The Future’s So Bright

SUNDAY MORNING UPDATE:  We had some neighbors over for coffee yesterday and they told us that while they were walking their dog the night before, they noticed that the rooftop dome on the outside end of the tube was lit up. That’s most likely from the integrated nightlight. So now I have to say that we’re less Close Encounters of the Third Kind and more Luxor Hotel in Vegas. 



The house we bought in Florida has a small kitchen in the center of the building. Lots of openings to the air and light of other rooms but no natural light of it’s own. There are only a few hours a day that you don’t need to turn on the ceiling lights to see what you’re doing. I don’t know where I got the idea – certainly, I don’t know anyone who has this nor have I even seen one in person – but I thought it would be nice to have a solar tube installed to brighten things up. I started asking around about it on Wednesday and by noon Friday, we had one installed.

It’s a 14″ round opening in the ceiling connected to the outside through a mirrored tube that runs through the attic. And man! Is this thing bright! Here’s a picture of it:


Okay seriously. After living in the dimness, the light does seem just that bright. Here’s the real picture:


So hard to convey what this really looks like in a photo but i think the shadows on the floor will give you some idea. Fortunately, it brings in only light, not direct sunbeams or heat. I took about 35 shots of the pre-tubed kitchen for comparison but you can’t really get a realistic picture from those so no sense posting.

Also, we opted to  get a small solar powered LED nightlight put into the tube and dudes, the effect is like moonlight. A tube full of moonlight in my kitchen. It just so happens I was roaming around the house today at 4 am admiring the indoor moonlight from different angles when Sami got up to go to the bathroom. I cheerfully invited him to join me but he pretended he didn’t hear me and went straight back to bed. Rude. So now it’s up to you to admire it:


I know this is meaningless to you and these pictures are dumb. Just humor me, ok? I really love this thing.

7 thoughts on “The Future’s So Bright”

  1. My mother had a similar lighting dilemma in the den after she had the patio covered and installed one, probly 10-15 year ago.


    And you can interpret that word every which way.

  2. These are just the best. I’ve had them in two houses I’ve lived in, and they make such a difference. I didn’t know about the nightlight option. Would love that!

  3. “I know this is meaningless to you and these pictures are dumb.” You’re kidding, right? We, your humble readers, love following the story of the new house — as we loved the story of the NJ house!

  4. Never heard of solar tubes before. I’m a neighbor – sort of – in western Nassau county with a similar FL house layout – an internal kitchen made even darker after enclosing the patio (now a screened porch) coupled with the addition of plantation shutters. I now see the possibility of a bright future for my shady kitchen. BTW, your photos are great. Many thanks!

  5. I love love love indoor moonlight. We have a skylight over the master bath tub which is right next to the door from the bedroom. When the moon is full and the sky is clear that room is bright! But you need to be awake at odd hours to appreciate it.

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