vario by velux bespoke rooflight extension
30 Mar, 2021

The difference between cheap and expensive rooflights

When you’re planning a building project, costs can rise quickly. There’s usually a limited budget and you’ve got to make it work while also getting the best value for money. You might do this by tweaking the materials, making things smaller or compromising on your dream look but while the cost is important, quality can’t be compromised.

The National Association of Rooflight Manufacturers has highlighted the importance of quality on their website, expressing concern about the dangers of not having rooflights that don’t meet certain standards and the implications that might have for customers.

For rooflights, going for a cheaper alternative or buying from a non-approved vendor can have severe consequences. When it comes to a building project, the materials and fixings you’ll use will create a structure that will stand the test of time, lasting for as long as 25 to 35 years, so going with a cheaper option could be costly in the long run.

Quality rooflights, roof windows and skylights

Made-to-order rooflights and windows are usually fitted on a pitched or flat roof and will need to fit the orientation of the plane with the surrounding roof. A high quality and more expansive rooflight can help to literally broaden your horizons, creating a large and expansive view of the outdoors, allowing more daylight to naturally flow into your property.

In addition, a made-to-order rooflight can also open so that you don’t just enjoy natural sunlight seeping in through but also natural ventilation. Combining these natural elements will make an enormous difference to how your home feels, allowing it to evolve into a soothing, stress-free environment that really brings everything and everyone together.

vario by velux bespoke rooflight extension 

Safety and security in the cost vs quality battle

As mentioned earlier, NARM have expressed concern regarding the quality of products provided, insisting that customers’ need to be aware of the implications of installing an under-spec rooflight.

In the past few years NARM has seen an increase in manufacturers and traders within the industry offering under-spec rooflights. Customers should be cautious, as some of these brands don’t offer the type of quality and guarantee that you’d expect from a long-established one. There are some rogue manufacturers in the industry, who will try to sell lower-quality products, directly to customers, products which simply won’t have the longevity or quality of higher-priced equivalents.

When it comes to cost vs quality, one area that’s impacted is the glass itself. While there are some cheaper alternatives on the markets, sold by manufacturers using marketing tricks - such as saying they have ‘toughened’ glass - you do have to consider what that actually means. Quality laminated glass that comes with a laminated inner pane to protect against breakage is really what’s required to protect both the inside and outside of your home, anything less than that will put your home at risk.

For rooflights, this can also mean safety for personnel who need to access the roof and walk on non-fragile glass such as this. In addition, poor quality work can also impact the security, water tightness and thermal performance of rooflight, skylight or roof window from a less reputable manufacturer.

Insulation is another area that will be impacted by the quality of your rooflight, with Uw values plummeting if the construction and insulation of the upstand isn't up to scratch. This is because a cheap rooflight that lacks the quality required could cause condensation and provide poor thermal performance throughout your home.

So, if you’re looking to save on cost when you’re planning your building project, it should be quite clear that it shouldn’t be on anything integral to the structural integrity of the building. You might think that you’ll save a few hundred pounds now but long-term structural issues that need fixing can often run into the thousands, meaning that over time you’ll be way out of pocket from what you originally planned.

Where can you save money?

So where can you save? Well, choose wisely on the softer or more aesthetic elements of the building, such as furniture, paint, wallpaper, as you can upgrade them at any point without harming the safety or integrity of the building.

As we’ve already established, you can’t compromise the integrity of the building or the core elements, so replaceable items like the above, will offer you the best chance of saving money on your project in the short-term, allowing you to focus on the true pillars of the plan.

If you’re looking for help when it comes to bespoke rooflights, skylights or made-to-order windows for your building project then get in touch with our experts today. We’ll be more than happy to walk you through the options and provide you with the best advice on quality products that are built to last. 

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