Why is my VELUX Roof Window Leaking?
4 minute read
VELUX roof windows are a popular choice for many homes in the UK. The roof application and the quality make them ideal when space is at a premium, such as lofts and pitched roof spaces. Allowing natural light to penetrate the room. It goes without saying that VELUX roof windows – like your normal windows – should not leak, however, due to their unique nature they can be more susceptible to the elements and may suffer during heavy or persistent rain.
Spotting the signs of a leak may be easy in a lot of cases, but catching leaks early – especially in older, 20 year+ VELUX windows – is the key to maintaining a dry home.
Here’s a list of areas you should be checking in your older VELUX roof windows…
- Corners of the windows – this is especially prevalent when installed on a pitched roof and exposed to the elements.
- At window bottoms, this is the area that will be hit hardest by the weather as gravity pulls all the water to this area
- On the sides of the frame as they rarely leak directly from the top
If you want to get ahead of the game you can run your fingers up each area of the frame and feel for changes in air temperature – this will highlight any air leaks, which could be a sign of things to come. Water leaks are easiest to spot after we’ve had rain (you won’t have to wait long in the UK), again if there are no signs of water ingress on the walls, you can run your hands along the frame to feel for moisture.
As a VELUX trusted installer, we have been fitting VELUX roof windows for over 20 years and have an in-depth knowledge of what to look out for and how to fix leaking VELUX roof windows.
What Causes My VELUX Roof Window To Leak?
There are several potential causes for your VELUX roof window leaking, but in most cases, it is not down to the frame. Famed for their durability and quality, VELUX windows are extremely durable which makes them, that little bit more frustrating when they do leak.
Cause 1 – Incorrect Installation
Given that VELUX windows are built to such exacting standards quite often when we are called to attend to a leaking window, it is down to the inexperience of the person who has fitted the VELUX roof window.
Completing an installation on a pitched angle requires specialist knowledge. If they are experienced, it may well be that they still have relatively little experience in fixing windows to a pitched angle.
Cause 2 – Old Roofing Felt
Quite often it is not the installation of the VELUX window at all, but they felt which provides the weather-tight seal. From ineffective flashing kits, screw holes piercing the felt or other damage, sustained over time. You should be able to observe the condition of the outer flashing by opening up the window.
Cause 3 – Frame Rot
Since their conception, VELUX Roof Windows have been available in a wide range of materials – including timber! If you or the people before you chose to install a wooden frame for the VELUX window you may be opening yourself up for higher maintenance or repair costs in the future. The issues that a rotting frame results in can easily cause leaks, which may mean you need to replace the entire frame.
Cause 4 – Damaged Glass Panels
Now, this doesn’t happen too often as it is very easy to spot ahead of any water ingress into a property, but a damaged glass panel could well cause leaks in your window. Now obviously if the panel has a crack in it or is smashed this is a clear indicator that it needs replacing.
If the glass itself looks intact but is steaming up between the two panes of glass, this is a sign of the vacuum seal being broken on the sealed unit and it needs replacing.
While the solutions to fix a VELUX roof window can be annoying when you don’t know what is exactly causing it, regular maintenance is vital to ensure you get the longevity out of your learning.
Your home’s ability to maintain efficient energy consumption relies on all windows and doors to be as fitted as possible. It only takes a small air or water leak to mitigate any gains made by having these units fitted and what’s more if it is a water leak, this can be extremely detrimental to the health and longevity of your roof.
How To Prevent Your VELUX Roof Window Leaking
Most of this next section is advice for most areas of your home which are exposed to the elements, and sometimes it just simply will not be possible to stop a window from leaking without replacing the whole thing, but following the points below it will give you the best chance at avoiding that hefty repair or reinstallation bill.
Solution 1 – Regular Maintenance
Keeping your VELUX roof window clean and carrying out general repairs or maintenance is essential and can help prevent most of the problems which result in leaks.
This is especially important for timber frames where rot may occur.
Solution 2 – Flashing Replacement
The felt and external flashing are vital for the water-tight seal. If yours is showing signs of wear, it may be time to replace it. While this can be costly, catching it early will enable you to have it rectified as soon as you can.
Solution 3 – Reduce Condensation
If you notice water coming in from the outside around the corners of the window, this is likely the difference in temperature between the inside and outside of your property. Try reducing the humidity levels inside your property.
Solution 4 – Call In The Experts
If you are still unsure of the source of your leak or do not understand how to fix the problem yourself, let us help. With over 20 years of working with VELUX roof windows, we’re uniquely positioned to help.
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