Part One of Two: Looking at the Pros and Cons of Roof Light Tubes vs. Skylights

Part One of A Two-Part Series, Comparing Roof Light Tubes versus Skylightsfeatured image

Posted on March 28, 2023 by Phillip Camerer

Natural light from roof solar tubes can have numerous emotional and physical benefits, such as improving mood and enhancing overall health. Access to natural light not only benefits humans but reduces energy consumption through the use of artificial light sources.

Light tubes, sometimes called solar light tubes, light pipes, tubular skylights, or sun tunnels, are tubes lined with highly reflective material that transfer light rays into the interior of a building to add natural light. The point where light usually enters the tube is through a dome, which captures light and reflects it directly down the roof light tube.

Pros of Roof Light Tubes

Thanks to all the advantages, light tubes are an attractive choice for residential and commercial property owners. Compared to other available options, roof light tubes provide better energy efficiency, longer lifespan, and more significant cost savings long term, including these other pros:

  • Design Flexibility
  • Environmental-Friendliness
  • Cost of Installation

Design Flexibility

Solar tube lighting is an excellent choice if you’re looking for ways to brighten up small spaces in your kitchen, bathroom, closets, or hallways. Solar tubes offer much more versatility when designing or renovating your home than traditional skylights, primarily due to the minimal size and non-intrusive nature of the design.

As a bonus, light tubes don’t require any structural changes to your roof for installation.


Solar tubes are eco-friendly and cost-efficient as a renewable energy source, making for a safe alternative to other energy sources. The environmentally friendly option can help homeowners and businesses reduce their utility expenses and proactively work against the impacts of rate hikes in the future.

Cost of Installation

The cost of installing light tubes is low and simple enough to be installed for less than $500.

Cons of Roof Light Tubes

Although light tubes are an excellent option for the home, there are some potential drawbacks to keep in mind, including:

  • Lighting control
  • A limited number of design styles
  • Roof slope impacts installation

Lighting Control

Solar tubes are more compact than skylights and can easily incorporate into your home or office building roof without significant structural alterations. With this, you have the opportunity to customize the interior of your building according to your preferences, giving you extraordinary freedom.

A Limited Number of Design Styles

Roof light tubes come in a limited number of design styles. Additionally, the small size of light tubes is less visually striking in the same way as a skylight.

Roof Slope Impacts Installation

Although the installation is easy on an existing roof, the slope can limit installation capabilities on some homes. The roof angle should be 15 to 60 degrees to install light tubes properly. Skylights may be a better option for homeowners or business owners with flat or steep roofs.

Get an Estimate From A Professional Roofing Contractor

Solar tubes are a great way to reduce energy costs related to lighting. That clever and cost-effective technology is an excellent investment for businesses and homes.

Solar tube lighting offers unique advantages compared to conventional sources for natural lighting; however, there may be certain limitations. If you are contemplating the installation of these lighting alternatives, it’s best to contact professional roofing contractor who can advise on whether or not your roof can hold them.

To schedule a consultation, call the team at Phillip Camerer Roofing at (417) 451-5479 today!