Deck VS Curb Mounted Skylight: Differences, Costs, Pros And Cons

It is always hard to finalize when you begin thinking of adding a skylight to your home. You have to consider many factors, such as how much natural light you want for the space and how large you want the skylight to be in ratio to your room and your budget.

It is a hassle to pick either a deck-mounted or a curb-mounted skylight as they both have their advantages. You might wonder, which option among the two is best for you and fulfills your requirement list?

A deck-mounted skylight is attached to the roof with nails to secure it in place. They have a lower profile with a cleaner look and possess energy-saving qualities. Curb-mounted skylights are connected to the roof through a wooden frame, causing it to stick out a bit. They are a good choice for flat roofs, while deck-mounted skylights are suitable for high pitch roofs.

A skylight can completely transform a room or space in your home as it adds natural light and fresh air. But, before you opt for either deck mounted or curb mounted skylight, you must be aware of the difference between them. This article dissects the good and bad aspects of both of them. Let’s give them a read!

Is There Any Difference Between Deck And Curb Mounted Skylight?

The addition of a skylight to your home provides you access to lighting and ventilation. Besides, it also makes the room appear to be larger than usual. They are great for colder regions as they allow the sunlight to enter the home and warm up the entire space during the winter months. Similarly, in warmer areas, skylights let the fresh air fill the whole room to give a cooling effect.

Is There Any Difference between Deck And Curb Mounted Skylight?

In addition, homeowners also use skylights to make an architectural statement and add value to the home. If you are also thinking about installing a skylight, you must have come across the two most common types. They include curb and deck-mounted skylights.

Before you move on to make a final decision, it is of utmost necessity to know the differences between them to figure out which one is a better pick for you.

Also Read: Can You Build a Deck Over an AC Unit? – Step by Step Guide

1. Mounting:

The main difference between a deck and curb-mounted skylights is the mounting that can affect their whole appearance. A deck-mounted skylight is fastened directly to the roof sheathing eliminating the need for a framed curb. On the contrary, a curb-mounted skylight sits on top of a wooden frame or curb. It is then secured with nails on the sides and then flashed over.

Thus, deck-mounted skylights give a cleaner, tighter, and more modern look. Curb-mounted skylights provide a higher profile and bulkier overall look.

2. Roof Pitch:

Yet another point that makes a deck-mounted skylight distinct from a curb-mounted skylight is the roof pitch. The former is more suitable for usage in areas where high pitches roofs are more common. On the other hand, curb-mounted skylights are a better choice for low-pitched roofs.

For instance, as commercial buildings are more likely to have low pitched or flat roofs, in such a situation, a curb-mounted skylight is a necessity. Moreover, homes with higher pitches or where the outer appearance holds more importance require deck-mounted skylights. Thus, the roof pitch will determine how the skylight should get mounted.

Also Read: Can You Build a Deck Over a Septic Tank? Step by Step Guide

3. Traditional VS Modern Design:

Deck-mounted skylights are a newer addition to the skylight family. Because they are directly secured and flashed to the roof, deck mounts protrude less towards the outside and give a visibly pleasing appearance to your home. Curb-mounted skylights have a traditional design approach. So, they might not add much appeal to the house but are considered a cost-effective option.

The Pros Of Deck Mounted Skylight:

The Pros Of Deck Mounted Skylight


One of the great benefits of having a deck-mounted skylight is they are known to be highly energy efficient. This type of skylight has a lower profile which gives it energy-saving properties. Besides, deck-mounted skylights allow less heat to escape making them perfect for colder regions that require more warmth inside the home.

Visibly Attractive:

Most homeowners prefer deck-mounted skylights as they find them more visibly appealing. They protrude less from the outside of the roof, providing them a cleaner and balanced look. These skylights have a built-in drywall groove on the interior that is hardly noticeable. Thus, they are successful in increasing the attractiveness of the home.


Another quality of deck-mounted skylights is that they offer more security to the home. As they are flush with your roof directly and more hidden from the outside, this subcategory of skylights is much more secure. It is difficult for an intruder to break into the house using this entrance.

Ideal For Multiple Skylight Installation:

Deck mounts are ideal if you plan to add more than one skylight to your home. They are a popular modern skylight type as you can flash them for shingled roofs, shake roofs, metal roofs, and even tile roofs. Also, you can enhance their energy efficiency with certain kinds of flashing that best serve the area and region you live.

Also Read: How to Build a Deck Without Digging Holes? Step by Step Guide

Meets The New Building Code:

Deck skylight mountings are gaining much attention, especially in advanced countries, as it meets the new building code. Every area or location has a set of construction rules and regulations that you have to follow and can sometimes make you restricted. But with deck mounts, you don’t have to worry much as you can use them on roofs having a pitch ranging from fourteen to eighty-five degrees.

The Downsides Of Deck Mounted Skylight:

The Downsides Of Deck Mounted Skylight


Deck-mounted skylights are generally expensive as they require intensive labor for installation. Thus, if you are looking for a cost-effective and budget-friendly option, deck mounts might not be for you, and you should consider curb-mounted skylights instead.

Also Read: Cheapest Ways To Build A Deck In 2022

Set Sizes:

If you want to customize the size and shape of the skylights for your home, deck-mounted skylights might not be able to give you a lot of room for experimentation. The size range is restricted compared to curb-mounted skylights. Also, the latter offers more flexibility in customization as per your personal preference.

Shingle Removal:

Another major downside of deck-mounted skylights is that they might require the removal of shingles around the skylight when you plan to install or replace them. Doing so adds to extra labor needs but also increases the expenses. Furthermore, it will demand finishing touch-ups from the interior side too.

The Pros Of Curb Mounted Skylight:

Easier To Replace:

Curb-mounted skylights are better for areas that might need complete replacements frequently or as a replacement for an older skylight. With curb-mounted skylights, you often don’t have to involve the flashing as long as it is in a decent condition. It gives you the freedom to change and fasten the new skylight onto the existing curb effortlessly and without any difficulty.


Another advantage of curb-mounted skylights is that they can get turned. Thus, it gives the homeowner versatility with design options. It is especially true for fixed curb-mounted skylights, and you don’t have to stress over condensation control. These skylight types possess a condensation weepage system located in their four corners.

Works On Flat Roofs:

Curb-mounted skylights are perfect for installation over a completely flat roof. It is a reason more conventional building structures often go well with curb mounts for light and ventilation. However, it is advisable to have a slight slope on the curb for better energy efficiency, but it is not mandatory.


If you want customizable skylights, the curb-mounted category will work for you. They allow you to have specific-sized skylights that you can then fit in the intended space without trouble as they are a good match. You cannot have such freedom with other skylight types.

Provides More Light:

As curb-mounted skylights have a larger glass area, unlike similar-sized deck mounts, it provides a way for more light to enter your space. Thus, you enjoy natural brightness and get a beautiful view of the outdoor environment.

Provides more light

The Downsides Of Curb Mounted Skylight:

Higher Profile:

As curb-mounted skylights are not flush with the roof like deck mounts, they have a higher profile. As a result, it can be a turn-off for many homeowners because it doesn’t look visibly appealing and often gives a traditional and old look to the house.

Less Energy-Efficient:

The biggest downside of installing a curb-mounted skylight is that it tends to be less energy efficient than deck mounts. The curb of these skylights is about 1.5 inches of wood, which means this will be the only source of insulation. So, curb mounts have a higher risk of heat loss during cold winter when warmer rooms are required.

Cost Comparison Of Deck And Curb Mounted Skylight:

When you plan to install a skylight in your home, budget is one of the leading factors you need to consider before sticking with the type of skylight you want. Now about curb VS deck mounts, the former skylight costs significantly less than a deck-mounted skylight as various reasons are behind it.

Cost Comparison Of Deck And Curb Mounted Skylight

Firstly, curb-mounted skylights demand less labor work for the installation process. Once the curb is created, it becomes easy to mount the skylight over it. On the flip side, a deck-mounted skylight might require adjustments to fit perfectly into the space designated for the skylight. Moreover, a deck mount needs maintenance with passing time. You have to inspect them time and again for leaks, and in case you detect any, they should be repaired or replaced.

Curb-mounted skylights are durable and never experience the same leaks as you would expect from deck-mounted skylights. A deck-mounted skylight, on average, can cost around $150 to $2500, excluding the additional repair and maintenance cost. On the other hand, a curb-mounted skylight price range is about $150- $1500, which is a lot less comparatively.

Also Read: Deck VS Terrace


Adding a skylight to your roof is an effective way to increase the amount of natural light that will brighten your home. Besides, a skylight will significantly lower energy bills and give your room good ventilation and fresh air. There are two types of skylight options available to install on your roofs, including curb-mounted and deck-mounted skylights.

Curb-mounted skylights are the most common type. They usually sit on top of a framed opening in the roof while a deck-mounted skylight is fastened to the roof directly. Curb-mounted types are typically more economical and budget-friendly. However, they are less energy-efficient and do not add value to the home.

Deck-mounted skylights are highly efficient in energy and add visible appeal to the property. However, they are more expensive than curb-mounted skylights, so you need to finalize one according to your budget.


Does Every Skylight Eventually Leak?

Not every skylight tends to leak, but many of them might sooner or later. Some skylights even look as if they have a leakage. But, they do not have any because they are widely notorious for causing condensation problems. However, there are many ways by which you can avoid it from happening.

What Is The Life Expectancy Of A Skylight?

A skylight can last between eight to fifteen years depending upon how well it gets installed, plus the standard of the skylight’s manufacturing. Furthermore, there is a high chance that improper installation can cause a leak from the skylight edges, the point where it meets with the building frame.

Can You Put A Deck-Mounted Skylight On A Flat Roof?

If you have a metal roof, it will only support deck-mounted skylights. On the contrary, if you possess shingle or tile roofing, you have the freedom to pick either a deck-mounted or a curbed skylight for your home.

Also Read: How To Protect Your Deck From The Weather?

How Do You Keep Skylights Clean?

You can keep your skylight clear and shiny on the inside by cleaning the glass with a soft, lint-free cloth. A few other things you would need are a chamois leather or a non-abrasive sponge. If you want, you can also go for a non-metal window squeegee. Usually, clean water is enough for the process, but a gentle household cleaner will also work fine.

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