What is the Life Expectancy of a Skylight?

You can expect a skylight to last for at least 8 years up to 15. However, there are a few factors that determine this. In this article, we’ll take a look at the factors that are involved with a skylight’s life expectancy.

How Long Should Your Skylight Last?

A skylight is a great way to bring natural light and a feeling of airiness to your home, as well as decrease heating and lighting costs. When you decide that you’re going to install skylights in your home, you probably wonder how long you can expect them to last.

As long as they are installed and maintained properly, you can expect your skylight to last for about 8 to 15 years. Of course, if you live in an area where there are strong winds and storms or hail, you may only get 5 to 8 years out of yours. When cleaning your skylight, make sure that you only use mild soap and water, as chemicals can cause them to weaken and need to be replaced sooner.

Average Skylight Lifespan

As we just mentioned, the average skylight will last for a 8 years or more. However, there are several ways that your skylight could be damaged and not even last this long. If you have high-quality skylights that you take proper care of, you can expect them to last for up to 15 years.

If you are doing any roof repairs, you might want to consider replacing the skylights even if it hasn’t been 15 years. You might even be able to get a package deal and save money on both services by doing them at the same time.

Again, it depends on whether or not the skylight was properly installed and how well it has been maintained.

Importance of Proper Installation

When you decide that you want to have skylights installed in your home, this is not the time to be a DIY-er. You will want to call in a professional to make sure that they are properly installed. After all, the most common reason a skylight doesn’t even make it to the 8-year mark is being improperly installed. A professional will make sure everything is done right.

Climate/Weather Considerations

In addition to proper installation, your geographic location has a lot to do with how long your skylight will last. Of course, a lower-quality skylight won’t last nearly as long as a higher-quality one.

The most important factor to consider is how much hail, sleet, and snow you get in your area, as these can accumulate and put extra pressure on your skylight, which can affect the seal between the skylight and the roof.

Additionally, your skylight could be cracked or damaged by falling branches or hail.

Proper Maintenance to Increase Life of Your Skylight

Once your skylight has been installed, it’s up to you to take care of it. Below you will find a few tips for taking care of your skylight to make sure that it lasts. These are common mistakes, which can lead to more issues in the future if not addressed as soon as possible.

Do not use standard sealant/caulk for repairs

Skylights are just like the other windows in your home. They need to be able to contract/expand with the changes in weather. Since wood is sensitive to these, you can’t use standard caulk/sealant. If you do use standard caulk/sealant, the frame can’t fluctuate as needed, which can cause pressure to be put on the glass. This could cause the glass to crack/break.

There are sealants on the market that are specifically designed for this reason. This also goes for installation, but a professional will already know what he/she is supposed to be using.

Clean with soap and water

You will need to clean your skylight windows often. You don’t want build-up to form on the glass, as this would keep the sunlight out. However, don’t scrub too hard, make sure that you’re gentle, and take your time with cleaning.

Make sure that you use a non-abrasive cleaner, as it could cause the glass’ protective coating to break down- weakening the glass. Never use a metal scraper as this could cause your glass to become scratched/damaged.


Skylights are a great way to bring natural light and character into your home. As long as they are properly installed and maintained, you can expect a skylight to last for at least 8 years and as many as 15. If not properly installed and maintained, you may not even make it to the 8 years. Make sure that you have a professional do the installation and take proper care of them once you have them installed. Contact us today and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions and concerns about skylights.