Sky tube/tunnel evaluations


Hi,
I need more light in my house. Has anyone installed the Sky tubes or tunnels available at Lowes and Home Depot themselves? If so any tips you'd like to share? Has it leaked or caused problems in your attic? Are you happy with the amount of light it provides?
Lowes has one for $160. Is that one crap?
Thanks Sevenbooks
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Sevenbooks wrote:

The information I found suggested staying FAR away form the stuff at Lowes. Seam separations, leaks, and poor light transmission.
Try www.sunpipe.com
Their pics are awesome,and they have ROUGH things to say about their competitors.They show you WHY their product is Superior.
Maybe more money, but clearly worth the price.
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Sounds nice, but I"d prefer that evaluation to come from someone a little more independant then another manufacturer.
In any case, how much do the SunPipe's cost in comparison to the Lowes/HomeDepot/Menards ones?
-Tim
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Tim Fischer wrote:

the tube thru the roof,what kind of diffuser you want, what diameter pipe you want to use, is the ceiling a cathedral ceiling or not, do you need a steep roof kit or not, do you need an elbow, do you want an electric light in it for night time use????
13" Sunpipe is $279 2ft lengths of extender are $55 4ft lengths of extender are $95
You will need one or more lengths of the extender pipe to reach from ceiling to roof. Average install uses about 5 feet
Call this roughly $350, more if you need more pipe, more if you want a wider angle diffuser, more if you have a steep roof(above 8:12),more if you need an elbow.
More light is delivered thru SunPipe than competitors. Maintenance will be far less with SunPipe.
The web site is very informative. Go look at the pictures.
Pure silver is used, polished aluminum has 1/10 the output. Some MFGs use silver foil or aluminum foil in a UV reactive plastic sleeve. Silver is why this costs more
Roof jacks come with a 60 yr warranty.
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a general rule of thumb when buying ANYTHING!
The cheapest is rarely a good idea, it was often designed for a price point below everyone elses, tends to have more trouble and shorter life...
the real expensive similiar product is generally a bad purchase unless you have money to burn, its target market is the look at me see meI have gobs of $$$ customer. unless theres a spiffy feature you just must have the best deal is likely the
MID PRICE STUFF, designed to function well and not at the lowest price:) over time is usually the best value.
I use this rule of thumb it saves me lots of fretting and over time has turned out pretty reliable indicator of future happiness.
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Do you have a stake in the company, or just a happy customer?
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Tim Fischer wrote:

No affiliation with the company whatsover.
SOON to be a very happy customer as I intend to install as many as 10 of these in a new house that we will begin construction on soon.
I read what they had to say AFTER I visited several other web sites exploring the concept.
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What are some midpriced companies?
Any one out there install one themselves with feedback?
Thanks
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wrote:

I put in two 9" solatubes. I had the roof flanges installed at the same time the roof was redone. I cut the interior holes and indicated exactly where I wanted the roofers to cut the holes. Although I probably could have done it, cutting into the roof and not wrecking the asphalt shinges made me a little more nervous than usual. The rest of the installation goes easy enough depending on your installation. One of my installations goes through a 2 ft. gap between ceiling and roof. That was real easy. The other was in the unfinished attic, and about a six foot gap between ceiling and floor. The only porblem to contend with was the heat in the attic. It builds up fast, even on summer mornings. We have these in place now for three years with no problems.
I will say that as the descriptions indicate, the difference in lighting after installation depends dramatically on where you are installing the units. One of ours is installed in a windowless hall bathroom with almost no direct light from windows. The tube made a drammatic difference in the light comming through. I would say on a clear sunny day the bathroom now looks like a 60 W bulb is on. The other unit is placed over an island in an interior kitchen space. In this case there are big sun room type windows 15 ft away. Here the tube made only a small difference in available light.
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I had a sola-tube installed. I watched the installation, but didn't do it myself as I didn't want to rely on unskilled labor making a hole in my roof and sealing it, nor cutting a rather large hole in the plaster ceiling, and I needed a kink in the tube to align the ceiling hole with the roof hole, which had to be offset to miss a rafter (I figured the installer would have all the pieces needed, while I might end up having to make multiple trips to pick up pieces I hadn't anticipated.
We are very happy with the result. It has the electric light in it, but we almost never need that, and it took a few years for us to learn to stop trying to turn off the light when it wasn't on, since the unit alone lets in a lot of light.
Ours also came with an exhaust fan that mounts remotely, where the duct passes through the fascia, which reduces the fan noise in the bathroom to virtually nothing.
I have no experience with other brands so I cannot address them.
Sevenbooks wrote:

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Not@home wrote:

aluminum. Over time, the aluminum slowly oxidizes,and its light transmission ability drops.
Course, will we EVER notice the difference unless we install them both in the same room side by side and watch what happens over time??
Its like many other things in life, we make a decision, and have few regrets about it later on.
As a home improvement project to brighten up a room that can only be used with the lights on in the daytime, all of these will work GREAT. The only questions are how long will the effect last, will that be long enough for me to care about the differences between products?
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