additionally, this will add space to your building by freeing up space which would be occupied by temperature controlling devices. The market as well offers some skylights which open, thus releasing humidity and hot air and allowing fresh air to get into your building.
Concerns when it comes to installation – Cost of installation
During installation, the cost differs according to the glass type and skylight size you go for. Additionally, as you install skylights, some other common requirements include framing alterations, paint, and new drywall all need to be considered. Although this may sound costly for the owner of the building, skylights are a great investment for your building as they can last for up to 2 years. Within those 2 years you will not need artificial lighting, so you can save in the long run.
Sun tunnels can be defined as tubes made from metal sheets, whose inside is polished. It works like a mirror which alongside its length, channels light all while keeping the intensity of light preserved.
The sun tunnel on the roof is capped using a plastic globe which is weather resistant, and the tube ends in the ceiling’s diffuser of your building directly below. This diffuser resembles a recessed or portable light. It is the globe which gathers light which is then spread out by the diffuser into your rooms.
These tunnels are like tubular skylights which capture light during the day and then distributes the light to the building areas which other traditional skylights cannot typically reach. Such places include bathrooms, laundry rooms, dark hallways, and closets. In addition, these sun tunnels occupy very small roof space and also minimize summer heat gain as well as preventing loss of heat during winter season.
Also called tubular skylight or sun tube, this is among the most recent natural lighting trend. These tunnels strictly serve the purpose of allowing natural light into the building. They cannot be opened to allow for ventilation. Sun tunnel installation is very easy and they are often used in specific building projects known commonly as green projects.
Concerns when it comes to installation
Compared to skylights, this is a more economical option of naturally bringing light into your building. Typically installation costs are lower than installing a skylight. However, if your sun tunnel is to extend to several floor levels from the roof, you can expect the installation cost to increase. Compared to electric lighting, sun tubes produce less heat, so the savings on energy achieved through reduction in electrical lighting dependency exceeds incurred installation costs.
Considerations while choosing the best option for natural lighting
Natural light comes with several health benefits which are associated with getting regular fresh air and sunlight exposure. SAD condition is linked directly to insufficient light. Therefore, before making the choice of which one to go for, consider the following things:
- The heating potential of passive solar.
- Accessibility of the convenience controls as it should be very easy.
- Over heat control and also control of produced interior light.
- The glass’ glazing level for energy efficiency and visual comfort.
- Cost to be incurred during installation.
- Energy efficiency whether it will conserve energy hence reduce on energy costs.
- The overall style and quality of the channel.
In conclusion, remember that whether your choice is sun tunnel or skylight, you will want to hire a professional for installation. A professional will have the necessary experience and will know how to repair any current problems as well as install the new skylight or sun tunnel. Both of the two can bring natural and warm light into your building and will benefit you and your wallet in the long run.