Should I Replace my Skylight when I Replace My Roof?

Are you wondering if your skylights are going to survive the upcoming roof replacement you have planned? We can understand your concern! The natural light and excellent free warmth of a skylight can be big benefits, and you probably would also prefer to avoid a completely new skylight installation along with the cost of the roof.

We’re sad to say, however, that you should probably go ahead and plan for getting new skylights to pair with your new roof. Why? Follow along with the specialists at Shanco while we discuss the perks of replacing the skylight now.

Why Replacing the Skylight is Best

The easiest answer here is to simply say that trying to salvage the current skylights will create a considerable number of weaknesses. A skylight might survive the change (the odds are less than 50/50), but tons of factors are all working against that. These include:

  1. The skylight was installed and designed with your current roof in mind. Depending on the roof project, your new roof is likely to be miles different than your older roof. Any changes to eaves, roofing materials used, the roof style, the slope or pitch, or nearly anything else will render your current skylights essentially completely incompatible.
  2. The seals, frame, and panes are all likely to take some form of wear or damage. It doesn’t matter if your roofer has been handling roofing jobs for 20, 30, or 100 years. There’s no way to get around damaging or weakening skylight materials during a tear-off. Skylights are installed in a way that makes them semi-permanent, and changing that is going to make the skylight weaker.
  3. Re-flashing weakens a skylight. The secondary option often touted, reflashing, also comes up with similar issues. Reflashing a skylight cuts it’s lifespan by years. There’s a reason that this process voids the warranty on skylights! It’s because manufacturers know that reflashing is a stopgap measure at best.

Can’t I at Least Roll the Dice?

Why not try to save a buck and give it a go anyway? The problem is that the gamble is much worse than that previously mentioned sub 50/50. A failing skylight can leak, let humidity in, and can allow mold to form. That means your new and very pricey roof stands at a far greater risk of taking serious damage. Roof repair isn’t cheap, and it’s not something you want to be pursuing 3-6 months after you just had it replaced.

The Cost Benefit to Replacing Skylights During a Roof Replacement

If you’re feeling a bit put out, we get it for sure. But there’s some silver lining in all of this! Skylights, while awesome, don’t have a particularly long service life—at the lowest 7-8 years. That means your skylights might already need replacing in the first place, and doing so now will serve to protect your new roof. Plus, replacing your skylights during a roof tear-down is actually cheaper than a normal skylight replacement! This is because the job is actually far simpler when the roof decking is completely open. This makes slotting in some new skylights a breeze, which will save you considerably on labor costs.

There are also benefits to be had in modern skylights as well. With new low-emissivity coatings, pane layering, and glazes, you can get more efficiency from your skylight and extend its lifespan. All around, this presents you with not an encumbrance, but an opportunity!

Skylight Installation & Home Improvement in MD, VA, and DC

Think now’s a good time to replace your skylights along with the roof? Call on Maryland’s most trusted contractors at Shanco! With our experience and access to top-class products we can ensure you get the best of the best across the board.

Contact us online now to find out more, or dial (301) 208-0848!

CONTACT SHANCO TODAY!

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see what our happy customers are saying

"Shanco Companies came up with the perfect solution for improving water drainage from the roof. The crews were professional and did a great job. I would highly recommend Shanco Companies."

-Silver Spring, MD

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