Skylights are a common feature on commercial property roofs. They are installed to let in natural light, which can help reduce energy costs.
However, they can also be a source of water leaks, which can cause significant damage to the interior of the building, including the ceiling, walls, and floor.
Leaks can also lead to mold and mildew growth, like in this case.
In severe cases, they can even cause the collapse of the roof.
Most skylight leaks are caused by one of several things: improper or poor installation, improperly installed flashing, faulty seals from lack of maintenance, water pooling, weather, or condensation.
Poor installation is the most common causes. If skylights aren’t installed correctly, they may not be properly sealed against the roof, which can allow water to seep in and cause damage.
Another common reason is that the flashing around the skylight has come loose.
That’s why it’s so important to hire a qualified professional to install your skylights.
Lack of Maintenance
As skylights age, the seals around them can begin to degrade, allowing water to seep in and causing leaks. This is especially true if the skylight is made of materials that are susceptible to weathering, such as plastic or wood.
The sealant is designed to keep water from infiltrating into the interior of the building. Over time, the sealant around the perimeter of the skylight can degrade, crack, or come loose.
When the sealant fails, water can enter through the gaps and cause damage to the roof and the structure of the building.
To prevent this, it’s important to have your them inspected regularly and resealed as needed.
Another common cause of skylight leaks is weather damage. High winds can loosen or break shingles around the skylight, allowing water to seep in and causing leaks.
Hail can also cause damage to the skylight itself, which can lead to leaking. Finally, keep an eye on the buildup of snow and ice around your skylights during winter weather and remove it promptly if it starts to accumulate.
By doing this, you can prevent small problems from becoming big ones.
Condensation occurs when humid air comes into contact with a cold surface, such as the glass or metal of a skylight. When this happens, water droplets form and can eventually lead to leaks.
In order to prevent condensation-related leaks, it’s important to make sure that your skylights are properly ventilated.
Preventing Skylight Leaks in Your Property
To prevent leaks in your commercial property, there are several things you can do:
–Make sure that the skylight is properly sealed when it is installed.
–Make sure that the area around the skylight is clear of debris so that water can drain properly.
–Make sure your skylights are properly ventilated to prevent condensation-related leaks.
–Inspect your skylights regularly and have them resealed as needed to prevent leaks from faulty seals.
–You should also clear your gutters & downspouts, trim trees , and take other preventive measures.
There are several things you can do to prevent leaks from happening in the first place, such as making sure that the flashing around your skylights is installed properly and having the sealant around them inspected regularly.
Have you had your skylights inspected regularly by a professional to prevent these problems?
Maurice is the Chief Inspector for U.S. Commercial Building Inspections of Southern California. He is a Certified Commercial Property Inspector (CCPI) with over 25 years of extensive experience in real estate, construction, restoration, remediation, and business development.
He holds numerous inspection certifications with the Commercial Property Inspectors Association (CCPIA), the International Association of Home Inspectors (InterNACHI), and he is also a Certified Mold Inspector (CMI), Certified Mold Remediator (CMR), and a member of the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA).