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Glass Roof Panels: A Clever Alternative to a Conservatory

1 April 2018
The installation of glass roof panels to an existing roof can create an illusion of additional space as well as offering significant improvements to your property’s energy efficiency.

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The skylight industry has really taken off in the last decade, as residential and commercial property owners alike are quickly acknowledging the numerous benefits a skylight can bring.

Perhaps the biggest attraction for consumers has been increasing product ranges, providing new features such as opening rooflights for roof access, internal floorlights for bringing natural light into cellars and basements and even electronically operated accessories that work autonomously to give property owners peace of mind.

Planning permission and building regulations

Planning permission is very rarely an issue with the installation of a glass roof panel even if it’s a new addition to an existing roof; though it’s always worth checking with your local planning council to be sure.

In fact, the only legal restriction you have to watch out for is Building Regulations that limit how much glass an individual structure is allowed. If you’ve sourced an architect to help with the design and installation of your glass rooflight then they should have an awareness of the regulations, as will building contractors.

A common misconception is also that a roof lantern or pyramid-shaped skylight – that you’d often find atop a conservatory – lets in more natural light. In our experience, during the last decade of designing bespoke rooflights it’s the exact opposite. There is less natural light coming through a lantern and certainly more issues with planning and maintenance.


On the subject of maintenance, it’s important that, if you do purchase a glass roof for your property, it’s not fitted with an integral upstand. An external upstand should be delivered and weathered into the roof membrane prior to the fitting of the rooflight. This will ensure that there’s a correct lean for water run-off and that in the event there’s a problem in the future, the skylight can be removed without damaging the roof structure.

How much do they cost though?

The cost of a high-quality rooflight starts from around £800, rising in price according to complexity and size. For instance, an electronically opening skylight for access or ventilation can start at around £1,700 and a walk-on unit costing around £900.

If you’d like to discuss the possibilities of installing glass roof panels from the UK’s only skylight designer and manufacturer to boast accreditation from the British Standards Institute (BSI) drop us a line or call our friendly team today on 01922 714087.

Download our whitepaper on building regulations

Written to help architects, surveyors and home improvers alike understand every UK building regulations.

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