Skylight / July 11, 2018 / Nicolas Charlebois
Tubular skylights An alternative to the conventional skylight which looks like a window in your roof is the tubular skylight. The tubular skylight is a roof-mounted dome which collects natural light and delivers it to the room below. It is less expensive than the conventional skylight because it is designed to fit between roof and ceiling framing eliminating the need for structural modifications. You will commonly see these used in bathrooms hallways and closets but they can be used in any room of your house. The average tubular skylight ranges in size from 10 - 21 inches in diameter which lights a 100-600 square foot interior space.
To maximize the energy efficiency of skylight windows you must choose the material carefully. Both glass and plastic skylights have their unique benefits and disadvantages. Glass is more durable but there are limitations in shape. It is also quite expensive. On the other hand plastic is flexible and can easily be bent or stretched to different shapes. It is inexpensive too. But plastic glazing has a tendency to change color after a while. More importantly irregular shapes lead to more heat loss as larger surface areas are exposed. Windows VS Skylights: It is wrong to believe that skylights can replace or take the place of windows.
Skylights may seem inexpensive at first glance since a quality 2x4 foot skylight along with a flashing kit costs anywhere from $100 to $400. However you need to consider adding another $3000 for installation costs. That being said you first need to carefully evaluate if installing a skylight is the right thing for your home. Till recently having a roof slope determined if you could install a skylight. Flat roofs or those which were too steep required special tools and techniques. However many of the skylight kits available today include a comprehensive installation kit and procedures which permits it to be installed on all types of roofs.