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How do you clean a tubular skylight?


One of the best things about tubular skylights – and maybe even why you installed one in the first place – is that they are a low-maintenance way to bring abundant natural light to the core of your home. Since most of your tubular skylight is a reflective tunnel hidden inside your attic, when it comes to cleaning, you only have to give regular care to the diffuser lens. Here are a few things you should consider:

Before You Begin: Cleaning Items to Not Use

  1. Abrasive or alkaline cleaners
  2. Brushes, gritty clothes, razor blades, squeegees, or sharp instruments
  3. Gasoline, acetone, chlorinated solvents, etc.

Removing Your Diffuser:

Most brands of tubular skylights make it easy to remove the diffuser so you can swap out the design over time. To remove your diffuser, you’ll need to:

  • Rotate the bottom of the lens counterclockwise – it should release.
  • In some models, there is an upper frosted lens and a lower clear lens that will come apart. You’ll want to clean those separately.

Cleaning Your Diffuser:

Our first recommendation before you start cleaning your diffuser is to avoid cleaning it during the hottest part of the day.

  • Wash your diffuser lens with mild soap and lukewarm water 
  • Rinse well 
  • Remove excess water with a damp cloth

Do You Have a Flat Glass Tubular Skylight?

The flat glass refers to the exterior part of the tubular skylight that sits on your roof. It resembles a traditional skylight in appearance. If you have one, you’ll want to add that to your tubular skylight cleaning list. 

Before you start cleaning the exterior of your tubular skylight, be sure to practice good ladder safety and do not clean during the hottest part of the day (the glass will dry too quickly and cause streaking). 

  • Wash the glass pane with water and soap solution to loosen and remove dirt and debris. You can use a non-abrasive glass cleaner and a soft brush. 
  • Rinse the window with water 
  • Use a lint-free cloth to dry any excess water off the pane. 

Do not use any metal scrapers or blades to clean large areas of the glass; these can cause damage to the glass pane. If you have hard-to-remove spots on the glass, you can use a small 1” razor blade. A good tip is to scrape with the razor blade in one direction. Scraping back and forth can cause scratches.

Regular cleaning of the diffuser (and in some cases the exterior of the tubular skylight) is a great way to prevent condensation and other debris from blocking out the consistently bright natural light flooding into your home

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