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New Englanders Want to Know: Can You Have Skylights With a Metal Roof?

Aug 18, 2018

Skylights improve the interior of your home. They help reduce your energy bill with proper installation and make your home warm and inviting. But can you still have a skylight, if you’re a homeowner in New England with a metal roof? The answer is yes. Here’s a rundown of what skylights do for your home and what to consider when installing one in a metal roof.

Energy Efficiency and Natural Lighting

Metal roofs have a reputation for being energy efficient. Adding a skylight increases the sustainability factor by adding a source of natural lighting and passive solar heat. Natural light decreases the need for conventional lighting, decreasing your energy bill. Plus, the sun in the winter brings warmth, cutting heating costs. In the warmer months, a remote-controlled shade can block any extra heat from entering your home.


Old-fashioned sunlight is one of the best ways to kill microbes. They are prone to grow in dark places such as the attic, basements and bathrooms, putting dangerous spores into the air. The addition of a skylight allows natural sunlight to flow, keeping healthy air quality in your home.

Replace Skylights Over 10 Years Old

Window and skylight technology changed drastically in the last 10 years. Old window panes let out a lot of heat during harsh Harford winters and let in heat in the summer. If your skylights are more than 10 years old, it is time to replace them when adding your new roof. Only use double-paned skylights with a low-E coating. The difference between materials will save you hundreds of dollars on your energy bill over the life of the skylight.

Use Good Flashing

High-quality materials do make a difference, especially in the case of skylights. Have a professional flash around the skylights. You only get one shot at making them waterproof during installation. It’s better to spend the money and do it right the first time, instead of regretting it later when there is water damage.

Consider Orientation

Orientation of a skylight should benefit the interior of your home. A southern-exposure skylight adds heat in the colder months but won’t add too much in the warmer weather. In a sunny climate, a western-exposure skylight can significantly add to your cooling costs, making it an unwelcome addition. Consider the placement of your skylights carefully or you could turn your home into an unwanted oven.

Proper placement, high-quality flashing and new technology all give skylights function in your home. If you are replacing your roof, consider adding a skylight to your design plan or replacing your existing skylights with more efficient technology to improve your home.

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