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Buying a new home or commercial building can be very exciting, but there are a lot of concerns you need to deal with when the building is older. You need to consider all aspects of your purchase including the natural light that comes into the home or building. Some older buildings or homes can be dark and may require additional natural light sources. You might think that an easy fix is to add a skylight, but professional roofing companies say that this may not be as viable an option as you might think. On a recent interview with roof repair experts we learned that homes or buildings with skylights always have additional concerns for roofing contractors throughout the United States.

The Lighting Issue 

When getting enough light in the house is an issue, homeowners turn to alternative methods to getting the natural light needed for a room. One method of doing this is through the addition of a skylight. Sounds good, except that this may not be such a great idea. Over the years, every reliable roofing company has come across a number of issues relating to the installation of a skylight. As such, we want you to be familiar with the risks. 

There is no question that a skylight adds beauty to a building, but there are also several drawbacks. If you are unaware of these issues, the cost of a skylight my end up being more than you expected. If you do decide to install a skylight, make sure that you are prepared to deal with the negative effects of a skylight on your roof.


Roofers will tell you, skylights are notorious for leaks. The seals and flashing of the skylight deteriorates over time, and because of its location, this allows for leaks that can damage your home and your roof. Rain, snow and debris may cause the skylight seals to weaken and accelerate damage. Modern skylights are better and specialists say that these new products are better made and less likely to leak than older versions. However, leaking can also occur due to poor installation methods, so if you do decide to get a skylight, make sure you get it professionally installed by a reliable roofing contractor. Keep in mind that even the best skylight can leak when not installed properly.


Roofing professionals are always educating consumers about their roofs. They explain that a roof is a somewhat vulnerable part of a home, and it cannot just be forgotten. It must be cared for and protected against wind and storm damage, and a roof with a skylights is even more vulnerable. Ice, tree branches and debris can easily crack a skylight. Added to this, homes in areas with excessive snow also risk additional damage to skylights because of heavy snow loads.

3. Injury

 Homeowners who perform general roof maintenance such as sweeping, clearing gutters and checking on roofing shingles also have a higher risk of injury when the roof has a skylight. Not all skylights are made to withstand a human’s weight, and it is easy to trip or fall onto a skylight. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration of Washington, DC, lists a skylight in the same category as open holes.

Energy Loss

Most roofing contractors explain to homeowners how a skylight can also result in energy loss. These products can have a negative impact on heating and cooling costs. skylights just don’t offer enough of a barrier to prevent heat from escaping in the winter and cool air from seeping out in the summer.

Roof Damage

Roofs with skylights are also more likely to experience damage or need roof shingle replacement faster than standard roofs. Rain, ice and snow can easily seep through the sides and edges of a skylight. If this damage goes undetected, it can cause the roof to have problems and may eventually require a total roof shingle replacement.

Skylights Take Up Space

These products take up space on the rooftop, making it difficult for roofing contractors to move about which can increase the cost of roofing repair or replacement, and make it excessively difficult for experts to complete their jobs.

Bottom Line

No one questions that skylights contribute to interior beauty but they can also increase the cost of repairs and the cost of electricity. As a homeowner or building, you must consider all aspects of installing a skylight. Remember to consider all hidden costs, including roof maintenance and repair.