Why it’s not such a good idea to replace only the outer acrylic dome
Many contractors will repair your damaged acrylic skylight by simply removing the outer lens and replacing it with a new one. Or, after major hail storms we see roofers, skylight manufacturers, and so-called skylight experts driving around neighborhoods with replacement outer domes in their vehicles. They knock on doors and charge owners for replacing the outer lens. Homeowners take them up on the offer because they feel they need the repair as quickly as possible. This is not a good idea or a good repair.
There are many factors why this is not a good idea. Here is a list of a few:
- The replacement dome doesn’t match the old inner dome in shape and size. This “misalignment” causes noisy “popping” skylights.
- Proper gasketing materials are not used causing leaks in the future.
- Proper spacing in-between the inner dome and outer dome causes poor insulating values.
- Your insurance company is required to replace the damaged skylight not just repair it. Take advantage of the opportunity to replace it with a much better quality acrylic domed skylight with thermal break frames.
- Invest a few more dollars and replace your skylight with a Velux FCM glass curb-mount skylight. These are hail-resistant and more efficient.
Outer dome damage does not mean your skylight will leak right away. If your concerned just tape up the damage or cover the whole skylight in plastic and take the time to talk to real skylight experts about how to replace your skylight properly.