6 Factors to Consider When Installing a Skylight on a Metal Roof
Sydney skylights are an excellent way to add value to your home. They improve your curb appeal and enhance the interior of your house, bettering your living experience.
They are usually installed over rooms with few or no windows to brighten and make them feel more spacious.
However, since they are mostly seen on top of concrete buildings, we rarely think of installing a skylight over a metal roof. You may even wonder if it’s possible.
But when you consider the benefits of having a skylight, such as improving ventilation, increasing the aesthetic appeal of a room, and temperature control, you will see all buildings deserve a skylight.
Are metal roofs a good roofing option?
Metal roofs are becoming increasingly popular because they are low-maintenance and durable.
They also help us reduce our energy costs and carbon footprints since most roofing materials are made from recycled metal.
Although metal roofs were mostly used on storage buildings such as warehouses in the past, they are increasingly being installed on residential houses.
Therefore, if you choose to install a metal roof over your home, its a worthwhile choice. And you should consider installing a skylight on it to enjoy its benefits.
Generally, experts advise homeowners to install a skylight on a new metal roof. However, you can install a skylight on an existing metal roof too.
The only important thing is to hire an experienced roofing expert who will preserve the integrity of your roof and ensure you do not void your roofing warranty.
Watch out for these issues when installing a skylight
However, as you install your skylight, there are a few things you should prepare for;
- Skylights are noisy, and they will add to the racket you hear from your metal roof during adverse weather such as rainstorms.
- If your skylight installation passes through the attic, it may create air leaks that cause condensation resulting in mold or ice dam formations on the roof.
- The method you choose to mount your skylight will determine how well it works.
- Unfortunately, skylights on any roof are essentially an opening that can let in debris, insects, and water.
- A skylight can lead to energy loss in your home if improperly installed.
6 factors to consider when installing a skylight on your metal roof
The setback issues outlined above may deter you from installing a skylight on your metal roof, but they shouldn’t.
There are solutions to these problems that we have included in the list below.
Professionally install your skylight
Hiring the right contractor to install your skylight will save you from problems caused by improper mounting.
When you hire a certified professional, you are assured of a perfect installation that is finished on time without incurring any unnecessary extra costs.
But ask yourself the following questions before you pick a skylight contractor.
Is he insured?
As many as 36 severe falls through skylights are reported each year, and most of them occur during skylight installation.
Therefore ensure you hire an insured contractor with up-to-date workers’ compensation and liability insurance to cover any work-related accidents.
Are the contract terms favorable?
Before anything begins, insist on a contract that gives a detailed outline of labor costs and materials needed for the installation.
It should also contain the warranty and give an exact estimate of the time it will take to finish the work. You can then use it to ensure your contractor stays within the budget and honors all contractual terms.
Does he have experience?
The contractor you choose needs to have at least five years of experience installing skylights in your area.
Check their reviews and contact some previous clients to get an idea of the services they will provide. It will help you to pick a reliable contractor with a track record of delivering the best results.
Pick the right skylight
Installing a fixed skylight on a metal roof is the only way to prevent debris or water from leaking into your home. But the type of framing you choose matters.
Metal framed skylights are a great pick. They come with durable seals, a maintenance-free glazing system, and gutters that clear condensation away from the framing and glass.
When purchasing a skylight for your metal roof, think of qualities that will improve its efficiency.
For example, the glazing should be made of high-performance glass that minimizes glare and improves insulation. Impact-resistant glass that is hard to break will also prevent damage from debris.
If you are still confused about which skylight to pick, aluminum skylights made of high-performance thermal glass and frost-free thermal breaks are great.
These skylights provide excellent insulation and prevent condensation. The glazing is also slim enough to ensure your room fills up with as much light as possible.
Aluminum skylights are coated with a polyester powder that gives them a durable finish reducing the chances of discoloration over time. They can also take a higher weight load which protects them from snow damage during brutal winters.
Overall, it’s best to pick a skylight with an extended warranty such as twenty years to keep you from incurring repair costs after a short while.
It guarantees your skylight is free from defects or problems caused by faulty workmanship for a lengthy period.
Choose the ideal time
Installing a skylight on an old roof can expose you to unnecessary damages caused by water infiltration and void your warranty because the installation process involves cutting into the roof and maneuvering over it.
And since your skylight is new and your roof has already aged, you will likely need to replace supporting parts such as the shingles, which will inflate your installation costs.
Therefore, you should install a skylight on a new metal roof because it is included in the roofing measurements, ensuring a snug fit.
Seasonally speaking, Summer is the best time to install a skylight on your roof because your contractor is unlikely to interrupt installation due to weather problems.
If you experience harsh winters or rainstorms in your area, installing a skylight may lead to leakage or condensation issues. It’s best to invest in installation solutions that prevent these problems, such as sealant and proper flashing.
But generally, skylights on metal roofs are suitable in hot or moderate weather areas where moisture issues are unlikely to occur.
Flash it correctly
Flashing is a thin material used to direct water away from your skylight.
Without it, water will leak into your home through the skylight, causing rust formation and mold growth.
Your skylight flashing kit is made up of a saddle flashing, a sill flashing, and a step flashing.
These flashing components and other materials, such as gaskets and all-weather underlayment, seal your skylight, ensuring it does not let water in.
Curb mounting is often recommended to ensure proper flashing of a metal roof skylight.
If you install your skylight at the same time, you put up your roof, including water and ice shields with the roof underlayment will also prevent leakage and formation of ice dams.
But remember, you should hire an experienced roofer to work on your skylight. It will ensure you benefit from such solutions that will lengthen its lifespan.
Use energy-efficient materials
If you do not use energy-efficient materials on your skylight, you will incur unnecessary costs.
It will also lead to the loss of any energy savings you make due to the nature of metal roofing which traps heat in winter, keeping the house warm.
The solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) number of your glass will determine how much heat is transmitted into your home.
A skylight with a high SGHC number is best for places with predominantly cold winters, while one with a low number is suitable for places that are mostly warm throughout the year.
You may also invest in low -emissivity skylights coated with a microscopic metal coating to enhance UV protection.
A skylight with window treatments such as tint may also reduce the light transmission in your home, preventing glare and heat absorption that may damage your belongings.
The best place to install a skylight on your metal roof is away from any distractions such as tall buildings and trees. That way, you will avoid unnecessary damage from falling debris.
There are minimum slope requirements to adhere to when installing a skylight to ensure water and debris run off your skylight preventing discoloration and leakage issues.
Therefore whether you are putting up a skylight on a sloping metal roof or a flat metal roof, you must consider pitch.
The higher the pitch of your roof, the better it will be at draining water and debris off the skylight.
The recommended pitch for skylight installation on a flat roof is 0.6 in 12, while steep slopes require 3 in 12.
Picking the right spot on the roof to install your skylight where you do not interfere with vent pipes, electrical wiring, or HVAC installations will also ensure a perfect fit.
You may also install the skylight over a spot on the roof that accents interesting areas of your home, such as the porch, living room, and indoor garden.
Facing your skylight in the right direction will allow you to get the best out of it. Southern-facing skylights increase heat absorption in the home during winter and reduce energy costs.
And if better lighting is your primary focus, an east-facing skylight will give your home the most sun exposure.
Do you want to install a skylight on your metal roof?
These are 6 tips you can use to make the right choices when installing a skylight.
The most important one that will save you from unnecessary stress and financial losses is leaving your skylight installation to a professional roofer.
It is also important to adhere to Federal and state government regulations concerning skylight installation.
However, remember that maintenance will also extend the lifespan of your skylight.
Once it’s on your roof, inspect it often to identify and deal with problems such as hairline cracks, leakage, and other structural issues that may compromise its efficiency.
A clean skylight will provide the best lighting for your home. Therefore, set apart time to clean it, to prevent discoloration from water stains or dirt build-up.
Also, consider purchasing the following additional materials to better your experience.
- Insulation and interior covers to muffle the noise coming from your skylight and prevent heat loss.
- Materials that prevent energy loss, such as thermal glass, to reduce your energy costs.
- Roofing grade sealant to strengthen your skylight and prevent air leakage.
Overall, skylights are a long-term investment that will significantly enhance your home.
If you’ve been wondering about installing a skylight on your metal roof, it’s time to get a quote.
Call a roofing expert and begin the journey to installing a skylight on your metal roof today!