Two years ago we tested a quantity of 36 Energy Star Fiberlite skylights that had been in service in the high UV southwest for 13 to 20 years.
We had the units tested for load strength and light transmission. The results were very favorable. Fiberlite glazing has a soft yellow tint
upon initial production. Over time the yellow will increase to a darker yellow and eventually a soft yellowish/brown.
All plastics used for skylight glazing discolor over time due to a number of factors such as rain PH, wind, airborne particulate matter deposited
on the glazing and most significantly UV exposure. Energy Star glazing has a slightly higher (Y1) yellow index number as measured by ASTM E313,
than that of many PMMA (acrylics whether smooth surface or prismatic imprinted) based glazing materials. It is important to note however that
color in skylight glazing is more a matter of perception than reality in terms of light transmission. Of all colors, yellow is the color that
most negatively affects the perception of any plastics clarity or light transmission. On the other hand, blue is a color that makes whites appear
to be whiter and brighter to the human eye. For this reason most manufacturers of plastic glazing add some blue tint (bluing) to their plastic
compound prior to extrusion or casting. The “bluing” agents remove or mask yellow light to lessen the yellow tinge and make the product appear
to be whiter and brighter than it would otherwise naturally appear to the eye. Our proprietary Fiberlite formula (a polymer of polyester) manufactured
by Ashland Chemical Company does not have a bluing additive. In fact the fire retardant additive that allows our Fiberlite to achieve a CC1
fire rating actually contributes to the coloration of the product.
On the above test all 36 domes supported a concentrated load (one sq. ft.) of 5,000 lb without failure and they only lost a fraction of their
original light transmission. But, they were not the prettiest domes we’ve ever seen.
Thousands of 20 year old plus Energy Star Fiberlite skylights are still in service throughout the world. It’s not uncommon for us talk to customers
who have 30 year plus units in service.
When glazing strength, severe 2” hail resistance and longevity are high priorities in your glazing selection your best
choice is Energy Star Fiberlite.
Fiberlite is arguably the strongest and most durable glazing in the industry and is an exclusive, proprietary product of Bristolite Daylighting