Installing a skylight: 4 things you need to know

Installing a skylight: 4 things you need to know

Skylights provide natural light in dark rooms and create exciting new architectural features for your house. If you are considering installing a skylight in your roof, here are several things you need to know before starting the project.

Skylights are a bit more vulnerable

Installing a skylight is a more complicated than just putting a window in your roof. Because the roof of your Marietta home can experience high amounts of wind, moisture and dust, your skylight and surrounding shingles are subject to plenty of elemental stress that can lead to leaks and the need for frequent cleaning.

However, don't let this keep you from ever installing a skylight. You can help prevent many problems by picking out high-quality materials and staying away from cheap plastic components. Modern, professionally installed flashing can help keep leaks away for years: According to This Old House, some skylights now come with 10-year warranties that cover leaks.

Placement is very important

Picking a spot for a skylight requires some thought. While it may be tempting to walk over to a dark spot in your house and just point up, there are other factors at play. For example, bathrooms and kitchens are two common places for skylights, but they are also two rooms that generate a lot of moisture through steam and other sources — which can cloud your skylight and lead to mildew. If those problems are likely, you may want to spend more on a vented skylight, which you can open to help remove inside moisture.

Position is also important. A randomly placed skylight won't look quite right: Try to line up a skylight with other architectural elements, like windows or doors. Look at skylight examples online or on other neighborhood homes for ideas on what position would work best.

Bigger is often better

It's a little harder to judge the effect of a skylight than a normal window. When possible, choose larger skylight sizes for a richer effect and more light. Smaller skylights will not save you much money and may well disappoint when it comes to lighting and appearance. If you have room for a bigger skylight, go for it — especially if you want to lighten up your darker rooms.

You can't control the sun

Skylights on sloping roofs tend to get a lot of sunlight: According to HGTV, skylights placed on the south side of your roof are particularly guilty of overlighting your house. They create bright sun spots that blind you when you step into them and overheating issues for those rooms. Direct sunlight can also cause bleaching problems to darker materials.

Since this is a common problem when installing a skylight, a number of solutions have been developed. You can choose between several glazes that reduce UV light, create a heat barrier or tint the glass to reduce brightness as needed. You can also install skylight blinds for especially large windows.

For any questions about installing a skylight in your roof, contact Findlay Roofing!

Image source: Flickr

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