Compare the options

Compare the main sun pipe systems available in the UK

Sun pipe systems in a dining room

To help you chose the most appropriate sun pipe systems for your situation we’ve put together a table that shows the features and indicates the performance of the main sun pipe systems available in the UK. Where possible we’ve shown the performance figures of the various sun tunnels. Our view is that if we were the manufacturer, and we were confident in the performance of our Solarspot system, then we’d publish the information. We’ll let you compare the information then decide why some manufactures do publish and some prefer not to. Before buying a light pipe we suggest you read our Jargon Buster.

You’ll also see that we have not given projections, figures or comparisons to light bulbs, light levels and the like. This is because any attempts to do so would be wholly disingenuous. Every installation will be completely different from the next. Length of tube, diameter, room size, roof aspect, decoration in the room etc will all play apart in how sun pipe systems work in your home. The only true comparison is efficiency. If there are two systems of similar proportions then the system with the higher efficiency will be brighter.

If getting the brightest system isn’t the most important thing to you but you want a sun tube that integrates into a bathroom extractor, or you need to have a flat finish on the roof and unit a dome, then you may prefer something different.

ManufacturerProduct nameDome or flat panelDiameter mmEfficiency %Flat roofGuaranteeLight Score
FakroLight TunnelDome350N/AYes7 years1
FakroLight TunnelDome250N/AYes7 years3
FakroLight TunnelDome350N/AYes7 years5
LighywayCrystal SuntunnelDome200N/AYesN/AN/A
LighywayCrystal SuntunnelDome300N/AYesN/AN/A
LighywayCrystal SuntunnelDome400N/AYesN/AN/A
MonodraughtSunPipe 230Dome23030YesN/A2
MonodraughtSunPipe 300Both available30035YesN/A3
MonodraughtSunPipe 450Both available45043YesN/A8
SolarspotD-25Dome25055Yes10 years6
SolarspotD-38Dome37557Yes10 years10
Solatube160DSDome25035Yes10 years4
Solatube290DSDome35040Yes10 years6
SolaSkylightsSky Tunnel XL2Dome3502YesN/A1
SolaSkylightsSky Tunnel XL2Dome350N/AYesN/A3
Velux Sun TunnelFlat panel25035Yes10 years3
Velux Sun TunnelFlat panel3504Yes10 years1
Velux Sun TunnelFlat panel35040Yes10 years5

*we’ve marked the light levels out of 5 stars with the Solarspot getting 5 as, according to all of the independent data available, it is the most efficient and therefore brightest system tested in this group. We welcome any additional independent testing from other sources and will happily review our figures.

Certifications and what they mean to you

BRE – Building Research Establishment

BRE is a world leading multi-disciplinary building science centre with a mission to improve the built environment through research and knowledge generation.

Totally independent and respected testing organisation for all aspects of the building industry.

CSTB

Basically the French equivalent to the BRE and respected throughout Europe.

As with the BRE, reliable data and recognised by all aspects of the UK building industry.

BBA

Certificate of conformity that is recognised through the UK and Europe.

Essential paperwork for any company requiring building insurances (such as NHBC) but in no way an indication of a products performance as the award of a BBA certificate to the flexible SolaSkylights Sky Tunnel demonstrates – the worst performing system in this group.

ISO 9001:2008

Similar to the BBA certificate, awarded to companies that can demonstrate a meticulous adherence to procedures. A vital requirement for large companies requiring assurance of continuity of supply. As a one-off customer it really isn’t here or there.

Energy Star Certificate

An American system notifying customers to a products’ ability to reduce energy consumption within their home or business. This is just our opinion but based on the criteria for the certificate we think that all of the above would qualify if they were made in the USA. Any light tube will save a degree of energy usage in your home. The Energy Star award is not test base and no indicator of how much light will be delivered.