Curb Mounted vs. Deck Mounted Skylights: Which is Right for Your Home?

Are you considering adding a skylight to your home? Before you make a decision, it’s
important to understand the differences between curb mounted and deck mounted skylights,
as well as between other features and materials. Both styles have their advantages, but
depending on the type of roof you have, one may be more suitable than the other. In this blog
post, we’ll explore the pros and cons of curb mounted and deck mounted skylights, as well as
the various materials they’re made from. Ultimately, you’ll be able to make an informed
decision about which style is right for your home.

Types of skylight mounts

When it comes to installing a skylight, one of the most important decisions you’ll have to
make is deciding which type of mounting to use. There are two main ways to mount skylights:
deck mounted skylights and curb mounted skylights. Deck mounted skylights are installed
directly onto the roof deck of your home. They have a built – in curb and have a low profile. This
type of skylight should not be installed on a flat or very low- sloped roof. Curb mounted
skylights are installed over the top of an on-site constructed box-like frame which is secured to
the roof structure.  The curb must be flashed by the installer, and the skylight is installed on top
of the curb.   

 Fixed skylights vs. vented skylights

When considering skylights for your home, you’ll need to decide between fixed skylights
and vented skylights. A fixed skylight does not open, meaning it provides a non-operable source
of light. It also requires very little maintenance, as the lack of moving parts helps prevent it
from becoming damaged. Vented skylights can be opened to allow for more natural light and
ventilation, depending on the weather outside. They are particularly beneficial in rooms with a
lot of humidity, as they can help to reduce moisture and improve air circulation. Vented
skylights are available in manual and motorized versions, which have different advantages.
Manual versions allow you to open and close the window yourself, while motorized versions
can be opened and closed with the touch of a button or by using a remote control. No matter
which type of skylight you choose, it’s important to note that they must be properly installed to
prevent water and air infiltration. Both types of vented skylights will require regular
maintenance to ensure that they continue to perform efficiently. Properly maintained skylights
can add beauty and value to any home.
Fixed Skylights: Fixed skylights are an inexpensive option for introducing natural light
into the home and do not need to be opened or closed. They are the most commonly installed
skylights, because of their low maintenance and value. However, since these skylights do not
open, they cannot provide ventilation like vented skylights.
Vented Skylights: Vented skylights allow for both natural light and ventilation. They can
be opened to let in air when desired. The downside of vented skylights is that they are typically
more expensive than fixed skylights and may require more complicated installation and

Materials used in skylights

Skylights come in a variety of materials to suit different needs. The most commonly used
glazing materials include glass, fiberglass, and acrylic. Glass is the most popular material for
skylights because it is strong, durable, and is transparent, which allows natural sunlight to pass
through. It also provides good insulation and does not require regular maintenance. However, it
can be costly. Fiberglass is another popular material used in skylights. It is lightweight, cost-
effective, and very durable. Fiberglass also provides good insulation. However, it will not allow
as much natural light to pass through as glass and is not transparent. Acrylic is a cheaper
alternative to glass and fiberglass, but it is not as strong or durable. It also does not provide as
much insulation as the other two materials and is also not transparent.  However, it does
provide a good amount of natural light.
Advantages and disadvantages of each type of curb mounted vs. deck mounted skylights
Curb Mounted Skylights: Curb mounted skylights are typically installed on a site- built
framed box above the roofline. This type of installation is beneficial because it allows for
optimal light and can be easily opened or closed when needed. On the downside, it can be
more expensive than a deck mounted skylight due to the extra installation labor and materials. 
           Deck Mounted Skylights: Deck mounted skylights are typically installed directly onto the
roof deck. They are also great for providing natural light to interior spaces. They have a lower
profile than many curb mounted skylights. This exterior aesthetic is preferred by many
homeowners. Deck mounted skylights are much less expensive to install than curb mounted
skylights, as they don’t require additional construction of the curb on the roof. Deck mounted
skylights may be the type that is installed with a separate, multi-part flashing kit, which must be
purchased from the manufacturer, or may be self-flashing, like SIG Skylights’, with a flange that
is built-in to the skylight. The self-flashing skylight greatly simplifies installation and does not
require the extra expense and complication of a flashing kit.  Self-flashing skylights come pre-
installed with metal self-flashing that is deal for asphalt shingles. They are pre-finished for a
clean and modern look. Self-flashing skylights are welded and painted for both strength and
durability. Self-flashing skylights are also significantly easier to install than curb mounted
skylights or deck mounted skylights with complicated multi-part flashing kits. Alternate types of
flashing must be purchased separately in most cases and tend to overcomplicate process.

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