Energy conservation is the need of the hour and many devices today are produced with their environmental impact as a major consideration. One of these devices is the solar tube which is highly sought after for natural lighting purposes. With a rapid rise in the cost of conventional energy sources, these tubes deserve consideration. By principally using passive solar energy these tubes give out light that is natural and has a therapeutic effect on people. This has led to an increase in the number of solar tube reviews in the past few years.
A solar tube can be chosen for rooms or spaces which don’t have direct exposure to sun. Most of these tubes are compactly designed (around 250mm in diameter) and have adjustable tubing which allows for easy installation irrespective of intrusions. Most solar tube reviews recommend these lights for areas like the bathroom, hallway, basement, kitchen or even the closet. Alternately, large rooms can also be illuminated by using several of these tubes. This can completely eliminate the need for artificial lighting.
For the first time user, taking the help of a few solar tube reviews before actually investing in this technology won’t be a bad idea. The size of the tube plays the most important role in the amount of natural light it provides. Normally a 10 inch tube covers an area of 150 square feet. The light coverage area for a 13 inch tube is up to 300 square feet. The corresponding light coverage area figures for an 18 and 20 inch solar tube is up to 500 and 700 square feet respectively. The above numbers each vary with different manufactures though all of them are in the same ballpark. Thus assessing the size of the space where the tube will be installed is very important.
Most solar tube reviews stress, and quite rightly so, the light output as the best measure of a tube’s performance. A high output tube is pretty much useless for an area that is less than a 100 square feet, so it’s vital that you choose the tube as per the utility of that particular space. A 10 inch solar tube has a light output of around 300 watts. Similarly the 13, 18 and 21 inch tubes provide a light output up to 500, 1000 and 1450 watts respectively. Most of these tubes have light reflectivity in the range of 90-98%. It’s recommended that you choose one with the highest percentage.
Solar tubes are available in the three predominant shapes of flat, curb and pitch. The choice of shape should be as per the attic shape. The average length of these tubes ranges from 18 feet for the 10 inch one to 30 feet for the 21 inch tube. Solar tube reviews rate tubes on all the above parameters including the presence of dimmer switches, the warranty offered by the manufacturer, weather compatibility and their installation time. You can choose the perfect sky-lighting solution by comparing these features across products from different manufacturers.