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Leaky Skylight: Diagnosis & Repair Tips

Leaky Skylight: Diagnosis & Repair Tips - All Roofing Solutions

Skylight leak repair are among the most common roof leak repairs seen in residential roofing.

A leaky skylight isn’t just an eyesore; it may be an indication of more serious, hidden damage. If you notice a leak around your skylight, you’ll want to diagnose it and have skylight repairs performed as soon as possible. In some cases, a leak around the skylight may indicate an overarching need for roofing repairs.

Diagnosing Skylight Leaks

The first step in any skylight repair is to identify the source of the leak with a thorough inspection. You’ll want to make sure the leak is not just excessive condensation that has moved along the underside of the glass and dripped down the side of the interior. This occurs more often in very cold climates, in single-glazed skylights, and in damp locations like bathrooms, kitchens and greenhouses.

If your skylight opens, check that it is fully closed, and that weather seals are in good condition. In addition, think about whether the leak occurs only in winter, in fall, or when there is snow or ice on the roof. If so, then look behind the skylight for leaves, ice, snow or other debris that might be blocking the downhill flow of water and causing it to back up under the roof shingles.

You’ll also want to look carefully at your roofing, paying particular attention to vent flashing or other roof penetrations. A leak in these locations can travel quite a distance before finding its way to an indoor opening at the skylight. For roof and skylight inspections, hire a contractor skilled in roofing repairs.

Skylight Repair Tips

Leaks at the insulated-glass frame may have permitted water to enter the window structure, forcing apart and damaging the seal of the insulated glass itself. If it’s determined that the insulating glass unit of the skylight has failed, you may be able to re-seal the unit against further water leakage. However, only a replacement of the skylight will remove the condensation and opaque skylight glass of a failed window unit.

If the skylight leak is at the roof flashing, it may be possible to make temporary repairs using roof flashing cement around the perimeter of the unit. However, proper repairs will require removing shingles near the skylight, installing appropriate flashing, and reinstalling new shingles in the area. Most skylights have integral flashing or a special flashing kit that is specifically designed for the skylight and roofing material.

Is Your Skylight Leaking?

If you notice leaks around your skylight, contact All Roofing Solutions for a comprehensive leak evaluation. We’re here to help with all your roofing installation and repair needs, and have over 15 years serving Delaware and Pennsylvania. For more information or to schedule a consultation, call 302-725-ROOF (7663) or request your free quote online!

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  1. Posted November 14, 2013 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Great article! Skylight flashing replacement is one of the top calls for roofing repairs we get.

  2. Posted February 5, 2014 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    Great article. You discuss elaborately about skylight. This post will help us to repair skylight Leaks. Keep sharing with us. Thanks.

  3. Posted March 31, 2015 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    I wouldn’t have thought about it before, but I can see it now. I am surprised more skylights don’t leak every now and then. Sealants are better than they used to be.

  4. Moo
    Posted November 10, 2015 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

    Good info! Last year I used 100% clear silicone caulking between the plastic lens and the aluminum frame just as a “temporary fix” and it worked all winter, so I forgot about it. I know better than that… silicone only lasts about a year before it starts peeling. Now I’m just trying to get through “another” Winter before having the pros replace the skylight that should have been done last Summer. It’s too muddy around the house now for them to replace a 4’X4′ skylight over my bathroom that is leaking through the attic and the drywall ceiling! I am very capable of doing a lot of stuff myself even at 60 years old, but when it comes to stuff I don’t know about I’m not so stupid to think I can learn a “trade” in a 5 minute youtube video! I just messed up, that’s all.
    In a last ditch effort I’m going to try to cover the skylight with plastic and hope a big windstorm doesn’t blow it off.
    Take advice from an old gal and pay somebody that knows what they are doing. But get the right guy to do the job. “You get what you pay for” but not always.

  5. Posted March 31, 2016 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    you still can’t find the source of the leak, use a garden hose to try and reproduce. Skylights often leak because their flashing is damaged, corroded, or improperly installed.

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