How much does it cost to repair a skylight?
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Skylight Repair Cost Guide
Updated: November 28, 2022
Skylights are decorative pieces that improve a home’s curb appeal, but like everything else in the home, they can have problems that require fixing. A common homeowner frustration is the appearance of a serious leak around a professionally installed unit. Even a small leak can cause water damage to the roof, the attic space, the materials in the ceiling, the insulation, and the interior of the home beneath the leak. For this reason, when a leak is evident near a skylight, professional intervention is key.
The national average cost of skylight repair ranges between $350 and $800. Most homeowners spend around $500 to replace the flashing and seal around the edges of a fixed skylight. On the low end, you will pay around $100 for a simple dome repair for a single tubular skylight. On the higher end of the spectrum, you can pay up to $1,625 for a full replacement of a ventilated skylight, including removing the old one.
Skylight Repair Price
|Cost to Repair Skylight
|National average cost
Cost to Repair a Skylight by Type of Skylight
You can expect to spend between $300 and $1,200 on skylight repair based on the type of skylight that needs to be fixed. There are three main types of skylights, each with its own considerations and repair costs. Tubular skylights are small and fairly easy to repair, while fixed skylights and ventilating skylights have higher repair costs because of their features and size. In the table and subsections below, you will see a breakdown of each type, its related costs, and other factors.
|$300 - $500
|$350 - $800
|$500 - $1,200
Repair a Tubular Skylight
Tubular skylight repair costs between $300 and $500. They are among the cheapest to repair. This is because they are typically much smaller than other skylights and have less flashing, weatherstripping, and other components that can become necessary to repair over time. The common repairs include fixing seals and replacing weatherstripping, but other issues may also arise.
Fixed Skylight Repair
A fixed skylight is the most common type, with repairs costing between $350 and $800. Common repairs include the weatherstripping and sealing of these units. The high end of the price range may include replacing the skylight window glass or other more expensive features. Usually, these windows are larger and require more attention to detail than other repairs. If there is severe damage, a full replacement may be required. However, repairs are generally easy to make in most cases.
Ventilated Skylight Repair
The average ventilated skylight repair costs $500 to $1,200, depending on the repairs needed. These skylights are more complex, including multiple mechanisms and operating parts, making them the most expensive option. Common repairs for ventilated skylights include motor repairs (for motorized units), hand crank repairs, and sealing or weatherproofing, which is also an issue for most types of skylights. If parts or the entire window need to be replaced, the costs will also be among the highest.
Cost to Repair a Skylight by Problem
Depending on the problem you have with your skylight, the price to repair it ranges between $50 and $1,700. They can have a range of problems. They are exposed to the elements from one side, so rain, snow, ice, and heat can cause damage to the glass, frame, or other roof issues. The most common problems are leaks, fog, heat loss, corroded frames, hail damage, cracks, and ice dams. Here is how much you can expect to spend to fix each of these problems.
|$50 - $600
|$50 - $700
|$50 - $800
|$50 - $1,700
|$175 - $600
|$200 - $1,200
|$300 - $1,700
|$400 - $1,200
Leaking Skylight Repair
Depending on the cause of the leaking skylight, fixing it can have a price of $50 to $600. This is one of the most common problems homeowners have with this type of window because they are tilted on the roof. Mainly, leaking issues happen when the flashing between the frame and roof loosens or when the glazing seal between the glass pane and frame starts corroding. If these two areas get loose, water can start leaking. A corroding frame can also cause leaking. To fix the problem, the contractor will fix or replace the flashing, seal, or corroding frame.
Foggy Skylight Repair
If you have a fog or condensation issue with your skylight, it will cost between $50 and $700 to repair. Excess humidity within the home can lead to skylight fogging that simply needs to be ventilated. However, constant condensation or fogging could indicate a more serious issue. For example, a skylight in a bathroom will usually fog during a shower, but it will dissipate once the water is off. If the issue does not go away, the solution is usually to repair or replace the flashing, seals, and/or skylight frame.
Skylight Heat Loss
Solving heat loss has a price between $50 and $800 depending on the issue at hand and the appropriate solution. While skylights provide daylight and ventilation to your home, they can cause unwanted heat in summer to enter the home and a loss of heat from the home during winter. The most common methods applied by professionals include resealing the unit, fixing the metal flashing, and, in some cases, weather stripping. If you want to solve this issue, you may apply insulated glazing, low-emissivity coating, or install a translucent insulation material between the glazing layers of the glass.
Solving mold issues has a range of expenses, ranging from $50 to $1,700 depending on whether repairs can be made or if the seal or flashing needs to be replaced. The most common reason mold appears on windows is condensation due to the difference in temperature on the two sides of the window (inside and outside). Mold can also happen for various other reasons. Water leaks, inner condensation, improper sealing, or cracks can cause water to seep into the window or interior and mold to form as a result. If you notice the mold has spread to other areas of the ceiling beyond the skylight, or other parts of the home, you may have to hire mold remediation services. They will inspect where the mold has spread and remove it from every part to ensure it is completely eradicated and the house is safe for everyone’s health.
Corroded Skylight Frame
Skylight frame repairs for corrosion cost between $175 and $600. If the situation is severe and you need to replace the frame entirely, it could become a much more expensive job. However, in most cases, repairs like replacing sections of the frame, weatherstripping, and seals can be made and provide better protection for the frame in the future. Some people may also opt to replace the entire skylight if the frame is too badly damaged, which will have a premium cost.
Skylight hail damage costs between $200 and $1,200, depending on the damage and its severity. If repairs can be made to the skylight, it will be much more affordable. However, if hail has cracked or shattered the glass, you may need to have a full replacement done to resolve the issues. Hail damage can be dangerous. However, it may also be covered by your home insurance, so be sure to ask about that when dealing with this type of problem.
Cracked Skylight Repair
A cracked glass can be fixed for $300 to $1,700, depending on whether the cracking can be repaired or if it is going to require a full replacement. Cracked glass can be temporarily fixed with silicone caulking and weather tape. However, this is a temporary fix and will only stop the current leak from causing further water damage to the roof, ceiling, and interior of your home. The cracked glass would still need to be fully replaced eventually. You may also be dealing with a cracked frame, which is a bit more affordable than the glass, but still has its own costs and considerations. Your repair professional will help you determine whether repair is possible or if you need to make a replacement.
Skylight Ice Dam
Cleaning ice dams from skylights is a very dangerous job, so they usually have a price of $400 to $1,200 depending on the time needed to clear up the ice from a single unit. If you live in areas with a cold climate, your roof area may have ice dams. The difference in outdoor and indoor temperature causes the snow that falls to melt and freeze again during the night. This forms ice dams that can be dangerous and cause damage not only to the skylight but also to the roof. To solve the problem with the ice, a professional may climb on the roof and chisel away the accumulated ice. To solve ice dam issues long-term, make sure that your attic is properly insulated and ventilated.
Skylight Repair Cost by Type of Repair
The total price to repair a skylight ranges from $50 to $600, including materials and labor. The type of repair will directly influence the price of the total project, as will the amount of repair work that needs to be done. Typically, skylight repairs happen in one of the areas listed, but any number of issues could arise, impacting the total project cost. In the table below, you’ll see some common types of repairs and their average costs, including labor.
|$50 - $150
|$50 - $200
|$50 - $500
|$100 - $200
|$150 - $600
Skylight Flashing Repair
If the contractor can repair the flashing without replacing it, the average price is $50 to $150. Instead of replacing the flashing, contractors may opt to seal the gaps or holes in the flashing with roofing cement. To repair the flashing, your contractor will use caulking and tape. Some advanced versions may involve using specialized foam. Repairing the flashing is required to solve problems with air leaks, heat loss, and mold. However, if you have a problem with water leaks, repairing the flashing will not work, but new flashing will be needed.
Skylight Seal Repair
If the professional can repair the seal, the cost to reseal a skylight will be $50 to $200. A broken seal can lead to unwanted air or water leaks along with heat loss. The glazing seal may be corroded, which causes water and moist air to leak into the interior of the glass frame. If there is small/minimal damage, seals can be repaired with minor work. However, most contractors opt to replace the whole seal because it’s affordable and often easier than trying to repair a small section. Talk to your contractor about what is best.
Skylight Motor Repair
You will spend between $50 and $500 on skylight motor repair. A battery replacement is the cheapest, while other minor part repairs or replacements cost a bit more. At the highest end of this repair, you will spend as much as $500 on motor replacement when repairs cannot be made effectively. The motor is used to open and close the skylight mechanism. When it has issues, some parts require replacing. The exact price to get the motor back running depends on which part needs repairing or replacing. Keep in mind that if the motor has some electrical issues and requires new wiring, you need to hire an electrician.
Skylight Dome Repair
Although many contractors may not offer this service, the average price for dome repair is between $100 and $200. The contractor may also repair small cracks and leaks in the dome using silicone caulking and weather tape. While this fix is not ideal or permanent, it stops a leak and prevents further water damage to the roof, ceiling, or interior of the home. However, the dome will still need to be replaced in the event of serious damage, so homeowners should talk to their contractors about whether repairs or replacement are the ideal solution.
Skylight Frame Repair
The price to repair the frame runs from $150 to $600, depending on the severity of the damage and the size of the skylight. Skylights are installed on roofs, so their frames are exposed to the elements, which can cause them to warp, loosen, and leak. If water or moisture is not caught on time, it may cause the frame to start corroding. If it has not caused much damage, the frame can be repaired. However, if it goes unnoticed, it may cause irreparable damage to the frame that would require replacing it.
Skylight Repair Cost by Type of Replacement
Replacement parts range from $75 to $1,000, depending on what you are replacing. Sometimes, replacing parts is more cost-efficient and simpler to do than repairing them. In some cases, replacing is the only option to repair the skylight, such as when the dome or glass is cracked. Your contractor will analyze the problem and inform you whether replacing a part would be a better option for your issue.
Dome replacements are the least expensive and a common option when the dome is cracked or has other damage. Skylight flashing and seal replacement are also common because the skylight is exposed to the elements on the roof and can see more damage over time. This can ensure a tight seal and weatherproof installation. Some of the most expensive replacements include the skylight frame and/or glass. However, these provide years of durable use and may be the only option if the skylight frame or glass is damaged beyond repair. Skylight screens get replaced for the same reason. For motorized skylights, replacing the motor is an option and has a range of costs, depending on the circumstances. The table below shows the most common replacement parts and their costs, including labor.
|$75 - $150
|$90 - $300
|$250 - $1,000
|$300 - $500
|$300 - $700
|$300 - $700
|$300 - $800
Labor Cost to Repair a Skylight
From the $400 it costs to replace the seal, around $200 accounts for the labor expenses, while the remaining $200 is the price for the materials needed. The exact proportion of the labor versus material price depends on the repair itself. Generally, professionals charge $50 to $100 per hour, with most jobs taking about one to three hours to complete. It is important to keep in mind that contractors typically charge no less than one hour of labor and may need to come more than once. Usually, roofing contractors and handymen are hired to repair or replace a skylight.
If you call a repairman about your unit, they will likely perform a roof inspection for $100 to $600 and determine the problem. In many cases, the inspection cost will be included with the overall repair estimate if the person who did the inspection makes the repairs, which will not cost nearly as much as a standalone inspection. They may make the repairs during the same visit if the repair is minor. To do the repair, the professional determines the issue and the best way to repair it. Then, they remove the roofing material around the unit and all the fasteners holding it in place. If they replace flashing or seals, they must remove the old ones first. Once the necessary repairs are completed, they finish the work and make sure that the roofing material is intact and secure.
Some professionals offer discounted rates for sealing and flashing done at the same time. The cost of repairs depends on what needs to be repaired and how complex the job is. The size of the job also impacts the cost, with custom sizes being more expensive than standard sizes. Similarly, fixed models are more affordable to repair, while vented ones are more expensive to repair. Another factor that affects the price of the repair is the accessibility of the leak. The more difficult it will be to access the damaged area, the more expensive it will be to repair it. The roof pitch is also important. Those on roofs with more than 60% pitch require more custom materials and equipment to reach and are more expensive to repair, increasing the costs.
Emergency Skylight Repairs
If you need to hire repair services urgently, remember that emergency fees range from $100 to $300, which is usually in addition to the repair costs involved. Homeowners may need to request an urgent visit from a contractor if a significant volume of water is leaking into the home through a skylight over a weekend or holiday. The roofing contractor or handyman will charge an increased fee for working these days, increasing the overall project price.
Skylight restoration costs $500 to $1,500 per fixture, depending on the work needed and the level of damage or wear. If you have a skylight that is an architectural piece, an older installation, or something similar, you may elect for skylight restoration instead of repair or replacement. Repairs and replacements incorporate new parts and elements into a skylight, while restoration allows the fixture to be returned to its original condition (or as close as possible). Talk to your repair tech to find the better option if you have skylights that might be worth restoring.
Periodic maintenance can help prevent problems, as well as catch wear and tear early, before any damage to the home occurs. The maintenance costs are usually incorporated into a roof inspection. Maintaining a skylight consists of two components: cleaning and inspecting. Window cleaners can be hired to clean the interior and exterior glass with a mild detergent seasonally and will have the right equipment to safely scale the roof. Professional sealant inspections should be done three months after initial installation and then every 12 months after that. From the interior of the home, homeowners should monitor the site for problems like water stains and other issues and contact a repair professional immediately if maintenance is needed.
Cost to Repair vs Replace a Skylight
Compared to the $300 to $500 to repair a skylight, you may spend $800 to $2,200 for skylight replacement. This includes the cost of removing the old skylight, which usually runs around $50 to $200, with materials and labor included. If your skylight is too heavily damaged, it may require replacement instead of repair. For example, broken glass, a damaged motor, or corrosion of the frame could all lead to a replacement instead of repairs simply because it is easier or more cost-effective. In the table below, you’ll see a comparison of the average costs for repairs versus replacing a skylight.
|$300 - $500
|$800 - $2,200
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
Skylight window cleaning comes at the cost of $25 to $35 per window. Scheduling regular cleaning ensures the unit provides great views. It also prevents dust and debris from blocking the weeping holes that are essential to preventing condensation. Usually, companies offering window services do skylight cleaning, but at times, roofing contractors and handymen that do the repair may provide cleaning services as part of the repair package.
You can expect to spend between $11 to $19 per sq.ft. for window tinting for your skylight. This depends on the type of tinting chosen, the size of the window, and how easy it is to access. Tinting skylights usually costs more because they are on the roof and not as easy to access. Professionals can apply glazes, window tint film, and spray-on tint. These protect from harmful UV rays and keep the home cooler during the hot summer months.
Reglazing a skylight costs $300 to $800, depending on the size and type of the skylight in question. Reglazing is a way to replace UV coatings and ensure that the skylight glass (or other material) is in its best condition. It can also help seal small cracks and hairline fractures to prevent them from becoming bigger issues. This provides a longer lifespan for skylights and saves money on replacement costs.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Permits. In most jurisdictions, a permit is required to replace an existing skylight with a larger one, but repairing or replacing one without making any cuts into the roof may not require a permit.
- DIY repairs. While many homeowners elect to repair or replace their skylights without a professional, leaks and damage are more common following DIY work. Hiring a professional is the best route whenever possible. Most importantly, homeowners should review their insurance policies to ensure that damage resulting from DIY projects will be covered.
- Insurance. Repair and replacement are rarely covered by insurance as these projects fall into the same category as window replacement. If damage occurs suddenly, however—like in the course of a severe weather event—and creates an emergency in the home, insurance coverage may kick in.
- Warranty. Most units have a manufacturer warranty, so before scheduling a repair, make sure to check if your skylight is still under one. The company may cover the cost of the repair.
- Mobile homes. Mobile home skylights experience the same issues as regular units in a house, so they need to be repaired, replaced, or removed to prevent further damage to the structure.
- Timing. In some instances, repairing or replacing a skylight may be more affordable when you are already doing roofing work. Standalone replacements require some modification or removal and replacement of roofing materials. If the roof is already being replaced, those costs will not be as high.
- Upgrades. One option instead of repairing is upgrading to a solar-powered skylight or energy-efficient model. These often include federal tax credits and other rebates. If you have a skylight in need of serious repair or replacement, it may be worth considering an upgrade instead.
- Do roofers repair skylights?
Roofers, general contractors, window companies, and carpenters often replace skylights. Contact a company ahead of time to learn more about their experience installing, inspecting, repairing, and replacing them.
- Who do you call to fix a skylight?
You can call a roofing company, a general contractor, a window company, or a carpenter to discuss potential repairs. If you want to be sure the company you hire is experienced and knowledgeable in skylight repairs, take the time to read their online reviews and reputation. Hiring a reputable contractor is key to preventing future water damage or ongoing costs associated with repairs or replacements.
- How often should skylights be replaced?
Skylights have an estimated lifespan exceeding 20 years. They should be replaced when wear and tear has made them inefficient or ineffective in keeping water out of the home. In many cases, repair is an option, but when the glass is broken, the unithas aged out, or the cost of repair exceeds the cost of replacement, replacement is often recommended.
- How do I know if my skylight seal is broken?
A leaky skylight is a sure indication of trouble, but it is best to rely on a professional to determine whether the problem is the seal or something else. Signs of a leak include water stains on the ceiling, water damage in the home beneath the unit, or a soggy roof surrounding it.
- What is the life expectancy of a skylight?
Skylights usually last between 20 and 40 years, but it does not mean they cannot have problems before that. It is recommended to schedule annual inspections to discover problems before they cause any damage to the house.
- How much does it cost to close a skylight?
In some cases, homeowners choose to close in a skylight to avoid potential water damage, limit light, or do away with annual cleaning and maintenance. The cost to remove it and replace the interior sheetrock and exterior roofing ranges from $500 to $1,000 including parts and labor.