While beautiful and functional, skylights are prone to leaking. In fact, skylight leak repairs 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 a serious need for roofing repairs.
Step #1: 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.
Step #2: Skylight Leak Repairs
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.
Skylight Repair Tips:
- Use roofing cement (can or tube) to seal any gaps or holes in the flashing.
- Apply 100% silicone caulking (tube) to seal leaks around the skylight lens.
- If your skylight is still leaking, replace/repair the metal flashing around the frame of the skylight.
Is Your Skylight Leaking?
If you notice leaks around your skylight, contact All Roofing Solutions for a comprehensive leak evaluation. With nearly 20 years of experience, we’re here to help with all your roofing needs, large and small.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, call 302-725-ROOF (7663) in Delaware or 610-551-ROOF (7663) in Pennsylvania. We offer Free Estimates and honest service, never take shortcuts, and ensure every step is done right!