Skylights are a highly prized addition to any home, boosting the aesthetics and ambience by flooding natural light into your living spaces. However, damaged skylights won’t perform the way they should and can end up creating more problems for your home than benefits.
Damage to skylights is often caused by improper installation or cleaning. This damage is preventable, so it’s important to understand the correct care for your skylights and have them properly installed by professionals where possible. Damage can also be caused by severe environmental conditions and normal wear and tear.
If you’re concerned your skylights may be damaged and aren’t performing as they should, here are the 3 most important signs to look out for.
If you notice a quiet whistle or rushing sound coming from your skylight when it is closed, it could indicate damage that’s allowing air to pass through. This problem most commonly occurs with opening skylights or traditional skylights when the seal or opening mechanism fails. A skylight that allows drafts into your home is a serious problem because it weakens your insulation and increases heating and cooling costs. If air can enter your home through your skylight, there’s a good chance water will enter as well which means you’ll end up with leaks and water damage next time it rains or snows.
Even if you don’t hear air entering your skylight, you can check for leaks by holding the back of your hand an inch or two away from the skylight glass. If your hand feels warmer or colder than the room you are in, or if you can feel a faint breeze, your skylight is probably leaking. In severe cases, the whole room will consistently feel warmer or colder than other rooms of your house.
Cracks to the glass of your skylight are usually visible and can present a danger to your home. Cracks can be caused by rough installation, but more often are due to environmental causes. A small crack will expand over time due to the normal expansion and contraction of the materials in and around your skylight. Having it treated quickly by a professional is key to maintaining the integrity of your skylight and preventing further danger and damage to your household.
Water leaks are the most common problem associated with skylights, but it can be hard to identify an actual leak. Just because there is moisture collecting on the glass does not mean that the skylight is leaking. That moisture could be due to poor ventilation, or differences in the humidity levels between the room and the outdoors. The easiest way to prevent moisture build up due to condensation is through proper ventilation
If the ventilation and humidity of the room are controlled, but there is still water gathering around your skylight after it rains or early in the morning, you may have a leak. Leaks can sometimes happen in places that are difficult to locate, and it may be a problem with the flashing that lines your skylight. If the leak is caused by damage to the flashing, it should be repaired by a professional.
Damaged skylights can be a nuisance, but the good news is that you can return their value and function through professional repair and replacement. Contact Sola-Brite for an expert consultation regarding your damaged skylights and bring natural daylight back into your home safely and reliably.