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Skylight Windows

What You Should Know About Skylight Windows

Skylight windows are becoming a very popular option for home builders and remodeling projects.  They allow some natural light come through, but they also allow some of the heat that radiates through the home in the warm summer months to be able to vent out.  Skylights can also serve other purposes, such as offering an exit in case of emergency.

The Cost of Skylight Windows

Skylight windows have a tendency to be on the pricey side.  You can get the actual window and not pay too much, but having it installed is a different story.  Skylight windows will typically cost around $150 to $500 or so, but some may be more depending on the style.  Where the real money comes in to play is with the installation. Installation will add anywhere from $500 to $3000, depending on how much work it entails.  

Talking to a professional skylight contractor to get an estimate is the best way for you to get an accurate depiction of how much your skylight windows will cost.  

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The Advantages and Disadvantages of Skylights

Fun skylist desgin

As with anything, skylights do come with their share of both pros and cons.  First, let’s take a closer look at the benefits of skylights. First, they can offer better ventilation for your home.  They can also help to increase the amount of natural light that is able to come into your home. They also look great, and add a touch of style to just about any room.  Sometimes, they can even save your life! Some skylights serve a purpose more than just for ventilation. They can also be an emergency exit in case there is a fire.

When it comes to the downfalls though, price is typically the biggest.  On top of being sort of expensive, it can also come with some added maintenance.  Without routine maintenance, these windows can become leaky and cause other problems.  This is why you should always have them regularly inspected to ensure they are sealed and secure. Inspections should be done at least once every year.

They can also allow UV rays to damage furniture, especially if they are installed right on top of furniture or other things that can be damaged by UV light.  It can also damage the carpet on your floors. It is a good idea to consider positioning to ensure that this isn’t a problem down the road. You can also get glass that has been treated to keep out the UV rays, which is something to consider.  This usually will make them a bit more expensive, but it is well worth the investment to protect your home.

The Various Types of Skylight Windows

There are so many different forms of skylight windows for you to choose from.  Some may actually open, while others may be fixed in place. Let’s take a look at some of the most common types of skylight windows.

Fixed Skylights

Fixed skylights are actually the most common type of skylight on the market.  These windows do not move at all. Once they are installed, they do not open. This also means that they do not really offer any sort of ventilation for your home.  Since they are fixed, they don’t really require as much maintenance as some of the venting skylights. They also last longer, which gives you more for your money.

Manually Venting Skylights

If you are looking for a skylight window that will offer some ventilation, then a manually venting skylight may be a great option.  These skylights have a crank that you can turn to open the window and let some air flow in. These windows do have their advantages, but if they are up too high then it may make it a little difficult to open and close them.  You may have to keep a ladder handy, and closing it in a hurry in the event of rain may be nearly impossible.

Kitchen skylights

Electric Venting Skylights

Another type of venting skylight is the electric venting skylight.  These are a lot like the manually venting skylight windows, but they can be opened and closed more easily.  They are operated electrically, with push button to open and close the window. They even have some with added features that will enable them to close automatically if it detects rain.  They can even be powered by solar energy.

Roof Skylights

Skylights most often used in attic spaces are the roof skylights.  These are usually only installed as a form of emergency exit. If a room does not have any wall area for a window to be installed, then a roof skylight window may be a good option for you.  It definitely increases the safety in the room if there happens to be a fire. It can also help to keep these rooms cooler during the summer. Since heat rises, this can be a plus!

The Importance of Good Ventilation

Ventilation in any room is important.  Skylight windows are really a great way to offer additional ventilation in rooms that tend to stay more humid and moist.  Bathrooms usually harbor the most humidity, due to steamy showers, so a skylight may be a great way to let out some of that moisture in the air and keep the air from getting stale and musty.

Skylight ventilation can also be a great way to keep your electric bill down during the summer.  If you house holds a lot of heat in during the summer months, then you may consider installing skylights to vent out the heat and keep the air flowing nicely.

Concerned About Leaks?

So many people tend to steer clear of skylight windows because they are afraid that they will start to leak over time.  The truth is that sometimes skylights can leak. You have to make sure that you keep them well maintained. The good news is that there are some new innovations that have been made when it comes to the window design and installation that make them less likely to leak.  It is just important to hire a contractor that has a decent amount of experience in the industry to help ensure a proper installation to prevent leaks and other issues down the road.

Using Low-Emissivity Treatment on Your Windows to Keep Out Damaging UV Rays

Since skylight windows can let in damaging UV rays, you will need to take some extra precautions to keep your furniture and flooring protected.  Otherwise, you may notice that the coloring starts to fade. One of the best ways to keep out those UV rays is by using a Low-Emissivity treatment.  This is a microscopic metallic coating that is put over the window pane. It will usually add a little bit to the price tag, but most people consider it worth it to keep their furniture and flooring safe.

Maintaining Your Skylight Windows

While you should keep a good eye on all of the windows in your home and keep them well maintained, it is a good idea to be extremely diligent when it comes to your skylight windows.  If you do not maintain them properly, it can lead to pesky leaks. Leaks can be damaging to your home and your belongings. It is a good idea to check them out at least once every year to make sure that the seal is secure.

The Importance of Professional Installation

Skylight windows are no ordinary window.  This is not just an average DIY project. There is too much at risk.  Because of this, professional installation is really a must. An expert in the window installation industry will know how to correctly measure and cut the hole for the skylight.  They will also ensure that the seal around the window is secure to prevent any leaks from happening.

The installation process can be broken down into five different steps.  First, a hole will be cut into the roof, based on exact measurements taken by your contractor.  They will then install flashing around the entire hole, to cover any exposed structuring to prevent any damage from occurring with the installation of the skylight.  Next, the skylight will be placed in the hole and secured with roofing nails. Once it is in place, they will seal it to keep an airtight seal to prevent moisture from getting in.  Finally, a final round of flashing is done on the outside just to really seal the window down.

Is a Skylight a Good Idea for Your Home?

Not every home is designed for skylight windows, so this is something to keep in mind.  For instance, it is a lot easier to install a skylight on an asphalt shingle roof. If you have a tile or metal roof, then it will be a bit more difficult.  More difficult usually means more expensive as well.

The positioning of your plumbing, HVAC equipment and electrical wiring may play a part as well.  You need to make sure that the attic space is pretty clear in order to ensure a smooth installation process.  Sometimes, the architecture itself will not allow for the space for a skylight. These are all things to consider.  

Living Room Skylight Ideas

The Hatch Difference

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