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Sola-Lite a bright idea that saves you money

Sean Bean, managing partner of Sola-Lite LLC, in his San Antonio showroom with samples of how his product works. Shown are a Solatube lighting system from the roof to the designer light fixture in a room, and the solar-powered fan that keeps homes cooler with less electricity. Photo by Suzanne Freeman

Sola-Lite LLC brings daylight into the darkest corners of your home with advanced technology that is affordable and environmentally friendly. Inside, it looks like a designer light fixture. Outside, a small dome on the roof is almost imperceptible. It is cheaper than a skylight, installs with no structural modifications necessary and comes with a 30 percent tax credit.

“This is one small way to more effectively light your home and reconnect you to nature,” said Sean Bean, managing partner for Sola-Lite, the exclusive dealers for Solatube daylighting systems and Solar Star Attic Fans from San Antonio to Corpus Christi.

Solatube consists of mirrored tubing that snakes from the roof down to any room that needs brightening. Raybender© 3000 technology’s advanced lens system captures sunlight on the roof. The light transfers through Spectralight Infinity© tubing, which has the highest reflectivity on earth, into any room in the house. It can move the light up to 40 feet — without any heat transfer.

“Natural lighting is better,” Bean said. “It disperses light through your home with the vibrancy of daylight. And you can fit a Solartube into areas you can’t fit a skylight.”

Solatubes are also much cheaper than skylights and come with a 30 percent tax credit. While skylights typically cost $3,000-$4,000, a Solatube, completely installed in Corpus Christi, costs between $799 and $899 — before the tax credit is applied.

“Specifically for coastal communities like Corpus Christi, we have to have high-velocity wind zone certification,” Bean said. “We have to be hurricane rated. With the thirty percent tax credit, you get a $200 to $300 credit that is dollar for dollar off your final tax bill.”

Installing a Solatube requires no structural modifications, no painting or drywall work.

“It’s quick, clean, simple,” Bean said. “You call, we come do a consult and install the same day.”

The Solatubes also come with a solar-powered night light that provides a moonlit glow at night, a benefit that came in handy when Hurricane Harvey hit the area last August. When damaged electrical lines cut off electricity to major parts of the Coastal Bend, homes with Solatubes provided a way for residents to see well enough to begin clearing out debris and rebuilding.

Add on the LED lighting options and clear lighting becomes available in your home 24/7.

Sola-Lite sells more than a better way to brighten your home. Cooling your attic space with a Solar Star Attic Fan can lower your electricity and extend the life of your AC. The solar-powered attic fans remove the hot air in your attic and cut the temperature around your AC ducts by 30 or more degrees. That reduces the stress on the AC unit and saves money on utility bills.

In April, Bean plans to add yet another new product aimed at improving ventilation. Like the attic fans, Sola-Lite will begin offering a line of garage ventilation products that will pull hot air out of a garage space, bringing in cooler air and making the garage a more enjoyable place to work and play. Better climate control also better protects the items you store in your garage.

Together with the Solatube daylighting system, Sola-Lite can improve the value of your home and the quality of your life in that home. Gone are the yellow tints that come from fluorescent lights and trapped bad smells, dust and germs.

“With natural lighting you get 100 percent color retention,” Bean said. “It makes your furniture pop, your countertops pop. It brightens up the paintings on your walls.”

Bean cited scientific studies that credit natural lighting with boosting brain activity and increasing productivity and creativity.

“We’ve done a lot of work in senior living facilities,” he said. “The residents can’t get out as much, so bringing natural light in to them is important for them.”

As a community that loves the great outdoors, Corpus Christi is a prime market for Sola-Lite, Bean said.

“When I think of Corpus Christi, I think of the bayfront and houses with large windows to let in the light and views,” he continued. “Natural lighting highlights the unique artistic tastes of Corpus Christi residents.”

The addition of both Solatube and attic and garage fans is an easy, affordable way to upgrade your homes, which are prevalent in the local real estate market. Right now is also a good time to look into that option for any type of home.

“With all the devastation that happened with Hurricane Harvey, a lot of new roofs are going in,” Bean said. “People with skylights should consider this as a great alternative when replacing their roof.”

In college, Bean studied sustainability and became interested in how to more efficiently use the world’s resources while being a good steward of those resources as well. Sola-Lite perfectly fit the bill, and he purchased it in 2016.

“This is one small way to effectively use electricity and reconnect people to nature,” he said. “I love the component of bringing light into dark places — places that are otherwise not utilized in a home. It’s the inviting nature of all that that really drew me to purchase this business.”

Becoming a small-business owner was another way to make a difference, Bean said.

“I want to change the world, and, by that, I mean impact it for good,” he said. “I can do that through providing a workplace where people enjoy coming to work. They can leave work and go back home more energized and excited about the impact they are making and the team they work with.”

Sola-Lite Inc. has a showroom at 5123 North Loop 1604 West in San Antonio. You don’t have to visit the showroom to find out more about the product and whether it is the right fit for your home. You can visit the website at or call (210) 764-7652.

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