Solar Tube Skylights - A Flexible Daylighting Option for Homeowners

Solar tube skylights are a great way to provide natural light to rooms that don't have windows.

Tubular Daylighting Device by Solatube
Photo: Courtesy Solatube

Also known as tubular skylights, these devices are used to light a room with natural sunlight. You may also see these devices referred to as solar pipes, or light tubes, but officially, they're known as tubular daylighting devices (TDD).

A basic TDD consists of four primary components...

  • Dome
  • Flashing
  • Tube
  • Diffuser

Sunlight enters the device through the dome. The light is channeled through a highly reflective tube to an interior room of your home. But before it enters your room, it is "scattered" through a diffuser to create a soft light effect. The flashing is between the dome and the roof to prevent water from leaking into your home.

Tubular Skylight vs Traditional Skylight

A Tubular skylights differs from a traditional skylight in several ways...

  • Entering sunlight is diffused - no harsh, direct sunlight
  • Since the light is diffused, it provides for uniform lighting throughout the room
  • Low summer heat gain
  • Low winter heat loss
  • Quick and easy installation - only 2 to 4 hours needed
  • No view of the sky

A TDD offers homeowners looking for daylighting solutions a lot of flexibility. For rooms that don't have direct access to windows or the roof, a tubular daylight device is your best solution for bringing in natural light. Adjustable tubing and angle adapters allow the TDD to be efficiently routed to these interior rooms.

Tubular skylights are also great for smaller rooms where a traditional skylight may not be appropriate. Due to their compact size, they are an easy fit for these smaller rooms.

Solar Tube Options

There are also several great options you can include with your TDD...

  • Dimmers can be used to adjust the amount of natural light entering your room
  • Ventilation fan
  • Integrated electrical light for night-time lighting

All of this can be provided by a single ceiling fixture! On top of that, designer trim and diffusers are also available for some models.

If you're looking for a daylighting solution for an interior room of your home, solar tube skylights may be the perfect solution for you.


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