Skylight or No Skylight? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-27-2007, 02:47 PM   #1
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We are within days of buying a 21' BigFoot trailer and a couple of the choices have the factory skylight option and a couple do not. My choice at this time is that the skylight should be avoided due to experiences I have had with skylights (not in trailers however) being too much of a solar heater. While they provide light which is good, on a warm day they will increase the time that you need to run the air conditioner and the shade/curtain provided does little to block the heat. Any pro or con comments on the skylight option -- I don't want to rule out the units that have it if I am missing some advantages??
Thanks, Ed
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Old 07-27-2007, 03:34 PM   #2
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Well, I can't speak to the heat issue - but I'm thinking that laying in bed and looking up through a skylight at the stars would be pretty cool!!
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:03 PM   #3
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On a previous big unit that i had ,I had a similar problem.To rectify this i cut up some 2inch stirofoam the same size as openings.When i wanted dark or or to block off skylight i stuck the precut peice of foam in opening.
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:10 PM   #4
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I was living in my trailer, rather than getting away from it all for a few days, plus my bunk was raised next to the rear window for ventilation, so I didn't care about seeing the stars through the roof because I could see them from my window.

My preference is for a 'skylight' that opens, aka roof vent, because in hot weather, the more ventilation, the better. If I am going to put up with the solar effect in summer and the condensation effect in winter, I want more than just a clear panel. YMMV!!
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:49 PM   #5
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There was a skylight in the PlayPac. Being able to look up through it was kinda cool... except in the morning when I just wanted to sleep longer.

Mike
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Old 07-27-2007, 05:06 PM   #6
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The Trill1300 that I had, had an automotive aftermarket skylight above the bed.
It was really nice to be able to see outside at night laying there.
Mine also tipped open several inches and with the Fantastical Fan at the other end(5ft away)I got a nice breeze too.

It did leak but not too bad and I could fix it easily just not permanantly

I miss it now.
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Old 07-27-2007, 05:23 PM   #7
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Ed:
The following may be a consideration: Our Burro is gleaming white fiberglass inside, with gravel shields front and rear. Even so, there are times when a skylight would really brighten it up, because all our windows except the door window are tinted. Very nice for privacy, but it does cut down on the light entering in. I wouldn't trade the tinted windows, but if yours have them, consider the loss of light. A skylight could be a good thing.
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Old 07-27-2007, 06:31 PM   #8
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Thks for all the comments. I think my negative thoughts have been replaced with a more neutral stance based on your comments. We won't let the skylight drive the selection as it does seem to have pros and cons and we can block/insulate it if the heat is an issue.
thks, Ed
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Old 07-27-2007, 07:54 PM   #9
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Thks for all the comments. I think my negative thoughts have been replaced with a more neutral stance based on your comments. We won't let the skylight drive the selection as it does seem to have pros and cons and we can block/insulate it if the heat is an issue.
thks, Ed
Hi Ed. My last 3 trailers had skylights. My 96 Bigfoot has a narrow unit, but they install a wide unit in the newer Bigfoot trailers. I do like the natural light, and have ordered the skylight with shade on my 25FB. I believe that they trap heat, but able to cover does help. In my opinion where I live (British Columbia) the good outweights the bad.

Rick
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Old 07-27-2007, 08:08 PM   #10
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I love skylights!
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Old 07-27-2007, 09:25 PM   #11
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The Bigfoot 21 trailers that I have seen put the skylight in the middle of the trailer, in the kitchen area. Not visible from either bed area for star gazing. Good for daylight illumination of kitchen work surfaces. While I wouldn't be upset if a used trailer has one, I wouldn't choose it as an option if I were buying new.
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Old 07-27-2007, 11:15 PM   #12
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While I wouldn't be upset if a used trailer has one, I wouldn't choose it as an option if I were buying new.
My sentiments exactly, thanks, Ed
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Old 07-28-2007, 08:58 PM   #13
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I've seen the automotive type used to good advantage. They are larger than the average vent, let in
lots if light, tinted, plenty of air and something to think about if you need to reduce the height of your trailer by a couple of inches to enable you to park inside the garage.
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Old 07-29-2007, 12:00 PM   #14
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Ed, having now had two Bigfoot trailers with the skylight, I should tell you that the skylights are dual thermo-paned, so the heat/cold transfer through the surfaces are minimal. They also come with a night shade that can be drawn across when desired. If you want it darker yet, or for long-term storage, the night shade makes it easy to support a lightweight piece of cardboard to slide into the skylight opening on top of the shade that blocks all light.

The 21' interior has always seemed a bit "close" to me, so I think that anything you can do to open it up and get more light in is good! The skylight really opens the living room of our 25', and seemed to make the interior of the 17' much brighter.

Roger
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