Solatubes Skylights Installed!!!

athomewith3June 25, 2008

We had Solatube Skylights installed a couple of months ago but just haven't had time to post pics. We went with tubular skylights cause i am a bit of a neat freak and although i would love to look at the sky i think all i would see when i looked up would be dirt, lol!! Anyway, we love them and since we had somewhat of a dark kitchen the natural light is amazing.

Pic before skylights (evening with kitchen lights on)

Pic of skylights with shutters closed

Here is a pic with skylights with lights on. We realized how yellow the artificial lights are once we got the skylights installed.

Either way, we are happy we had them installed......nothing beats natural light!!!

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They really make a difference. Looks great, the Kitchen also. Can you feel any heat coming out of them? What size are they?

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 4:35PM
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I was just going to post about doing tubular skylights! Thank you for the pictures -- that gives me a good idea. I looked at Solatubes --- may I ask what size you got and what size kitchen you are trying to light up? Our kitchen is approximately 18x12 and in the center of the house and I'm wondering where we might put the skylights and how big they should be?

I like how you interspersed them with your recessed lights? Do you find that you need less artificial light in the daytime? Do they really give you alot of natural light?

My mudroom is approx 11x12 and I'm thinking of installing one there as well.

May I ask how much they cost including install? Did your contractor/builder install them?

Sorry for all the questions!


    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 4:37PM
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Shelly-just be aware that the kind of light your solar tube gives you depends(I think) on how far away your ceiling is from the top of the roof. I put a solar tube in our main bathroom as it was an inside room. In addition to the couple of tube extensions that it came with our builder had to add 3 more lengths. The resulting light is quite bluish and not that bright. I now call my main bathroom the aquarium because its got the watery bluish light and striation reflections where it hits the walls. I think it would have been quite a bit different if the pitch on the roof had not been so steep.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 6:16PM
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Shelly, your kitchen is beautiful.....what are your cabinets?...stain....granite? You did good~~ (also really liked the skylights~~

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 7:19PM
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Shelly K, the space we were intending to light (the actual working kitchen itself is approx 10 X 18)and the two 14inch solatubes worked perfectly in doing so. DH always researches things before purchasing and while looking at solartubes found that the Solatube brand was the most natural, whitest light. I was fighting DH to get the traditional window skylight but he kept trying to talk me into the Solatubes so i lost the fight but have to admit i LOVE these things. The price for the traditional skylight would have been close to $3K and we had both the Solatubes installed for a total of $650, okay, so that made me happy!!!

As far as heat coming through it is minimal to none. Last week, here in California it was hitting the 100 degree mark and i had all the curtains and shutters closed with the convenience of the natural light. We had the AC on and i actually pulled a step stool and put my hand right to it and felt hardly any heat coming through from that beating sun.

Our kitchen is a DYI and has been done for 4 years now and have been wanting to get the skylights for sometime. Now, i feel like i have a well lit new kitchen to enjoy again.

Good luck with all your decisions. Please keep us posted on your progress!!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 8:00PM
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Oh, Shelly K, About the amount of light i use during the day. Before the Solatubes were installed i would use lights every morning when the sun was coming up and again around 2:00 or 3:00 when the sun was wasnt able to reach my kitchen windows. Now i can honestly say the only time i do use my lights is around 7:00 pm when the sun is actually setting.........They are pretty amazing and keep my space well lit throughout the day into the night!!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2008 at 8:06PM
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Thanks for the nice comments on the kitchen Phoggie. The cabinets are American Woodmark from Home Depot. They are hickory cabinets in a spice finish. The granite is Juprana Columbo Gold......still love it after 4 years!!!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 1:22AM
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Quite the objective proof of a successful solatube installation--thanks for the photos and the numbers, too. I just might have to get one for our master bath, if we have any $ left over after the repairs...

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 1:37AM
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mustbnuts zone 9 sunset 9

I have a Solatube in my master bath water closet (no window in there). That thing gives out a ton of light and no heat. It faces west and we get up to 110 on a frequent basis during the summer. Again, no heat. Mine has a light and fan kit attached to it. Eventually, I want to have one put in my laundry room and kitchen.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 7:43AM
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I've never really seen any of those installed...very nice...they really add a lot of light to the room...and your kitchen is beautiful!!!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 8:01AM
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I would love to do that in my kitchen, but I am afraid the pitch of the roof is too tall. My kitchen faces the back of the house(east). Gets plenty of morning sun, but feels like a dungeon in the afternoon. I noticed you said your bathroom isn't the same natural light. How high is your roof over that area? I might check into it anyway. Also, could you tell me what kind of slide in gas range you have and do you like it. I am having a time picking a range. I like the Kenmore Elite, but have read all the bad reviews about keeping the front clean. I also like the GE, but my husband and I have decided we will not support a company that deals with Iran. The frigidaire looks good, but I wonder about the quality(mixed reviews). I currently have an Amana white gas slide in and have had no problems, but don't really like the look of the new ones. Thanks for any information you can give me! Sorry to change the subject of the thread.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 9:01AM
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Thanks so much for sharing your photos, etc.. I'm also planning on putting 2 solatubes in my north-facing kitchen which is similarly sized to yours. My builder had them priced but I didn't ask if they were the Solatube brand that your dh recommends. Were there any brands he definitely thought were a no-no in his research?

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 10:05AM
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Since our kitchens are similarly sized, could you please tell me specifics about the model of Solatubes you had installed as I know they offer a 10" & 14" size in the Brighten Up® Series? Did you get a diffuser or any of the effect lenses? Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 10:32AM
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mrs-mjt, we got the 290DS, which is the 14 inch. We were going to get the effect lense but decided to go standard and are happy with it. And about your quetion on other brands. We did see Velux tubular lights and the light it gave was not even close to the Solatubes. I found that Velux makes the top of the line in traditional skylights but Solatube is the original maker of tubular skylights. Some friends had the Velux tubular skylights installed and when they saw ours they were amazed on how much more light it gave. Just our experience!!!

Julie92, not sure if the pitch of the roof would affect your light coming in. From what the Solatube dealer told us it is the reflective tubing they use that brings the light in no matter the pitch. The reflector is pointed South to capture the greatest amount of sun THROUGHOUT the day. I too, had a kitchen where the sun was almost blinding in the morning to where i had to close my shutters and have not light and then in the early afternoon would have a dungoneous look as well. We highly recmomend them!! People walk into our kitchen as say something is different in here. It is nice that are not obtrusive at all!!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 10:47AM
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Oh, Julie92, we don't have a skylight in our bathroom, just our kitchen (i think mustbenuts or moose2007 commented on that??). As far as the slide in our kitchen is 4 years old and we did go with the GE Profile (sorry!!). Good luck with all your choices!!!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 10:59AM
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Thanks for all the info! Your kitchen is beautiful!!!!!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2008 at 11:34AM
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Hi 'athomewith3'- - I really like the countertops shown in your pics (Charlotesville Hickory spice kitchen cabinets). Would like to install similare stone in my kitchen, and would appreciate your poviding the name/source of the granite. Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 12:46PM
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