A skylight can become susceptible to leaks, mold, or even fungus. There are different factors to consider that will affect the price of fixing your skylight.
Photo by Dylan Ferreira on Unsplash
You can expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $2500 to repair your skylight. If the glass requires replacement due to cracks or dirtiness, it will likely cost around $300 to $1200. If the skylight is leaking, the seal most likely requires replacement and will probably cost you around $300 to $800. These are estimates, and it’s best to have someone come and inspect your skylight to determine the exact costs.
But there are many, many reasons behind the price of a skylight repair. This article explains the costs of fixing a skylight, the reasons behind the price, and what you can do to work towards a good repair at a reasonable price.
Type of Skylight
There are three main types of skylights. The first is fixed skylights, which are usually the cheapest option. They add extra light but do not provide ventilation.
A tubular skylight is ideal for hallways or any enclosed spaces. It is adjustable and can fit into tight places.
A vented skylight provides ventilation and is ideal for rooms with excess moisture, such as kitchens, bathrooms, or laundry rooms. Kitchens will be more expensive to repair, where laundry rooms and smaller rooms will be cheaper.
Type of Roof
The type of material on your roof will determine how expensive it is to fix the skylight set inside it. Metal or tile roofs make it difficult to install skylights and tend to cost more than the average to do so. Shingle roofs are a lot easier and more cost-efficient.
Metal roofs require deck-mounted installation, where the skylight is nailed to the trusses and joints between the structural components on your roof. Tile and shingle roofs can have either deck-mounted or curb-mounted skylights.
Curb-mounted skylights are sometimes installed on low-sloped roofs, which allows for a low profile and an easy fixing process.
Shades and Blinds
Skylights can allow too much light into a room and cause a glare. For this reason, it is often advised to install filtering shades or blinds. If you want to install blinds while the repair is taking place, it can cost up to $400 or more.
Type of Glass
Going with an expensive type of glass is a good idea, as it allows you to have protection from outside elements and you won’t have to worry about fixing it if damages occur. Here are some of the most common types of skylight glass available. Keep in mind that the price of glass to start with can be anywhere from $300 to $800.
Annealed glass is the least expensive type of glass available, but also the weakest. It is easily breakable and is typically not the best choice.
Heat-strengthened glass application uses a cooling and heating process. It is sturdy but still harmful when shattered, making it usually fail standards for safety glass.
Toughened glass requires cooling and heating under compressive stress for formation, creating tougher glass that separates into small pieces of glass when broken. This classifies it as safety glass, as it’s less likely to cause injury.
Exposing toughened glass to sustained high temperatures creates heat-soaked toughened glass. It has the same breaking process as toughened glass.
Laminated glass separates two or more sheets of glass using an interlayer. The interlayer catches shards of glass if it breaks, reducing injury. It is thick and provides load-bearing capabilities that prevent objects or people from falling through.
Number of Skylights
Installing more than one skylight at a time will cost more. That’s obvious, but it’s important to consider when thinking about how you want to light a room with the natural light a skylight provides. The number you need will depend on the size of the room and how much light you need. A small bathroom will only need one, which is cheaper. But a large living room will need more than one to be fully lit when the sun’s out, which will increase costs.
Considerations Before Installing a Skylight
There are some crucial factors to determine before having your skylight installed. It’s important to consider the details big and small before installation so you don’t end up with something that only provides light to one section of the room.
Location of Installation
There are advantages to having a skylight in each kind of room in a house. For example, skylights installed in bathrooms create natural light and ventilation that can prevent mold growth.
Install your skylight in your office or living room to increase natural light exposure. Natural light boosts mood and productivity. Skylights allow more solar heat into the room, which will help save on electric heating costs. They also improve sleep patterns, as natural light exposure supports better sleep. Installing a skylight in a kitchen is a great way to filter out stale air or smoke from cooking.
You should also consider using a quality roofing company when you decide to install your skylight. You do not want a skylight that will leak or crack in a few years.
Determine how much experience a roofing company has with skylights by looking up their previous work. If they are new, you will want to find a company with more experience. Reading customer reviews is a great way to find out what kind of work they you can expect them to do. If they have plenty of happy customers, it’s likely safe to choose them.
See if the company provides videos or pictures of their work online. You can inspect their work yourself and see if it looks acceptable. Discover which payment plans they offer and if they fit your budget. Certain companies will offer payment options such as monthly payments.
Perhaps most importantly, ensure that the company has proper insurance and offer a warranty. Working on a roof can be unsafe, and accidents can happen. You do not want to be responsible if something goes wrong.
How Much Does it Cost to Remove and Replace a Skylight?
If you’ve decided that repairing your skylight is too costly or you want to remove it, you can always remove it and have your roof replaced. Skylight removal is often cheaper than repairs at around $100 to $250. But the skylight removal process consists of difficult steps that should only be tackled if you have roof construction experience.
Start by attaching roof brackets and a plank so you can work on the roof, then connect the harness to the bracket.
You will need a flat pry bar to remove a few of the shingles above the skylight. You will also want to remove some shingles below the skylight, exposing two layers of metal flashing around the skylight. Remove the nails from the top counter flashing and then take it off.
Use a drill to remove the screws holding the brackets. The membranes surrounding the skylight can be cut with a knife. The skylight will then be removable.
First, all building codes for load, wind resistance, and building permits must be noted before installing a skylight. Decide on sizing and area placement before installation.
Installation supplies will include:
- Roofing paper
- Roofing nails
- 16d galvanized nails
- Step flashing
- Utility knife
- Flat pry bar
Following the manufacturer’s specification and measurements, a hole will need to be cut in the roof using a circular saw. Use a utility knife to cut back the shingles roughly 3 inches back on all four sides.
Set the skylight in place with nails or screws. Strips of roofing paper 8 inches wide are then cut and slid under the shingles. Install the bottom piece next, followed by the sides and then the top. Putting the paper under the shingles helps prevent leaks.
Install the bottom flashing next. Nails should then be driven horizontally into the skylight. Individual pieces of step flashing will slide under the shingles, and the step flashing will overlap one another. Solid flashing pieces fit tightly against the skylight so that water cannot get in between them.
It’s important to install the bottom pieces before the side pieces. Installation of the top piece will involve going under the roofing attached to the skylight.
How Much Does it Cost to Reseal a Skylight?
Due to labor costs and the materials needed, the average cost to reseal a skylight can cost anywhere from $420 to $1325.
The process consists of cleaning out any debris around the skylight flashing. The flashing is then inspected to ensure it is nailed to the roof. If not, water can leak through. Loosening of the compound can be another reason for leaks.
In resealing a skylight, a caulking gun and roofing cement should seal anywhere where water can get in. Any visible gaps in the flashing must be sealed to prevent leaks. The glass should also be inspected as leaks can occur. Silicone seals the edges of the glass.
Insurance and Warranty
Most companies offer a 20 to 25 year warranty. Pay attention to the details of the company’s warranty, as it will give you an idea of how long it should last. A warranty is essential for making sure you don’t have any extra costs if any further skylight repairs pop up.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most asked questions by skylight repair customers, and our answers as the people who get called out to help them.
How do you Measure for A Replacement Skylight?
If you have a deck-mounted skylight, measure the outside glass width and length inside the frame and the frame itself. A curb-mounted skylight will need to be measured in a way that includes the flashing. The interior drywall opening will also need to be measured.
How Long Does a Skylight Last?
A properly installed skylight should last between 20 and 40 years. But this estimate depends on the materials used and weather conditions. Frequent extreme weather conditions can wear on a skylight and affect its longevity.
A skylight is a great way to brighten up a home. It will also increase ventilation and mood and even decrease your electrical bill. But it is important to get the skylight properly installed to guarantee no unforeseen costs in the future.
Author Bio for Louis Hanley
Louis is a community manager for Baltic Roofing where they help the greater Chicago community with everything from high-quality roof replacements to skylight repairs. He is an expert on all things roofing and home improvement. Outside of work, he’s a huge Cubs fan and enjoys spending time with his dog, Roscoe.