Is Your Skylight Contractor an Expert?

Especially in the winter months, when exterior home improvement projects are slow, you may find more businesses offering ‘skylight’ services, whether it be installation, replacement or repair.

Contractors, remodelers, roofers and handy-men may, in fact, have sufficient experience with skylights to do the job right every time.  However, please do not make the mistake of assuming that.

Take the time to determine if the person or company you are hiring is well-versed in EVERY aspect of skylights, so nothing about your project is guesswork.5starlogo

We’ve heard people say, “How hard can it be, isn’t it just a few screws?”…referring to a skylight replacement.

In the world of VELUX skylights today, it CAN be very technical these days.  There are literally hundreds of skylight options…sizes, fixed units, venting units, electric units, solar units, and types of glass…not to mention hundreds of blind and shade options.Vented-Skylight-Manual-or-Electric

Quite often, a homeowner does not even know what questions to ask to determine if they have found the right contractor for their job.  However, there are ways to make the best choice.

Here are just a few skylight questions you should ask to determine if you are working with an expert. (Some may not apply to your job, but it may be worth inquiring just to hear if you get a quick, thorough and intelligible answer):

1) What type of skylight is appropriate for this project?  Curb-mount? Deck-mount? And why?

2) Can you explain to me the benefits of glass v. acrylic?  Can you explain the energy efficiency of each?

3) What types of glass is available?

4) What flashing will be used?  Engineered or self-made?  Benefits or one over the other?flashingkit

5) Tell me about the benefits of venting units?  Electric v. solar?

6) What are the warranties on the different brands and types of skylights? What is your labor warranty?

7) Tell me about all the options, styles and colors of blinds and shades available.

8) Is there anything about my particular job that is unique or particularly challenging?

9) What professional credentials do you have? Are you a certified VELUX dealer or installer? What training did that require? Do you have a Kansas Roofing Contractor’s license?  Are you insured?

10) Where can I read customer reviews of your SKYLIGHT work besides your website?  Angie’s List? Home Advisor?  Others?

Please remember, if your potential contractor cannot easily answer all of your questions during your consultation, find someone who can.  “I don’t know” or “I will look into that” should raise red flags for you. The main reason homeowners have issues with skylights is due to improper installation or workmanship, NOT a physical defect in the unit.

Being careful on the front end of your project will ensure many, many years of all the benefits a skylight will provide!

Please call if you have any questions or would like to get started on your skylight plans!

Jeff

913.492.2989

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SKYLIGHTS AND INSURANCE CLAIMS

Why do insurance companies insist on replacing acrylic

skylight domes with more acrylic?

Very good question, and one I guess we need to find an insurance claims adjuster to answer.

Here is our view of the many reasons it just doesn’t make sense in 2014 to replace an acrylic dome with an acrylic dome….

1)  Acrylic was the technology in the 70’s and 80’s. It is no where close to the best material we have in 2014…why would you replace anything in your home with a technology that is 30 to 40 years old?finishedviewflashing

2) When we ask homeowners about this, we almost always hear “this is what the insurance company

will pay for.”

It makes us wonder if the insurer has even attempted to check prices for a replacement acrylic dom

e vs. a glass replacement skylight.  The price is very comparable, and yet, with glass you get a whole

list of huge advantages.

3) Replacement of just the acrylic dome part of a skylight involves disassembling and re-using an old skylight frame and hoping that frame then does its job on the roof for the next 20-30 years. Replacement with a new glass skylight gives you an entire new high tech unit on your roof, unadulterated and ready to perform.

4) Acrylic domes are not enegy-efficient. Velux glass is Energy Star rated. Using one is just like putting the finest quality windows on your home.

5) Acrylic domes create condensation when the temperature changes. Additionally, the view from inside is of ‘brown’ sky.

6) When hail happens, the acrylic skylights break. Glass rarely does. We have seen this year after year in Kansas City after hail storms. Glass is just so much stronger than plastic.

We think those are very compelling reasons to replace acrylic with glass.  Our goal is to empower homeowners with information they can take to their insurer when they request the latest technology in skylights.

Please feel free to call for more information and we can help you get the skylight that will serve you well for decades!

Jeff

913.492.2989